Monday, June 2, 2014

Being a MOM, sharing some tips and reality…

“God doesn't require us to succeed, he only requires that you try.” 
― Mother Teresa

Amazed at how life changed after being a Mommy, to two beautiful kids. I am thrilled… but feel unsure like many in my boat.. I am sure would agree.

The journey from an independent working woman to a full time Mommy has deprived me of the many abilities to have a full time career,  having to not deal with routine to do things at odd hours, or simply do nothing or anything. They were past luxuries!
This post is not about the rumblings of a Mommy, but about little things that women can adopt to change their living.

Here is a list of habits I inculcated in my little ones to ensure that they become independent soon:
This is a piece of my journey I will be glad to know your tips, feel free to leave your list in the comment section at the end of this post, may be we can together arrive at a better comprehensive list. Looking to learn more from you. 
Please contribute your learning!

- Provide ample mingling opportunity- start from as early as 1.18 years to 2 years.
Kids learn to manage themselves in groups this has benefits later on when they go to school. An early start in this arena helps them learn an important life skill- Team bonding and you can peacefully be rest assured that your toddler will know how to survive in groups as he grows.
- Encourage your little one to start eating and bathing independently
This can be started right after potty training your young one as by that time they start to follow instructions. This will teach them self-dependence and in a way helps to foster good hygiene habits.
- Self reading and self-play
I started by initially reading rhymes and pictorial story books to develop interest, slowly they picked up.
Now I buy them interesting books and they like to explore. I am blessed with two kids so introducing self-play was relatively easy, games like UNO, Carom Board, the good old SNAKES & LADDER, LUDO, CHESS etc. believe me kids love these activities. We only need to introduce them in the right way.
- Minimize dependence
Now this might be a little unconventional but I think it works wonders to ask the little ones to do tasks on their own as much as possible, things like dropping to school bus, applying paste on tooth brush, socializing independently etc.

Some might differ as we are traditionally taught to be servicing our kids, so per that standard we might be giving them a dose of extra freedom, but I believe this teaches kids to be responsible for the freedom they received and teaches an important life skill- Ownership.

If they commit a mistake they pay for it and learn to rectify errors on their own!
Now these were some things for the kids, what about us the moms.

It’s fine to want your dreams, to be living
Have a mission apart from being a Mommy.

“A child can teach an adult three things: to be happy for no reason, to always be busy with something, and to know how to demand with all his might that which he desires.” 

See my next post on “So you think you are a Mommy born to be? Are you truly connected?”  Next on my blog watch this space!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

My Theme For the A to Z Theme Reveal Challenge...Sorry I am late!

With children at home for summer vacations, what better can I do?

 This is a brilliant opportunity for me to bond with my little ones, we will do it with a twist of creativity. Writing short story and Haiku together!

Me and my little sons aged 6 years and 4 years!

The first one- Story Of an Arrogant King....

Once upon a time there lived a king.
Image by Yash Bhowmik

In a big and beautiful palace.
This king was strong but greedy, he always choose the wrong path in his arrogance.
He secretly wanted to defeat the world and rule the planet.

Image from the net.

One day he encountered the biggest enemy called English with his troops.
He lost the battle and was baffled by his defeat. 
Later back in his palace he realized that arrogance alone is not enough to conquer the world.
He needed to plan, prepare and be better then the rest to rule.

Story by Yash Bhowmik

Hope you would like the innocent creative venture!
I plan to post their stories, poetry and pictures, of course I get promoted to be the editor and publishing their deeds!

Have fun friends , do visit this place for regular updates!
Happy Blogging and bonding!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Women seeking a career break my musings, and reality!

Image from the net!

"How wrong is it for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself?” ― Ana├»s Nin

I was in the midst of a successful career, really busy making it work for me, suddenly I had to pause unexpectedly, I was pregnant…expecting our first child, that did not bother me and all seemed fine until I noticed things were changing around me.
Meetings were getting fewer and there were not many new projects in my kitty. I was still performing like before but my boss’s perception of me and my abilities had changed. Not liking this I tried to fight but it was a hidden gun pointed at my face; needless to say I did not survive the bullet.
Does this sound familiar? A corporate chess game, many witness each day!

