Are you the star of your own life?
1. Your birthday is today. Your boyfriend calls from work to say he's on his way to a baseball game. You say:
a. "No, sir. You are on your way over here with a thoughtful present and a dinner reservation, or you are not on your way over here again, ever."
b. "Oh, really? Because it's my birthday, and usually on one's birthday one's boyfriend is en route not to a baseball game but to a flower store. But hey, I forget things too. Actually, I don't forget birthdays anymore because of Facebook, but whatever. Have fun. And maybe later you can cuddle with the Marlins."
c. Nothing. Maybe he'll remember later. Or not. Really, it's fine.
2. You just did the most brilliant work thing ever done at your job. "Congratulations!" says your boss. You say:
a. "Thanks! I worked hard, and it really paid off. I feel fantastic!"
b. "Thanks! But Amy, Ben, Sally, Jake and Ryan all really helped make it happen. And I couldn't have done it without my interns. And the guy who brings us coffee. And this pen."
c. Mumble mumble. "It was nothing, sir." Mumble mumble.
3. You have to run to the store for milk. You put on:
a. Red lipstick, sunglasses and a vintage wrapdress.
b. A button-down and jeans and maybe some lip gloss.
c. Who cares? If pajamas are good enough for the house, they're good enough for the Safeway parking lot.
4. You arrive at a party and you know almost no one. What do you do?
a. Mingle! Play party games! Leave with five guys' phone numbers, a job offer and a new best friend.
b. Have a drink, gossip with your one friend and then take off.
c. Leave promptly. Do not pass go, do not eat an hors d'oeuvre.
5. It's between you and a work pal for a promotion. You want the job, but she's your friend. What do you do?
a. Say, "May the best man win!" And by "best man," you mean you, and by "win," you mean amaze the boss with a PowerPoint presentation enumerating the great work you've been doing.
b. See if you and your friend can be comanagers.
c. Bow out of the running. You wouldn't want to do anything to make her mad.
6. Where do you see yourself in five years?
a. Onstage, accepting an award, married to Ryan Gosling. OK, maybe not Ryan. But definitely wearing some kind of ridiculously expensive Rodarte dress.
b. Doing pretty much the same thing as today, but making more money and further along career- and relationship-wise.
c. The future is now. And to be honest, it reminds you of a crummy movie on TBS.
So how'd you do? If you had mostly A's, you're a star, baby, and you know it! Just don't be too demanding -- nobody likes a diva. Most of us, however, land in the B or C range, meaning we need to up our wattage a little, or a lot. "So many women consider themselves second-class citizens," laments Alice Domar, Ph.D., assistant professor at Harvard Medical School. "It's crucial to prioritize yourself. When you do, people respect you. You get further in your career. Your relationships improve." So how does a regular gal get that celeb swagger? Glamour's got your plan. Just don't forget to mention us in your acceptance speech.
Assemble your entourage
Drew Barrymore is famous for not going anywhere without a girlfriend on each arm. Lady Gaga reportedly brought a gang of 80 to a British talk show appearance. Eva Longoria lives with her friends. "We always say my house is the female Entourage," she's said of the arrangement. "I don't know what I would do without them." A support network is crucial in bad times and good, says Domar. "These are people who aren't competing with you," she says. "They believe in you and encourage you -- and they point out when you're messing up." If your girls go sour when they hear of your successes, take a cue from Theresa O'Rourke, a writer from New York City: "I grew up in a blue-collar world, and when I became a professional, I would see good friends from the neighborhood and they'd say things like 'Oh, look, it's the big writer,'" says O'Rourke, 37. "They weren't happy for me. I realized I had to steer clear of them." You want a crew that wants for you what you want for yourself and is happy to help you get it. And the man in your life? He should want those things for you too.
Treat yourself like an A-lister
Celebs make detailed demands in their contracts for the comforts they want in their trailers or dressing rooms. Andrew Goldberg of thesmokinggun.com, which has posted more than 300 of these contract riders, says while some requests are outrageous, like a certain R&B queen's insistence on a new toilet seat wherever she goes (cough, Mary J. Blige, cough), "the common theme is comfort." And if J.Lo requires white flowers, white furniture and white curtains for a cameo in a charity video, you can be a bit more high-maintenance too, says Domar. "What do you need to keep you happy throughout your day?" she says. "Start with your favorite brand of water, lipstick, hand cream, then add more indulgent things." Maybe you scrape together the cash for a maid or splurge on that $150 pillow you've been dreaming about. The point here: Don't settle.
Keep your eye on your Oscar
We all know the story: A starlet known for slick commercial flicks takes an unglam indie role and winds up with -- wow, how did that happen? -- an Academy Award and a reputation as a serious actress. (See: Charlize Theron in Monster, Halle Berry in Monster's Ball. Shall we go on?) This risky move isn't just for celebs: Lisa Broock left a juggernaut career in PR at ABC television to start at a more junior position in the news department for 25 percent less pay! "Best decision I ever made," says Broock, now 39 and managing editor at Us Weekly magazine. "I earned less, but I spent less because I loved what I was doing." Maybe you don't need a major switch to find your bliss, but you do need to lift your head up from your desk now and then and think about your end game. "Ask yourself, Am I on track with my long-term goals? What are they?" says Maggie Craddock, a career coach. "If you don't, you could wake up and realize your career's gone by" -- and you've played the kooky cubemate, rather than the hotshot in the corner office.
Hire a publicist
Ever read the story about Kate Winslet rescuing a 90-year-old woman from a burning building? Sure you have, because she, like all stars, has a publicist who's paid not only to keep bad news out of the papers but true stories of good deeds in. We all could use a booster, someone to talk us up to others in a way that would sound conceited coming from our own mouth -- whether to a professional contact or the cute guy at the end of the bar. "I bring my sister to events because she's free PR," says Cheree Berry, 34, a stationer based in St. Louis. "She'll introduce me: 'This is Cheree. She designed all the paper for Chelsea Clinton's wedding!' It's been good for business." So for work events and nights on the town, bring along your personal PR wingwoman to get you the positive attention you deserve.
Be a little full of yourself
Ever find yourself at the bottom of your own to-do list? "Women are very likely to meet the needs of friends and family, and then, if there's time, take care of ourselves," says Domar. For celebs, not an issue. Why? Because no matter how many babies they've adopted or all-night premiere parties they grace, they know that if they show up on set haggard and unfocused, the work suffers. So the smart ones get their eight hours, eat healthy and work out religiously. "Yes, celebs want to look toned and lean on camera, but they also work out for themselves," says Domar. "They know that exercise is the single best stress reducer we have." They have trainers to keep them honest, but the buddy system works just as well and adds an endorphin boost from bonding, Domar says. "Social support is the second best thing for stress," she says. However you do it, the point is this: Put your own needs first, so when life calls for a flawless performance, you'll be ready.
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