Morra Aarons-Mele’s mission is to make work work for everyone, especially those who feel exhausted, disenfranchised, and discouraged by the 24/7 grind of always being “on.” An ambitious introvert and founder of the award-winning social impact agency Women Online, Aarons-Mele’s new book, Hiding in the Bathroom: An Introvert’s Roadmap to Getting Out There (When You’d Rather Stay Home) (Dey Street Books), was written for achievement-oriented people who are introverted, anxious, or just plain tired of the networking, deal-making, and the nonstop work culture we’ve come to see as the norm.
Hiding in the Bathroom is a breakthrough introverts' guide that broadens the conversation sparked by Quiet and moves away from the "Lean In" approach, offering wisdom and practical tips to help readers build strong relationships and achieve their own definition of professional success. Most ambitious people believe that reaching the peaks of success means being on 24/7—tirelessly networking, deal-making, and keynoting conferences. This is nonsense, says Aarons-Mele. As an eminent entrepreneur with a flourishing business and a self-proclaimed introvert with lots of anxieties, she disagrees with the notion that there’s only one successful "type": the intense, super social, sleep-deprived mover and shaker, the person who musters endless amounts of "grit." Hiding in the Bathroom is her antidote for everyone who is fed up with feeling like they must always "lean in"—who prefer those moments of hiding in the bathroom to constantly climbing the ladder or working the room. Thoughtful and practical, it is a must-have handbook for building a fantastic, prosperous career and a balanced, happy life—on your own terms.
Aarons-Mele was founding Political Director for BlogHer.com, and has written for BlogHer as well as The Harvard Business Review, The Huffington Post, MomsRising, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The Wall Street Journal, where her essay “Why We Need to Tell Different Stories About Entrepreneurs,” was one of the most popular articles of the year. She has covered events from the White House to the campaign trail to Harvard Law School in her role as a blogger on women, politics, and work. Aarons-Mele is also the host of the popular podcast Hiding in the Bathroom, part of the Forbes Network.
Aarons-Mele’s Internet experience spans politics and the private sector. She has been working with women online since 1999, when she helped Hillary Clinton log on for her first Internet chat. Morra has launched online campaigns for President Obama, Malala Yousafzai, the United Nations, and many other leading figures and organizations. During the 2004 Presidential Election, she was the Director of Internet Marketing for the Democratic National Committee. After the 2004 election she founded Edelman’s digital public affairs team where she worked with Fortune 50 clients. Aarons-Mele worked in various roles at leading online companies in New York and London, including iVillage.com, eBookers.com, and at iVillage UK, where she managed public relations and marketing.
Presenting to audiences around the country, Aarons-Mele has lectured at many organizations including the Yale Women’s Campaign School, the Harvard Kennedy School, and at the World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders forum at Harvard. She has degrees from Brown University and the Harvard Kennedy School. When she’s not traveling for business or keynoting conferences, Aarons-Mele works from home in her yoga pants and loves to cook for her family of five. She and husband Nicco Mele live in Boston with their three children.
Praise for Morra Aarons-Mele:
"Morra Aarons-Mele gave a powerful speech about self-confidence and what it means to be a woman working in a professional field given the barriers that are still present today. She spoke about the importance of inclusivity of all needed in order to overcome these barriers and her focus on mental health which many attendees identified as a highlight of the day. Morra did not hesitate to address the important subjects which really mattered to the audience while also serving as an inspiration for all of us to pursue our goals."
-- Ayesha Ali, Co-Director of University of Toronto Rotman School of Commerce Women’s Leadership Conference 2016-2017.
“Morra Aarons-Mele brought inspiring and highly practical life skills to the student entrepreneurs in Brown University's Breakthrough Lab. To build a professional personal brand, she described essential concepts and tools to cultivate an intentional digital presence that lasts beyond the successes or failures of their ventures. Morra's unique perspective on being an introvert in a realm that reveres extroverts was a welcome relief to many. She left our aspiring students empowered, but also with permission to feel comfortable in their own skin as they navigate the complex world of entrepreneurship.”
--Liz Malone, Program Manager of Jonathan M. Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship at Brown University - Brown University and Jason Harry PhD, Associate Professor of the Practice School of Engineering Breakthrough Lab (B-Lab)
"Thank you SO much for an excellent program last night! We’ve heard nothing but wonderful feedback from audience members as well—they felt heard, they learned something, and they were in a room with their niche! Your book really spoke to everyone, and gave them the bias to action our attendees love. The mix of personal story and practical recommendations made for an evening that was both educational and entertaining. It felt like our favorite vibe: listening in on a nerdy cocktail party conversation between two great minds."
--Marisa Levine, Director, INFORUM at the Commonwealth Club of California
Praise for Morra Aarons-Mele’s Podcast, Hiding in the Bathroom:
“Tackling all the big issues, from dealing with Imposter Syndrome to how to handle a difficult boss, Forbes podcaster Morra Aarons-Mele's revolving door of power women is a treasure trove of practical advice to help you get ahead at work, as told by some of the best in the game.”