I think many would relate to my story. We may be creating welfare policies at corporate levels but they will be ineffective useless pieces of paper until we change the mindset. 

Cartoon Image taken from the net.
I wondered why was it me, stepping down, here are my findings:
  • We have been taught to be responsible for child support, elderly care etc. As little girls it was imbibed in our upbringing to forego personal goals for a successful family. I now beg to differ, we should not do anything that we do not want to as this causes deep sorrow and further results in lot of emotional discord, the basics here are simple, I asked myself can I make others happy if I am not being so deep within? The answer is a big no, it’s OK to be living for yourself ladies, without any guilt!
  • What stops us from including our partners in child support? The old school of thought that a good wife will do it all by herself. I think we must seek their help from the early days so they get to understand and both partners in a family get some breathing space for living. It’s not a crime it’s OK. We learn the tricks after becoming a mother so can they?
  • Here is an interesting list of rules by oprah winfrey- building happy relationships.
It is not gender specific I have come across many women managers saying they would not like to promote or hire somebody who is pregnant or has young kids. Once your secret is revealed things begin to change plans for bigger roles, promotion, on site visits etc. suddenly disappear.
 This is also not a culture specific trend it’s a global phenomenon affecting many women. It was nice to see so much buzz about it in the virtual world. 
A hope may be something would change soon in reality!

I was thrilled to read this post and would be so glad if such a thing is accepted and practiced Mothers should get a six-yearcareer break, says FTSE 100 chairman, yet another post on similar lines An interesting read First female union chief: 'Jobsmarket is bias against all women from the outset'.

I could clearly see,  I was being set up for an unsuccessful return after my maternity but fighting was difficult and surprisingly other women folks were watching discreetly no body choose to voice with me, probably it worked for them but we failed as a society, I feel. It did give me a purpose though, I chose to write read and research about my state.
Image borrowed from the net.
During my time out and a successful return, I did a few things that all women must consider:
Keep in touch - network with colleagues and friends
This is important as you would not want your image frozen in time, making a comeback difficult for you later. People might be able to help with useful information once you are ready.
Polish your core skills
This is really critical as it will help in building confidence and you will have pointers to explain what you did during the break. While planning a comeback this is the most difficult part, prospective employers would want to know why they should hire you after a break are your skills updated. 
- Identify creative ventures
I choose to explore my writing skills and started a few blogs, this helped in two ways I research so knowledge quotient is not degraded and creating literal stuff  skill quotient is in place. There are other options as well like writing a book in your field of profession, doing freelance work, voluntary works etc.
Connect with like-minded people
Believe me during my research to write about this I was amazed to find several women in my boat. This made me feel better and this collaboration helps build a support system, knowledge sharing and at the end you feel better.I connected with a few and here I am writing with a mission.
Upgrade your skills consider further education/Certifications 
While planning my first career break I was finding it hard to get past the initial resume screening rounds, I was rejected without a second glance. Then I found out I need to upgrade so I did my post-graduation and it worked helped. Needless to say I landed a job.
Keep up your confidence
My mind doubted my abilities as being at home had its adverse effects I had lost my confidence. It might sound silly but it worked I dressed like I am going to work and would hunt for jobs, I imagined myself working, made my friends take mock interviews and may be fooled my brain but I gained confidence.
Seek support when you need
Once I decided to get back it was difficult to get a break, after struggling alone for a few months, I connected with friends asked them to help. It worked. Now that being said we need to be judicious about whom you seek help from as it will work negatively on your self-esteem if you face rejection or no support from friends. 

Here is more about me to douse your curiosity!

I am a mother to two, HR professional turned poet, writer, blogger. 
I took a career break in 2008 after my first child , proud to say successfully broke the unemployed edge and returned to work but then had to take another break after just 10 months of being employed want to know why, read my next post on my blog!  Is it enough to get a job to bounce back after a break?

There is another aspect worth mentioning, while planning to bounce back I am sure many, like I did, wonder if they are neglecting their responsibilities, is it worth it and if the time is right or when should we plan a return?

