Women should compliment each other more often

23 May

girl-power-thelma-louiseSocial media site, About.me just this past week published a story about me (no pun) and two other women. It was actually a woman at the organisation who stumbled across my page some months ago and asked if she could interview me. Since then the social media site has been incredibly supportive, featuring me several times and sharing my story with their incredibly large network. It was the  most recent mail out that sent close to two thousand people to my page within 24 hours, but this influx also granted me a small gender based case study.

Let me explain where I’m going with this – my Facebook page is mainly liked by men, men largely make up my YouTube subscribers and views, and those that favourite my tweets and click the thumbs up on my Facebook profile, are again, men. So, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised that About.me proved no different.

The great thing with About.me is, it gives you the name and profile of those that have viewed your page and notifies you of who loved your page, liked your bio, thought you’re cool, or are impressed by you, (there are lots of options to choose how you compliment someone). You are also notified by whether you are added to a user’s list of say, “interesting people”.

It disappointed me that out of the many women that viewed my page in the first 24 hours, only one complimented me. One from almost 2,000 people. Sure, it was nice to have men in my field reach out and show their support, but to be honest, I was wondering what happened to my female colleagues? Now, if you’re sitting there saying that the men only reached out because I’m female, you can go ahead and have that stance, but it still doesn’t explain why only one woman could tell me she liked what I was trying to do. And if you’re now saying that’s because I’m not achieving anything at all, well, thank you for your honesty.

Personally, I can be pretty awkward around women. A good 20% of the time during first encounters, I throw up the lock-out blinds and weather the storm until it’s over and I’m safe again. That may sound extreme but it’s all a result of past experiences. I’m sure plenty of women reading this have also had scarring experiences at the hands of other women. It’s only understandable that for some of us that fear holds us back from seeing certain women as anything but the enemy.

It’s sad but I think this pattern starts off when we’re quite young. For some dumb, fucked up reason we were led to believe we were competing against each other; for men, for jobs, for attention, to get your period first, get married first, have a kid first! And this then leads to some extremely negative lines of thinking.

Haven’t we all at one point seen a confident woman and thought, “I wish I was like her” and if not that tame, “she looks like a bitch”, but I want to know why we don’t automatically say, I want to be friends with her, or, I’m going to go over there and tell her she’s amazing?!

Sure, we all have our personal insecurities to work through. I always see creative women who are incredibly comfortable in their skin and wonder how amazing my life would be if I could be so freakin’ cool and empowered. But instead of allowing myself to feel insignificant in comparison, I see these women as someone I can learn from.

I am certain we all arrive at this place eventually but I wish there was a way to speed up that journey, because we are all so incredibly strong and could do such great things if sisterhood is encouraged from an earlier age. Don’t you agree?

This week, I’m going to make an effort to compliment more women around me. If I see a woman who is achieving the things i hope to, or has great legs, or an amazing attitude, or even a woman driving a hot car (I love cars), I’m going to tell her that she’s killing it. That I like her style. That she deserves a raise!

Hunt down the women that inspire you this week. Tell them why they scare you 🙂

Maybe even tag them in this post?!

K x


So you’re single. Do you like the 80’s?

15 Oct

I attended an eighties movie double last night. They were playing Risky Business and the film that lead to my childhood obsession with Molly Ringwald, Sixteen Candles.

It was during Sixteen Candles that it hit me – eighties films have shaped my concept of men. Oh god! Why did I not realise this sooner!

As I watched Molly’s character, Samantha swoon over heart-throb Jake Ryan, I realised that Jake too was my first crush. I fell in love with Jake sitting on my Aunt’s couch on any given weekend, watching my favourite John Hughes film’s on repeat. I would have been about seven and I couldn’t wait to turn sixteen and materialise into Molly Ringwald, with her gorgeous freckles and super cool clothes and of course have my first kiss with someone like Jake….*sigh*

So, how did eighties films shape what I look for in a man? Well, Jake is the epitome of preppy and it is no secret I have a penchant for ‘preppy’ men (Tom Cruise in Risky Business is also a Country Club kid). I am also obsessed with cars (both Jake and Tom Cruise drive a Porsche in these films) AND I love eighties music, which is kinda besides the point, but all I’m trying to say is – Jake Ryan has ruined me, because Jake is a character John Hughes made up and ladies, Jake does not exist…Well, I certainly can’t find him.

