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8 Times Your Mom Was Right And You Can’t Deny Them Now

8 Times Your Mom Was Right And You Can’t Deny Them Now

You remember the days when you thought you knew it all and your mother was nothing but a nag. Don’t get me wrong, you loved her, but she needed to get off your back. She’d just always carry on these longwinded, nonsense conversations, clearly not understanding you at all… And then one day, you grow up, and realize she was right all along.

1. “You Can Make a Meal Out of Anything”

Money was tight growing up, so we had a lot of ‘concoctions’, as my mother called them. 20 years later, my sister and I still make fun of this one meal in particular that she made. A curious mixture of things to say the least! All I can recall is an orange broth, dumplings and corn mixed together. Although it appeared totally gross, my mom insisted her concoctions were still worthy of being a good meal. She was right though, it was good enough to fill our belly. Now that I’m a busy mom of four, I find myself making a lot of concoctions from leftovers too.

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2. “The Older You Get, the Less You Care”

We all remember those periods of our lives, especially during our teenage and high school years, when everything seemed so important and so significant. We were young and didn’t experience life enough yet to know what really mattered most. My mom would always tell me, “the older you get, the less you care.” That advice didn’t matter much to me then. I was 15 years old, and the way that girl looked at me was a huge deal! Sure, I can laugh about it now… Now that I’m old enough to know that mom was right; I don’t care about that dumb stuff anymore.

3. “Learning to Swim Is Good for You”

When I was younger, our public pool gave free swim lessons, and my mom wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity for us to learn how to swim (especially since it was free!). I admit it though, I hated to swim. I was afraid of the water, and yes, I was one of “those” kids. I managed to have a mysterious stomachache every morning before lessons. I would never let go of the side of the pool. Put my head under water?! Umm… No way! Luckily, my mother didn’t fall for my fake illness and made me take the lessons anyways. It’s what mom’s do to help keep us safe.

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4. “Hold the Door”

Like most moms, my mother taught us to be polite, use our manners, and say “hello”. She was big on little gestures of kindness. If another vehicle on the road let me turn first, I should wave a ‘thank you.’ If someone was walking out behind me, I should always hold the door. Sometimes it’s the little things that matter.

5. “Change Your Socks and Underwear”

Let’s face it; kids don’t give a darn about dirty clothes. They will go days on end in the same clothes, and it won’t even occur to them until mom starts yelling about it. Good hygiene is an essential part of life, so I can’t image where I’d be right now without all the longwinded lectures about it. Dirty underwear when I went into labor? No thank you! How about the time I injured my calf at the gym and the hunky instructor came over to inspect what could have been an unshaved leg?! Yes, you were right mom. Thank you for the good hygiene lectures.

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6. “We Didn’t Have Much, but We Survived”

Sure, we had a family car to get around in, but it wasn’t one us kids would want to be seen in. Yeah, I had new clothes; new from the thrift store. My siblings and I had bicycles, but my brother’s was a pink ‘Huffy’. We owned our own house, but not one I’d want the kids on the school bus to see me being picked up in front of. Now that all us kids are adults, we can look back on my mom’s famous words, “we didn’t have much, but we survived,” and be grateful for how that helped mold us into who we are. Children and teens worry about materialistic things. Adults worry about family, love, and experiencing life.

7. “Don’t Judge Others”

“Kids will be kids”, they say. Sad but true, they have ‘cliques’. They tease. They bully. And yes, I was a culprit of it at some point. I think we all were. As the saying goes through, “don’t judge someone until you’ve walked in their shoes.” Mom always made sure we were open to and accepting of others.

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8. “Hard Work Will Pay Off”

Kids only see a mean mom that yells all the time. She’s too strict and bedtimes are dumb. Mom’s always nag about doing chores and getting homework done. However, schedules, deadlines, routines, and hard work are necessary to succeed in the adult world. Mom wasn’t being a nag; she was setting a strong foundation for our future. Moms just want us to be smart and make good, healthy decisions.

It usually takes us becoming adults or parents ourselves before we see the true meaning behind our mother’s teachings. We may not see it as children, but as adults, we are thankful for it!

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Published on January 30, 2019

How to Support a Working Mother as a Working Father

How to Support a Working Mother as a Working Father

In roughly 60 percent of two-parent households with children under the age of 18, both parents work full time. But who takes time off work when the kids are sick in your house? And if you are a manager, how do you react when a man says he needs time to take his baby to the pediatrician?

The sad truth is, the default in many companies and families is to value the man’s work over the woman’s—even when there is no significant difference in their professional obligations or compensation. This translates into stereotypes in the workplace that women are the primary caregivers, which can negatively impact women’s success on the job and their upward mobility.

According to a Pew Research Center analysis of long-term time-use data (1965–2011), fathers in dual-income couples devote significantly less time than mothers do to child care.[1] Dads are doing more than twice as much housework as they used to (from an average of about four hours per week to about 10 hours), but there is still a significant imbalance.

