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Equality Needs to Start with us Ladies!

Women’s Equality Day is coming up on August 26th. It also happens to be my daughter’s 4th birthday and as I think about the day I, too, think about the world my daughter lives in and the kind of woman I hope she will be.

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Yes we need allies and we are moving in the right direction but things aren’t moving fast enough. What we need to do is be as accountable as possible for acting and living the life we deserve. Saying no when we are not treated as equals in the world both in the office and at home in the world of parenting. If you cannot get gender equality at home then how can we expect people in the workplace to do that?

Type “working mom” in Google and then type in “working dad” and see what comes up. You will find a lot about schedules, balancing life with moms and not much or anything like that for dads. The truth is we can have it all in the office and with our career but if we don’t have equality at home then working moms will never have work-life harmony.

OK, if you are not both working parents then stuff isn’t so 50-50, but if you are then you betcha they need to be.

Here are some ways I see working moms can help working dads with equality parenting:

  1. When the kids are sick the hubby stays home with them the first day.
  2. Use hubby’s email for all school forms so they get notified and can help with academic schedules (because they are always changing).
  3. Mom time. Find a time in the week that is your time. Mine is every Saturday morning and I do a long run and get coffee with my running friends after.
  4. Incorporate hubby in the evening routine. We have two kids so we each take one kid to put to bed and rotate what kid we have each night.
  5. Let hubby take the kids to birthday parties. Personally, I love birthday parties so often we all go but if I can’t then hubby goes with the littles.
  6. School drop-offs or pick-ups. You learn a lot when you take your kids to school in the morning or once you pick them up. You see who their friends are, talk to the teacher, meet the other parents. It is a huge part of their lives so have one parent do the drop-off and the other does pick-up if scheduled allow.
  7. Find hobbies together. My son loves soccer and hubby was the coach one season. He goes to all the games and it is their thing. My daughter is a foodie and hubby loves to cook so the two enjoy fun treats at home and out and about together.
  8. When you travel with kids you have to do everything for them. I’m a fashion lady so I like to know what my kids are wearing and pack for them, but I give a lot of the logistics to hubby like getting the rental car, tickets, and hotel accommodations.
  9. Leaving the house always takes longer with kids. Give hubby a task he can do each time to help get everyone out. I kind of became the snack lady so I usually make sure the kids have a backpack with the things they need and a water bottle. Hubby is the car seat guy. I send the kids outside once they have shoes on and their bag and he buckles them in. Hubby also manages the car seats if I need them in and out of the car. Mostly for our nanny car but he is the guy. I had to do it a few times when traveling with kids and no hubby but he gave me a lesson.
  10. Kids go to the doctors a lot. Vaccines, accidents, and whatnot. Often we both go but there are times when one of is busy and cannot go and we trade-off. It is important from a safety perspective but also good for both parents to be involved in their kids’ health.

If we can’t have these conversations with our partners about equality parenting then we should consider the impact it will have on our children and the world we are building for them to live in. If you can’t do it for yourself consider the other women and girls out there who will not invent the next life-saving drug, wifi technology, or machinery to make everyday life easier or yummier.

If you are as passionate as I am about this topic follow along with me and Two Working Moms as I explore this more in a month-long focus.

Also, let me know if you have other ways to support #equalityparenting. * L


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Micro Habits

I read this book Atomic Habits by James Clear and just LOVED it. There are so many micro-lessons and things anyone can do to make a behavior change in their life. For my career I do just that, make material to change someone’s behavior. Often by teaching them something in order to be successful at their job.

Not everyone is going to read this book but if you are that is great and you will get a lot out of it. If you are like many who won’t read the book, I think this post will give you the highlights so you too can make some positive changes in your life.

The great thing about habits is they can be the catalyst for you and your goal. If you want to write a book… read more, hang out with other writers, find a place to write, dedicate time to write, do what writers do. What you do is who you are.

I thought a lot about this recently when someone asked me if I am a runner. I never really thought of myself as one, but instead, maybe someone who does it every now and then. The truth is I have done several half marathons, have another one in two weeks and it will be my 2nd race pacing for others. So yes, I am a runner and I run 3 times a week.

What type of person do you want to be? Start being that person with small micro habits. Want to be a runner, then start by getting running shoes, go for a walk, join a running group, run 1 mile.

The science behind habits is there is a cue, a craving, your respond, and then there needs to be a reward for it to be something you will do again. The issue with long-term goals is you don’t get that reward right away. It takes time to see results and so people stop running, stop writing, stop trying.

There are some simple things you can do around these 4 areas of habits to help create new ones and to break the bad ones. book.jpg

 

How to Create Good Habits

Cue = Make it obvious

Craving = Make it attractive

Response = Make it easy

Reward = Make it satisfying

How to Break a Bad Habit

Cue = Make it invisible

Craving = Make it unattractive

Response = Make it difficult

Reward = Make it unsatisfying

So what are ways to support the cue? You can leave your running stuff out so you see it when you wake-up. Or put your junk food in the back of the pantry so you don’t see it.

I run with friends and I look forward to listening to my music and playlists I only listen to while running. It is my time and I look forward to the pretty places I run in. I have my TV in the basement of my house, it is a dark part of my home, the sofa isn’t that comfortable, and is my least favorite room.

Running is attractive to me since it is a goal of mine to live a healthy life. Fitting into my clothes is a goal, keeping my mind happy is a goal, and I enjoy running. Buying new clothes since I gained weight is not attractive to me.

I make it easy by having a running bag with all my accessories like gloves, lights, hydration packs. I lay out my clothes the night before and I have friends who are waiting for me. I keep junk food out of sight, I put the veggies and fruit in the fridge in view and junk food in drawers. I keep healthy snacks with me and pack a healthy lunch when I have time. My response is tailored so I make better choices based on my environment.

The reward should be the process, not the goal. I enjoy my music, friends, the view while running. My goal is to be healthy and get faster, but my reward is how I get there. The goal is almost unsatisfying as the journey is over once I get there.

If you are looking to change a habit, start out small. Find one little thing you can do today to move in that direction. James, the author, suggests something that only takes 2 minutes. Build that around the 4 steps: Cue, Craving, Response, Reward and see how you change over time. Take a look at his book “Atomic Habits” if you are a reader and follow me on Instagram as I will be sharing tips around micro habits each day in August.

Here’s to being the best version of you. * L