024: Perfectionism

On this week’s episode, Maria and Anna discuss perfectionism. They offer answers as to why some of us are perfectionists, what areas of life we apply perfectionism to, and how it both hinders and helps us. They also discuss how perfectionism relates to control, how it affects collaboration with others, and ultimately how we can change our views on perfectionism in order to benefit us. And, they round out the discussion with some classic wisdom from Voltaire.

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023: Sock Talk: Updates & Reflections

A lot has happened since Never Wear Boring Socks was born, so our hosts took the opportunity to reflect on their experiences and share a few updates. Topics include charitable donations, a newly released EP from a past podcast guest, the PMA award of the year (yes, of the year, even though it is only February. This was a very impressive display of PMA), the statuses of Anna’s and Maria’s New Year’s resolutions, current creative projects, some general life updates, and a discussion of what Anna and Maria have gained from the podcast over the course of the first 23 episodes.

 

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022: Sharing Creative Work

Anna and Maria return to the topic of creativity this week, specifically addressing the process of sharing creative work. They tackle the various fears that might preclude us from sharing work, discuss the benefits of sharing our products with others, and some things to keep in mind along the way. Ultimately, they decide that although sharing work is scary, it helps us become better and more confident artists. And it makes us want to share more!

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021: Habits

This week, Maria and Anna talk about habits (and struggle to correctly say “habit” throughout the episode… what is up with this word?). Our fearless co-hosts attempt to answer some elusive questions: What makes an action a habit? Why do we label habits as good and bad? How do we keep the positive habits in our lives? They also talk about how habits relate to creativity, time, decision-making, and more. We hope you find some of our suggestions helpful as you continue your resolutions for the new year—habits are a good way to follow through on your goals!

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020: Katie Dalebout on indecisiveness, long-distance friendships, social media, and living in New York

Anna and Maria are joined this week by a very special guest, Katie Dalebout! Katie is the host of the podcast Let It Out and author of the book Let It Out: A Journey Through Journaling. She’s also a speaker, mentor, eating disorder recovery advocate, and an enthusiast of many things. Her work has been featured in places like Refinery29, The Huffington Post, MindBodyGreen, Teen Vogue, Women’s Health, The Telegraph, and many more. Since Katie’s an advocate for journaling and creativity, of course we had to invite her to join us on Never Wear Boring Socks! Our hosts chatted with Katie about living in New York City as a midwesterner (Katie recently moved to NYC from Michigan), indecisiveness, maintaining long-distance friendships and letting friendships go, and the different ways (some positive and some negative) in which we interact with social media. Listen to the end to hear a few of Katie’s current favorite things, and a fun Katie-inspired call to action for our listeners!

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019: Traditions

Anna and Maria have traditions on the mind coming out of the holiday season, so for this week’s episode they dive into the topic and explore their own relationships with tradition. Some of the questions they ask, and attempt to answer: What makes a tradition a tradition, and in what ways do traditions add value to our lives? How do our traditions evolve with us as we change and grow, and when is it time to let them go? Why did Maria wear plaid on the same day every year until she was 18? They also discuss why traditions may be particularly useful for young adults in periods of transition, and the ways that traditions can help us be more mindful and present. Our hosts wrap up, unsurprisingly, with a quote and a dose of PMA.

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018: Resolutions

This week, Maria and Anna welcome in 2018 with a conversation about resolutions. They tackle the conundrum of why New Year’s resolutions often don't result in the way we want them to, and discuss what provides for an optimal environment and plan for fulfilling your goals. They end this week's episode with some concrete tips for creating your resolutions this year, as well as with some wisdom from Henry David Thoreau.

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017: Nostalgia

What feelings do you associate with nostalgia? Is nostalgia positive or negative? These are some of the questions Maria and Anna ask this week in their discussion about nostalgia and all its complexities. They begin by sharing their experiences with nostalgia, then explore some recent research which argues that nostalgia is actually good for us. They discuss how we can use nostalgia to our own advantage and in order to make meaning out of our lives, and how, ultimately, utilizing nostalgia is just all about PMA.

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016: Holiday Gift Ideas

The holidays are upon us! For many people, the holiday season means gift-giving, so Maria and Anna set out to compile some gift-giving approaches and ideas. They discuss the five different love languages and how these can inform our methods of gift-giving, and the importance of giving something that will make the recipient feel loved and appreciated. They then share some of their favorite small businesses and artisans that create wonderful products and gifts, because supporting independent artists means supporting creativity. Gift giving doesn’t always have to be about purchasing items, however, so Maria and Anna give some gift ideas that don’t necessarily cost money, but do communicate love and thoughtfulness. Finally, our co-hosts encourage listeners (and each other) to remember that giving gifts is not just about spending money, but about showing our love for others and also for enriching our own lives.

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015: Four Weirdos with a Podcast

This is a very special episode because Anna and Maria are joined by not one, but TWO special guests: their siblings, Martha Barnard and Ben Ramsey! Because it’s the holiday season, our hosts decided it would be fitting to invite family to join them...and it’s a party! The four cousins discuss long distance cousinhood and staying in touch, music, favorite colors, spirit animals, life cakes, and more.

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014: Creative & Productive Spaces

This week, Maria and Anna talk about the way we interact with our spaces. Based on their own experience, they focus on how physical space can affect creativity and productivity, as well as some of the space-related challenges common to young adults (like living in a dorm room or other shared or small space). They discuss a variety of topics that can affect how we perceive a space, including color, layout, size, lighting, decor, clutter, and feng shui. They also talk about some of the helpful changes they’ve made to their own spaces, and how they’ve tackled the challenge of living in a room that serves many purposes. Our hosts also wonder how their artistic inclinations may affect their experience of the spaces around them, and how perceptions of space vary according to individual differences.

