Northrop's message: 'finding happiness in your own life'

"Creative visualization affects everything that happens in our lives, both negative and positive," says Elaine Northrop, longtime Howard County real estate maven and first-time author who hopes to inspire others with her new book.

Since the December release of "Create Your Own Fate: Connect with Your Creativity and Change Your Life," Northrop is now working to launch a second career in motivational speaking and will give a talk at Savor, Sip and Style on Sunday, Feb. 19 at 11:30 a.m. She will also offer her book at a book-signing during the two-day luxury home showcase.

The book "is about finding happiness in your own life," said the Ellicott City resident who says she built the Elaine Northrop Team on the rebound after her first marriage dissolved..

The first step is realizing that "it's what you take away" from good and bad events in life that matters.

"Everything about an event is emotionally neutral; we choose to put our own spin on it and that's what we create for ourselves," said Northrop, 71. "My life has not been without sad events, but I haven't let them cripple me or change me."

She refers to the biggest disaster of her life — when her husband of 10 years ran off with her best friend four decades ago — as simultaneously being the best moment of her life, leading her to a successful career and to her second husband of 32 years, Rick Menz.

"Some people would have ridden the bus to bitterness and stayed there the rest of their lives," said the writer, who fills her pages with colorfully-worded advice.

"There's nothing exceptional about me that anyone can't recreate," she said. "If you believe it, you can bring it into being."

Northrop will preside over a question-and-answer session with the audience, a prospect she relishes in her mission "to get through to others and inspire them."

She added: "Most people let their thoughts control them instead of controlling their thoughts. Life is about who we believe we are and what we do as a result."

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