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24 Oct

Date Diving: 5 Ways Dating is like Scuba Diving

24/10/2014   |   No Comments »   |   Posted in Barbara McNally

  1. Proper gear is a must.
When you make the decision to scuba dive, you make the decision to come equipped. You wouldn’t show up for your session donned in plastic goggles and flippers. Planning ahead is a must and familiarizing yourself with the quality of materials you will need can literally alter the type of experience you will have in the water. Likewise, if you sport sky-high stilettos on a first date and you end up walking 4 blocks, you could very well find yourself in a bit of pain by the end of the evening or in a pickle should you “excuse yourself” after your date mentions he still lives with his mother. Likewise, if you’ve been dating for some time and tonight becomes “the night” and you don’t have protection, that is (or should be) a deal breaker. A little bit of detail gathering prior to your night out is completely acceptable…and smart. Even if your date wishes to surprise you, getting an idea of what you will be doing so you can prepare accordingly can bring an entirely different experience to your date. A little planning assures you will be not only comfortable, but confident…and literally ready for anything. (Side note: Consider wearing classy low heels on a first date. This says you are sexy in an elegant way and tests the waters to make sure he knows there’s more to you than sex appeal).
  1. Get certified.
Long before you take the deep dive, you are given courses that prepare you for what you will encounter once under the sea. Many courses even require you to take lessons in a pool prior to venturing into the ocean. Basically, it is an endeavor you take slowly. Your dating adventures should operate similarly. If you decided during lunch you wanted to scuba dive that day, it would be under very shady circumstances. A respectable instructor would not let you simply show up and dive in. So, keep this in mind when eyeing that cute guy during happy hour. Anything worth diving into is worth delving into.
  1. Avoid the “mask attack”.
Any diver knows a proper fitting mask is not only vital for clarity and safety, but also to avoid headaches and unsightly aesthetic appearances afterwards. (Think mask hickey). Equally, your relationship should have a healthy fit to avoid dangerous clinging behavior and consequences. Not only is texting or calling too much annoying, it portrays you as a needy individual and your new love interest may not be interested in double duty as your partner and your babysitter. Should your partner be the one displaying gripping behaviors, you should always be prepared for warning signs. When diving with a tight fitting mask, one will get headaches. If you note that your new fling is giving you more than your share of headaches, that is a warning sign to note. Not only for your sanity, but for safety measures as well. So, take the time to make sure your relationship fits you both appropriately and allot the appropriate space needed.
  1. Enjoy the view.
When scuba diving, you have to maintain control of how fast you descend into the ocean. The goal is to slow your speed and even stop every 10 ft of your decent to clear your ears and adjust to what you are now feeling and seeing for the first time. There is a reason speed scuba isn’t a sport. Who would want to rush through coral reefs after all? You thoroughly immerse yourself in the sensation of being in another world. Your slow pace not only helps you physically adjust and enjoy the beauty, but to remain alert as well should a sea urchin, eel, or God forbid, shark visit your vicinity. Dating is comparable to this experience. If you “dive in” and rush straight into the sack, you will bypass the chance to become adjusted to each other’s demeanor and personality, thus possibly making anything you do non-bedroom related awkward. Consider taking the time to embrace your date’s sense of humor, the mystery of his body, the playful sexual tension pinging between the two of you, crackling like the hum of electrical current. Take it all in and enjoy the view ladies!
  1. Savor the experience.
When you reach the surface with a snotty nose, matted hair, and throbbing calf muscles, you pull yourself up to the boat and your first thought is still, “Wow”. You’re not thinking about how you’ll do things differently next time or how much further you’ll go or how much fitter you’ll become…you’re thinking about how badass your experience was. You relish in those afterthoughts, replaying the sights and sensations. Likewise, after a successful date, stop thinking about what you’d change about them, or how soon you could be walking down the aisle in your Bridal Barn gown. Nix the future thinking and what-if mental reel. Take a moment to be grateful for what just happened. Allow yourself to bask in the glow of a lovely connection and relax into knowing if more is meant to happen it will. You won’t need to force it, or manipulate and contort it. May you always have a desire to dive deep into life, and become more exhilarated with each adventure.

