Lose It!

According to this month’s cover Atlantic story, The Perfected Self, by David Freedman, people, including the author’s brother, have lost weight with the free app Lose It!

The application seems a perfect way to use social media to connect people around positive life goals. I know I have blogged (almost) every day because of the prodding of my online community of Catherine Flowers, Julie Jordan Scott, Kim Koning and Meredith Cardenas Weis at Post A Day (Week) Challenge at Postaday2012 on Facebook.

I have another friend who regularly documents the pounds she is losing on Facebook and she receives a ton of support (and a bit of unasked-for advice!)

The Freedman article is an homage to the psychologist B.F. Skinner who advised positive reinforcement as a route to changing individual behavior for the good of society. Alcoholics Anonymous does this for problem drinkers who seek sobriety.

I’m not sure if an app can replace a support group (or peer pressure). For me, one real-world application for this app is: Sure, I feel good when I work out — but I feel even better when I work out and other people compliment, encourage and admire me for doing so! (Or compete against me!)

I’m always bragging (complaining) to my kids — “I did Pilates and rode my bike to work today!” To which, they shrug!

I like praise for working out! I’m just not sure if an app will praise me enough. Will the app shrug at my efforts for health and fitness? I may try it and find out and document my attempt at: Running Aground, my health and fitness blog.

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The End of Men?

A report by Hanna Rosin in The Atlantic‘s July/August cover article, “The End of Men,” subtitled “How Women Are Taking Control — Of Everything” is so good. http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2010/07/the-end-of-men/8135/

The previous month’s cover story, “Fat Nation” with an obese Statue of Liberty on the cover was also really provocative. The magazine is just so good at noting and analyzing trends in the nation. I love following trends. And this one’s pretty interesting.

One trend noted — and I so hope this is true — is that companies are looking towards an effective and new kind of leader, a transformational one.

My one worry about women taking over is that I like partnership. It’s cliche but it’s true. “Don’t walk ahead of me, I may not want to follow. Don’t walk behind me, I may not want to lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend.” I thought that equality — not superiority — was what the women’s movement was all about. That, and equal pay.

I still think that’s what it’s about. Because while I am excited that women are taking over, I know that women are not being paid fairly for their new leadership and on-going labor. Women are still paid about 80 cents to every dollar that a man earns. Until there is no wage gap, men are probably not too worried that their end is near. Although, perhaps, it is.