New On The Blog

Mother’s Day is quickly approaching! As a busy mom, Mother’s Day can sneak up on you with the chaos of end of the year school activities, home projects, and travel plans. Moms have a heart of gold and do not have expectations of presents, but we still love the gesture of gifting to make the day special and show our appreciation for everything she does for the family.

“We read a lot of articles and books about how to get through the engagement process, but no one ever talked to us about what it would be like the first year of our marriage. I wish we had known what to expect,” said one of the couples my husband and I mentor. This is a common comment, and if you find yourself having similar feelings, do not fret! You are not alone. The first year of marriage is fabulous, but it can also be difficult. Two people learning to become one does not happen overnight.

We all like to think we have good manners in marriage, but with the people that are closest to us, we can sometimes find ourselves slipping a bit. As stated by Cindy Grosso of the Charleston School of Protocol, manners are not about a bunch of rules. Manners are the outward manifestation of the condition of our heart. If we have a heart that loves, honors, respects, and cherishes our spouse, then these traits will show in how we behave.

Society is opening and people are resuming long overdue vacations. This is great news! I recently posted some tips on making your travels successful, but let’s focus on dos and don’ts of traveling with friends.

 

1. Boundaries: When traveling with others, set guidelines, boundaries, and expectations before leaving town. If you know you and your husband want one night to yourselves, express this up front. If a quiet breakfast in bed is necessary to start your day, see if this fits with the group’s schedule. 

The world is opening, and it is time to celebrate! One of the first things people are doing as they exercise their recaptured freedom is heading out of town to new destinations. I thought a few refresher tips on travel might be good for all of us.

Walking into the room, my husband pauses in front of the TV. Turning to me with a spoiler alert about my favorite Hallmark movie he says, “Hey Lisa…they get married.” And you know what? He’s right! The girl found her prince charming, and the couple has a happy ending, every time.

How many mornings have we left home in a state of utter chaos? Breakfast was late, children were crying, and we hurriedly throw on clothes from the night before only to realize how wrinkled we look. This mad dash makes for an unpleasant parting from our family and it is usually caused by a disorganized approach to our routine. So much of the bedlam we experience at the beginning of the day can be avoided if we are willing to implement a few tasks the night before.

The mamor (mother-in-law) and damor (daughter-in-law) relationship is meant to be beautiful and strong. In parts 1 and 2 of our series we learned why women in these roles might have certain feelings in their new family dynamics. Once we learned the “why” we then explored practical steps we can take to strengthen these special bonds. As we bring our series to a close, I want to impart some words of wisdom we all need to hear, and be reminded of, to ensure we create a healthy, life-long bond between the mamor/damor.

In part one of our series on the mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationship we learned why the women who find themselves in these roles often experience emotions ranging from pure joy to hurt and sadness. Once we discovered the answers, our understanding of this special relationship came into focus. We had an “aha” moment which makes our path forward easier to navigate.

Do you remember the movie Monster-in-Law? It starred Jennifer Lopez and Jane Fonda in a romantic comedy centered around the tumultuous relationship between a bride and her future mother-in-law. If you have not seen it, you should. It will keep you laughing but, sadly, may hit closer to home than you would like to admit.

As Texas plunged into single digits with multiple days of a windchill below freezing, millions found themselves stranded with no power or water. Living along the Gulf Coast we have weathered hurricanes and endured power outages for much longer periods, but somehow this seemed different. Maybe for those of us close to the shoreline it was the unusual sight of snow we experienced as opposed to the natural disasters we usually face that arrive with rain, wind, and sweltering heat.

Our son and daughter (in law) were finally able to take a long-overdue honeymoon to St. Lucia in December. Cecelia interned one summer for a travel agent so naturally called the company to book their trip. What an incredible experience they had, and I was reminded WHY using a travel agent is worth the expense. Fees range depending on the service, but most charge between $300-350 to plan a vacation somewhere in the Caribbean Islands. 

