Advocating for Ourselves with Christine Michel Carter

Motherhood is a nurturing, compassionate, and emotional occupation – yet our systems aren’t set up to support women during this transformative time. 

Today, we engage in a candid conversation with Christine Michel Carter, marketing expert, and leading advocate for maternal mental health and gender equity, who Katie Couric has called the “the mom of mom influencers.” Together, we open a critical dialogue on navigating injustice, racial discrimination, and how to push for true, tangible change.

Once you’ve listened, we have a feeling you’ll need to add her best-selling books to your reading list, including Can Mommy Go To Work? and MOM AF. And, she’s a senior contributor for Forbes, where she tackles the complexities mothers face today, and offers accessible solutions.

In this episode, you’ll discover:

– How to embrace accomplishments, challenge societal norms, and advocate for yourself.
– Strategies for navigating conversations about race, identity, and injustice.
– The importance of community building and solidarity among working mothers.

5:37 – Personal experiences of discrimination in healthcare
7:02 – Details about Mom Congress and its advocacy work
10:44 – Decline of maternity leave benefits in companies
17:11 – Content creation during the pandemic
25:37 – Encouragement to own achievements and take up space
28:45 – Navigating personal growth and self-promotion, recognition and validation
32:16 – Balancing pride with ego and managing others' perceptions
39:51 – Societal influence on behavior
45:01 – Journey of self-awareness and growth

Connect With Christine:

Website: christinemichelcarter.com
Instagram: @cmichelcarter
X: @cmichelcarter
Linkedin: Christine Michel Carter

Learn more about Mom Congress: Mom Congress

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

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Being Present as a Professional Athlete and Parent

With the 2024 Olympics on the horizon, we’re honored to have Betsi Flint join us for a timely conversation on managing motherhood as a professional athlete. 

Betsi is an integral part of the USA Volleyball Team, boasting an impressive record as a 7-time AVP Champion, 2-time AVCA All-American and still holds indoor records in career aces and digs. 

At the start of her career, in 2015, she was awarded the AVP Newcomer of the Year award. She has also been awarded the AVP Best Server of the Year in 2019, 2022, and 2023.

In this interview, she shares her journey of returning to training after welcoming her child and moving through moments of self-doubt.

Tune in for insights on integrating motherhood into athletic careers, embracing both wins and losses, and cultivating a mindset of growth and balance.

In this episode you’ll discover:

– How to reframe nerves as excitement and embrace wins and losses.
– Strategies for balancing intensity on and off the court.
– Insights on how to integrate motherhood into athletic careers.
– Lessons on determination and sacrifice.
– The importance of strong partnerships on and off the court in achieving success.

02:17 – Returning to Training After Childbirth
06:12 – Balancing Motherhood and Career
09:04 – Challenges of Traveling for Tournaments
12:05 – Perspective Shift After Motherhood
17:08 – Humbling Moments in Victory and Defeat
20:58 – Coping with Losses and Maintaining Perspective
27:14 – Nervousness Before Big Matches
32:27 – Discussion about competitiveness and societal expectations
35:05 – Betsi's experience with Olympic qualification
37:42 – Importance of partnership in sports and life
39:09 – Favorite tool for working motherhood: Dr. Becky's resources

Connect With Betsi:
Instagram: @betsiflint 
Website: https://betsiflint.com/ 

Check out her Sponsors:
Just Ingredients Discount Code: BETSIFLINT
https://just.crrnt.app/BETSIFLINT

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

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LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

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Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

The Politics of Adoption and the Privilege of American Motherhood

Join Mads for a special interview with Gretchen Sisson Ph.D., who recently released “Relinquished: The Politics of Adoption and Privilege of American Motherhood,” to uncover the often-overlooked stories of mothers who relinquish their children for adoption.

Throughout the process of writing Relinquished, Gretchen learned how factors like poverty, lack of support, inadequate counseling, and limited access to resources and information force women to make choices they never imagined. She also reveals startling facts about the lack of federal regulation and the role of market forces.

As an adoptive mom, Mads believes these conversations are critical for change, so don’t miss out on this important discussion. 

In this episode you’ll discover:

  • How to understand adoption from a birth parent's perspective.
  • The broad definition of motherhood, and how birth mothers continue to mother their children in unseen ways, even after relinquishment.
  • Emotional and financial struggles mothers face and how adoption can often come from a place of limited choice.