When Jake opens the passenger door for Samantha at the end of the film, my girl friends and I all sighed and mumbled ‘where’s my Jake?’. Ladies, Jake is an actor and no man will ever be that perfect. You might find a nice ‘John’ or ‘David’ and he may even open the door for you but JAKE! The hottest guy at school that tracks you down at your crazy sister’s wedding and drives you away in a red Porsche to have a private sweet sixteenth birthday celebration – Does. Not. Exist.

PLUS you’re not sixteen anymore, you’re like, thirty or close to, and you are now dating men the same age or older (some of you lucky things are cougars) and men at times can be as romantic as a smack in the face with a frozen pack of Lean Cuisine.

How do we fix this? We don’t. We can’t.

Do you know what needs to change? You.

“No I don’t, I’m flipping awesome!” I hear you say.

You’re awesome. I agree. A good chunk of you reading this are my friends, and I KNOW you are the bombdiggity but riddle me this sexy ladies –

Do you meet your criteria? If you were to put the same expectations on yourself, are you hot enough? Smart enough? Ambitious enough? Successful enough?

Would it upset everyone if I suggested that maybe, just maybe, the right guy is hard to find because we’re expecting him to fill all the cavities in our lives that we could in fact improve alone?

For example, if you want a successful man, maybe you need to strive to be more successful yourself? Maybe you want a rich guy to ride in on his Porsche? Then, maybe you should be aiming to buy your own sportscar?! I’m just saying, maybe, in some situations, certainly not for everyone, finding a man is impossible because you’re setting expectations for someone else that you wouldn’t apply to yourself.

“There’s no man in Maserati“. That’s my little mantra. I like it because I think it says one simple thing – don’t expect a man to do what you can do yourself. If I want a Maserati, I should buy it. Much like if you expect your ideal man to be wealthy, intelligent and good-looking – isn’t it fair to expect the same from yourself?

Now I realise all of this doesn’t apply to romance because that is really why we’re sighing during romantic films, but besides the *spoiler alert* kissing over the cake moment at the end of Sixteen Candles, Jake doesn’t actually do anything romantic for Sam. He literally turns up! That was enough! Imagine if that is all we expected? Any man could do that!! Jake finds out she likes him, has this weird break up with his prom queen girlfriend and TURNS UP!

I still would love a guy to open his car door for me and bake me a cake for my birthday (just like Jake, though Jake’s chef probably baked it) BUT I’m not too sure how comfortable I’d be reversing the roles to be Samantha – car-less, in an awful bridesmaids dress and suffering a family that forgot her sixteenth birthday. To really find Prince Charming you’d have to be the damsel in distress and I’m not sure any of us want to open the door to that kind of drama!

Maybe instead of longing for Jake Ryan, it’d be better to be Jake Ryan! Or, expect a man to work out you like him and simply ‘turn up’.

K xx

Turn those Grey skies YELLOW!

13 Jul

It’s raining, cold, your rego is coming up, that guy never called and you didn’t get that audition you went for. Your ex girlfriend is back in town – engaged, you dropped your phone in a puddle and to top it off you’re getting evicted.

You want to give up. Lie in bed all day, every day, until it stops hurting.

Me too! I feel you. That’s exactly how I feel when life decides to throw me a million curve balls. Sometimes I even stop answering my calls. (Me without a phone in my hand? Amazing!)

The thing I love the most during these awful times is that sinking feeling you get in your chest, that seems to arrive each morning, fading in pain as the day goes on but forever stopping you from eating or thinking straight. I wish that thing had an off button….

