Iggy Azalea Parts Ways With Island Records: ‘I’m Officially Unsigned!’

Iggy Azalea has parted ways with Island Records, the rapper announced via social media on Saturday, tweeting “I’m officially unsigned!” “Wild you spend so long trying to get IN a record deal… never thought I’d be so elated to be OUT of one,” she wrote in an emoji-filled post. “now I’m free to release whatever […]

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15 Ways to Work Plaid Into Your Fall Wardrobe

Shopping: PlaidIt’s no secret that this time of year is all about being extra.
Something about the approaching holiday season just makes you want to do more. Decorate your house, sing songs, dress…

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15 Ways to Work Plaid Into Your Fall Wardrobe

Shopping: PlaidIt’s no secret that this time of year is all about being extra.
Something about the approaching holiday season just makes you want to do more. Decorate your house, sing songs, dress…

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101 Ways to Live, Work and Goof Off More Ambitiously

To go from a mere Type A to a Type A+, consider these inspiring suggestions. You’ll never vacation, ask for raises, ascend Mount Everest, eat pizza or blow bubbles the complacent way again.
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Chrissy Teigen Shows 4 Ways to Layer Dresses in the Fall

ESC: Fall Boots, Chrissy TeigenChrissy Teigen revealed epic looks this week and we couldn’t help but notice her mastery of fall layers.
Based on looks like her shirt dress, blazer and patent leather boots…

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Chrissy Teigen Shows 4 Ways to Layer Dresses in the Fall

ESC: Fall Boots, Chrissy TeigenChrissy Teigen revealed epic looks this week and we couldn’t help but notice her mastery of fall layers.
Based on looks like her shirt dress, blazer and patent leather boots…

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16 Ways to Pull Off Celebs’ Current Fave Color: Neon Green

Shopping: Neon GreenWhen we spy a new celeb street style trend, we always take a pause.
A pause to ask ourselves: Do we like this trend? Could we pull this trend off in our own lives? Often times it’s a…

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Brioni, Nina-Maria Nitsche Part Ways

MILAN — Brioni and its creative director Nina-Maria Nitsche have parted ways.
The men’s luxury company sent a brief statement on Friday announcing the exit of Nitsche, who presented her latest collection for the brand in June in Paris. A successor hasn’t been named yet.
Nitsche joined Brioni in June 2017, succeeding former creative director Justin O’Shea, a women’s retail executive who had no design experience, who left the company in October 2016. Previously, British designer Brendan Mullane held the role of Brioni creative director from July 2012 to February 2016.
A Maison Martin Margela veteran, Nitsche joined the French company in 1989 and, after Margiela’s resignation in 2009, took over the creative direction of the brand. She joined Vetements in September 2016 but left when the company relocated to Zurich from Paris in 2017.

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Cheryl and Liam Payne ‘go separate ways’

Cheryl and Liam Payne have said they are “going our separate ways” in nearly-identical posts to their 40 million Twitter followers.
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Tomas Maier and Bottega Veneta Part Ways

One of the longest-serving designers of the Kering group, Mr. Maier exits the company after 17 years.
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Apple Unveils Ways to Help Limit iPhone Usage

Apple unveiled controls to help curb the amount of time users spend on iPhones and iPads.
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Something Blue! Meghan Markle Finds Stylish and Sentimental Ways to Add Color to Her Reception Look

Meghan Markle may have opted for monochrome and traditional white palette during her wedding ceremony, but the new royal embraced another wedding tradition by adding touches of blue to her second look for her wedding reception.

The Duchess of Sussex, 36, stepped out with Prince Harry for the evening party in a sexy open-back Stella McCartney evening dress featuring a high halter neck.

Her first something blue was sneakily and stylishly incorporated into her second look courtesy of the soles of her custom white satin Aquazurra shoes which were dyed baby blue.

Meghan also honored her mother-in-law, the late Princess Diana by wearing her emerald cut aquamarine ring on her right hand, PEOPLE confirms.

Diana famously wore the emerald cut Aquamarine stunner to an auction of her own clothes at Christie’s in 1997. The jewel is part of a set — the other piece is an aquamarine bracelet, where it’s connected by five strands of pearls. She wore both to a gala dinner in Australia in 1996.

Eva Hartling, the vice president of Maison Birks — Meghan’s favorite brand — tells PEOPLE she expected the bride to wear something blue during her wedding ceremony but thought the sweet touch was perfect.

Can’t get enough of PEOPLE’s Royals coverage? Sign up for our newsletter to get the latest updates on Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and more!

“I thought she could have gone with something blue with a piece of jewelry for example in her first look, but we saw it in her second look with her ring belonging to Diana,” says Hartling. “I think that was symbolic.”

RELATED: The Sweet Way Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Honored Princess Diana During Their Royal Wedding

Meghan also changed up her hairstyle — and hair stylist — turning to George Northwood to create her effortless updo, after go-to Hollywood stylist Serge Normant created her bridal hair moment for the ceremony.

It’s the event of the year! Be sure to keep up with all of PEOPLE’s royal wedding coverage and don’t forget to check out everything you need to know about Meghan Markle’s perfect style.

The former actress once said that Carolyn Bessette Kennedy’s bridal look was “everything goals” and she appears to have taken notes from the late star with her own elegant and effortless bridal style.

Meghan and Harry had a fairytale wedding in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19, where she wore a gorgeous custom Givenchy design by the label’s British Artistic Director, Clare Waight Keller, that was fit for an elegant princess.

The service was attended by close family and friends, including Queen ElizabethPrince PhilipPrince CharlesCamilla, Duchess of CornwallPrince William and Kate Middleton. Charles had a special role in the service, escorting Meghan down the aisle after it was confirmed that her father, Thomas Markle, couldn’t attend the wedding.

RELATED: Carat Queens! See the Most Jaw-Dropping Jewelry Worn at the Royal Wedding

Following the ceremony, the newlyweds will climb into the Ascot Landau carriage from the Royal Mews to take them on their first horse-drawn journey through the streets of Windsor.

