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01/11/2010

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TV's Take

Is Your Glass Half Full or Empty? In my opinion a person’s mindset is one of their greatest attributes or downfalls. I admire people who only see the upside to life and I don’t get along with those that only see the negative. I’m in the middle and consider myself a realist. I grew up in a house full of hard work, fun and problems. It’s a dichotomy that has given me a unique perspective. We are all given history so we can learn from it, build our character and move on. Our past gives us depth of character whether we like it or not.
I read many positive blogs and then I come across some blogs that seem to be stuck in focusing on the negative. It’s important for all of us to realize that life is what we make it. I know my glass is half full and I have much to be grateful for.
How does your glass look?

TV's Take

I believe a solid perspective can solve the world’s problems, but I’m not a world leader….. Moving on, a neighbor recently told me about a conversation she had with a friend regarding couples who do not have children. Her friend’s opinion; people who do not have kids are selfish.

I have a different opinion on this matter.

I commend couples who decide not to have children because they don’t want them. Having worked for a non-profit for abused children, couples who don’t want children definitely should not have them. If people recognize they don’t want kids, that’s their decision.

The other viewpoint, what if the couple could not have children. Adoption may have been an option but perhaps not for that couple. Infertility is a painful topic and one so many couples are not comfortable talking about. I'd also like to point out that this argument goes for couples with one child.

Thoughts, feelings, reactions?

TV's Take

First comes love then comes marriage then comes baby in a baby carriage…..then what?
Lately I’ve heard a lot of dialogue about whether couples should place their marriage over their kids as a priority in their relationship. My guess is most people will say it depends on the situation. Oddly, my husband and I only talked about this topic after we had our daughter. His first response was, “our daughter comes first, of course.” I retorted, “She will come first most of the time but if we are not in sync there will be no us and she will be left with divorced parents.” He agreed but truth be known, she has stolen his heart.
I think it’s incredibly easy to put the kids first in a marriage. But should we be? Is there any coincidence in a divorce rate of 40-50% when kids, careers and (fill in the blank) all come before a marriage?
What do you think, should the kids come before the marriage in a relationship?

TV's Take

Prior to working at home I would talk with co-workers about various professional goals/ideas. We would brainstorm, refine and move on. Now that blogging has replaced working outside the home, I no longer have that face to face constructive team. My friends have replaced co-workers for guidance and support, but some (not all) of their reactions are mixed (rather silent actually). Historically I have kept work and friendships separate so this new ‘relationship’ with them isn’t as comfortable. It dawned on me, why am I expecting my friends to be interested in my professional whereabouts. Sure they can be supportive but it’s not necessary for them to dive into my professional aspirations. Has anyone else had this epiphany?

TV's Take

While shopping for for my little girl, a fellow mom shopper started a conversation with me. We talked about all the cute clothes for girls etc etc. After a while she told me she was new to the area. I told her it can be hard meeting other Mom’s in our area then named a few places where Moms hang out with their little ones. As we were checking out to purchase our sweet baby girl clothes, I decided to write my name and e-mail down so that this Mom would have a fellow Mom to connect with. She has since e-mailed me and we have a playdate scheduled.
The point of this blog is that I remember contemplating whether I should or shouldn’t give her my name and number. She seemed nice and being a new mom in a strange town must be incredibly hard. I’ve moved to new cities several times and making those first few friendly contacts seems to be the most difficult. Assuming no one is putting their life at risk, why don’t we all reach out more? (note: I am not typically this friendly to complete strangers)

TV's Take

Yesterday I had lunch with a good friend. We talked about our families and finding balance in our lives. She is busy with her successful business, family and recovery. I’m busy being a new Mom, adjusting to stay at home mom(SAHM) life and taking time to write/blog. She asked how long I want to be a SAHM? That was a good question and one I didn’t know the answer to. Right now, I feel like my life is balanced (note: this took decades and could be fleeting feeling). I know a lot of Mom’s who are working to create balance. They may work a ton and don’t have a lot of time with their family while other Mom’s are with their kiddos so much they feel lost. Finding balance in our lives makes us, and everyone around us, happier. So if we know this, then why do we have such a hard time getting there? Why do we let so many external pressures affect our ability to find balance and peace? Shouldn’t life be simpler?