1:52 – Defining Motherhood
6:17 – The Emotional Impact of Adoption
10:27 – Statistics, Data and Private Adoption System
13:53 – Barriers to Parenting and Examples of Relinquishment
23:17 – Ethics in the Adoption Industry
28:02 – Unlicensed Adoption Facilitators, Legal Ambiguity and Revocation Rights
40:51 – Vision for a Healthier Adoption System and Practices

Connect with Gretchen:

Website: https://www.gretchensisson.com/

Book Website: https://www.relinquishedbook.com/

Substack: https://gretchen.substack.com/

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

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Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

Cultivating Our Creative Cycles

What’s more valuable – creativity or productivity? Spoiler alert: it’s a trick question.

To understand why these two practices are better together, we brought on social innovation artist, and creator of Rest to Harvest, Moulsari Jain. In this interview, she helps us get in sync with our natural cycles, embrace every stage, and find peace after we hit the pause button. 

Moulsari challenges the notion of isolated creativity, comparing it to demanding a plant to uproot itself, which is impossible. Trust us, we’ve tried. Instead, she encourages us to celebrate ideas and possibilities without rigid control. 

What you'll learn from this episode:

– Tap into your innate creativity by embracing the Rest to Harvest approach.
– Honor your natural cycle.
– Recognize the importance of building relationships and community connections.
– Balance masculine and feminine energies.
– Change your perspective on productivity by learning the value of simply being instead of constantly striving for tangible results.

01:30 – Origin of “Rest to Harvest” concept.
06:15 – Embracing the power of doing nothing.
14:00 – Understanding women's natural cycles.
26:57 – Balancing masculine and feminine energies.
35:30 – Adapting to technological change.
42:33 – The power of community in Rest to Harvest.
46:19 – Embracing vulnerability for growth.

Check out her TEDx talk: Rest to Harvest – Redesigning work along the cycles of life  | Moulsari Jain | TEDxBreda

Connect with Moulsari Jain
LinkedIn: Moulsari Jain
Facebook: Moulsari : B-A-D for GOOD 
Instagram: @moulsari
Website: https://moulsari.com/

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

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Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

Dr. Nikki Pensak Talks Rattled | Part 2

Welcome back to Part 2 as we continue our enlightening conversation with Dr. Nikki Pensak. In this bonus episode, she shares her journey of writing her new book, ‘Rattled’ and how she decided to blend personal anecdotes with professional expertise to create a digestible guide for mothers. Personally, we can’t wait to add this to our reading list.

1:18 – The writing process of “Rattled”
3:32 – Addressing the idea that it's never too late to seek help
4:45 – Importance of not projecting personal experiences onto children
5:30 – A tool for working motherhood: being present with children
8:14 – Details on the release of “Rattled” and pre ordering information
8:55 – Closing remarks

Connect with Dr. Nikki Pensak:

LinkedIn: Nicole Amoyal Pensak PHD
Instagram: @drnikkipensak
Website: https://www.drnicoleamoyalpensak.com/

Preorder RATTLED here, available April 30, 2024.
Attend her virtual live book launch event with Eve Rodsky on May 8, 2024 @11am EST

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/workingmomhour/

TikTok: https:/www.tiktok.com/@workingmomhour

Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

The Power of the Postpartum Brain with Dr. Nikki Pensak – Part 1

Postpartum can be a complex time in motherhood, as it is often linked with feelings of depression, anxiety, or similar challenges.

Today, we're privileged to bring back trained clinical psychologist, Dr. Nikki Pensak, to talk about postpartum mental health, and her new book, RATTLED, which dives into how to manage and calm new mom anxiety.

Rather than viewing this developmental phase through a lens of struggle, Dr. Nikki helps us see it as a time ripe with potential. She explains how our brains change during this time, why our feelings might not match up, and why it's so important to take care of ourselves and get professional help when we need it.

For a deeper dive into Dr. Nikki’s book, RATTLED, and her favorite working mom tool, stay tuned for our bonus Part 2 episode coming next week.

What you’ll get out of this episode:

– A better understanding of matrescence, the rapid transformation that causes a mismatch between physiological and psychological adjustments.
– The psychological challenges of becoming a mother, including postpartum OCD and anxiety.
– How high-functioning mothers often mask their struggles, facing perfectionism and unrealistic expectations.
– Why mindful practices and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) are effective tools.
– How to manage ‘mom guilt’ when it pops up during much-needed downtime.
 
0:48 – Understanding matrescence.
4:51 – Challenges in recognizing postpartum mental health needs.
15:28 – The experience of high-functioning mothers.
28:26 – Addressing mom guilt and the importance of leaning into downtime.
32:48 – Understanding intrusive thoughts and anxiety in new parents.
46:42 – Practical ways to support parental leave and mental health.
52:52 – Embracing neuroplasticity and growth during motherhood.