The pair began dating in July 2016 after meeting on a blind date and were first revealed as a couple in October 2016. During their high-speed, long-distance courtship, Harry and Meghan spent time together at each other’s respective homes in London and Toronto, where Markle filmed Suits. The seventh season of the USA legal drama was Meghan’s last.


PEOPLE.com

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Pistons, Van Gundy part ways after 4 years

Stan Van Gundy, the Pistons’ president of basketball operations and head coach, is out after the team failed to make the playoffs in consecutive seasons.
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Brady looms over Pats’ draft in a bunch of ways

Loaded with picks and potential, the 2018 NFL draft for New England is as much about star quarterback Tom Brady as it is about any college kid the franchise selects.

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6 Ways To Turn Your Old T-Shirts Into Accessories You’ll Actually Wear

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5 Ways Andy Cohen Is Redefining Late-Night TV

Andy Cohen, Andy Cohen's Then and NowAndy Cohen isn’t just the host of Watch What Happens Live. He’s also a pioneer in late-night television.
The 49-year-old Bravo star has hosted the show since 2009. Over the…

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Annihilation: 6 Ways the Movie Changed from the Book

We break down six key ways writer/director Alex Garland changed the plot of Annihilation.
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21 Ways Neil Patrick Harris Is Still a Kid at Heart

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Three Centuries of Valentines Offer 12,000 Ways to Say ‘I Love You’

Look inside a vast collection of cards, from as early as the 1680s, featuring pop-ups, cutouts and Civil War soldiers.
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Five ways to make the All-Star Game even more fun

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The many ways Cavs-Warriors is a matchup for the ages

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Cowboys part ways with veteran RB McFadden

The Dallas Cowboys have parted ways with veteran running back Darren McFadden, who was barely used this season.
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Super-Cute Ways Celebrities Are Layering Clothes for Winter

ESC: Layering, Priyanka ChopraLay it on…thick.
If it’s not already cold, it will be soon. While bulky clothes will keep you warm, they don’t always look so put-together. No need to throw style to the…

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3 Simple Ways to Kick Your Smartphone Addiction

Technology promised to make living easier—but complicated it instead. The answer? More tech that helps curb your reliance on your phone.
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4 Unconventional Ways Celebs Are Wearing Coats

ESC: Kim KardashianDon’t let the cold weather kick your creativity.
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Why Grey’s Anatomy’s 300th Episode Was Record-Breaking in More Ways Than One

Grey's Anatomy 300th Episode, Ellen PompeoGrey’s Anatomy made history last night.
The long-running ABC drama, now in its 14th season, aired its 300th episode, making the Shonda Rhimes-created medical soap the first series in…

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Kendall Jenner’s $10K Metallic Boots, 3 Celeb-Inspired Ways

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High-Waisted Jeans: 3 Ways to Wear Denim Like Kendall Jenner

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The Best Ways to Tell the Hard Truth at Work

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Politics has ruined the Emmys… in many ways

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Q. & A.: Tell Us 5 Things About Your Book: The Ways We Inherit Historical Traumas

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Seven Ways Destiny 2 Evolves the Franchise

Partner Content by Nvidia

 

2014’s Destiny made quite a splash, turning even the most jaded gamers into armchair Guardians. Of course, the game’s gatekeepers at Bungie love a good challenge, so they’re not only delivering a sequel that polishes, refines, and pretties up what previously worked, but one that also ambitiously expands on the original experience in a number of key ways.

Whether you’re craving a deeper narrative experience, looking for fresh ways to frag your friends, or seeking a progression path that doesn’t punish solo players, Destiny 2’s got your back. Guardians of all stripes should appreciate these seven ways Destiny 2 is improving upon its predecessor.

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3 Ways to Wear this Travel-Friendly Trench Coat

From dapper to downtown cool, this is the only piece you need.

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Essay: Sally Hemings, Thomas Jefferson and the Ways We Talk About Our Past

Why the words we use to describe Sally Hemings matter.
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Google Searches for Ways to Boost News Subscriptions

The tech giant is working on new tools to help news organizations sell their wares, a move that could help ease its strained relationship with publishers.
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John Oliver Shows All The Ways Trump’s Border Patrol Surge Could Go Wrong

It’s been tried before, and it didn’t work.
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3 Ways to Dive the Great Barrier Reef, from Affordable to Epic

An eager diver sets out to experience this bucket-list trip three distinct ways, by basing himself at a camp site, at a luxury resort and aboard a scuba yacht.
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French Label Paule Ka to Part Ways With Creative Director

NEW HORIZONS: Suggesting short tenures are the new norm in fashion, Paule Ka is the latest fashion house with a change in creative direction.
According to market sources, Alithia Spuri-Zampetti and the French firm are to part ways after a two-year collaboration. Officials at Paule Ka declined to comment.
Spuri-Zampetti worked to extend the brand’s appeal in daywear and separates, bringing to the task a passion for fabric innovation and a sense of elegance rooted in the classic French fashions of the Fifties and Sixties.
Formerly the head designer in charge of women’s ready-to-wear collections at Lanvin, she was the first designer at Paule Ka since the departure in 2014 of founder and creative director Serge Cajfinger. Spuri-Zampetti also has stints at Valentino and Bottega Veneta under her belt.
The Italian-American designer grew up in Rome and the U.S. She is a graduate of Central Saint Martins in London.
Paule Ka has targeted expansion in the United States, Middle East and Asia since Change Capital Partners bought a 70 percent stake in the firm in 2011. “We have a global objective of doubling in size in the next five years,” Catherine Vautrin, chairman and chief executive officer of Paule Ka, told WWD last year.
The label’s

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2 Ways to Style Savannah Chrisley’s New Moto Jacket

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25 Ways To Have A Better Relationship Starting Today

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3 Easy Ways to Pull Off a White Dress at Night

