Excerpt: 'It's My Pleasure'

Maria Rodale, vice chairwoman of the publishing group Rodale Inc., has collaborated with her 23-year-old daughter, Maya, on "It's My Pleasure: A Revolutionary Plan to Free Yourself from Guilt and Create the Life You Want."

Maria Rodale, who had Maya when she was 20 years old and unwed, was miserable as the creative director of Rodale, her family's business. She came to the realization that she wanted to be a writer and took the steps to make that happen. Along the way, she and her daughter have learned to incorporate all types of pleasure into their lives by loving what they do and living life by their own rules.

You can read an excerpt from the book below.

Introduction: 'It's My Pleasure'

This is a book about the power of stories to change your life.

It's about stories we know deep in our soul, but have forgotten. It's about discovering the reasons why we forgot them, and remembering them again -- and seeing them in a new way. It's about why our culture looks down on those happily ending romances and fairy tales that little girls love and women secretly crave. This book is about why we let our children watch violence on TV, yet sex is strictly forbidden. It's about our story as women -- mothers, daughters, friends, journeying together on a long, adventure-filled, and sometimes frightening path. It's the story of many women who you may or may not have heard of, but who have paved the way for all of us in revolutionary ways -- in spite of tremendous odds.

These stories have already changed our lives and continue to, so we want to share our own story with you to show you some possible paths to take. But the true magic happens when you create your own story, which this book will help you do.

What's the main story that we've forgotten? It's the story of pleasure. How we lost it. Where we can find it again. It's the story of why pleasure often makes us feel guilty, as if we don't deserve it. It's about why we truly do deserve it, why it matters, and why it's so easy for us as women to say, every day, as we are helping others, "It's my pleasure," but so hard for us to say to ourselves "It's MY pleasure." This story is about a revolution in your attitude about yourself and about pleasure. It's about taking action to create positive change in your life and in the world. And, it's about appreciating the tremendous, wonderful change that has already occurred. Finally, it's about believing that maybe we can create a happy ending after all.

How I Tripped and Stumbled Onto the Path of Pleasure -- Maria

When I was 35, I quit my job.

You have to understand how scandalous this was. I had been designated the heir of my family's publishing business by my father, who had died seven years earlier. Until my mother decided to retire, which she vehemently vowed never to do, she was in charge of the company; then it would be my "turn." I was expected to work my way up the ladder, rung by rung, proving myself to the Guys (and to the occasional Girl-Guy, which is a woman who wants to be one of the Guys) along the way (none of whom, I realized later, really wanted me to succeed). I'd been climbing persistently since I was 13, when my parents forced me to work at the company to keep me out of trouble after school (the joke was on them).

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