Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Yep.


Can you relate? I sure can! This quote is from my daily reading on the Noom app. I wish I would say that I have dropped tons of pounds on the program, but that's not the fault of the program. I just have a looser definition of food tracking :-) It has definitely helped focus on nutrition (add lots of veggies!) and mindfulness (are you really hungry? Or just stressed?) and is full of #psychtricks that are helpful.

While we're at it, here are two #psychtricks of my own:

1. Listen to The Chicks, especially their new album, but any playlist will do.  I had forgotten how awesome their music is, especially turned up LOUD when you need to Get. It. Done.


2. Check out this Instagram account.  Never not makes me happy.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Work It!

 


Great quote isn't it? It's from an article in the Wall Street Journal on Wendy York, a former Silicon Valley exec that is now the Dean of the Clemson Business School

In 2008 she had been downsized and was at a career crossroads. Volunteering with her children's schools pointed her towards a move into the non-profit sector, but with school age children earning money was still essential. She took a job at Stanford in executive education at a significant pay cut. It ended up being a good move as she is now the first female Dean of the Clemson Business School. 

So many times, so many, many times, especially in the Air Force, I've ended up in a job or a situation or with a task (I was an "additional duty" magnet) that was either not a good fit or decidedly un-fun. But when the boss gives you the assignment you have to "put your pride in your purse and get to work." Eventually, maybe not directly but rather karmically, it paid off.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

I Love This Man (and You Will Too)



Have you seen Ted Lasso on Apple+? GO SEE IT NOW! You do not need to follow the Premier League or soccer or even like sports at all. It's a lovely, funny, addictive show, and I am sad that the first season is over and I have to wait for the next season. I was going to include Ted Lasso in one of my periodic "fun things" blogs, but today I happened to pull up the Unlocking Us with Brene Brown podcast and saw her guests this week were Jason Sudeikis and Brendan Hunt from Ted Lasso.

WHAT??? 
QUEEN ICON LEGEND BRENE BROWN IS A TED LASSO FAN????

Now you know you will have to go watch it. I promise when you get to the part in the first episode when the new team owner fires the coach you will get as hooked as I am. Enjoy!

Monday, September 14, 2020

Never Assume

 



I saw this...some where...online and it instantly reminded me of my dad. We were having a talk on the eve of my departure for the Air Fore. I confessed I was worried that I was too quiet, that by not being a yeller  and screamer I would be somehow less. In his own typically quiet way he told me not to worry, that being the quietest one in the room wasn't a bad thing. "That way when you do yell, they know they should pay attention." 
He was a very wise man.

If you are looking for a great conversation about the value of being your authentic self, check out this weeks Armchair Expert podcast with Keith Urban. Really awesome!




Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Parenting in the Time of Quarantine


Like many mothers of a college student, I connected with the parents Facebook page when my daughter started her first year. It's helped me learn some ins and outs of our particular school, provided a handy place to unload some football tickets and has prepared me for how early I should reserve a place to stay for graduation weekend (like 3 years ago). 

Lately, though, I refer to it as the Train-Wreck-I-Can't-Look-Away-From. The helpful, cheerful posts have given way to reports from campus on mask wearing or lack there of, the posting of pictures of kids who are not wearing masks (!!!), reports of kids with 12 packs under their arms (egad, that must mean they are on their way to a large party), articles on current virus infection rates throughout the US, and what just about every other school is doing about on-campus or virtual learning. 

I 1000% understand the concerns of parents, normally high when sending their child off to college, now extra extra stressful when unsure of how this particular semester will go. This virus is a risk with still so many unknowns, and somehow we've conflated "flatten the curve" to mean "quarantine and the virus will go away." Even with mask wearing, small group mandates, extra curricular cancellations and mostly virtual classes, our school cannot guarantee my kid will be 100% healthy and safe. The world doesn't work that way and it's unfair to ask the school administration to make that promise. For the record, my kid had mono and got hit by a car on her bike, all in her first semester, so perhaps I am a little battle toughened :-).

So what is my point? Not to pick on any family or individuals that are making different decisions than we have with our kids. Rather, I want to point out that in our effort to try and do the right thing in these anxious times, we may be teaching our kids the wrong lesson. Instead of teaching our kids how to handle risk and make good decisions, we may be teaching our kids that the world is a very bad place and they can't be trusted to handle it. Resiliency is born out of enduring risk, and learning from the decisions you made navigating it. Imagine the confidence gained by that experience.

Monday, August 10, 2020

Sweet Escapes


Rom-coms and Chick Lit, it's how I escape, turn off my thoughts, and relax. But they need to have smart, realistic heroines - characters with fluff for brains, frankly, just piss me off. Here are three book recommendations that thread that needle perfectly - smart and entertaining.  



One to Watch, by Kate Stayman-London. The lead character is a "devastatingly stylish plus-size fashion blogger" whose life is turned upside down when she becomes a contestant on a Bachelor-like show called "Main Squeeze." There is a lot of reality show inside baseball that is a great backdrop for the real romance that develops. Trusting your feelings can be tough, even more so when all of America is watching too, and this book doesn’t gloss over the difference between what’s reality TV and what’s real.
 


The Bright Side of Going Dark by Kelly Harms. I’ve already recommended one of Kelly Harms books (The Overdue Life of Amy Byler) and I loved this one even more. It also passes the Bechdel Test – more than 2 named female characters that have a conversation not about a man.  This book weaves together two stories – a lifestyle influencer that is going through a major crisis and a loner employee of a social media platform that inadvertently takes over her profile. Like the peak at reality TV above, this is a peak inside social media and the world of influencers and sponsored content -- yet has a happy ending. So good!

 

  
It’s Not All Downhill From Here by Terry McMillan. Ahhhhhh, no one draws a group of girlfriends better than Terry McMillan. These ladies have known each other for 50 years, and their lives are intertwined as they navigate husbands, mothers, kids, grand kids and everyone in between. Lifelong friends that back you up, support you, but call you out when you have lost your way – we could all use more of that!

Friday, July 17, 2020

A Mantra I Can Get Behind


In case you missed it, the executives of a Japanese theme park said that in times of corona virus, riders should "Please scream inside your heart." Huh, I think, this is a new thing? If you are a mother, teacher, supervisor of other humans, or really have any interaction with any humans whatsoever, I am thinking you are familiar with this. Unless of course you have a zen like calm, 24/7.

I think there is added pressure for women to be calm and measured. "Too emotional" is often a criticism of working with women or for a female leader. To have our act together at all times, regardless of degree of hunger, deficit of sleep, or dip in emotional equilibrium is the gold standard. 

This recent NYT article, The Rage Mothers Don't Talk About, has some interesting thoughts to consider. Reach out to your pals, regardless of degree of outward calm. And especially in these bonkers times we live in. We're all kinda over the zoom happy hour, but I gotta say, these are the lifelines I count on :-).

p.s. - As I have been writing this and fiddling around with a couple other tasks, I got an e-mail asking to reschedule a call I missed. One that was only scheduled because I had asked for it to happen. Auuuuurrrrrgh (I scream inside my heart).