Branded: White Dress OutfitsWho says you can’t wear a white dress at night?
We get it: White is a risky color in the first place (clumsy girls who spill their wine, beware), but the choice to wear it when…

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Fay, Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi Part Ways

MILAN — Fay and creative duo Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi have parted ways.
The designers joined the Italian label controlled by Tod’s Group in 2011, succeeding Giles Deacon, who collaborated on Fay from the women’s fall 2008 collection until the spring 2011 season. Previously, the brand’s collections were designed by an internal creative team.
“On behalf of the entire company I wish to thank Tommaso and Roberto for their most valuable contribution to the evolution of the brand,” said Tod’s Group vice president Andrea Della Valle. “I personally think that this collaboration has proven to be extremely fruitful for both sides.”
“This was really a great experience, which naturally came to an end after six years,” said Aquilano, who was reached by phone on Friday afternoon. “This partnership definitely ended on a happy note with satisfying feedbacks in terms of visibility and commercial results.”
In 2016, Fay benefited from its expansion around the world and showed a 5.3 percent increase in sales to 62.6 million euros, with a sharp acceleration in the fourth quarter.
At the group level, in the 12 months ended Dec. 31, sales totaled one billion euros.
The duo, who ended the collaboration with Fay with the spring 2018 pre-collection hitting stores in

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The Best Ways to Backup Photos On Your iPhone

Smartphone out of memory…again? Three free and paid ways to easily copy your photos and videos to the cloud.
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Skin Deep: 5 Ways to Smell Like the Beach

Aquatic scents are all the rage. Here’s how to get the essence of the ocean, minus the sand.
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Gingham Is Making a Comeback–Here’s 15 Ways to Wear It

Branded: Gingham CollageSummer is in full swing and the only thing you’re in need of is a new casual statement piece that makes you look more together than you feel (#goals).
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Paris Men’s Sizzles — In More Ways Than One

PARIS — Call it the Macron effect. With Paris men’s fashion week in full swing since Wednesday, retailers and brands say there’s a positive global energy that is helping propel business, boosted by the recent election of President Emmanuel Macron — a man well-connected with the nation’s luxury conglomerates and also contributing to the goodwill toward France.
“I moved to Paris three months ago, and I have to say that, especially since the elections, there is a high level of confidence, trust and energy. I am hearing that from all over the world,” said Balmain’s new chief executive officer Massimo Piombini.
“It’s a global energy that is spreading. There is a global drive,” agreed Pascal Morand, executive president of the Fédération Française de la Couture du Prêt-à-Porter des Couturiers et des Créateurs de Mode.
That’s despite Paris being further rattled by an attack on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées on Monday, marking the fifth time in four months that security forces were targeted in the city. Morand said the federation and its members are working with state services and police to ensure safety during the men’s season and the women’s couture shows, which begin July 2.
“The measures might generate some constraints for guests attending

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Carrie Underwood Is Officially the Biggest Nashville Predators Fan: All the Ways She’s Supported Her Husband’s Team So Far

The Nashville Predators are hanging on to their Stanley Cup hopes tonight, facing off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in game six in Music City at 8 p.m. ET.

One person who will most certainly be there, Instagramming the whole thing? Carrie Underwood. The country star — whose husband Mike Fisher is the team captain — has been very vocally supporting her team ever since the guys started their playoff run on April 13. Here, a look back at her best moments in navy and gold.

For game 1 of the western conference first round, Underwood showed her mani/pedi pride

Days later, it was all about the hat

And she Instagrammed all the craziness from inside the Bridgestone Arena during game 3

By their May 3 game against the St. Louis Blues, the Preds were “on fire,” she wrote

She kept her tee on for a May 7 performance with Luke Bryan, too

Her son Isaiah, 2, joined in the fun for the Preds’ May 7 win against the Blues

Good luck? On May 16, her song “The Fighter” was played during a game against the Anaheim Ducks

Another game, another great hat

Similarly another game, another great mani

The super-supportive wife was “Ready” for the Preds’ May 22 game against the Ducks, which her team won, sending Nashville to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time ever

It helps to have support!

And she was elated to watch the guys accept the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl

When traveling, Underwood is sure to bring one essential: that ‘Smash’ hat

Her destination: Pittsburgh, for game one of the Stanley Cup Final

Her June 3 regram had pretty much the sweetest caption ever: “I love this man more than words can express. I am beyond proud of him…he is an amazing man of God. He loves his family, his friends and his job. He deserves nothing but he best in this world, because he gives nothing but his best to it! I am amazed every single day at the kind of human he is! I love you, baby! #ProudWife #Blessed #MikeFisher #GoPreds #StanleyCup”

She got that roar down

Back in Nashville on June 4, Carrie & co. were pumped for the Preds win

An important milestone amid the craziness of the Cup: Fisher’s 37th birthday! Underwood marked the June 5 occasion with another sweet Insta post, writing, “Happy birthday to this handsome hunk! I’ll never forget the day he told me he was asked to wear the “C.” I was so proud on that day and I’m even more proud now to see him play in the #StanleyCupFinals He’s definitely the only FISH in the “C” for me!”

Yes, it was just days before the CMT Music Awards, but she was happy to be out celebrating

With her sisters-in-law and mother-in-law at the last game in Nashville

We can’t wait to see how crazy Carrie goes tonight! Catch the game on NBC.