Q: I will be a new mom soon, and I have been preparing for life “after” a newborn. There is a lot of information on raising babies, and how dads can support mom, but I cannot find much on how moms can support dads. A lot of my mental preparation has been around my marriage. Specific questions: How do I preserve my marriage? How do we embrace the changes? How do I maintain my husband as a priority when we have a tiny human demanding everything? How can I help my husband bond with our new child?

Want to set your children up for success? Then look no further than the habits of successful people you know, whether that be in the corporate world, media, or within your own circle of friends. Experts agree that there are certain common traits all successful people possess. This is great news because it means we can emulate those leaders that have come before us. 

Many of us grew up learning multitasking was a hallmark of a productive person. While sounding good in theory, this practice has proven to be incorrect. Studies now reveal that multitasking is nothing more than switching back and forth between tasks and it lowers our productivity. Below are 5 points that deal with the facts behind project hopping and the lack of performance that occurs when we allow seemingly innocuous interruptions to occur in daily life.

  • Alina Gersib

Say Yes to Life



Last week I talked about journal prompts for growth. If you did any of the prompts, you may have realized there are things in your life you want to shift. If that was the case, great! It is crucial to periodically check-in and assess your attitude towards life and if you like the trajectory you are on. One practice that I believe to be incredibly underrated and helpful in this process is challenging yourself to say “yes,” more often.

Now, I am not talking about living like Jim Carry in “Yes Man.” That could leave you in some predicaments you do not want. However, I do think it is important to approach opportunities without fear and with excitement for what may come. Even if you cannot see the result from where you are now, get excited.

Teachers and guides talk about following your passions to reach your desired end goal. Though this is a good idea in theory, in practicality is can be difficult to figure out what your passions are. The easiest way to identify the things you are passionate about is to act. Say yes to opportunities and find out if they resonate with you when you do them. If you do not try a new thing, you miss out on ways to discover more about yourself.

When I was in college, I was unsure about what career to pursue, however I loved to write, so I challenged myself to contribute to a publication weekly for 6 months. I had never done anything like it and, being someone who typically keeps thoughts and opinions to herself, it was a leap I was nervous about, to say the least. However, when the opportunity presented itself, I knew it would challenge me and help me grow in new ways. I said yes to the job, which led me to a great internship, which ultimately paved the way for a career that I love!

We find what we are looking for in life. If you are seeking out the good and the growth, you will find the good and the growth. If you are seeking out the negative and the wrong, you will find the negative and wrong. Our attitude can make things appear like either opportunities or roadblocks. It all comes down to mindset. When we approach prospects with a mindset of openness and a willingness to say yes, not only does our world widen but we may be pleasantly surprised to discover a new hobby, workout, or job that we love.

A few ideas:

*Grab a pen and paper and sketch the scene in front of you.

*Sign up for a Pilates, Yoga, or Zumba class at your local community center.

*Watch a video about a hobby that has always interested you (gardening, photography, line dancing), whatever it is, there’s a video out there that explains the basics.

*Instead of picking up take-out of your favorite meal, try to make it at home.

*Already have an interest that you do sporadically? Commit to it for a set amount of time. Example: write or practice daily for 30 days; make a new meal once a week for the next 3 months.

*Ask a work friend out to dinner.

*Accept the offer that you have been putting off.

*Start the business you have been waiting to begin.

*Volunteer at a local pet shelter, homeless shelter, or soup kitchen.

*Reach out and network; do not keep waiting for the “perfect moment.”

*Bring your talent to an open mic night.

Do not be afraid of new opportunities. If an idea peaks your interest, explore it. Do not keep yourself in a box to satisfy a projection of the person you think you are “supposed to be.” Let yourself change and become. Life is too short to avoid trying new things. Step outside your comfort zone and enjoy discovering what you love (and what you do not love), all while cultivating a deeper relationship with yourself in the process.

Alina Gersib