Connect with Dr. Nikki Pensak:

LinkedIn: Nicole Amoyal Pensak PHD
Instagram: @drnikkipensak
Website: https://www.drnicoleamoyalpensak.com/
Preorder RATTLED here, available April 30, 2024.
Attend her virtual live book launch event with Eve Rodsky on  May 8, 2024 @11am EST 

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/workingmomhour/

TikTok: https:/www.tiktok.com/@workingmomhour

Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

Authentic Friendships with Dr. Miriam Kirmayer

Having trouble keeping up with the group chat? We’re guilty. When life gets busy, friendships can often take a back seat. But in reality, these connections are critical to our well-being, especially as working moms. 

To help us understand the science behind social connections, we brought back one of our favorite guests, Dr. Miriam Kirmayer, clinical psychologist and friendship expert.

Together, we discover how to open ourselves up to finding, broadening, or deepening friendships, all while staying vulnerable and authentic. We also discuss tricky dynamics, from friendship breakups to natural ups and downs.

What you’ll get out of this episode:

  • Strategies for expanding and deepening existing friendships.
  • How to tune into your authentic motivations for building new friendships and learn practical steps for initiating connections.
  • Understand when to address negative dynamics in friendships and how to navigate them with compassion and honesty.
  • Ways to sustain friendships beyond the shared context of children, fostering deeper connections based on mutual interests and shared experiences.
  • Tangible steps to rekindle friendships after periods of absence or busy seasons.

0:00 – Introduction
1:03 – Discussion on the importance of friendships for emotional and physical well-being.
4:17 – Tips for making friends authentically.
8:45 – The power of expressing a desire for friendship directly and authentically.
13:04 – Strategies for deepening existing friendships without emotionally dumping.
15:18 – Broadening and deepening existing friendships.
19:09 – Understanding and communicating boundaries in friendships.
20:33 – Recognizing when a friendship is negatively impacting your energy.
28:19 – Maintaining friendships beyond the connection through children.
30:56 – Empowering adult friendships and strategies for bridging gaps in communication during busy periods.
38:38 – Reconnecting with old friends.
42:04 – Bold acts of friendship.
45:43 – Embracing changing friendships.
48:59 – Guiding children in friendship choices.
55:31 – Course announcement: “Confidently Connected”

Connect with Dr. Miriam Kirmayer:

Linkedin: Dr. Miriam Kirmayer

Instagram: @miriamkirmayer

Website: https://miriamkirmayer.com

Sign Up For Miriam’s Friendship Course: Confidently Connected

Book Miriam to Speak: Keynote Speaking

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

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Lightening the Invisible Load with AI

We’re continuing to explore the ever-present elephant in the room of motherhood: “TheInvisible Load.” It's all those behind-the-scenes tasks that keep our lives running smoothly, from meal prep to managing schedules.

Could the solution be found in AI? Avni Patel Thompson, founder and CEO of Milo, says yes.

In our episode, she explores the concept of the ‘modern village’ we must create and sustain to support working parents. Tune in to find out how her team at Milo is reducing and redistributing the unseen work.

In this episode, you'll discover the following:

  • Avni's journey from corporate roles to entrepreneurship, which was driven by her own experiences as a working parent, highlighting the need for better support systems.
  • The concept of the “invisible load,” which refers to the unseen mental and logistical work involved in parenting, from managing schedules to coordinating childcare.
  • How technology plays a crucial role in addressing the invisible load by making tasks more manageable and collaborative.
  • The challenges of trust in AI and emphasizes the need for transparency and accountability in tech companies.

0:00 – Introduction
1:09 – Avni's background and journey as an entrepreneur.
6:15 – Concept of the modern village
10:31 – How technology is turning parenting burdens into joy
13:15 – The importance of measurement in solving the invisible load
16:45 – Addressing the challenge of defining and solving the invisible load
23:24 – The emotional impact and real challenges faced by working parents
25:30 – Recognizing, reducing, and redistributing the invisible load
28:10 – How AI could be the solution for modern parenthood.
34:42 – Origin of the name “Milo”, it’s current status in beta testing and how to access it
42:06 – The potential integration of Milo with other apps/services.
47:47 – The importance of teaching care skills to both genders.
50:21 – Thoughts on trusting AI and digital products.
55:33 – The mindset shift of recognizing the need for help in working motherhood.

Explore Milo!

