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Feel the fear

Given the uncertainty of the world right now, I wanted to share this past post . . . Here is a practice I try to do daily. I close my eyes and focus on my breath for a few minutes to still my mind. Then I ask myself, “What am I resisting most in my life right now?” Waves of emotions come. I name them and then sit with them. Once they die down, I ask myself the question again to get a new wave. 95% of the time, my waves are some version of fear. It’s intense and uncomfortable.

What to do if you suck at meditating

I often hear busy moms complain that meditation doesn’t work for them. I get it; our minds are going a million miles a minute and pausing sometimes can bring up more anxiety, not less. Enter breathwork. It has the same mind (and body) calming effects as meditation, but is active. You are doing something, which makes it so much easier to execute. Breathwork combats stress and depression. So today, grab 10-minutes and breathe. #selfcare #stress #beingpresent

How do I become less reactive?

This week’s reader question is common. I start every day with good intentions, but then fire drill after fire drills happen. How do I become less reactive? Here are some ideas... Play offense: Limit email. Only check email 2 to 3 times per day, so you only have a few times a day that you can get derailed. Set office hours. Tell your team that you will be completely available for them during a specific set of time (say 11 am to 2 pm), and try to put-off interruptions until the

It’s Never 50/50

Creating a true partnership means that it’s hardly ever a 50/50 divide. Life is too unpredictable. We need to be able to flex with our (and our partner’s) needs.  Enter Brene Brown’s daily check-in with her husband: Each of them communicate how much gas they have left in the tank. (If you don’t have a partner, you can do this check-in with yourself.) Somedays he’ll come home and say, ‘I only have 20%.’ To which, she responds, ‘Don’t worry. I’ve got the other 80.’ Other days,

My Type of Parenting Method—CTFD

I often get asked what the ideal parenting method is. My new favorite is CTFD, which stands for “Calm the F*ck Down.” (Hint, it’s directed at you, not your kids.) The idea is that no matter how you choose to parent, your kids will grow up fine. Let’s see it in action: Worried that your neighbor’s kid is walking way before yours? Calm the f*ck down. Concerned that your kids misbehave in public? Calm the f*ck down. Stressed that you aren’t the parent you thought you’d be? Calm

Don’t Step on a Crack

The other morning, I was super stressed. The hyper-efficient Kari wanted to drive the kids to school instead of taking the extra 10-minutes to walk them. I resisted and walked. On our way. Chloe started chanting, ‘Step on a crack, break your mother’s back.’ I smiled. I vividly remembered that game as a child. How many generations of kids have passed along this silly rhyme? Then I played along. I didn’t step on any cracks. Each thoughtful footstep took me out of my head and in

(Not) Snapping at kids

And, our final tip from a single dad, Marc Pickett... This is a recent discovery. I found myself getting into the habit of speaking sharply to my kids to get them to listen: "Get your pajamas on now!" or "I told you not to throw marbles inside!". I did a little internal digging and realized that I wasn't doing this so much out of anger but because it works to get kids to listen (at least temporarily). I came up with a new strategy that seems to be better. When I've asked my s

Be early

Those that know me well will laugh that I’m writing this, as I am chronically late. But, I recently heard the quote, “all the good things in my life I can attribute to being early.” I wanted to test the impact being early could have on my life. I showed up 30-minutes early for a 10-minute interview, and the interviewer and I were able to chat about my business for 10-minutes before, doubling my time. Getting to a party right when it started meant that I was able to spend qual

Assume Positive Intent

I recently came across the best piece of advice that former Pepsi CEO and badass working mom, Indra Nooyi ever received: My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From him, I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you're angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you

Go on a listening walk

Over the past few weeks, Rowan’s Pre-K class has been going on ‘listening walks’ around the school grounds. His teacher encouraged us to try them at home. On Tuesday, we turned our walk to school into one. All of us were quiet and paid attention to the sounds around us. I heard so many birds, planes, and cars. Shockingly, all my other senses also perked up. I noticed things on my street that I’d never seen after two years of living here. When we debriefed on what we heard, th