PEOPLE.com

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5 Days, 5 Ways: You Need Victoria Beckham-Like Trousers in Your Life ASAP

ESC: 5 Days, Victoria BeckhamShowing a little shoulder will never get old.
Kate Bosworth has the perfect solution to wearing sleeves in the summertime and it starts and ends with this top. The off-the-shoulder look,…

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Pal Zileri and Mauro Ravizza Krieger Part Ways

MILAN — Pal Zileri owner Forall SpA and creative director Mauro Ravizza Krieger have agreed to part ways.
“This is amicable,” Giovanni Mannucci, chief executive officer of Pal Zileri, told WWD. “We have talked about the development of the brand and a change made sense for both of us.”
Mannucci said he is focused on a new strategy that will be presented in January 2018 and declined to provide details about a possible successor at press time.
Ravizza Krieger joined Pal Zileri in July 2014 and played “a key role” in the repositioning of the brand, said Mannucci.
Ravizza Krieger’s last collection for Pal Zileri is for spring-summer 2018 and will be presented on June 18 in Milan at the Rotonda della Besana. It is understood he will not be at the event. Ravizza Krieger has worked with Caruso, Loro Piana, Herno and Luciano Barbera, and his first collection for Pal Zileri bowed in January 2015.
The group’s Pal Zileri LAB collection will be showcased in Florence during Pitti Uomo running June 13 to 16.
The late Baroque Rotonda della Besana was also the set for Pal Zileri’s fall presentation, where Ravizza Krieger asked the company’s seamstresses to show 12 of the 180 steps needed to

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Olivia Palermo’s Bomber Jacket Is Having a Moment

ESC: 5 Days, Olivia PalermoMonday would have been business as usual, but then Rihanna and her oversized menswear happened.
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5 Easy Ways to Get Pet Smells Out of Your Car

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Emma Roberts Proves Orange Really Is the New Black

ESC: Emma Roberts, 5 DaysThis week called for risk-taking trends and a whole lot of florals. (It’s finally spring, after all.)
There aren’t too many people that can rock an orange-y brown from…

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Sara Sampaio Is Giving Us Major Sneaker Envy

ESC: 5 Days, Sara Sampaio Warmer weather is coming, and stars are changing up their wardrobe to go with it.
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All the Expensive Ways Celebrities Are Going to Coachella–Without Paying a Dime

Celebrities Traveling to CoachellaThe more money you have, the less you spend.
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The best ways to stream live TV without cableGoogle’s YouTube TV is a solid streaming cable option, but is it the best? Google, though, is entering an increasingly crowded market with a wide variety of different channel offerings that can be difficult to parse when all you want to do is watch “The Bachelor” and eat your KFC $ 20 Fill-Up in your comfy chair. YouTube TV is missing Turner and Viacom properties.



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Here Are a Whole Mess of Ways to Get a Good Night’s Sleep

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7 ways Facebook tried to copy Snapchat

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In wake of loss to Clippers, Bulls have to find ways to get Jimmy Butler rolling again

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Rihanna’s Paris Wardrobe Is Beyond Chic

ESC: 5 Days, RihannaThis week is all about wardrobe staples.
Especially around fashion month, celebs are notorious for wearing outfits that can sometimes be, well, a little outrageous. But as the world…

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6 Ways to Avoid Being Mad Online, Courtesy of President Trump

He’s leading by example. Kind of.

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The Smartest Ways to Use Your Smartphone in the Car

Replace your car’s poor voice-control, navigation and music systems with the best from Apple, Google and Amazon; Joanna Stern reviews your options.
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5 Days, 5 Ways: Vanessa Hudgens Goes Big in the Bag Department

ESC: Vanessa HudgensAre the days of mini bags done?
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6 Ways ‘Girls’ Changed Television. Or Didn’t.

Our critics look at the impact of the HBO show on television as it enters its sixth and final season.
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Five ways fraudsters could make a fool of you

In days gone by, scam emails had a certain pure nobility – perhaps because those sending them were all, coincidentally, Nigerian princes.
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5 Days, 5 Ways: Olivia Palermo Knows a Thing or Two About Layering

ESC: 5 Days, Olivia PalermoStars flocked to Paris this week to watch haute couture ensembles make their way down the runway.
Needless to say, they rose to the occasion wearing incredibly chic outfits bound to lend…

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Olivia Palermo Knows a Thing or Two About Layering

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Best Ways to Steer Clear of the Flu

For starters, get a flu vaccine to protect yourself and others, infectious diseases expert says
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5 Days, 5 Ways: Selena Gomez Is Bringing Rexy Back

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Ten Simple and Unexpected Ways to Boost Happiness

What are some small ways to boost happiness in everyday life? originally appeared on Quorathe knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

Answer by Raj Raghunathan, Professor of marketing and happiness expert at UT Austin, on Quora:

I once surveyed my students to make a list of three small things that make them feel happy after watching this video. Here’s the Top Ten list from that survey:

Note that not all of them will work equally well for you, so you need to figure out which ones work best:

1. Engage in vigorous physical activity.

The next time you need a mood-boost, try this out: go for a long run or play a game of basketball. Now, what counts as a long run for you may be a mere walk in the park for me (it’s more likely to be the reverse), but the point is that the activity needs to be vigorous enough get your heart pumping and your mind distracted from your negative ruminations. If you are like most people, you are unlikely to want to get off your butt if you are feeling down. But, as the Nike slogan says, “Just Do It!” Here’s a fact to get you going: you are guaranteed to feel better after a workout than you felt before it.

2. Hang out with friends.

When we feel down, we typically don’t want to interact with others. This is partly because we don’t want others to see our negative side, but it’s mostly because we don’t think that hanging out with others is really going to help us feel better. I’m not sure where this intuition comes from, but I can tell you that it is wrong: our mood reliably improves after we socialize, especially if the people with whom we socialize are happy and likeable. Similar to how it’s important to overcome the reluctance to exercise, it’s important to overcome the pessimism we feel about the effectiveness of socializing when feeling down.

If you are wondering where and with whom to socialize, just call one of the “favorites” on your smart phone and make a plan to meet. Tell them about what is troubling you to get you started–even a short chat with a close-friend can significantly improve your mood.

