A Woman at Forty’s Nation

Maria Shriver I took a little creative license with the title, but Maria Shriver in conjunction with the California Women’s Conference has launched a project in partnership with the Center for American Progress and the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Center on Communication Leadership and Policy. The project, A Woman’s Nation, plans to take a comprehensive look at American women who for the first time in our history make up half of all workers, and are becoming the primary breadwinners in more families.

The media is all abuzz with these new statistics, but since I come from a family where at least as far back as two generations ago the women have been going to work everyday, it just didn’t seem all that surprising to me. But, bringing these statistics to light will definitely generate discussions surrounding traditional male/female roles, how we define family in the future, how social class and economics impact these statistics, and even how men and women define themselves.

The Women at Forty Project focuses on a snapshot of women from all over the world, taken in the fortieth year of their lives, and it will be interesting to hear how women in their forties receive this news compared to women in their twenties, thirties and sixties.

What are your thoughts on the newly released findings? Does it matter that women now make up half of the workforce and are surpassing men as primary breadwinners? Should it matter? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on our Facebook Fan page, or tweet your comments to @womenatforty.

PHOTO SOURCE: The Women’s Conference

Kim: On beautiful mistakes…

Kimberley Plans? Hmm. One of the things I’ll never forget from Business 101 in college was this: “If you don’t have a plan, you plan to fail”. Ok, makes sense I guess. But then again…sometimes the best laid plans are recipes for disaster. So how do you find that happy medium? Flip a coin? Magic 8 ball? Tarot cards? See what kind of toy you get in your next Happy Meal? I say YES to all of those! Or…in other words…just let it happen.

One of the first examples that comes to mind is in my jewelry studio. As a jewelry designer and artisan, I really do make every effort to have a bit of a plan as I go into the studio…usually a quick sketch or at least some kind of vision in my mind. I would say 75% of the time I end up with something completely different. Mainly because I goofed and ended up melting one of my bezel settings, one whole side of the piece, or cracking a stone, rendering it useless. Rather than scaring the neighbors with violent profanity…I’ve learned to step back and reevaluate the charred remains of the fruits of my labor. In every instance I was able to salvage my work and turn it into something beautiful. A work of art! As a matter of fact, some of my favorites pieces are complete ‘mistakes’.

You have to be able to see what beauty lies behind these so called ‘mistakes’ and realize that something good will always come from them. You just have to be willing to look. And that applies to all areas of life. So…have no fear if you deviate from your plan – it’s not always a bad thing!

Kim’s a friend, a jewelry artisan, fellow blogger, and rounding the corner to forty (though she’s not as close as I am). You can check out Kim’s one of a kind designs at her on-line boutique Lexie Jewel, and her killer sense of humor on her blog.