What can we do to fix it all?

Positive distractions.

Friends. Jump on your phone now. Who are your favourite 10 people, yes 10. Text them right now. ‘Coffee next week?’, ‘picnic on the weekend?’, doesn’t matter what it is, arrange a meet-up. Your friends are what make your skies the brightest of blues. See them. Don’t let the conversation be all about your troubles. You will only find yourself leaving lunch feeling even more down. Keep it about them. Their energy will most definitely rub off on you.

The gym. It is impossible to go when you’re feeling like a piece of shit. You have to! I would personally recommend going to a class. Go to one of the classes filled with old women. Or a class that will be entertaining, like Zumba. Spend an hour being surrounded by smiling faces and women who refer to you as ‘Darl’.

Confession: I have once, okay maybe twice teared up after a petrol station attendant has been nice to me, yep, just because I was feeling so low. It might happen to you at the gym when an elderly woman in lycra compliments you on your eyes at the beginning of your newly found aerobics class. It’s okay. You have a sweat towel handy. Wipe them away and get that butt moving.

Avoid the junk food. It’ll just make it worse….I love a good bowl of hot chips, banana bread and some chocolate when I’m down but it will just add to the self loathing. Stay clear of sugar. Try to keep on an even playing field. Don’t let food play with how sensitive you’re already feeling.

Book a Holiday. It doesn’t matter if it’s just a weekend away. Get out of here. Change it up. Adopt fresh eyes and meet new people! You’ll come back refreshed and energised and let’s hope, a little tanned.

Volunteer. You may not value yourself at this very moment but other people sure do. Give up some of your time to help people who need it. I know, you feel like you need help right now too BUT you get what you give, it’ll come. Nothing is better than seeing someone smile thanks to your hard work. Invest in others when you feel spent.

Don’t search for answers. I am one of those people who thinks too much. I will try to find meaning in everything and sometimes, well, there isn’t any. The universe isn’t punishing you. We’ve all learnt that the bad times disappear and good times follow. It’s the rollercoaster of life. You just gotta ride this wave until the better months hit.You will inevitably get a better job, go on an amazing date, get a raise….Good stuff will happen and you can bet bad stuff will follow again. You just have to find ways you can manage it. Play close attention to what works for you in turning that frown upside down. Let yourself cry, sure, but don’t feel sorry for yourself. Everybody’s life sucks at some point. You’re not that special.

K xx

Working the Bitches….

27 Jun

I was reading a well known women’s magazine recently, that featured an article offering advice about an age old problem – bitchy women.

The article attempted to cover ways in which to cope with work place witchery, however, the piece only succeeded in offering the same kind of advice you were once given from your school counsellor; try to work out why they’re doing it, seek to ignore them and if it gets too much, tell your teacher, ahem, your boss. Sounds like the bitch wins to me.

Sure, you may believe in karma! The universe will get’em one day and they will get their comeuppence. That’s all well and dandy, Pollyanna but for now, they’re making your life Hell! There’s gotta be a better way than just simply ignoring them?!

Before I go further, I’d like to highlight the difference between a woman of strong character and a bitch.

A strong, confident woman is also considerate, perceptive and open to communication. A bitch is someone who undermines you, is inconsiderate of you both personally and professionally and thrives on seeing you weak or affected. This post is most definitely about the latter.

Bullies travel in packs, so, you’re more than likely dealing with a co-bitch or co-bitches. Think of them as co-pilots in the repeated attempts at your assassination. They ride the coat tails of the alpha bitch,  allow the work place bullying to continue, and often, when you catch them alone, they struggle to make eye contact with you. It’s hard when you’re faced with more than one bully but you have to remember the co-bitches are the weakest individuals you will ever encounter. You’re really only dealing with one person here. You will always know exactly who the leader is.

Now that we’re clear, we can move on.