I realized after much introspection that the answer to all these is simple, no we are not neglecting anything and the time is right when you are ready. 
Children go to school does that mean they are neglecting you, husbands go to work so should you if you want to, we all have dreams and we should go after them freely.

We must not let social pressures come in our way towards reaching our dreams, Are social pressures stopping you? Here is an interest read about how to beat it?

In my quest to share and support other women in my boat, here is my top return to work support resources and some interesting posts from around the globe. 
May be this can pep you up, help you gear for the fight -landing a great job!
Browse through the list and click on whatever works for you to read - learn and win!
  1. I re-launch is a site dedicated to help women at global level providing support to women to bounce back after a career break.
  2.     10 Expert Tips on Going Back to Work by lisa Heffmen
  3.     Returning to Work After a Career Break: The GOOD News
  4.     How to write your resume after a career break for women
  5.     Help Women Succeed - Non-Profit helping women in India‎
  6.    TATA – Second Career Internship Programme for Women:   
  7.  HUL Launches 'Career by Choice' for women in India 

 A  small request!

Dr. Malissa Clark an assistant professor of psychology and women’s studies at the University of Georgia, is leading an online study to learn more about women’s career breaks’
I urge all women to take a few moments and participate, raise your voice shout out, ...yes I know it’s conducted by University of Georgia,.... so what? 

We are  living in a virtual world  no boundaries global edge, data speaks louder than words. Let your voice be heard. There are no boundaries!

Click here to take the survey now!

I can't stop writing on this here is my poetry, how can I finish something without my famous touch :-)
A bird
seeking liberty

Chose to speak
inner words revolutionary
might be contradictory!

My deeds 
may be 
out of ordinary!

I choose
to be a woman
of dignity 
respecting my integrity!

By Bhawana Bhowmik

Also read 'The Piranha in me.'..'Women s identity'... 'I am pickled jalapeno' other poetry posts on this subject!

“Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.” 
― Virginia WoolfA Room of One's Own

“You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.” 
― Brigham Young

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Lime- The Flavor Of Life...

Lime is the flavor of life
changes taste dramatically!

Mixed with sweet it's sweet
mixed with salt it's salty
just like the flavors of life
emotions define our being
sad mixed with anything is agony
joy is pestilent, a touch changes everything!

Translucent color,mystic
half revealed-just like life
Symbolizing Vigor in our dreams
changing side scenes- reality
Lime is the flavor of life!

Scent is subtle refreshing
touch is soft ,touch it gently.
Lime is the flavor of life!!

Lime truly is the flavor of life, alone it is sour extreme. I can only dare you to taste.
Mixed with various things it changes taste and is nice refreshing. My favorite flavor is lime.
Bacardi has come up with quite a few but I would always go for my lime :-)

Friday, July 5, 2013

Who are the rapidly evolving Indie Author's?

I first read this word on a Google+ community post, being new to the jargon's of the publishing world I imagined it to mean an author from India LOL, ......truly my ignorance! 

Not convinced and secretly convinced about the bizarreness of my definition I finally hit Google search and wow the new world was reveled!

Image From The Net.
I researched and stumbled upon few very interesting facts about the so called "Indie Author".

I am sure there are people out there wondering like I did, hence sharing my insights, maybe it will help the beginners like me!

Know the world of the new and rapidly evolving Indies through my eyes!

Author's, many of us would eventually anyways fall in this category.

Who are the Indie Authors?
 Indie is a short-form of "independence" or "independent"; it may refer to the fields of literature, Art etc., however for the sake of this post let us talk only about "The Indie Author", in my opinion it can mean any of the following categories of writers:

Debut writers who take the self publishing route, and manage all the activities associated with publishing on their own like Editing, proofreading, cover design, buying/owning the ISBN, Printing, Sales and Marketing, Book Promotions, Book Distribution etc.They have the option to hire experts to do some of these activities, but they are independent -  Indie and choose their own course!

Image from the Net.

- Writers/Authors who choose the vanity publishing houses to publish their books. Since these are small independent publishing houses they are Indie.