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013: Making Decisions

This week, Anna and Maria ponder the decision-making process, something they’ve both continually struggled with. They reflect on some of the big decisions they’ve had to make in their own lives, highlighting choices they’ve had to make in college and decisions regarding the activities they have participated in. In addition, they discuss what makes decisions so complex and difficult, and the differences between “big” and “small” decisions (apparently, small decisions can be deceiving in their smallness). Finally, they brainstorm some ways to make decision-making a little easier.

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012: Fear

This week, Anna and Maria tackle the topic of fear. They talk about fear’s relationship to other emotions, notably excitement and love, and why thinking about these relationships can be helpful.  They also discuss some of the different feelings that we lump together under the English word “fear,” and their thoughts on how our language affects our perceptions of situations. They also talk about some tools we can use to confront and let go of fear, while acknowledging that the goal is not to eliminate fear altogether, but rather to focus more on how we can cultivate other feelings, like love and gratitude.

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011: Variety is the Spice of Life!

This week, Maria and Anna switch things up a bit (because, after all, variety is the spice of life). To remind themselves (and listeners) of the inner childlike wonder and creativity that is always somewhere inside them, they transform the Never Wear Boring Socks podcast to the Never Wear Boring Socks theatre company, and read from a play they wrote, directed, and acted in along with their siblings when they were younger. Following this reading, our hosts put each other on the spot and ask one another some thought-provoking questions. Finally, they finish up the episode with their recent favorites in regards to food, fall, film, and more. Maria and Anna needed a break this week from the craziness of life, and we hope you enjoy listening to this fun, relaxed, and somewhat silly episode as much as we did recording it.

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010: Getting to Know Yourself with Rebecca Cooper

In this week’s episode, Anna and Maria are joined by special guest Rebecca Cooper. The three of them chat about a few topics that fall under the umbrella of getting to know yourself better, including introversion vs. extroversion, quitting before you burn out, and Gretchen Rubin’s Four Tendencies framework (a way of understanding how people respond to inner and outer expectations). They discuss similarities and differences between the ways each of them interacts with the world and consider how the self-knowledge they’ve gained can be applied in their work, social lives, and creative pursuits. Also discussed: the merits of winter squash, how the Never Wear Boring Socks philosophy applies to cooking, and memories of high school marching band.

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Never Wear Boring Socks 009: Identity

On this week’s episode, Maria and Anna discuss the complex topic of identity. They share what terms and phrases they use to identify themselves, and delve into the ideas of self-image, having multiple or conflicting identities, and how others’ perceptions of us affect our identities. How do stereotypes play in with identity? Do we need to be sure of our identity or identities? Can our identities evolve? Should they evolve? The cousins offer possible (and maybe somewhat questionable) answers to all these questions. Some fun tidbits from this episode include thoughts on Kesha’s awesomeness, analysis of the phrase “be yourself,” and the sentiment that we all should strive to be juicy, ripe peaches. (Trust us on this one.)

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Never Wear Boring Socks 008: The Post-College Period

In this episode, Anna and Maria discuss the transition from college into the somewhat murky yet very exciting post-college period. Maria talks about her experience finding community out in the Real World, how it’s different from finding community in college, and what has worked well for her. The cousins also dive into the topic of career: the pressures we put on ourselves to find the perfect career and start pursuing it right out of school and why this isn’t helpful. They offer what they believe to be a better option (at least for those of us who haven’t known our ideal occupation since we were four years old). To offset some of the existential quarter life crisis vibes, the episode ends on a positive note with a few of the things Maria is enjoying about this period of life, and both cousins express their gratitude for their college experience and for the support and opportunities they’ve received along the way.

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Never Wear Boring Socks 007: Productivity

On this week’s episode, Maria and Anna attempt to tackle the topic of productivity. They discuss its complexity and how it has taken shape differently throughout their lives, and how focus, prioritization, and procrastination come into play. And, they decide that productivity is basically just another form of mindfulness (it’s everywhere!). At the end of the episode, following all their musings, our two hosts come up with some practical ways to find motivation and maximize productivity on a regular basis (hint: it includes some PMA).

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Never Wear Boring Socks 006: Creativity

This week Anna and Maria talk about creativity, and they both have a quite a lot to say about it...so much, in fact, that it was agreed there will definitely be more episodes on this topic in the future. The cousins discuss the benefits of creativity, what counts as creativity (hint: it doesn’t have to be painting or writing a novel!), what it means to identify as a creative person, dealing with judgment from yourself and others, doing creative work as a career, and how Anna and Maria’s relationships to their creative outlets have changed over time. Also, Maria’s recent experience getting out of a creative rut leaves Anna hopeful and with some practical takeaways. Plus, a fun call to action to our listeners at the end of the episode!

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Never Wear Boring Socks 005: Music, Travel, and the Creative Process with Monica Hunter-Hart

In this episode, we're thrilled to welcome our very first guest, Monica Hunter-Hart! Monica is a talented musician and a truly wonderful person, and Anna and Maria had a great time talking to her. There's a lot of discussion about music, songwriting, and the creative process, and Monica also talks a bit about her travels and how her experience in Turkey influenced the way she thinks about music.

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