TV's Take

What makes some married couples stay together while others fall off a cliff? Marriage is a perplexing unity that so many of us enter. Sadly only 40-50% of us will stay together - yikes, those are Vegas odds! What’s equally unnerving is that a couple may be blissfully happy one year and appear to be on the verge of divorce the next. I always look at those situations and ask who gave up on whom? My parents divorced when I was 11 and it was a good thing. That said, I don’t want divorce for myself. My husband is a good man, friend and father and while we have our occasional differences, we are solid. I know one very happy couple who’s been married 40+ years and they continually work on their marriage. They don’t take each other for granted and are consistently looking for ways to communicate and appreciate each other better. There is no doubt marriage is a complicated relationship full of ups and downs. No one ever said it was going to be easy, but for me, it’s worth it. So, what do you think, what makes a good marriage last?

TV's Take

Some people are meant to be artists while others are meant to be attorneys. Do you ever wonder what you are destined to become? I often wonder and I do look forward to discovering that sweet spot of professional identity. My professional career has been good; I’ve done well in all my jobs. Past opportunities have been more about learning who I am and who I’m not. Now that I’m a mother I’m supposed to say my passion is being a mother. I love being a Mom and dreamed of the role for years. No job is more important than being a good parent; a role that lasts a lifetime. And so, I’m happy to be a Mom but realize that it is not where my professional destiny resides. One day I’ll find my passion, it will be easy, fun and extremely rewarding. Until then my job is do be a good mother and wife. How about you, have you found your professional passion? If so, how did you find it?

TV's Take

This day is typically an appreciation of all the great things Mom’s do for their children. At the same time it can also be a painful reminder of that motherly connection that has been broken. To that end, Happy Mother’s Day to all those Mother’s who have lost children. I have watched my own Mother loose a son and the pain and anguish seems inconceivable now that I have my own child. As I think about all those Mother’s who have lost a child, thank you for showing others the courage to go on. Lastly, thank you to my husband and daughter for giving me the greatest gift, motherhood. I’m grateful to be a Mom!

TV's Take

Three months ago I quit my job to stay at home with our daughter and work very part-time. Since then I haven’t seen many of my ‘professional’ friends. Recently I ran into one of those professional friends who asked since I’m home, “what I did all day?” I laughed at the question because she is also Mother. To her credit she works full-time so her home alone time with her little ones is more focused. There was no malice intent to her question but it was comical to think that a fellow Mom would have such wonderment about my days at home. Since I’ve been both ‘types’ of Mom I appreciate having both experiences. I also appreciate being given a choice to do either (thank you husband). Each type of Mom has their struggles, but it is how we deal with these challenges that make us a good parent. For the record, I love staying home with my daughter and just like days at the office, we have good days and bad days. What do you think?

TV's Take

If you’ve moved around a bit you know that it can be hard to stay in touch with friends. E-mail and Facebook have definitely helped but after a few years of being away, friendships inevitably change. When we move away we work hard to build a new life and new friendships and our friends ‘at home’ do the same. After a period of time the calls are less frequent and the visits are less often. Luckily the communication doesn’t stop but often times it does slow down. It’s always a little sad when I realize that the distance has taken a toll on my friendships. Thankfully many of my long distance friendships are the ones that pick up right where they left off. I have this relationship with my brother as well. Months can pass but when we reconnect we are right back on track. Is it hard for you to stay in touch with friends far away?