3. Consume a moderate amount of alcohol.

I know, I know, I shouldn’t be encouraging people to drink, but what to do? It turns out that when we desperately need a happiness quick-fix, consuming a moderate amount of alcohol can be effective. The key here is to consume just enough to feel a little relaxed. The very process by which alcohol lowers inhibitions can also lower the tendency to worry. In other words, alcohol can temporarily take your mind off things that are causing you to feel negative and thus, can be useful in situations in which our mind is on a “negativity overdrive.” Needless to say, it is important to consume only a moderate amount of alcohol. If you are one of those who can’t stop after two, don’t try this at home or elsewhere!

4. Dress to kill.

As I mentioned in an earlier article, human beings are highly social creatures, which means that we worry a lot about what others think of us. When we believe that others view us positively, we feel good, and when we believe that they view us negatively, we feel bad. So, one way to make yourself feel good is to wear your best clothes and perfume (or cologne, as the case may be) and venture out to your local park or mall. We you look and smell good, or think that you do, you are likely to believe that others view you positively and this will make you feel good.

5. Revisit old (and positive) memories.

Reliving the “good old times” can be a surprisingly effective mood-booster. I say “surprising” because many of us, especially the young among us, rarely engage in reliving fond memories. Curiously, it seems that the more our life has become virtual, the less we are likely to revisit the past. My parents, for example, regularly spend time recalling pleasant past memories, and also routinely pore over the “family album” to relive past memories. Our existence in the virtual world, e.g., on social media websites, should, if anything, allow us to revisit our past even more effectively, given that many of our cherished memories and experiences are merely a “click away”.

A note of caution, however, if you are looking to the Internet to revisit the past: stay away from those who make you feel inferior. That is, stay away from people who are into the game of “keeping up with the joneses”–you know, the ones who frequently post pictures from their vacation in Spain, or engage in name-dropping. Findings show that such “friends” bring you down.

6. Watch a funny or touching video.

Some people prefer funny videos and others prefer heart-warming ones. Regardless, findings show is that even a short exposure to a positive video can significantly boost happiness. (There’s a reason why one of the most popular ways to manipulate mood in experiments is to have participants watch a video.) Here are links to two funny and two touching videos. (Note: the last one is relatively long, at about 15 minutes, but it is well worth it!)

Funny videos:

Dog playing piano: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=…

The Duck Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=…

Heart-warming videos:

Love Language: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=…

Validation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=…

7. Talk to an older relative.

It’s a bit of a pity that, in many “new” cultures (like the US), the elderly aren’t as respected as they are older cultures (like China or India). Think about it: as you grow older, you get physically weak and mentally less nimble. The one saving grace could have been that you gain in respect. Without it, growing old seems to have no positives. No wonder the US is so “youth crazy”!

As findings on hyperopia show, the elderly do deserve our respect because they have “been there, done that.” They thus have many valuable lessons to share. In particular, no one can put things in perspective like the elderly can. Talking to them will help you discern the important from the merely urgent and will also help you not sweat the small stuff.

8. Tick something off your “to do” list.

Have you ever written down something on your things to do list just so that you can have the pleasure of scratching it out? Well, turns out you are not alone. Findings show that people derive an “efficacy boost” by accomplishing goals and this can, in turn, make them feel good. If you don’t have a things to do list or can’t think of something to write on it to scratch off, don’t worry. Just do something simple and easy, like depositing a check or washing a cup, and you’ll be on your way to feeling good.

9. Do a small act of kindness.

Perhaps the most powerful determinant of how we feel is the story we tell ourselves about who we are. The more we believe that we are efficacious and successful, the better we feel–which is why tip #8 (ticking something off your list) works. Another story you can tell yourself is that a large-hearted, generous person. One way to convince yourself of this story is to act like a large-hearted and generous person. This doesn’t mean that you break your bank to serve someone; all you need to do is to perform a small act of kindness such as, rescuing a kitten from a tree, or giving left-over food to a homeless person. Even merely smiling or saying “good morning!” to someone can pick your mood up.

10. Venture into nature.

Most urbanites don’t recognize it, but human beings are biophiles, that is, we love being out in nature. I take my MBA students on a two day retreat each year to a place out in the boonies. We hike up a hill and swim in the river and do various other “nature-oriented” things. Before going on the trip, most of my students are skeptical that being out in nature is going to do anything good, but many come away making a pledge that they will get out more in nature in the future. (I’m not sure if they actually make good on their pledge, but the pledge is good enough for me.) Turns out you don’t need to go on a two day retreat to reap the benefits of being out in nature: even a short hike or a picnic in a park can help you feel good.

This question originally appeared on Quora – the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights. You can follow Quora on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

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How To Recover From Blogger Burnout In 3 Easy Ways

What Happens When You Step Away

What happens when you’ve slowed down on social media to truly reflect where you’re heading with your business?

What happens when you lose the flow of your posting schedule and you don’t even know where to start?

What happens when you think your voice won’t matter anymore?

What happens when you feel stuck?

You haven’t spoken up in over 2 months and we all know that is forever in the online world. You’ve not posted on all your social media platforms, You haven’t recorded a video, You’ve not showed up in your own FB group! What happens to your self-esteem and your confidence when these actions take place. Well, I should really ask what happens to your self-esteem and confidence when nothing has taken place or when you are sucked into this idea that you have to be online 24-7 in order to make a dollar? Well, it can be pretty depressing to know or should I rather say “think” that you have to start all over.

“Truth is being on social media all the time does not equate to running a business or conducting business activity”

You didn’t always feel this way…You actually had some rhyme or reason to what you were doing months before but somehow you’ve experienced something called burnout. That’s what it is. I hate this term burnout. It feels so cliche, it feels like I crashed and burned and there’s no return. There’s no getting back up. But really with all these emotions and thoughts there is light at the end of the tunnel. There is a lesson to be learned and taught to others.

So…let me revisit those questions and share with you my answer.

What can happen when you’ve slowed down on social media?

