Do You Keep Your Personal Life Private at Work?

how to keep certain parts of your personal life private at workKeeping aspects of your personal life private at work may feel necessary to you, or it may just be a personal preference. Maybe you’re worried that certain information about your life outside of work will make you a source of coworker gossip, or lead people to stereotype you, or even cost you your job. Or maybe you feel that some parts of your personal life simply aren’t anyone’s business. We thought it’d be interesting to talk about the things that readers prefer to keep quiet at the office — and why. Readers, do you keep certain parts of your personal life private at work? What parts, and why? 

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What Are Your Friendship Tiers — Who is a Close Friend vs. an Acquaintance?

friendship tiersI know we just discussed the effect friends have on your life a few weeks ago, but I thought friendship tiers and theories would make a really interesting discussion: How do you define tiers of friendship? What is the difference (to you) between a close friend and an acquaintance, and how has that changed for you over your life?

Recently I saw an interesting article in Vox about “why 30 is the decade that friends disappear, and this is what you can do about it” — and it contained one woman’s friendship tiers:

First come acquaintances, people I can recognize and say hi to at yoga class, cookouts, church, that kind of thing. Then I start to connect with some casual friends, people I can do coffee dates and see movies with. Once we reach a point where we don’t have to make plans in advance — where we’re comfortable enough to do nothing together and I can just text that I’m on my way — that’s when I’ve made a close friend.

I immediately texted Kate to note that I disagreed with that “just text that I’m on my way” level — as an introvert, I haaaate when people CALL without a specific purpose (or, frankly, without us having agreed to have a call at X time — because I am crazy). If a good friend were to just show up at my door, I would be like, “Hi! Are you in dire need of a bathroom? Are you injured? Can I help you in some way? No? OK nice seeing you let’s get together soon!” But again, I’m kind of an extreme introvert. It’s particularly interesting to me because some of the people I consider my best, closest, soul-sister type of friends aren’t necessarily people who are in my orbit on a regular basis — they’re those people I maybe haven’t seen in nine months (or longer) but we talk for four hours straight without stopping when we do see each other. So for me, my friendship tiers look more like this:

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How to Style a Sweater as a Layering Piece

how to style a cardigan as a layering pieceI recently saw some interesting photos at Banana Republic of sweaters styled as a layering piece, and since it IS that season where you may or may not need a sweater or cardigan, depending on temperature, wind, humidity, office AC, etc., I thought it might make an interesting discussion. If you’re not actively wearing the sweater, how do you style it? Do you wrap it around your shoulders or your waist, or do you just carry it in a bag? This can be very office-specific as well as location-specific, but here are the basic questions: Are there ways to style a cardigan that are “classic,” or does the sweater-as-accessories-look read a certain way to you, like preppy, casual, or (ahem) dated? Do you prefer to just throw a cardigan in your bag for your commute if you’re not wearing it? (In the past, we’ve talked more generally about cardigans in our guide to stylish cardigans for the office, and we’ve also discussed ways to button cardigans.)

For my $.02, I think both looks above are way too casual for a conservative office. If I needed to shed a layer before returning to my office I’d be far more likely to throw both arms of the cardigan over my shoulders, like below. But while I see a lot of this look in real life (enough that I’d call it classic!), I see hardly any images in the styled annals of Pinterest and style blogs, which makes me wonder if people see it as outdated. (Refinery 29 has their “cool girl” take on how to style sweaters that includes a very sloppy version of the below looks…)

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The Best Birth Control Options in 2018

the best birth control options in 2018What are you all using for birth control these days? We thought that a good companion to our discussion earlier this year about how to decide if you want kids would be a roundup of the best birth control options in 2018, so that’s our topic for today. (We’ve also talked about planning your career for babies and shared the planner’s guide to pregnancy and in general have had many posts about family planning and pregnancy, including a guest post long ago from a reader on why she chose an IUD). Over at CorporetteMoms, we recently explained what to consider when choosing birth control after having a baby — but whether or not you’ve had kids doesn’t have a huge impact on your contraceptive choices. Dr. Melissa Gunter, MD, an ob/gyn in Rochester, NY, says, “There is no method that is off-limits based solely on whether or not you’ve had a child.”

In addition to pointing out that the best type of birth control for you right now may not be the most appropriate choice for you a year from now (or five), Dr. Gunter recommends that you first decide on your must-haves for your ideal birth control: “Is it the method that you are least likely to get pregnant on? Then you want a Nexplanon [contraceptive implant] or IUD,” she says. “Is cycle predictability important to you? Then a pill, patch, or ring may be better. Do you prefer something which will also regulate or level out your reproductive hormones, or do you prefer how you feel with your own natural hormonal ups and downs? Do you want something you never have to think about, or are you OK remembering to pick up prescriptions and take your birth control every day, week, or month?”

Keeping those factors in mind, here are some of the best birth control options in 2018:

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How to Make the Most of a Long Weekend

How to Make the Most of a Long WeekendWhat’s everyone doing for the long weekend coming up? In general, how do you like to spend long weekends like this, and what historically has been your best long weekend ever? What are your best tips for how to make the most of a long weekend if you don’t have plans?

For my $.02, I’ve employed a few tactics over the years to make the most of long weekends:

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10 Tips to Save Money on Subscription Services

Save Money on Subscription ServicesWe recently rounded up several good ways to cut the cord and say goodbye to your cable company forever, and today we thought we’d take a deeper dive by sharing 10 tips to save money on subscription services of all sorts — both the ones you already have and the ones you might be considering cutting.ways to save money on subscription services Readers, we’d love to hear from you — how often do you reassess subscription services? What are your best tips for ways to save money on subscription services? 

First, take stock of the current situation. Take a moment to write down all your current subscriptions, from your gym to Hulu to Hello Fresh — including the ones (like, say, Netflix) that you know you won’t be canceling, and the ones you’ve been meaning to get rid of and keep forgetting about. Check your last month or so of credit card transactions to catch any that you might be forgetting. (Don’t forget to check your Paypal account, and scrutinize charges from regular credit card line items like Amazon and iTunes to make sure you’re not unwittingly subscribing to services.)  Are there yearly subscriptions or paid memberships you’re forgetting about? What is your monthly total for the subscriptions you’ve signed up for, and are there any you’re not even using, or barely using?

If you find yourself unpleasantly surprised (or even shocked) by your list, you can tackle the problem by using these 10 tips to save money on subscription services, now and in the future:

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