Open Beta: joinmilo.com

Instagram: @join_milo

LinkedIn: Milo

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

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Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

The Business of Home and Modern Masculinity

Between pick-ups, drop-offs, activities and calendar conflicts, staying organized can feel impossible. But there is hope. One solution is Maple, an app designed to keep all the chaos in one space. Today, we’re joined by the CEO and founder, Michael Perry.

Michael is a serial entrepreneur in the tech industry and a champion for parental equality. Together, we discuss the ongoing mental load of managing schedules, and how Maple aims to simplify parenting by organizing various aspects of family life, from meal planning to household chores. 

In this episode, you'll discover the following:

– Michael’s personal journey towards advocating for gender equity, sparked by his experiences as a husband and father, shedding light on societal expectations and biases.
– Maple's mission to ease the mental load on parents.
– The importance of partnership and equity in relationships, aiming for a 50/50 split in responsibilities to foster harmony and mutual support.
– How we can shift societal norms and expectations around household responsibilities, striving for true partnership and equity in all relationships.
    
00:00 Introduction
01:26 Michael's journey towards gender equity
06:40 Challenges of securing funding as a male founder in the household equity space
08:07 Friction and support from the venture community
12:44 Introduction to Maple and its mission
15:17 Incorporating children into Maple's platform
17:28 Importance of relieving the mental load for moms
24:39 Michael explains the focus on 50/50 partnership
25:00 Defining partnership in different households
29:35 Maple's broader vision as a generational company.
32:35 Reflecting on societal norms and gender roles in household dynamics.
42:32 The importance of teamwork and viewing relationships as partnerships.
47:22 Michael defines modern fatherhood and masculinity.
49:30 Discussion on the lack of strong male role models in today's society.
53:59 Exploring the impact of positive role models on family dynamics.
54:24 Michael shares his favorite life hack for being present with family.

More on Maple:

Download the app: Grow Maple, use code WMH30 for a 30-day subscription to Maple Plus. 
Check out their Website: Grow Maple

Follow them:
Instagram: Grow Maple
LinkedIn: Grow Maple
X: Grow Maple

Connect with Michael:
Instagram: @michaelperry
Linked: @MichaelPerry
X: @michaelperry

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/workingmomhour/

TikTok: https:/www.tiktok.com/@workingmomhour

Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour

Bringing Empathy to Brain Surgery

During tough moments, sometimes the best thing you can do is hold space.

Dr. Charuta Furey has spent her entire career doing just that. As a trailblazing resident neurosurgeon at the Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Arizona, she leads patients and families through their darkest times with empathy and understanding. 

Throughout this discussion, she shares how she follows her clinical intuition, which has helped her navigate the challenges of balancing a demanding career with motherhood.
 

In this episode, you'll discover the following:

  • Dr. Furey's personal story of what drew her to neurosurgery and how her mother's battle with brain cancer shaped her career.
  • The significance of empathy in patient care and how Dr. Furey navigates tough conversations with patients and their families.
  • Strategies for balancing a demanding career with family life, including Dr. Furey's tips on being present and mindful in both roles.
  • Dr. Furey's advice for patients recovering from surgery, particularly the importance of pre-surgery preparation.
  • How cultivating gratitude and self-compassion helps Dr Furey remain grounded.

Timestamps:

0:00 – 1:26: Introduction

1:28 – 9:08:  Journey to Neurosurgery and Empathy

9:09 – 13:15: Navigating Tough Conversations

13:16 – 17:43: Navigating the Demands of Career and Motherhood  

17:53 – 21:04: Pre-surgery Preparation

21:05 – 24:35: Handling Neurosurgery Challenges

25:40 – 34:49: Navigating Patient Care and Patient Empowerment

36:23 – 40:47: Support Systems

40:48 – 41:57: Describing Work to Children

42:08 – 43:59: Navigating Patient Recovery

44:41 – 43:24: Cultivating Gratitude and Self-Compassion

43:29 – 45:55: Conclusion 

Connect with Dr Charuta Furey:

X: charutafurey

Learn more about the Ivy Brain Tumor Center at Barrow Neurological Institute:

Visit website: https://www.barrowneuro.org/

Please make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode, and kindly review the podcast on Apple Podcasts so we can reach more working moms.

We always want to hear your thoughts, concerns, questions or guest suggestions – email [email protected].

Follow us!

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/workingmomhour

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/workingmomhour/

TikTok: https:/www.tiktok.com/@workingmomhour

Working Mom Hour Website: https://workingmomhour.com/

Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/@workingmomhour