For starters you get to reflect where you were/are heading with your business… So in my book, amazing things can happen! You begin to have a new sense of confidence and clarity. You can find a new sense of commitment to your goals and what you stand for in your business. You can begin to find your own voice again. You know what when you are constantly online being bombarded by everyone else’s messages you can begin to sound like or imitate someone you really admire. But guess what? You aren’t that person so this time away can bring about a uniqueness in you, and difference in you where you begin to stand out more in your own niche in this sea of online businesses.

What can happen when you lose your flow of your posting schedule and you don’t even know where to start?

Realistically you haven’t lost your flow…you had it scheduled once before. If you scheduled it before I’m sure you can refer back to your old schedule but this time with a breath of fresh ideas and opinions. You can find it on a piece of paper a word document, one of your planners. Start looking back and re-evaluating what you were doing before the burnout. You may just be in a bit of a funk…YOU personally and internally may not be in a flow but that’s ok. Begin to reconnect with your creator first, with the God who created you and listen in to your spirit and where He would have you begin. He’s given you a message for others and you know you gotta get it out to the masses. Start small. Start with an inspirational photo, feel free to reintroduce yourself. Do whatever feels right to you but whatever you do never give up because you lost your flow or feel like you don’t know where to start. I can help with that…I hope this blog post is helping with that now.

What happens when you think your voice won’t matter?

Well honey, this is more of an internal thing. If you are feeling like your voice won’t matter then guess what…it won’t. It’s not for you to determine how your story will connect with others. It’s not for you to give a consensus on the wonderful message imparted within you. Nope you don’t get to judge your message before sharing with others.

When I stepped outside of my own comfort zone and began to share my story and share what I stood for, guess what. I got an astounding…”That was powerful”. This was a mindset shift that I was sharing with other women in my group.

Did you know that I re-edited and re-edited and stressed over this message for days before I put it out. Your voice is your message and when you share it just know if you’ve touched one person you’ve done your job!!!

Conclusion

Whether you are recovering from “Burn Out” or currently experiencing it as you read this post, it’s important to remember that business is a journey and there is no race to the finish line. Brands continually evolve and grow just like we do as people. Sometimes that growth may feel stunted and other times you may experience a growth spurt. But most importantly, building a business is a journey through personal development.

Learning more about yourself and allowing your commitment to shine through regardless of where you think you should be in business are important steps to showing up and serving others through your business.

About the Author: Justina Ford is a Mindset and Success Coach for Multi-Passionate Business Minded Women of Faith. Check out her free workbook on 4 Simple steps to visualizing your Business with God. You can find her in her Facebook Group The Purposeful Pursuit to a Beautiful You.

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

Four Uncommon Ways to Clear Your Mind and Make Big Decisions

What are some tips for battling decision-fatigue? originally appeared on Quorathe knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights.

Answer by Jenny Blake, Author of PIVOT: The Only Move That Matters is Your Next One, on Quora.

Decision-fatigue refers to the phenomenon that, like willpower, our ability to make decisions throughout the day diminishes without proper recharging. When mid-Pivot and asking life’s biggest questions, we are often overwhelmed by smaller decisions and things that might not have registered on our radar in the past. Or conversely, we’re so bogged down by small day-to-day decisions that we don’t have the space to ask bigger Pivot questions about what we really want and what next steps would resonate most.

To refresh your mind, I recommend the following:

  • Don’t ask the same giant questions every day (ie: Should I quit my job?). Give yourself a period of time where you don’t have to decide at all, perhaps while you’re researching options. Revisit the decision at specific intervals of your choosing, but not on a daily monkey-mind basis.
  • Create routines for as much as you can in your life – morning routines, scheduling exercise for the same recurring days/times, evening wind down rituals. What recharges you? The more you can create routines around these things, the less you will find yourself debating what to do when throughout the day (gobbling up precious mental bandwidth).
  • Write your questions down.
  • Go with your gut! We actually do know the answer to more than we think – on decisions large and small. If you find yourself debating unproductively, ask: what does my gut say?

This question originally appeared on Quora. – the knowledge sharing network where compelling questions are answered by people with unique insights. You can follow Quora on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Kendall Jenner’s Metallic Jacket Is Almost as Cute as Her Dog

ESC: 5 Days, Monday, Kenall JennerThe week in celeb style did not disappoint.
The time before the Golden Globes presents plenty of opportunity for stars to show everyone they are worthy of a golden statue (or at least an…

E! Online (US) – Fashion Police

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25 Ways To Cut Your Wedding Catering Costs

By Sharon Naylor for Bridal Guide

Take a bite out of your food and drink budget with these clever ideas.

1. Hand pass pricier appetizers, like shrimp, scallops or other seafood items, rather than setting them out for guests to serve themselves. Caterers say guests consume 40 percent fewer pieces this way.

Related: 101 Ways to Save Thousands on Your Wedding

2. “Put out big bowls of colorful, lush salads with grilled vegetables, which allows you to show generosity without spending a whole lot,” says Shai Tertner, award-winning chef at Shiraz in New York City. Tertner suggests adding punch to your presentation by using colorful bowls, giant woks and other unusual platters.

3. Comparison shop for seafood. For example, calamari and mussels are often half the price of shrimp cocktail and scampi. Ask your wedding caterer for a list of less costly seafood appetizers.

Related: Secret Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding Vendors

4. Skip the big cubed-cheese platter. It’s often the least popular item at a wedding cocktail hour, because most guests have had cheese platters at office parties and family get-togethers. No one will miss it.

5. Just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean your crudités have to show it. Instead of carrot sticks and cucumber rounds, choose artichoke hearts, broccoli flowers, radishes cut in heart shapes or other creative choices, with flavored dipping sauces.

Related: 50 Fun Menu Innovations for Your Reception

6. Use unique plates. Leila Miller, award-winning event planner at Feastivities Catering in Philadelphia, says, “People eat with their eyes first, so focus on the presentation. Serving trays that are a bit different, like small tapas-style plates, can add a twist to the fare without adding to your bill.”

