6/12/17

Blue Eyelet Cami + Being Assertive

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It's the first full week that the kids are out of school here and I feel like I've entered an alternate universe! Mine are signed up for some fun day camps throughout the summer (like surf camp this week!) to prevent their boredom and protect my sanity, but it's going to be a nice change of pace from the regular school year schedule. Speaking of a change of pace, every since Express stopped making my favorite cami (the Barcelona Cami), I've been trying out camis from different brands and so far, Banana Republic is taking the solid lead as my new favorite. I've had really good luck with the fit, quality and pricing (since their 40% off sales are so frequent), including this blue eyelet cami.

Cami: Banana Republic | Shoes: Target | Jeans: Express | Necklace: Kendra Scott | Bag: c/o Amazon | Ring: "Daisy" c/o Kendra Scott  | Bracelets: Charmed Stacks

This cami ran true-to-size for me and has a nice amount of stretch to make it easy to get on and off. It doesn't have a side zipper like the other cami they make that I love (see I how I wore it in navy here and champagne here) but it doesn't really need it because the material on this is different (softer and stretchier). I love where the neckline hits and that it doesn't gape open at all when I move around or bend forward. I also love the curved hemline so I don't have to fuss with tucking it in. 

Front View: 

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Monday Motivation: Being Assertive
Last week was the last week of school, and I was ready to end the year on a high note with parties and and celebrations all week. But then there was an "incident" at school on Monday while I happened to be on campus to help out with one of the events. I wanted to ignore the issue just to keep the peace and finish up the year. It wasn't a major problem and it would have been easy to just let it go with only three days left, and I'm sure it would be forgotten by next Fall. But I didn't feel good about that because it involved my child feeling he had been wronged by a teacher (part of which I witnessed thanks to being there that day), and he was very concerned about clearing up the issue for his own personal sanity. (I am trying to carefully respect the privacy of the parties involved, so I apologize for the vague explanation of the issue. It's not at all serious, otherwise I wouldn't think of letting it go or even discussing it here.)

When I was finished helping out, I went out to my car and called my husband to get his input on whether this issue was worth escalating. After he agreed that yes, it was, I took some deep breaths and went back in to ask for a meeting with the principal in hope of some resolution. Even as an adult, meeting with the principal is intimidating! I have a lot of respect for our school principal, and I don't want to be "that parent" who causes trouble for her or complains a lot, etc. I briefly explained my concerns as calmly as I could, and she was courteous and professional as always. By that night I had an email from the teacher involved explaining her side of the incident, and that helped clear the air because I knew the principal had explained my son's situation to her, and I also completely understood her choice of actions based on the information she had at the time. Then I talked with my son again to help him better understand her position so we can all move forward.

I recently shared about strengthening my risk-taking muscle, but last week's issue reminded me that my assertive muscle is can pretty weak too due to lack of exercise! I am just not in a lot of situations anymore where I need to speak up about something or confront someone. When the moment arises, doubts and discomfort step in. It is so much easier said than done to, "just talk to them about it!" I was glad that I spoke up this time, but there have been other times when I didn't and probably should have.

Being assertive is a valuable skill that I am motivated to cultivate not just for myself but as a parent.  I remember my mom intervening on my behalf in middle school when I wanted the teacher to move my seats to get me away from a boy who was relentlessly teasing me. I wasn't comfortable discussing it with the teacher so my mom made the call for me (which probably wasn't easy for her!) and I was extremely grateful for that. I want my kids to be able to count on me to step in when they need a little backup! After "the incident" last week I read a few articles to see what I could learn to be more prepared if and when I find myself in one of those situations again. This explanation of assertiveness from WikiHow accurately explains my objectives: "Being assertive falls right in the middle of being passive and being aggressive. If you're passive, you'll never get to vocalize your needs; if you're aggressive, you'll look like a big bully and will likely be misdirecting your frustrations. But if you're assertive, you'll be able to express your desires while respecting the needs of others, and you'll have a better chance of getting what you want and deserve."

So that's my something I'm personally motivated to work on right now...maintaining the assertive mindset! (In a polite, respectful manner, of course!) As always I love hearing from you all if have books, articles, tips or experiences that have helped you improve in this area!