- Authors/Writers who are published by the traditional top six Publishing Houses, but their books are now out of print choose this course to make the content available on Kindle/Nook etc. E-book formats.

- Authors who have published one or two books through the traditional publishers, and later choose to go the independent route. (This is done since the indies get to keep better profit margin from their book sales, also since they manage most of the publishing activities on their own they cut on costs, their are no middle men to eat up on the margin cost.) quite a few advantages in contrast to the traditional path.

There is quite a bit of debate all over the publishing world about "who the Indie is?", the above is my gathering from researching, It would be great to hear, what you think about the 'Indie Author'?.

Few interesting recent facts about the Indie Publishing arena:

This discovery genuinely amazed me, I wondered: why would Penguin want to do this? It sounded crazy, but then I realized that the paradigm shift from Traditional to the Indie route is immensely evident in the publishing world. The Indie advantages seem to be overtaking the traditional publishing good charms. It in a way is a question of survival in the digital world, this I feel is where the Indie writer dominates.

In my research one aspect that was evident is the fact that as an Independent Author we do not have all the doors open for us. Sad but true many writing organisations do not consider you to be a true Author if you are only self published. 
We cannot be nominated for an Edgar and many other such literary honors!

This can be debated hence, I would be glad to hear what you think?

My bottom line after this research is that it ultimately boils down to your aspirations as a writer, if you want the awards and do not care about other things like freedom of expression etc. then Indie route is not for you.

There are authors who simply want to write good books and get them out there for people to read they do not really care much about the literary credits. 
They are content, being truly Indies!

It is an authors pick ultimately!

An Author's Hope....
"When I am dead, I hope it may be said:
'His sins were scarlet, but his books were read.'- Hilaire Belloc

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Universal Fidelity Suffering and Self-Pity....

Suffering, grief, sorrow or Pain
Can't be big or plain?
Quantity's relativity
Is so disdain!!

I looked around and found that there is a bit of suffering in all that is around, wondering about quantifying it. 
I realized that sorrow is just sorrow cannot be quantified. 
Nobodies grief is bigger or smaller than anybodies. 
It simply is!!!

I was dumb struck ascertaining  how we unconsciously or consciously glorify misery. Captivating self assuring thought, all of us feel what we are facing is the ultimate grief. Displaying our batches of victory a way of gathering reassuring words- gratification. We tend to fabricate our efforts sounding victorious gaining self esteem. Learning is lost only stories remain in shared words. Spread with no real meaning plain grape wine-gossip.

A closer Look and I was dismayed at how ordinary seeming people can be battling so extraordinary pain.

There is misery all around so is the opportunity to evolve, grow, but the blind belief, egocentric approach.

 Most people ignore what is so evident universally, available source of growth learning. We have created a society where talking about our pain is looked down upon. Those who are brave enough to say they are battling with something, are thought of as naive, weak, immature and many such adjectives. 

Haunted by cruel memories of a past deed, an impulsive act or anything are treated differently under varied judgments passed secretly.

Humanity ignoring an omnipresent fact- Suffering, it is all around, every body's life is an example. Entire human race has a spiritual eternal learning to take and evolve into better beings. 

This is the meaning of life anyways. Evolution learning reaching higher ground from where we are or were is not possible without grief. All learning is difficult  even the most ordinary skills are learnt with great difficulty. Who then said that learning to live life is going to be any easy.

Does it help in anything, to be so restrained, bordered in sharing melancholy

I wish we mature and create a place where suffering and agony is shared respectfully.

There should be no judgments, right or wrong equations. 

What happens in one person's life is unique to them. Watching somebody Else's life, there simply is not enough view to judge. 

Mutual respect is vital for sharing. 

We must create a sacred world where non is demeaned for their sufferings, none for their wrong or right doing. 

Cause everything is relative to time and a moment alone. After that time is gone the relativity is lost we only arrive at conclusions. A learning evolution spirituality. The plethora of suffering is yet an unsolved mystery, we are pondering to reveal the secrecy.

To conclude here are two of my favorite poets and their poems around this theme:
  1. Sorrow's Uses by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  2. If Grief for Grief can touch thee by Emily Jane Bronte