Related: 7 Unique Ways to Display Your Wedding Food

7. Serve macaroni and cheese in martini glasses, mini grilled cheese bites made in sandwich presses and tiny crab cakes with tartar sauce. These perennial crowd-pleasers come at about one-third the cost of traditional cocktail party fare.

8. Offer theme stations, such as a fajita station or Thai station. “The Asian station, where it’s more about the display, is very popular now,” Tertner says. “We set out large woks or serve food in take-out containers that coordinate with the wedding’s theme or colors. We also create pyramids of basmati and jasmine rice, lots of egg noodles and a range of condiments. These ingredients are not costly, but it looks as though you’ve invested a lot.”

9. Skip the raw bar — though trendy, it’s one of the most exorbitant kinds of stations. Instead, Miller suggests a hand-passed hors d’oeuvre, like tequila-cured salmon served in martini glasses.

Related: Wedding Splurges: What's Really Worth the Cost?

10. You don’t need to have a carving station. Prime rib, ham and pork loin are too heavy and filling, not to mention quite pricey, for the cocktail hour, says Bill Chriswell, catering director at The Park Savoy in Florham Park, New Jersey.

11. In cool weather, serve mini cups of clam chowder (again, you’re serving seafood at a minimal price), lobster bisque, acorn squash, or any other flavors that are easy on the wallet.

Related: 100 Ideas for Winter Weddings

12. No one will need a five-course feast after cocktails — three will do just fine. If you offered salads at the cocktail party, eliminate the salad at dinner (double savings!).

13. Keep the salad and combine it with an appetizer. A salad with two grilled shrimp is a budget success because the chef can buy less for both courses.

14. Use a great sauce on less expensive chicken or pasta dishes. Tertner suggests doing something unusual — an espresso sauce over chicken, for example.

15. Miller says, “Forget a top-dollar filet! Less costly braised boneless short ribs are a wonderful choice, served plated or at food stations.” Ask your wedding caterer to show you price options for different cuts of lamb and pork as well as beef.

Related: 50 Cost-Cutting Wedding Swaps

16. Make pasta more interesting by choosing pumpkin ravioli, or spinach and goat-cheese manicotti.

Related: Finding Your Wedding Caterer

17. Instead of offering a choice of three entrées, design a platter with beef medallions and grilled shrimp or crab cakes. You’ll use far less food than if you had to plan for a large quantity of all three entrées to have on hand should guests change their minds.

18. For savings of up to 20 percent, consider family-style dishes. Try platters of sliced meat or pasta that guests can pass around.

19. If you plan to have children at the reception, choose a wedding caterer who offers free or half-priced meals for children up to age 16.

Related: 10 Ways to Make Your Wedding More Kid-Friendly

20. If you design a tasting menu of seven or eight small courses instead of four big ones, you’ll save about 15 percent.

21. Go bite-size with desserts, like tiny chocolate-covered cheesecakes. By controlling portions, you’re saving one-third the price of a full dessert buffet.

Related: 25 Delicious Wedding Cake Alternatives

22. Instead of a full bar, serve beer and wine with one or two signature cocktails that you’ve personalized with a clever name and your wedding colors.

Related: 25 Creative Ideas for Your Wedding Bar

23. Dress up your signature drinks with fun garnishes, suggests Miller. Ask the bar manager to provide curled lemon and lime peels, orange slices or mini fruit kebabs on toothpicks to coordinate with your wedding colors. These garnishes are often free, and because they add to the festive look, everyone thinks you’ve spent more than you really have.

Related: Stock the Bar: What You Need for Your Wedding

24. If you can’t negotiate the corkage fee out of your contract entirely, at least discuss lowering it. At up to $ 2 per bottle, it’s worth a try. If you’re stocking your own bar, research less expensive wine vintages on winespectator.com.

Related: 30 Unexpected Wedding Costs Brides Forget to Budget For

25. Skip the champagne for your wedding toast. Guests can toast you with the drinks they have in hand. Or look into serving easily available sparkling wines from France (cremant), Spain (cava) or Italy (prosecco) instead.

Plus, check out 25 More Ways to Cut Catering Costs

More from Bridal Guide:

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5 Days, 5 Ways: The Shoe Style You Need to Act Like an A-List This Winter

ESC: 5 Days 5 Ways, Chrissy TeigenSquare toes, round toes, peep toes begone!
In order to act like an A-list this winter, you better be swapping the above styles for something with a pointed toe.
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1001 Ways to Be Romantic

1001 Ways to Be Romantic


More Romantic than Ever! Sure, you could buy some roses. Yes, you could cook an elegant romantic dinner. Of course, you could give a heart-shaped box of chocolates. But sometimes you want to do more than that. Sometimes you want to show just how much you really care, how much passion you really feel, and how much more your partner means to you than absolutely anything else. Packed with unique suggestions, easy gestures, and thoughtful gift ideas, 1001 Ways to Be Romantic is “worth memorizing” (Boston Herald). More than one and a half million people have used this book to kick up the fun and romance, making it a modern classic and #1 national bestseller. It’s a must-have for anyone, in any relationship, who wants to spark some more love in their lives. You’ll find: Little things you can do every day Big ideas for when you want to go all out How to be romantic without spending a dime How to really go to town when money is no object Tons of resources, including websites, online shopping, places to go, music, movies, and much, much more

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Six Ways for Men to Wear Dark Denim

Dark denim and its different shades are pushing the men’s jeans market back into high gear, with retro Nineties washes among the most directional styles.
 

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3 ways Uber can help its drivers

3 ways Uber can help its driversThe author of a new study on Uber’s economics made less than minimum wage over 16 weeks driving for the popular yet money-losing ride-hailing service—but that’s not his biggest gripe with the company. “An Analysis of the Entrepreneurial Aspects of Uber’s Driver-Partner Platform,” written by Brown University adjunct lecturer Patrick McQuown and a team of his students in Brown’s engineering school, draws on McQuown’s experience as an Uber driver as well as interviews with 110 others to question Uber’s treatment of its independent workers. “Uber’s business model puts into practice technologies and policies that frustrate and belittle drivers while not living up to its marketing on the financial rewards,” the report reads.



