As a participant in the Zone Perfect Blog Forward Challenge I was given an amazing opportunity to conduct a phone interview with Dana Hilmer, author of Blindsided by a Diaper: Over 30 Men and Women Reveal How Parenthood Changes a Relationship.
A little background on Dana (from her website DanaHilmer.com) :
Dana Hilmer is the founder of THRIVE*itude, Inc., a media and consulting company, the mission of which is to help people live their truth and to create a life of happiness, well-being, meaning and wonder. Her pet project is forwarding the mission of the THRIVE*olution™, a community – and movement – dedicated to embracing a new definition of success, one that puts happiness, wellbeing, and making a difference at the top of the list. Dana is certified in the science and application of Positive Psychology with Tal Ben-Shahar at the Wholebeing Institute. She is pleased and honored to now be serving as a TA for the program.
Prior to THRIVE*itude, Dana founded LifestyleMom™, an online destination for women who want to live passionately while raising a family. She is also the author of Blindsided by a Diaper(Random House, 2007), a podcaster, inspirational speaker, media spokesperson and long-time marketing executive and consultant.
Dana is a media-savvy interviewee and her insights and tips have been featured on hundreds of radio and television shows across the country. She also writes and speaks widely on making a difference and topics related to healthy, happy, authentic living. Dana lives in a beautiful shoreline town in CT with her husband (and college sweetheart!) and their three young boys.
As nervous as these types of things make me, I knew I had to jump on this opportunity! Luckily, Dana is amazing and I immediately felt like I was talking to an old friend.
My main question for Dana... What advice would you offer to me and my husband as we embark on this new journey of parenthood? (Dana's comments are paraphrased, I did not record the conversation, just took notes).
The 4 C's
- Connect: Physically and emotionally. Have fun with each other. Make checking in with each other a priority.
- Communicate: Make a point to spend 10 minutes together daily with the intention of purposefully communicating. Put away phones, turn off the TV, make eye contact.
- Create: Goals and dreams for your family together. Declare dreams for yourselves, your child(ten), and family. If you put these goals out there you can help each other work towards them.
- Celebrate: Who you are as a couple. Appreciate each other and your relationship.
Another fun thing she pointed out... Appreciate has two definitions:(1) being grateful (2) increasing in value. Just like anything else that you want to appreciate in value, you've got to put time and energy into it!
I'm very grateful to Dana for taking the time to speak with me and to Zone Perfect for allowing me the opportunity. I also wanted to pass along to you all that Dana is offering a really cool program right now, called the Thrive Circle. Twice a month you can call in and she'll be discussing various topics centering around well-being and happiness. The really great thing is that right now she's offering the program for free! Check it out here to sign up!