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22 Oct

Women to Watch Wednesday: Emma Watson

22/10/2014   |   No Comments »   |   Posted in Barbara McNally

Our standout woman to watch this week has packed a lot of life into her young years. At 24, Emma Watson is an outspoken advocate of women’s rights, an accomplished actress, graduate of Brown University and successful fair trade entrepreneur. This week we salute her outstanding mother, lover, fighter, sage dimensions. While Emma isn’t sure if she wants to be a physical mother as of yet, she has full heartedly embodied her role as a nurturing encourager to women everywhere through her advocacy endeavors. Proud to tell all that she is a feminist, Emma has outspokenly promoted wits and intelligence over an artificial and false perception of “beauty”. While cameras followed her every move, she was insistent on getting her education.
 Ignoring fame was my rebellion, in a funny way. I was insistent on being normal and doing normal things. It probably wasn't advisable to go to college in America and room with a complete stranger. And it probably wasn't wise to share a bathroom with eight other people in a coed dorm. Looking back, that was crazy.
While mainstream media has covered many of her education rallies, she has taken her role as an ambassador for the Campaign for Female Education as far as Bangladesh and Zambia. This attention to international awareness garnered the eye of the UN and in July 2014, they appointed her as a UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassador to promote gender equality and female empowerment. The specific campaign is titled “The HeForShe Campaign”, which enlists men and boys to stand up for gender equality as well. To top off this immense honor, Emma remains humble and more focused than ever on her responsibility as a role model to women:
 Being asked to serve as UN Women's Goodwill Ambassador is truly humbling. The chance to make a real difference is not an opportunity that everyone is given and is one I have no intention of taking lightly. Women's rights are something so inextricably linked with who I am, so deeply personal and rooted in my life that I can't imagine an opportunity more exciting. I still have so much to learn, but as I progress I hope to bring more of my individual knowledge, experience, and awareness to this role.
Emma’s fighter years began at a young age as she skyrocketed to fame as Hermione in the wildly successful Harry Potter series at the age of nine. The competition for the role was fierce as the international acclaim of the book series set the bar high for the film adaptation. Having previously acted only in school plays, Emma was faced with contenders who had agents, acting experience, and impressive credentials. Nonetheless, she remained poised and self-assured. The casting agents found Emma through her theater teacher and the producers were instantly taken aback and impressed by her commanding confidence. Harry Potter author and creator, J.K. Rowling even supported Emma’s casting from watching her very first screen test. Eight auditions later, she nabbed her iconic role. This buoyant assurance comes from Emma’s conscious choice to stay rooted. 
Becoming yourself is really hard and confusing, and it’s a process. It’s often not cool to be the person who puts themselves out there,
Emma vulnerably confesses.
What gets scary is when your self-worth is tied up in what strangers think of you.
Part of staying true to herself is not succumbing to Hollywood materialism and ideals. Despite having an estimated net worth of $60 million, she has memorably been quoted as saying,
I’ve got about eight pairs of shoes, and that’s it. 
This authenticity isn’t just inspiring –it’s funny! She once joked to reporters,
You can’t go to the pharmacy without someone saying, ‘Hey, you’re the girl from Harry Potter!’ and I’m like ‘Yeah! Just buying tampons, see you in a bit!’
When it comes to men, she likes for them to “wonder” a bit. While fashionable enough to be the face of Burberry, Emma prefers to tease with her language, rather than her wardrobe, citing flirtatious playfulness as her favorite quality in a man. And in being true to her feminist roots, she adds:
It sounds like a cliché but I also learnt that you're not going to fall for the right person until you really love yourself and feel good about how you are.
Notably, money in the bank is not a problem for Emma and she gracefully opens her schedule to an array of fair trade projects –and collaborates for free. For the past six years, Emma has been involved with People Tree, a Fair Trade fashion brand.
Fashion is a great way to empower people and give them skills; rather than give cash to charity you can help people by buying the clothes they make and supporting things they take pride in; I think young people like me are becoming increasingly aware of the humanitarian issues surrounding fast fashion and want to make good choices but there aren't many options out there.
If Fair Trade fashion happens to pull a heartstring for you and you’re ready to roll up your sleeves, Emma has publically declared,
I will work for anyone for free if they’re prepared to make their clothing fair trade and organic. It’s really hard to get people interested in it.
To top the list of reasons to admire Emma, she also recently became certified to teach yoga and meditation; telling Elle Australia that an uncertain future meant finding...
a way to always feel safe and at home within myself. Because I can never rely on a physical place." 
If she can floor us at age 24, there is no telling what this vivacious woman will do with the rest of her years. Thank you Emma Watson for being the bravado spirit you are!

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A global vision: BARBARA McNALLY’S
JOURNEY AND her mission to support
women everywhere

Barbara McNally lives in San Diego where she supports organizations and sponsors activities that help women explore their potential for freedom and individuality. To further this cause, she started a foundation called Mother, Lover, Fighter, Sage. Open to receive and ready to give, Barbara continues her own journey to freedom with a daily zest for living large. READ MORE>>