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What’s fair about a chocolate bar?

All people must be treated equally—including children. But when you’re dealing with kids of different ages, interests, and personalities; it can be difficult to make decisions without having one (or all) of them storm off yelling, “But it’s not fair!”

Let’s take the example of “The Chocolate Bar.”


Suppose two kids are given a chocolate bar. As a parent/caregiver wanting to teach fairness, the smart thing is to split the chocolate in half. Right? But wait—what if only one child likes chocolate? Is it still fair? Or would it be better to give the whole bar to the child who enjoys it?

Fairness is about getting everybody’s needs met. If each person’s needs were identical, then splitting the chocolate bar in half would work perfectly 100% of the time. But we know all too well that our children are more nuanced than that.

This principle doesn’t just apply between siblings either. There’s also the question of what’s fair between parent and child. While a fancy steak dinner might feel like a treat for you, it might feel like a punishment to your kid. They may respond with one of the three R’s (rebellion, resistance, or retaliation), and you may respond by calling them spoiled or ungrateful. Things spin out of control quickly, all because you expected your child to have a certain reaction to a steak dinner they never wanted to begin with!

So, how do you make decisions regarding vacations, leisure time, food, and more that are truly fair for your children?

  • Get to know your kid. What does your child truly enjoy? Would they rather eat yogurt than chocolate? Would one prefer reading over watching a movie during leisure time? Finding out what each child likes will help inform the decisions you make for the entire family.
  • Practice consideration. We can’t always get what we want when we want it. To teach children to give and take, Marshall Rosenberg suggests an interesting form of educational play. Designate one sibling as captain for the day, and give them authority to make all decisions for the group. The curveball: they have to give their “powers” over to another sibling the next day. This activity helps children learn to be considerate of each other’s needs by treating each other the way they want to be treated.
  • Loop them into decision-making. One of the fathers I work with told me a story of how he once planned a big holiday trip to France for his family. He ended up being sorely disappointed because when he finally revealed his plan, his children told him they wanted to visit their friends in California instead. Make your life easier by involving your kids in family decisions every step of the way. Getting your children’s opinion not only sharpens your kid’s collaborative skills, but it also makes the entire family more harmonious.

Fairness is not about “one for you, one for me.” Being truly fair is everyone’s needs are met (which isn’t everyone’s wants are met) it’s about being able to take everyone’s needs into consideration and as you show what it looks and feels like your kids know how and reciprocate with the same consideration back to you.  This way everyone’s unique preferences are recognized and everyone feels so seen, known, and loved just the way they are.  From this point family problem solving that is bringing everyone one’s voice into the space will bring about outcomes that are preventing future disappointments.

P.S. Want to continue the conversation about what’s fair? Join our Facebook group to ask a question or share a challenge.

Growth Personal Development Women In Business

Predictions for 2022 – Women Claim Business Success As Free Agents!

The pandemic has provided women with a special opportunity to step back and reevaluate their priorities and commitments. As a global business mentor to successful women, my clients tell me every day about their urgent need for more professional freedom, income, flexibility, and fulfillment. These are powerful women who will not surrender their dreams and are actively claiming success as business free agents!

In its 2021 “Women in the Workplace” report, Lean In and McKinsey & Company found that 1 in 3 women have considered changing or leaving their jobs in the past year. Furthermore, Deloitte’s 2021 Women @ Work study found that 59% of women feel less optimistic about their career prospects today than before the pandemic. Surveys and statistics point to a major transformation occurring with women and work. Women want more agency, sovereignty, and freedom and are relentless in this pursuit.

Instead of committing decades of their lives to climb the traditional corporate ladder, millions of women are making the bold choice to become CEOs in their own C-Suite. They want more control and more opportunities to choose and scale their own ladders of success!

2022 is the year for women to be courageous and claim success as business free agents!

Free Agency has historically been associated with athletes and sports teams instead of executives and entrepreneurs. Free agents are generally considered to be self-determined and are free to sign a contract with any team or organization that meets their criteria for success. This is also true in the business world. Business free agents are entrepreneurs who can determine who, what, where, why, and how they conduct business. They are not bound by geographical, time zone, and location constraints. Free agents know that business success is created by executing solid strategic plans, delivering value, and transforming problems into positive solutions. The bigger the problems; the bigger the paycheck!

Typically, women pursue business free agency as entrepreneurs because they are managing work and family responsibilities and want more freedom and options. Later in life, women executives are seeking to transition out of corporate life and start a successful business on their terms. These “encore entrepreneurs” create thought leadership businesses to capitalize on their years of knowledge, experience, and relationships while converting these assets into financial equity and impact. Women are natural problem solvers and transformation agents, so they have a unique ability to start, grow and scale successful multi six-figure (annually, monthly or weekly) businesses.

To be a successful free agent, women need to become “A players” in their field of expertise. Leadership skills and confident competence are the “table stakes” of successful free agency as an entrepreneur. Every business owner needs to provide value to their clients while at the same time creating a profit for herself. Women owners do not have to be on the journey alone. Free-agent entrepreneurs can and must build a team to attract, retain and fulfill on their business brand and mission.

Being a solopreneur can be the first stop on the free-agent journey, but it does not have to be the destination. Growing a successful business means achieving more through a leveraged business model supported by a community of mentors, supporters, and advocates.

Women Are Claiming Business Success as Free Agents – Now!

What impact is the women’s free-agent entrepreneurial movement having on the US economy now? According to the Census Bureau’s Annual Business Survey (ABS), women now own 12.3 million businesses, approximately 42% of all US companies.

Women started 1,821 net new businesses every day in 2021 and generated $1.8 trillion this year in sales. To put things in perspective, there were around 402,000 female-owned businesses in 1972. The good news is that the number of women free agent entrepreneurs will grow in the coming years, according to business ownership statistics.

Why is this important for you? Essentially, it comes down to more opportunities. More women free-agent entrepreneurs translates to increased prospects for collaboration, partnership, new clients, innovation, and increased participation in the global economy. As it is often said, “With all women in the game and off the sidelines, we’ve got the “A players” on the field.” So, let’s play ball!

To support the ambitious growth of women free agents, I created C-Suite Network’s Women’s Success Council ™ (WSC) and Women’s Success School ™ (WSS). The WSC and WSS are innovative online communities dedicated to increasing our members’ success and free agency as business owners, CEOs, coaches, consultants, authors, speakers, and visionary leaders. We guide and mentor women to start, grow and scale successful businesses. We operate by the principles of collaboration over competition and “growing the pie, not just splitting it.”

We welcome you to learn more about the Women’s Success Council and the Women’s Success School at http://tinyurl.com/KathleenCaldwellLinkedIn or by contacting the founder, Kathleen Caldwell at 773.562.1061.


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