If you are forced to work with a ‘bitch’ you’re in trouble. Let’s not pretend you’re not. I’d love to say  – beat her at her own game, though, for those of us who are adverse to drama and quite frankly time poor, there has to be a better , cleaner way.

This lovely boy I knew in High School once said to me –  “Bullies hate it when you’re nice to them”. Pretty wise for a 15 year old and he was right. People are lost for reasons to dislike you when you’re nothing but nice to them.

How do you combat the bullies?

Here are some ideas, consider them experiments. Let me know how they go –

1. Be Sally Field for a day (circa The Flying Nun.) Bake cupcakes and share them with everyone at work, including the Bitch Brigade. Keep the happy greetings and goodbye’s flowing and never ever let the cracks show. Remember, these people survive on drama. You have to starve them of their energy source.

2. Be Dustin Hoffman (circa Working Girl) You are simply going to have to work harder at your job. Be prepared to hear them spout negative comments in your direction. Be a winner. Dress smarter, be smarter. Use their insecurities to feed your desire to rise above, literally. Who knows, if you find yourself in a higher position than them, you can always transfer them to another office!

3. Be Gwyneth Paltrow (after a Yoga class). Find activities outside of work that energize you and keep you positive. Mean people tend to bring you down leading you to eat more, work out less and struggle to put in the kind of performance you’d usually achieve quite easily at work. The only way to survive is to be able to see your workplace as a facet of your life and not your entire purpose. Mid week dinners with friends and rewarding weekends spent doing what makes you happy are the answer.

“This is your life, not theirs.” My dad said that to me just a few weeks ago and it’s spot on. You’re no longer in High School. Don’t let these women chart your future. Like my grandpa used to say, “You drive the car, the car doesn’t drive you!”

They’ve targeted you because you have something they don’t. Don’t let them crush you. Keep being great and watch them fall to bits.

That way, you win. Every time.

You might also want to add this track to your gym workout playlist –

….. Just run it out girls  🙂

Kristy xx

Punching below your weight: How to find a keeper

20 Feb

I am sitting in a café, and next to me sits a couple, that any observer would count as being on very different ‘levels’.

This couple is around my age, maybe 5 years older and they have caught my attention because of a trend I’ve seen occurring over the last year – extremely mismatched couples. Or as some may put it, ‘punching below one’s weight’. That’s right, slumming it, not pulling the goods. It occurred to me that this is because we have reached ‘marrying age’, the ‘pressure zone’ as some may coin it. It is time to settle down and when I mean settle down, for some of us, that purely means to settle.

We’ve all experienced the gamut of relationships. Long distance, High School Sweetheart, Lust filled, dramatic, crazy, should have stayed as friends, long-term ….

I think we can all agree that the scariest relationship was the one where our partner was special. Attractive, smart, talented – all the things you ever wanted. Then came the day it ended, taking you forever to get over the heartbreak.

Could you go through that kind of heartache again? Hell no!

So you’re on the hunt for someone solid, dependable, probably not all that attractive to the opposite gender. Someone, who would give anything to marry you. Someone that felt so thankful to be with you that they would never stray.

Wow. How fucking depressing.

It seems that in the face of fear, you have decided to allow love to lose its importance, replacing it with the need for security, for the boring instead of the inspirational.

Let me fast forward. You’re now 50 with 3 great kids, living the same suburban experience as your parents and their parents before them, all because you couldn’t risk spending your 30’s alone.


Don’t do it!

I know where you’re coming from. Yes, it is scary feeling thinking that you’re never going to find someone and that if you do, you better hold onto them because if you don’t, it may take even longer to find someone next time round.

It’s a race, didn’t you know?!

If you’re the lucky last of your friends to find love, bouquets are purposefully thrown your way at weddings and brunch conversations revolve around married friends sharing possible options with you, describing potential partners as having a ‘solid work ethic’ and being ‘upbeat and personable’.

A year of bliss vs 30 years of monotony?

