Jessica Grose is an opinion writer and journalist for The New York Times and a three-time author. Her first nonfiction book “Screaming on the Inside: The Unsustainability of American Motherhood” is out December 6, 2022. In it, Jessica dives into the historical background of the unattainable pressures placed on mothers today.
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Michelle Florendo learned early how much you can’t control.
Readers share how access to abortion affected your life, work, or family, and what you wish other people knew about abortion.
Reflections on pandemic brain fog and the need to slow down without giving up entirely.
Tell us about what you’re building and introduce yourself to others on this thread.
A leadership framework to guide how to show up for your team, community, and customers during times of crisis.
Share your experience—how much paid leave did you get, and how much did you want?
The way we collectively talk about, think about, and treat women seeps into our own brains. As a result, many women internalize specific beliefs about their worth, value, and creativity. Here are three key ways the patriarchy takes root inside of your own mindset.
Why do we ask women if they work? Domestic work is work—”do you work?” is such a weird question to be asking moms. Here’s why it’s a strange question, and what we aren’t admitting when we say it.
Women do all sorts of work. Parents work incredibly hard, and they contribute an estimated 75% of the national output of work in any given economy—but it’s not recognized (or paid). Margo Aaron writes about all the things that are real labor—domestic, caretaking, mental, emotional, psychological, and more.
“There Is No Right or Wrong Way to Do This” — Alicia Jabbar on Becoming a Parent and Building a Business
Alicia Jabbar designs and delivers leadership programs for women working in male dominated industries. She joined us to share candidly what becoming a parent has been like, and how becoming a parent in the pandemic has affected her.
How long will it take to recover from pandemic burnout, early parenting fatigue, or Covid? A massage therapist weighs in on what recovery looks like, and what you need to pay attention to.
How did we get to a place where women are expected to do it all? Leadership expert and author Tiffany Dufu shares out to drop the ball, let go of the guilt, and remove the pre-set expectations that hold women hostage.
Helen Mayer, a mother of young twins, was in the midst of building her first company when the pandemic hit. The pandemic shut down her company and took away her childcare, leaving her the stay-at-home parent by default. She needed childcare to get a new job. So she started organizing parents together to create childcare swaps by matching parents who needed care with local stay-at-home parents able to provide extra childcare in the pandemic.
Context Switching Between “Parent” and “Professional” Modes Can Be Exhausting — Vanessa Van Edwards Can Help
One of the hardest things to do as a parent is switch back and forth into professional mode. It turns out that you can project confidence and charisma through specific skills, and I took a deep dive with best-selling author Vanessa Van Edwards on how to switch into professional mode to let your expertise and confidence shine through, even after a tiring day of parenting.
Trying to “do it all” will get in the way of you accomplishing what you really want to with your limited (and very precious) time. In WWC, we teach you skills around doing less, finding focus, and figuring out what to say no to.
The Wise Women’s Council is back and accepting enrollments for our Class of 2022. We only open once per year for enrollment, so whether you’ve been a longtime listener or a brand-new listener, check out our leadership incubator and community for executive, entrepreneurial moms navigating both life and business at the same time.
The Wise Women’s Council is our annual leadership incubator for high-impact women navigating the big (and little) moves that come with building a career, life, and family. We are now accepting applications for our 2022 class.
Vanessa Van Edwards learned right away that being an expert in behavioral science did not translate into innate parenting know-how. Vanessa joined us earlier to talk about those first few blurry weeks of infancy and babies in Episode #104. Now, she’s opening up about the first year, explaining that while some phases do indeed “go by so fast,” others can feel like a slog, but telling parents that it goes by so fast is not, well, helpful. We dig into the nitty-gritty of the first year of parenting, what surprised us, what we wish we’d known, and the milestones most parenting books miss.
You’re not insane, you’re not wrong, you’re not broken, and you’re not a terrible parent or a terrible worker if you’re having a hard time getting work done while also sustaining the full-time job of caring for a baby. Taking care of a baby is a huge job, one that requires the work of multiple adults. But instead, we ask women to do it all, without help or support, and then to work additional jobs on top of the round-the-clock work of childcare. It’s impossible.
Growing up, James Breakwell never had to think about what jobs he wasn’t allowed to pursue. That changed when he had kids. As the father of four girls — one of whom recently said she wants to be a construction worker, and another who asked if she could be the Pope — he’s had to put himself in the shoes of the females surrounding him at home. As an author and internet personality behind the popular Twitter account @XplodingUnicorn, James is best known for his viral tweets depicting hilarious snippets of conversations with his daughters. In this interview with our first startup dad, he gets real about how he navigates building a public persona based on his family life — including how much to share and what to withhold.
Most of the parents I know are still not okay. When I think about why my brain feels broken and how tired I am, I start to see how this fatigue and burnout is part of a much larger puzzle. It’s not just the pandemic that wore us down, although that’s a huge part. Instead, it’s an amalgamation of many forces, all layered on top of each other. As a result, it feels like we’re carrying loads of sandbags around with us at all times. We carry the weight of all that we’ve been through. It’s a particular set of layers that I’m now referring to as the five layer dip. Here’s why we still feel so broken.
Creative dynamo Amber Anderson is the founder of Tote & Pears, a branding and marketing agency with a female focus. For her, becoming an entrepreneur was about more than the business. It was about creating possibilities for her family, establishing a set of core values for her family, and aligning her business values and family needs holistically. We first interviewed Amber on Episode #029 all about the birth of her son and her business. We invite her back to talk about what marketing to women looks like, how brands and agencies can better understand their target audience, and how to build a business that works for you and your family. Tune in to this episode to hear returning guest Amber describe how she aligns family values with work values, the rebranding of her marketing to become female-focused, and why she is committed to keeping work and home life intertwined (while keeping her work weeks around 40-50 hours).
How badly is this year, this pandemic, messing up our kids and us, as parents? After more than a year of living through social distancing, virtual school and blended schools, and highly restricted business activities, parents and children are suffering tremendously. We still don’t know what the long-term damage looks like, so I reached out to a parenting and children’s psychologist, Dr. Courtney Bolton, to ask her about how parents and kids will fare through all of this. Here’s what a psychologist says about the well being of parents and children in a pandemic, and how to help them (and yourself) through it.
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