What does it really mean to work full-time?

I am at O’Hare flying to Pittsburgh to give a speech. I try to never give speeches. Actually I try to never leave my house. Because I think I will regret any time I spend away from my kids.

Well, definitely I will. Here’s how I know:

Because I chose to live in abject poverty in NYC because I didn’t want to leave my kids to work in an office. So I started building a freelance writing business on $25 articles. We ran out of food a lot, and I thought I’d look back and be horrified that my kids did not have beds. (We all slept on the floor because we had no room for beds.)

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5 Ways to make people think you’re nice

We are at the dining room table eating dinner and my eight-year-old son who is dying to have a girlfriend tells us, “Taylor Swift said she’s only going to date guys who have sisters because they understand women better. Is that true? I think I need a sister.”

I say, “I read that, too.”

Matthew says, “I don’t want to hear quotes from Taylor Swift at the table. She keeps dating men and then writing about them. I can’t stand it.”

“Really?” I say, “You can’t stand it? How do you put up with me?”

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There’s a high price to hiding from the need to transition

This is our spring family portrait. The calf wandered into the photo.

Winter is peaceful on the farm because there’s nothing to do but keep the animals alive. It’s hard work, but it’s only a few hours a day. Summer is busy because all the fields are ready at different times—farmers cut hay many times in a season, farmers rotate the animals to graze different fields, and there are baby animals that have to grow and become independent by winter. But the rhythms of summer are predictable because everything is part of a system.

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Four-day webinar with Penelope: Networking for people who hate networking

This webinar includes four days of of video sessions and email-based course materials. You can purchase this webinar for anytime, on-demand access. The cost is $195.  

Buy now!

I need to tell you at the top of this that I also have a special guest for this webinar: Guy Kawasaki.

I probably should have a huge picture of Guy because really, he is the king of networking. The last time I hung out with him was at SXSW and he rented a limo to party-hop, because he was invited to all 50 parties that were going on that night. So we are bouncing from party to party and finally I announced, “Did you see how nice the lighting is in this limo? I’m not getting out anymore. I brought a book. I’m reading it.”

But Guy kept going. I asked him how he could manage that and he said,”It’s just part of my job.”

Networking is part of your job, too. It’s part of everyone’s job because really, all good things come from having a network.  Well, except one-night stands. But actually, I never had a good one-night stand, because if I liked the one-night stand then I would stalk the guy til he’d do it again and then it went from a good one-night stand to a bad short-term relationship.

So all good things come from networks.

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Don’t let your career become outdated

I’m still stuck on that study in the Harvard Business Review that I wrote about a few weeks ago. The data shows that what women want from their career is respect, and what men want is a series of engaging problems to solve. This struck me as totally true.

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Simplifying life has nothing to do with all your stuff

I have never filed my taxes on time. Ever. It’s very annoying when people blame every little thing on their parents, so I’m not going to tell you that year after year my mom would let my dad do their taxes, my dad would wait until the last minute, and then he’d ask my mom to sign at 11:45 pm so he could drive to the post office and get it postmarked and she would say she has to read it and he would throw a fit. Then the police would come and stop the fight.

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When is worry good?

Last night I was in bed with Matthew, and I was reading The Week, which I totally love because it’s like a summary of every idea that has been posed by mainstream media for the last seven days. My only gripe is they should be quoting my blog. Especially for topics about women and work. And in fact, I am putting a link here to Editor-in-Chief William Falk, so  this post comes up in his google alerts and he mends his misguided ways.

I worry that I should not be worrying about this. Why can’t I just enjoy a magazine I like?

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The revolution in Ukraine… and on my site

Did you notice there is a person in hiding on the Quistic team page?  He won’t let me show you his picture or give you his real name because he’s scared people will find out he works for an American company and they will come to his house to take his money.

“What? Who would do that?” I ask.

“The mob. Or the police. In Ukraine it’s the same thing.”

So I used this site that picks Russian names to find one for our team page. I suggested some and we settled on Dmitry Petrov.

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How to build a career if you have Aspergers

This is an excerpt from an article I wrote for More magazine titled, Could Your Boss Have Aspergers? I was thinking that the article is so good and someone should give me a book deal from it. Then when an agent contacted me I remembered that I can’t stand having a book contract hanging over my head. But I like this article, so I’m posting an excerpt below, and you can read the whole article at More magazine.

Roughly 80 percent of adults with Asperger’s syndrome do not have full-time work, according to some studies. By the time I figured out I had the disorder, I had been fired from every job I had ever held. I had offended everyone I knew. Think of all the thoughts and judgments that go through your head that you’d never say aloud: You’re fat. You’re lazy. Your clothes don’t fit. Your office smells. I say these things because they’re true, and I’ve since built a career on saying what no one else will say—or maybe I have a career in spite of that.

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How to tell if you’re headed to the top

While Generation X did not give a crap about building corporate America, Generation Y defined its own paths through corporate life, all largely non-linear, family-centric, and gold-star focused. If an achievement can’t be conveyed through social media then it doesn’t exist. The Organiziation Man is no more.

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