Best of Both Worlds Podcast

Best of Both Worlds Podcast

Love your career? Love your family? Best of Both Worlds is the show for you! Hosts Laura Vanderkam, author of I Know How She Does It and a mom of five, and Sarah Hart-Unger, a practicing physician and mom of three, discuss work/life balance, career development, parenting, time management, productivity, and making time for fun. Tune in each week for strategies to help you thrive in all spheres of life.


June 18, 2024 39 mins

In today's episode, Sarah and Laura tackle some common struggles, starting with BEDTIME. They discuss struggles and strategies in each category, including bathing suit shopping, summer uniforms, kids' summer assignments, screen time dilemmas, and more.

In the Q&A, a listener already thinking about *next* academic year writes in asking about creating a "last minute school request" emergency kit.


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Sarah and Laura open today's episode discussing the ways that they keep their friendships (both near + far-flung) alive. Then, Laura interviews Anna Goldfarb, author of Modern Friendship (released just last week!) -- a practical look at how to make and strengthen friendships as an adult in the current very digital world.

In the Q&A, Laura and Sarah answer respond to a question about how to best respond when close couple ...

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June 4, 2024 48 mins

In today's episode, Laura and Sarah do a deep analysis of some common myths about working parenthood, from "A stranger will raise your baby!" to "You'll never get any free time every again" to "I can't take on this leadership role, I have (insert # here) kids!" -- and many more.

This episode goes out especially to anyone just beginning their parenting journey and wondering whether to believe the hype, but it's also valuable ...

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In today's episode, Sarah and Laura open with a discussion of teen parenting (mostly with Laura's experience so far!) and then Sarah interviews Ellen Galinsky, longtime researcher and author about all things related to teenhood, as inspired by Galinsky's recent book: The Breakthrough Years: A New Scientific Framework for Raising Thriving Teens.

One thing that sets Galinsky apart is how positive she is about this phase of lif...

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Today's episode is all about building career capital and raising your profile without working around the clock. Sarah and Laura discuss their own work hours, and then discuss strategies in 4 categories listed below:

- Building a schedule that prioritizes space for the important
- Minimizing other work and making life sustainable
- Paying into career capital accounts
- Be everyone's favorite to work with!

In t...

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In today's episode, Laura and Sarah open with some recent travel planning talk, and then delve into all things packing! They share thoughts on carry-on vs check, current luggage situations, packing processes, and include a discuss ion on packing cubes and the merits of unpacking at your destination.

Then, they address some listener travel questions. Topics include managing selective eaters on international trips, ski school,...

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Today's episode features Kathryn Valentine specializes in Gendered Negotiation, or how to negotiate successfully as a woman.  Sarah and Laura chat about their feelings around negotiation, and then Kathryn joins Laura to discuss ways to negotiate successfully --including some strategies specifically for women, who have been shown to face different challenges in negotiation.

In the Q&A, a listener writes in asking about ki...

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May is a packed month for most families but usually lots of the events are fun and positive ones! Laura and Sarah discuss strategies for enjoying (not just surviving) your May (and often early June, too!). Laura suggests a 3-part framework: don't get overwhelmed, find the right balance and manage your energy. Sarah and Laura chat about these strategies in depth and how they can be employed throughout and even before this full month...

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In today's episode, Sarah interviews Laura Mae Martin, Google's productivity expert and author of Uptime: A Practical Guide to Personal Productivity and Well-Being, which was released earlier this month. They chat meetings, setting priorities, task & calendar management, family life, and more.

In the Q&A, Laura and Sarah answer a listener wondering how to balance vacations with nuclear family with extended family requests.


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In today's episode, Laura and Sarah discuss when they themselves became "financial grownups" and then expert guest Bobbi Rebell joins Laura to share ways we can encourage a mature approach to money matters even from a young age. In the Q&A, a listener wonders how Laura and Sarah keep track of their calendars without relying on a digital system (like Google or Apple Calendar).

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Today's episode is dedicated to celebrating and preserving the moments that make up our lives, from the cutest baby phases to big milestones -- all of these things enrich our lives and have the power to turn the fleeting present moment into a deeper and more lasting experience. Laura and Sarah talk about the ways they preserve family (and personal) memories, and discuss the value and role of celebrations and traditions in their own...

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Laura and Sarah welcome Cal Newport to Best of Both Worlds to chat all things slow productivity and how Cal's stage of parenting influenced a lot of his current thinking around productivity, pacing, and getting things done.

In the intro, Sarah and Laura discuss their own planning habits going back to childhood, and in the Q&A a listener writes in asking about how Laura and Sarah read blogs - do they browse through individual ur...

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Today's episode features a fresh crop of mailbag questions! Topics include:

  • split shift childcare
  • handling the daily household chores with young kids
  • different formats for kid activities
  • how has work / productivity changed since COVID
  • thoughts on digital calendar frames
  • retirement plans?
  • dealing with kids that have disparate sleep needs
  • how to handle the tension between wanting to stay up with teens and having your own morning...
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In today's episode, Laura chats with author Emily P. Freeman about endings, and in particular determining how and when to leave a situation that no longer fits.

Emily's new March 2024 release is How to Walk into a Room: The Art of Knowing When to Stay and When to Walk Away, available wherever books are sold.

In the Q&A, Sarah and Laura discuss their experiences in coming back from recent injuries.


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This episode is a departure from the usual topics + format, and is a chance to get to know Laura and Sarah just a little bit better as they share some very random things about themselves that (generally) have not been discussed on the podcast! From physical characteristics (flexibility + left-handedness) to Meyers-Briggs types to ideal superpower and much more - this is a fun conversational chat, recorded live together in Florida.


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Dr. Meggie Smith is a reproductive endocrinologist at Nashville Fertility Center and she shares her journey to motherhood today, from freezing her eggs during fellowship to moving forward with a pregnancy as a solo parent.

In the Q&A, a listener writes in asking for advice on handling 1st trimester fatigue and nausea -- with respect to work, exercise, and more -- when she hasn't shared yet about her pregnancy.


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February 27, 2024 37 mins

Summer in February? No -- but also, yes! Summer episodes often come out in May, but those camp rosters often fill up by March, and summer childcare can be a major pain point for many working parents. Sarah and Laura have experienced this first hand, and so in today's they share strategies for figuring out the pieces of summer that are best planned well in advance of the summer heat. They talk childcare/camp, travel, fun for themsel...

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February 20, 2024 38 mins

In today's episode, Laura and Sarah explore the concept of "Quality Time", one of Gary Chapman's 5 Love Languages. However, they don't limit the conversation to just partner quality time - they also discuss cultivating and deepening quality and connection time with kids and with themselves (with some side tangents about time with friends, too!).

In the Q&A, a listener asks for details on Laura and Sarah's daily planning ...

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Today's episode is about media consumption, from books to movies to music and of course social media too. Sarah and Laura chat about ways to enjoy media more, cultivating an awareness of the types of media we choose to consume, and different feelings about their own personal social media use habits. In the Q&A, a listener asks for tips helping her rising 6th grader plan and organize around schoolwork.


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February 6, 2024 41 mins

Sarah and Laura reflect back on jobs of the past (including the pretty distant past - remember video stores?) and then introduce an alliterative framework for loving your job more: Passion, People, Progress, and Pleasure.

In the Q&A, Laura answers a listener question about her experiences in getting a family dog.

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