Stop being overwhelmed by your to-do list

So often, an idea pops into my mind, and 20 minutes later I find myself down a rabbit hole of random tasks. A simple hack helps: I add filters to my todo list. I keep my Asana board filtered on “today,” so when I add a task for the future, it disappears. As I watch this happen, I feel my mental load decreasing because I know the task is documented. At the same time, I’m not overwhelmed by a mile-long list of things that need to be done. Each morning I look at my list and move

Do a Hug Countdown

When I pick up Rowan, we need to cross a vast avenue to get to the car. Usually, I am annoyed when we miss the light, watching the crosswalk sign countdown from 60. This week, though, I reframed the situation. I knelt next to my little munchkin and gave him a huge hug and just didn’t let go. It ended up being the favorite part of both of our days. What was shocking to me was how much a single minute could impact my day. My usual reaction increased my stress, while the

Do Some Kiddo-therapy

Last night, I left my notebook on a plane, which meant getting back home at 3:30 am instead of 1. Today I could have been a mess with the lack of sleep, but instead, I took a page from my good friend, Leah Fink (founder of Classes At) and practiced some kiddo-therapy. When my kids woke me up, instead of dreading the morning, I hugged them as tight as I could. I slowed down, let go of all responsibilities, and just concentrated on being present with and thankful for the

Is the Rush Worth It?

I love this story from Derek Silvers. He used to bike to exercise, pushing himself hard, so he was sweaty, red and out of breath. It hurt. The ride always took 43 minutes. One day, he decided to chill and enjoy what was on the ride. He noticed the dolphins frolicking in the water. Felt the sun on his face He brought the joy back. The kicker? The fun ride took 45 minutes, just two minutes longer than the tough one. Trying to maximize every second took the joy out of som

Don't Run Away

Being a working mom is ridiculously hard. Even the ones that look like they have it all together, don't. Trust me, I've interviewed hundreds to get the behind the scenes view. Today's tip is for when you are struggling—Don't quit on a bad day. Don't quit in tears or at your wit's end. Wait it out. Wait until you at least have a day that's half-OK. Then decide. You want to be running towards something, not away. If this today is a bad day, take a deep breath and power th

Overwhelmed today? This can help

I'm always fighting the feeling of being overwhelmed, which is why I love Shawn Blanc's tool—the overwhelm grid. First, make a list of all the tasks overwhelming you, including the ones that you know need to be done, but you aren't working on. Second, assign each a category on the following two by two: how much do you love versus hate doing this and how much only you can do it. Then develop a strategy for each box. You love doing it + only you can do it: savor these items You

Ask For More Time

Deadlines have been identified as the most common cause of work stress (with 30% of folks citing it). Not only that, it decreases creativity and proactiveness. Today's tip: Ask for an extension. A new report over ten studies shows that employees are afraid to ask for an extension from their manager for fear that it will make them (especially women) look incompetent. Yet, most managers don't perceive this. Think about the last deadline you stressed about. Would having an extra

How to Handle Conflicting Advice

I've started raising my friends and family pre-seed round for Uplift. Whenever I dive into something new, I try to talk to as many smart people on the subject as possible to jump-start my learning curve. Unfortunately, all the advice is contradicting each other. I'm reminded of when I was a new mom. Cry it out. Co-sleep. Breastfeed. Don't. My head is swirling by the end of each day. A simple spreadsheet has helped: One column has the name of each person, the next has t

Create a Zen Moment When That Seems Impossible

Let's be honest—being a working mom is stressful. We need as many tools as possible to...Chill. The. Hell. Out. Today's hack: create a zen photo album. Chose pics that put a smile on your face, bring up happy feelings, and calm you down. For some people, these are photos of their kids. Bless you. For me, it's photos of my organized cabinets. These pics give me a sense of control and calm in my crazy world. No judgment, please. What's your zen? #stress #selfcare

Create a Mental Health Shelf

How is your Friday looking? You survived the week. Nice one. Today's hack: Create a mental health shelf. Designate a place in your house with items that bring you joy. Think of it as the comfort food of your stuff. Your favorite photo. Incense reminding you of backpacking in Thailand. That book you could read (if you had the time) for the umpteenth time. Or even make it virtual—your favorite curl-up-under-your-favorite-afghan RomCom or a Playlist of songs that bring you back

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