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Kakeibo: The Art of Financial Mindfulness

By Gina Messina, Ph.D. About a year ago, a friend introduced me to Kakeibo, the Japanese art of budgeting and applying mindfulness to our spending, and I’ve been obsessed ever since. You see, I am a major contributor to our consumeristic culture. I see something shiny and I think I have to have it. A friend jokes that she hates going shopping with me because I have to pick up and touch everything on the shelves (although I’ve eliminated that practice due to COVID!).  Like so many of us, I am easily persuaded by marketing tactics. Now that we so rarely spend cash, it feels like I can simply swipe a card, click a button, or use my fingerprint and suddenly I have a new…

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Women in Today’s Workplace: Two Steps Forward, One Step Back?

The post-pandemic workplace is littered with uncertainty for workers in all industries, especially women. While the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic has passed, the lack of a steady workplace for women is still a prevalent problem. COVID-19 and Women’s Employment During the COVID-19 pandemic, women were 33% more likely than men to work in an industry shut down by the pandemic. Research indicated that jobs held by women were 1.8 times more vulnerable than those held by males. Women made up 39% of the employment on a global scale, but they accounted for 54% of the job losses worldwide. Economists also report that women were much more likely than men to be furloughed during the pandemic. In addition, women were furloughed for longer periods than…

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The State of Women in the Workforce

PRE-PANDEMIC: Progress for Women was Slow with Many Challenges While there was a minor upward shift for women in senior positions, women continued to be drastically underrepresented in leadership positions, especially women of color.The “broken rung” continued holding millions of women back from being promoted to manager.Women remained significantly outnumbered in entry-level management with only 38% of positions.Women’s participation in the labor force had not yet returned to its 2000 peak by the time the coronavirus pandemic began (McKinsey 2020). THE SHECESSION 100% of jobs lost in December 2020 were held by women.275,000 women left the workforce in January 2021.Mothers who are reducing their work hours and leaving the labor force outright add up to $64.5 billion a year in lost wages and economic activity.The net 2.4 million women who left the labor force…

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Tips for Setting Long-Term Goals 

Goals, broadly speaking, are defined as the desired states that we seek to obtain, maintain, or avoid (Nair, 2003). Long-term goals can be defined as the set of goals that need a longer period of time to achieve. For example, they could be goals related to our education, career, relationships, fitness, etc. Long-term goals require planning and sustained effort, so they can be a bit trickier to achieve than shorter-term goals. Here are some tips to get you started.  How to Reach Long-Term Goals  1. Set specific and challenging goals. It turns out that we achieve more by setting specific goals that are a little bit bigger or challenging, but not too challenging. If we set easy goals, we often don’t achieve as much as…

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Thriving in the Gig Economy: A Primer for Women

This post is based on a webinar hosted by Dr. Denise Reading. It’s the first in an ongoing series of workshops, webinars, and for-credit courses offered by the Institute for Women, Wellness and Work to help women explore freelancing, consulting, and solopreneur opportunities as a path to a satisfying and successful professional experience.   “Gig economy” is a phrase you’ve probably heard a lot, especially in the last couple of years. It refers to the part of the workforce (more than half!) that doesn’t work full-time for one employer, but instead takes on multiple opportunities from different sources. The term got its start in the music industry. Musicians generally refer to a performance they’re hired for as a gig. That terminology has spread to other industries,…

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