This is not just an issue between spouses; it’s a workplace culture issue. In many offices, it is still taboo for dads to openly express that they have family obligations that need their attention. In contrast, the assumption that moms will be on the front lines of any family crisis is one that runs deep.

Consider an example from my company. A few years back, one of our team members joined us for an off-site meeting soon after returning from maternity leave. Not even two hours into her trip, her husband called to say that the baby had been crying nonstop. While there was little our colleague could practically do to help with the situation, this call was clearly unsettling, and the result was that her attention was divided for the rest of an important business dinner.

This was her first night away since the baby’s birth, and I know that her spouse had already been on several business trips before this event. Yet, I doubt she called him during his conferences to ask child-care questions. Like so many moms everywhere, she was expected to figure things out on her own.

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The numbers show that this story is far from the exception. In another Pew survey, 47 percent of dual-income parents agreed that the moms take on more of the work when a child gets sick.[2] In addition, 39 percent of working mothers said they had taken a significant amount of time off from work to care for their child compared to just 24 percent of working fathers. Mothers are also more likely than fathers (27 percent to 10 percent) to say they had quit their job at some point for family reasons.

Before any amazing stay-at-home-dads post an angry rebuttal comment, I want to be very clear that I am not judging how families choose to divide and conquer their personal and professional responsibilities; that’s 100 percent their prerogative. Rather, I am taking aim at the culture of inequity that persists even when spouses have similar or identical professional responsibilities. This is an important issue for all of us because we are leaving untapped business and human potential on the table.

What’s more, I think my fellow men can do a lot about this. For those out there who still privately think that being a good dad just means helping out mom, it’s time to man up. Stop expecting working partners—who have similar professional responsibilities—to bear the majority of the child-care responsibilities as well.

Consider these ways to support your working spouse:

1. Have higher expectations for yourself as a father; you are a parent, not a babysitter.

Know who your pediatrician is and how to reach him or her. Have a back-up plan for transportation and emergency coverage.

Don’t simply expect your partner to manage all these invisible tasks on her own. Parenting takes effort and preparation for the unexpected.

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As in other areas of life, the way to build confidence is to learn by doing. Moms aren’t born knowing how to do this stuff any more than dads are.

2. Treat your partner the way you’d want to be treated.

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard a man on a business trip say to his wife on a call something to the effect of, “I am in the middle of a meeting. What do you want me to do about it?”

However, when the tables are turned, men often make that same call at the first sign of trouble.

Distractions like this make it difficult to focus and engage with work, which perpetuates the stereotype that working moms aren’t sufficiently committed.

When you’re in charge of the kids, do what she would do: Figure it out.

3. When you need to take care of your kids, don’t make an excuse that revolves around your partner’s availability.

This implies that the children are her first priority and your second.

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I admit I have been guilty in the past of telling clients, “I have the kids today because my wife had something she could not move.” What I should have said was, “I’m taking care of my kids today.”

Why is it so hard for men to admit they have personal responsibilities? Remember that you are setting an example for your sons and daughters, and do the right thing.

4. As a manager, be supportive of both your male and female colleagues when unexpected situations arise at home.

No one likes or wants disruptions, but life happens, and everyone will face a day when the troubling phone call comes from his sitter, her school nurse, or even elderly parents.

Accommodating personal needs is not a sign of weakness as a leader. Employees will be more likely to do great work if they know that you care about their personal obligations and family—and show them that you care about your own.

5. Don’t keep score or track time.

At home, it’s juvenile to get into debates about who last changed a diaper or did the dishes; everyone needs to contribute, but the big picture is what matters. Is everyone healthy and getting enough sleep? Are you enjoying each other’s company?

In business, too, avoid the trap of punching a clock. The focus should be on outcomes and performance rather than effort and inputs. That’s the way to maintain momentum toward overall goals.

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The Bottom Line

To be clear, I recognize that a great many working dads are doing a terrific job both on the home front and in their professional lives. My concern is that these standouts often aren’t visible to their colleagues; they intentionally or inadvertently let their work as parents fly under the radar. Dads need to be open and honest about family responsibilities to change perceptions in the workplace.

The question “How do you balance it all?” should not be something that’s just asked of women. Frankly, no one can answer that question. Juggling a career and parental responsibilities is tough. At times, really tough.

But it’s something that more parents should be doing together, as a team. This can be a real bonus for the couple relationship as well, because nothing gets in the way of good partnership faster than feelings of inequity.

On the plus side, I can tell you that parenting skills really do get better with practice—and that’s great for people of both sexes. I think our cultural expectations that women are the “nurturers” and men are the “providers” needs to evolve. Expanding these definitions will open the doors to richer contributions from everyone, because women can and should be both—and so should men.

Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

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