I’d take the one year of bliss. It may seem like more of a gamble but the inspiration you feel from being with a partner you’re passionate about, the qualities you adopt when you’re with someone who makes you a better person, the smile that forever dances in your eyes when you’re truly happy, isn’t worth sacrificing thanks to some self-imposed deadline.

I’m not saying anyone is ‘better’ than anyone else. Some people are just a better fit. Don’t settle for anything less than that. Afterall, this isn’t just your 30’s you have to get through but the rest of your life.

Find a knockout. Life is too short to play it safe.

Be my Valentine

13 Feb

It’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow and being savvy could win you a million brownie points.

I’ll get to just how to switch on your romantic side just after this quick message from our sponsor – ‘Single women all over the world’.

Below are some handy tips to help you know whether your Valentine likes you. They’re pretty obvious but then again, we all know how perceptive you men are….

Women hint A LOT. They will say they mentioned you to a girl friend, compliment you, make reference to a Facebook pic from 2007 (I am that girl!) and the more blunt of the species may just be bold enough to come out and say “well, how ’bout it”.

We will show interest in what you do and those of us with that crazy maternal gene will go that step further and offer to help you with a whole range of things, from work stuff to tying your shoelaces 🙂 kidding. In total honesty, we invest in the ones we want something more with, we just can’t help it.

Touching! If she can’t stop finding a way to touch your arm or make some form of physical contact with you, then there’s a pretty big chance she’s interested. Unless she’s massively drunk and you in fact have become her anchor for balance. I’m sure you can figure out which is which.

She sends you a ridiculously random text. Yep, she’s ignored her friends and decided to text you before you text her. If you don’t respond for an entire day, then it’s pretty clear you’re not that interested or are juggling too many women to care. The best way not to leave her thinking you’re a player is to respond. Yes, the quicker on the buzzer you are the better.

So, looks like she likes you. How should you tackle Valentine’s Day?

I can imagine most men will opt for sending a text,  ‘Happy V-Day xx’. Okay….Cute…But there’s not a great deal of effort in there. No one expects a limo to pick them up after work to take them on a mystery dinner date . Well, maybe some girls do. But a one line text like the kind you have managed to get away with your whole life, isn’t going to fly today. Put some thought into it. At least swallow your manly man vibe and let her know that you’ll be thinking of her. I’m not asking you to sing ‘You’re the best’ from ‘Karate Kid’ into her voicemail, just be sincere.

Flowers delivered to work. This may seem like a big call but let’s look at this scenario closely. Single women are usually the centre of all water cooler chat. The influence your Valentine’s colleagues have, along with that of her friends is huge. Let me give you a play-by-play. Your flowers arrive and instantly her colleagues find themselves falling in love with a faceless man who did what they’re husband’s/boyfriend’s couldn’t do. Thanks to that one bunch of roses, they are doing the extra groundwork for you,  convincing your valentine she is one lucky girl. Sounds like a win/win to me.

Dinner. If you have the balls to ask her to dinner, it doesn’t have to cost you an entire paycheck. You can cook for her or have a candle lit picnic on the beach (weather pending). Or! Forget about dinner – hit up the movies, the theatre or a jazz bar. There’s always plenty to do Valentine’s Day eve.

I always think that something ridiculously unique wins. I love anything quirky. No surprises there. Let’s face it. If you’re willing to embarrass yourself, then you have to be pretty keen?! Like maybe, donning a white suit and singing N’Sync’s ‘Girlfriend’ on bended knee….? Video is above if you want to get a start on learning the lyrics 😉 Thank me later.

In short, you really can’t go wrong in making some effort. If you read the signs wrong and she isn’t keen, don’t fret, we’re adults, she’s not going to laugh at you with her friends and tell everyone on Facebook what a schmuck you are. In fact, a romantic gesture may work to your advantage and she may just find herself interested in getting to know you better. For some of us girls, the fact you cared enough to try, means everything and more.

Happy Valentine’s Day lovers.

Spread the roses and chocolates far and wide.

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