05/16/2012 01:40 pm ET Updated Jul 16, 2012

Turning Points in Successful Women's Careers

Turning points arrive after crises, when we feel lost or are grief-stricken. Turning points are experienced as a sudden awakening -- an epiphany that directs us to the True North on our internal compass, spinning us to destinations that later we call our destiny. Only then do we embrace them as our greater life, one in which we can make a difference to one another, even to the world.

Patty De Dominic, creator of the hugely successful temporary agency PDQ, philanthropist, and longtime leader of The National Association of Women Business Owners, has joined forces with Maureen Ford, formerly of March of Dimes, and an entrepreneurial educator. They have written a book, Life Moments For Women, showcasing the testimonies of 108 women, diverse in backgrounds yet alike in their resolve, to share their inspirational accounts through a glimpse -- just two pages each -- of their own turning points.

Some stories are so astonishing that I have to share them to help motivate your own passions. Kim Carter, for example, finished another prison sentence and was left again at the bus stop on Skid Row wondering what she needed to survive this time. That was the spark of an idea for a foundation to help others make the transition from homelessness and recidivism to self-sufficiency. Aileen Adams graduated from law school and volunteered on a rape case blocked by a preposterous regulation prohibiting a victim from prosecuting unless she could prove that she actively fought back against her assailant. Adams worked to change the law. Vivian Clecak enrolled as a graduate student but found that she literally could not speak in class and, recognizing the trigger that was holding her back, started an agency for abused women and children. Sylvia Fogelman yearned to do more than a single social worker can for children who suffer from extreme brutality, so she rose to create The Southern Californian Foster Family and Adoption Agency. Kathryn Downing, having seen the heavy cost of sexism of the women in her own family, was motivated to study law and make her way up to become President and CEO of the Los Angeles Times, and then chair the Board for The Women's Foundation of California.

These brief revelations among such an array of dazzling women -- rich and poor, highly educated and street savvy, privileged and poverty-stricken -- all faced roadblocks and found the courage not only to help themselves but even more, to lift the gate for many other women to pass through. Each story will motivate you to join them -- a wake-up call to you who may just be at a turning point in your own career.

Make Your Luck Happen!

By reading Life Moments for Women, you'll join Patty De Dominic and Maureen Ford who are donating the profits to the Women's Foundation of California to replicate the model for non-profits across the country.