You Are Enough! is an inspirational text that’s filled with practical advice for working and living with passion and purpose.
Charlene Wheeless’s You Are Enough! is part memoir, part motivational guide; it draws on Wheeless’s experiences climbing the corporate ladder and battling breast cancer to illustrate life lessons for others.
With the exception of its introductory biographical chapter, the book is organized not chronologically, but according to the words of advice Wheeless wants to share. She was the first person in her family to go to college and, in her thirty-plus-year corporate career, she became the first Black woman to reach the executive ranks at companies in industries that were dominated by men, including oil and gas, aerospace, and defense.
The book’s chapter titles, like “Quit Whining” and “If You Do Something Good, Tell Someone,” establish the book’s candid, common sense tone. Inspirational quotes from thought leaders like Maya Angelou and Marianne Williamson begin each, helping to establish their themes. Personal recollections are used to illustrate that Black women not only have to contend with a glass ceiling, but also a concrete wall that makes it impossible to even see what lies on the other side, much less determine how to get there. While acknowledging that there’s no single path around that wall, Wheeless shares advice on how she navigated the route herself. In a chapter on work-life balance, for example, she explains a strategy of outsourcing everything possible.
Wheeless’s experience in corporate communications is apparent in the clarity of the text. The book’s concise storytelling helps to make its messages resonant, as do Wheeless’s authentic, frank admissions, as of being chronically late, and regarding mistakes that could have gotten her fired; these contribute to career advice that can be applied in any industry.
Blog posts are included at the end of many chapters; these are just as compelling as the text itself. Many help to punctuate Wheeless’s lessons learned. The blog began after Wheeless’s 2017 breast cancer diagnosis; the same event is credited with prompting her to write a book, but is only part of the complex story that Wheeless tells throughout.
Declaring “Everything that I have or haven’t done or that has happened to me, for me, against me, or around me has led me to this moment and prepared me to tell my story,” You Are Enough! is an inspirational text that’s filled with practical advice for working and living with passion and purpose.
Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The publisher of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the publisher will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.