The short read

It wasn’t on my bucket list. It wasn’t a lifelong dream. But suddenly, at the end of 2020, I found I had accidentally published a book.

As I connected the dots for this post, I realized how that came to be:

  • I was resisting the resistance. In my case, that is laundry, meal-planning, and general housework.

Parenting is a journey — full of ups and downs.

Photo credit: Hendrik Morkel on Unsplash

The short read

If you have been following my work, you will know that I work by connecting dots. Here are the dots for today’s post:

  • Parenting is like hiking in un(der)-developed terrain. There is no road map. If you are lucky someone who came before may hand you a contour or topographical map. Bring your own compass.

The longer read

Why is the book titled “Contours of Courageous Parenting”?


Did you have one extra-curricular activity that you really enjoyed in high…

Towards better, rather than perfect, decisions.

The short read

Great news: Our new dishwasher was finally delivered after an eight-week wait!

Better news: The plumber was able to make time the same day and installed it!!


We still have a leak.

Reminder — Don’t solve the symptom. Solve the root problem.
Had that happened, we may not have been up to our elbows in hot water, hand washing dishes & pans since December 29.

From Contours of Courageous Parenting — The Root Problem

The irony? Solve the Root problem is a chapter in my upcoming book on decision behaviours. (You can’t make this stuff up!)
Has this ever happened to you? …

What an amazing list of parenting lessons, also learned through example, through your very insightful compassionate photographic lens.

Photo by Caroline Attwood on Unsplash

My son was excited to turn theory into practice. He had been following the Masterclass series on Cooking for a couple of days. Guided by such Masters as Gordon Ramsey and Thomas Keller, he had a simple menu planned and had taken charge of the kitchen.

He prepped his work area.
Got out the chopping board.
Wrapped the apron around his waist. Laid out the various bowls, knives, ingredients. His work area was a carbon copy of the set (minus the fancy backsplash).
He set to work at chopping the onions.

Thud. Thud. Thud. He was slicing through the onions…

“98%? Where’s the other 2%?”

The words stung. On what should have been one of the happiest days of my short life, I felt berated.

Years later I was playing nursemaid to my ailing father. “Why did you say that, Dad?” I asked. “I thought you would have been so proud of me. It had been a very tough year. We had just emigrated to a new country. I had crammed a two-year course into one-year, staying in during recess for extra lessons. That score was magnificent, given the circumstances. If I say so myself!”

“I was joking. It’s just…

My Manifesto for a Moral Revolution — Part 2

This is part II of my manifesto written in response to the question posed by Jacqueline Novogratz and her Acumen team in the class Path of Moral Leadership.

What is the “impossible” you dare to imagine as “possible”?
What is the story about the future or an alternate reality your manifesto will tell?
What will help you sustain and thrive throughout this work?
These questions are based on her book ‘ Manifesto for a Moral Revolution ‘.

The manifesto was the last deliverable in 10 weeks of work in the company of so many others. …

My Manifesto for a Moral Revolution — Part 1

What is the “impossible” you dare to imagine as “possible”?
What is the story about the future or an alternate reality your manifesto will tell?
What will help you sustain and thrive throughout this work?
Jacqueline Novogratz asks these questions in the Acumen class Path of Moral Leadership that partners with her book ‘ Manifesto for a Moral Revolution ‘.

It was the last of 13 lessons, the culmination of weeks of working alongside other wonderful souls committed to learning how to move more effectively through our world, leaning into learning new ways of being agents of change.


Can you imagine who Gen Z’s top career influencer is?

It isn’t their peers or their professors.
It turns out to be …. drum roll … their parents!

That is the result of 2 surveys in North America.

Survey Results

One was the Brainstorm strategy survey. Done in 2019, it questioned around 25,000 Canadian post-secondary students. It showed over half the students listed their parents as a primary influence in their decision-making process when talking about careers.

The other was a survey undertaken by Randstadt in conjunction with Future Workforce, which showed the difference in thoughts between Millennials and GenZ when asked the same question. The switch is significant. …

Before you can think outside the box, you need to understand the box.

Think outside the box by Karena de Souza using Canva

To make a long story short

What is with this focus on Critical Thinking?

Have you noticed school report cards now focus on critical thinking? You get extra remarks for “thinking outside the box”.

This may be a very empowering phrase for 20-somethings and 48-somethings. Especially for those who have grown up hemmed in with rules.

But what does it mean to a kid in Kindergarten?

If you want to think “outside the box”, you have to:

First figure out the box

The longer read

In the associated story — Canada Goose ON, Autopilot OFF — we talked about critical thinking as an EQ skill.

In his HBR article ‘A Short Guide to Building…

Karena de Souza

Global citizen|GenZ Parent|Future of Work|RTW Traveler

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