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17 comments:

  1. First, I'm in love with your cami. Second, I'm so happy and proud of you. It is very hard to be assertive but I think what you did was great and you are setting a great example for you boys. Assertiveness really is a muscle that you need to engage.

    xo
    Pinksole

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    1. Thank you Rachelle! I think that's a big part of it - I want them to learn the skill for themselves so I hope I'm teaching by example a bit here!

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  2. I am sad the Barcelona cami seems to be on its way out but I've been enjoying seeing the other options you are finding for yourself! This blue is gorgeous and I am a softie for eyelet!
    Good for you for being assertive and clearing the air! There were a couple of times when my dad did something similar for me growing kk and I will never forget them. Having that support system and trying to learn by example is a good thing! And finding that balance between passive and aggressive in a male dominant industry at work is definitely important for me and something I constantly have to work on and am not always successful. It's no surprise that I tend to err to the passive side. :( But thanks for the reminder to keep that in check!
    Caryl | http://morepiecesofme.com

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    1. Oh I'm sure that's extra challenging in your industry! I would love to hear more of your thoughts on that in a post sometime!

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  3. You set a great example for your son! Being assertive and stepping in is not always easy and is something I struggle with sometimes too. I love your eyelet top! The color is so pretty!

    Jill
    Doused In Pink

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    1. Thank you Jill! It's nice to hear I'm not alone!

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  4. I hear you, Gina, and it always used to trouble me that Eve's approach was more of, "Let's see where this goes, before you raise your claws, mama bear". Yes, she does call me Mama Bear :) after a while, I realised it was her way of managing the situation and by forcing the issue, I was the aggressor. So I allowed her to sort things out on her own. Of course, if it was a truly serious situation, then all bets flew out the window. I think you did the right thing, and showed your that it isn't just about tackling the issue, it's also (and perhaps even more importantly) about taking a few minutes to calm one's mind before making any decisions on what next to do xoxo

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    1. Thank you Sheelah! You're right it really is helpful to take that minute (when you have it to spare! Sometimes that's easier said than done!) to think things through. Love that you have the nickname Mama Bear. :)

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  5. Your cami is such a gorgeous color! I'll have to try on the BR Camis and hopefully they work for me too!

    As for being assertive, good for you! As you can imagine, I'm the same way and back away from situations even when I feel wronged. Definitely not healthy so I'm trying to change that. I'm glad you spoke up and things seem resolved. Now you can really enjoy Summer!

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    1. You're obviously not alone in finding these situations difficult. I would not be surprised if you find that you grow stronger in that area when you have kids! Especially when they're little they can't speak for themselves at all so you're forced to step up! It's hard but a good learning experience.

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  6. I love the color of that cami! It's looks lovely on you. And I agree with being assertive! It's tough. I have learned these last six years from other teachers and my principals about how to talk calmly to lower the tension, and somewhat about how to be assertive. I bought a book a few months ago, The Assertiveness Guide for Women, by Julie de Azevedo Hanks, a therapist. But I haven't read it yet! I definitely think it's a problem many women have, and in the LDS culture maybe even more. Or, some women don't have a problem with it, but many men do! (accepting women who are assertive). We've also been studying it in my master's program as we look at gender issues in upper management in sports. Interesting topic!

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    1. You always have the best book suggestions so I will definitely look into that one! And yes, the gender issues with assertiveness are a whole issue in and of themselves! Interesting how both you and Carylee (above) touched on this. Your master's studies on the sports aspect of this sound very interesting!

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  7. I still have occasional issues with being assertive, but I do think I have gotten so much better in the past few years! That is one thing I am thankful I learned when going through infertility and I hope stays with me! Good for you for trying to be more assertive in your life! You are teaching your children that skill! Love that beautiful eyelet cami! What a gorgeous color!

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  8. Beautiful cami but most important great message, we should always strive to be better, there is always room for improvement :)

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  9. Being assertive is a very hard line to walk, but I'm glad you were able to get some resolution in the incident with your son. By the way, I am a huge Banana Republic fan and I love that top!
    -Kristin
    countdowntofridayblog.com

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  10. That cami is so cute and I love the blue and white combo! Good for you for standing up for your son. It can be hard to be assertive without coming across as mean, but it is an important muscle to develop. I think it is one that I need to develop more as there have been a few times I regretted not speaking up for myself. I look forward to hearing more about your progress!

    Nicole
    Nicole to the Nines

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  11. I love how pretty that top is and how the color pops against your white jeans!

    Abby | Life in the Fash Lane

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