TV's Take

This morning while at the local zoo my husband and I saw a woman fall. We rushed to her side to see if she was okay. The area she fell was quite rocky and awkward and she was unable to get up on her own. As a result, my husband and her husband helped her stand and walk to an area where she could rest. As my husband helped this complete stranger, I told our daughter that Daddy was helping the woman who fell. As we watched them hobble away I started tearing up because I was so proud of my husband for coming to the aid of a complete stranger. I believe most people would have helped her to her feet but my husband went the extra mile to make sure she was okay. He was setting a great example for my daughter. Hopefully we all have an “I helped a complete stranger by ____” story that didn’t put us in too much danger. Do you have a good helping story you’d like to share?

Leed

I believe there are many paths and it is which paths we chose that decides what lessons and where we are in our lives. Haven't we all sometimes thought we chose the wrong path when in fact it was the one we needed.

TV's Take

Have you ever met a co-worker that is so dissatisfied with his/her job or career that they should have resigned years ago? I’ve met plenty of these miserable worker bees. Often times I wonder why they don’t leave their job or career and three reasons come to mind: 1) Money 2) Can’t find another job 3) Too scared or lazy to explore something else. What these coworkers don’t realize is that their attitudes are contagious and negatively affect those around them. In addition, they may be in the wrong career too scared to explore the much better fit for them elsewhere. A free assessment site is www.careerpath.com through CareerBuilder. Sure we all have our rough days/weeks at work but in general you shouldn’t mind going to your job. If you do, challenge yourself to go find a job/career that is a better fit. You never know, the new venture may just be the key to your 8-5+ happiness. Don’t you think it’s time you found your happy place?

TV's Take

Recently I was asked to review applications for a scholarship program that highlights women who support their families and have overcome significant obstacles to pursue a degree. Their stories are filled with courage, persistence and redemption. Many of these women made decisions that created adverse circumstances in their lives; teen pregnancy, drugs, bad relationships etc. With all this they were able to rise from these situations because they wanted a better life for themselves and their families. I’m a sucker for ‘before and after stories’ and in reading their stories they all had turning points that drove them to want to be better. So why do some of us take advantage of these turning point opportunities while others do not? These women decided that life is full of opportunity not circumstance. What was a turning point in your life and why?

TV's Take

Do you remember that Janet Jackson song, “What Have You Done For Me Lately?” The song was released in 1986, during a time when music videos were cool, unlike present day. Anyway I digress, instead of the original song title I think, “What Have I Done For Me Lately” would have been better. Reason: our happiness should not rely on one person or relationship, but rather how we own the decisions that create happiness and peace in our lives. Often times when people let themselves go, they’ll say they didn’t have time for themselves or everyone else came before their needs. I’m suspicious these people put everyone ahead of themselves just to be a martyr. Carving out time for ourselves whether it’s a workout or a night out is important. Do not put undo pressure on your partner or kids to be the sole keeper of your happiness. Create some sunshine of your own. So, what have you done for you lately?

TV's Take

Today I attended a funeral of a lovely, giving and brave man. He was 84 and lived a full life. Each time I attend a funeral I always think about my loved ones giving my memorial. What would they say and how would they remember me? My basic hope is that they would remember that I loved them. You’ve heard the saying, “it is not how you die but how you live that counts”. Living a full life is what matters here. Giving your best to your family and friends is what everyone expects. All too soon the opportunities to show people how much you care about them will be gone. Remember this the next time you fail to bring the Best You home from work to play with your kids or spend time with your spouse. What you do counts in this life, just make sure it’s worth being accounted for. Are you living a full life?

Justin

Great topic. I firmly believe we are beings of freewill, and that a large part of our lives are made up about the choices we have made (or yet to make). Even the events in which we think we have no control over- we have a choice. We have the choice to choose how we perceive the said event.

The notion of creating your own path in life is a powerful one. Something, that I think everyone should do. However, I do think there is one key ingredient to making your own path...and that is knowing yourself. Do you know yourself well enough to embark on your own path?

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