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People Are Tweeting All The Bizarre Ways Their Pets Celebrate The Holidays

How do animals celebrate the holidays? Mostly by messing with your stuff and waiting for food to hit the floor, according to people sharing their experiences on Twitter.

The  hashtag is full of cute animals hoping for that turkey to fall off the plate or making wrapping presents even more difficult than it already is. There are even a few cats who seem mostly OK with the hats they’ve been forced to wear.

Here are a few of the favorite posts that we’ve seen so far:

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5 Days, 5 Ways: What Celeb Has Your Hoodie Style

ESC: 5 Days 5 Ways, Gigi HadidThis past year, streetwear came back–in a serious, high-fashion way.
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Six Ways for Men to Wear Cropped Jackets

The chic geek is the leading character in spring outerwear. That infamous shade of brown that screams Seventies, with distinctive panel detailing, was one of the season’s most defining statements.
 
 

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18 Expert-Tested Ways to Prevent a Hangover

There’s more to it than just chugging some water before you fall asleep.

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Six Ways to Give the Gift of Generosity to Children and Teenagers

Here is a guide to help you teach young people about philanthropy and offer them the tools to give.
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7 Ways to Shake Up Your Makeup in 2017

Makeup artist Susie Sobol shows us how to take classic makeup trends—blue eye shadow, black liner, red lipstick—and make them completely unexpected.
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The Clarins 4-Colour All-in-One Pen, which launches next month, includes three eyeliners and a lip liner to create a variety of looks.
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The Magical Ways Ashley Graham Completely Nailed 2016

2016 was a god awful year and the dread of what’s to come in 2017 is getting ever closer. But there were some good things to come out of this past year, and Ashley Graham’s increasing presence in the public eye is one of them. 

The model, designer and body activist has led the way toward shifting beauty standards in the fashion industry, whether it be through spreading her own message of body positivity or landing jobs historically reserved for models of a smaller size. It’s hard to think of a single person in fashion who had a better, more impactful year than the 28-year-old model. 

Still not convinced? Allow us to break it down for you chronologically. We could essentially create a running list of every successful minute of Graham’s year, but that would be creepy and we’d be here all day. So herewith, her biggest, boldest wins of 2016. 

#1

Graham kicked off the year with a bang in January by being named one of Forbes’ 30 under 30 in Art and Style, thanks to her growing roster of magazine covers and a successful lingerie line.  

#2 

Then, in February Graham landed the cover of the iconic Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, becoming the first plus-size model to ever earn the highly coveted spot, and catapulting her to stardom. 

#3

Just a few weeks later, Graham co-hosted E!’s Academy Awards red carpet coverage on Feb. 22 alongside Zanna Rassi, Kris Jenner and Giuliana Rancic wearing one insanely beautiful dress.

Had a wonderful time with these gorgeous ladies on @enews tonight! #Oscars // dress by @baotranchi //

A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on

#4

March brought the in-demand model to Paris, where she walked in H&M’s show at Paris Fashion Week. C’est bien!

#5

She covered Maxim’s April issue, and then Cosmpolitan’s August issue and Self in October, to name a few. Shall we go on? 

#6

We shall. In May, the supermodel appeared as Joe Jonas’ love interest in the video for DNCE’s “Toothbrush.” Jonas, Graham and DNCE were all praised for the move. The super sexy video didn’t hurt, either. 

#7

Graham was unsurprisingly named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year in early November, but the month ended up being a double win when she was presented with a Barbie made in her likeness, complete with touching thighs

#8

The very last day of November left us with one reason to be excited for 2017 ― she became the first plus-size model to land the cover of British Vogue.

#9

Finally, Graham made her debut as a judge on the “America’s Next Top Model” reboot on Dec. 12, alongside Rita Ora, stylist Law Roach and photographer Drew Elliot. 

Bow down. 2016 was a great year for Graham.

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50-Minute Critic: Got an Hour? See the Met These 4 Ways

The collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art holds a number of remarkable depictions of powerful women. Here’s our 50-minute critic’s guide.
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3 Clever Ways to Wrap Her Holiday Presents

Step 1: Buy her jewelry. Step 2: Hand it off using one of these fun methods. Step 3: Bask in the praise.

Style – Esquire

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5 Days, 5 Ways: Celebs Reinvent Polka Dots for the Fashion-Forward

ESC: 5 Days, Janelle MonaeThese aren’t your mother’s polka dots.
Celebrities are sporting this timeless trend in ways that are transforming the way we think about the classic look. Instead of giving off…

E! Online (US) – Fashion Police

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Holly Madison Baby Blog No. 6: Easy Ways to Look Your Best Pregnant

Holly MadisonThe former star of E!’s Girls Next Door and Holly’s World is expecting her second child with husband Pasquale Rotella. Their daughter, Rainbow Aurora Rotella, was born in 2013. Follow her…

E! Online (US) – Style

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25 Sweet Ways To Give Thanks Before, During And After Your Wedding

By Stefania Sainato for Bridal Guide

In the spirit of the season, we’ve gathered some fun ways to give thanks before, during, and after your big day.

More from Bridal Guide:

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Traditional Body Care Methods: Natural Ancient Ways to Keep Your Body, Hands, and Feet Beautiful and Younger Looking

Traditional Body Care Methods: Natural Ancient Ways to Keep Your Body, Hands, and Feet Beautiful and Younger Looking


Table of ContentsIntroductionSkin Cleansing RubsFor Oily SkinSkin BlemishesCombination SkinsDull and Lifeless HairProblems of Excessive SweatingHyperhidrosis And Mud TherapyBenefits of Using MudLocal Application of MudBenefits of Mud PacksHaving a Mud BathNatural Skin Lightening and Anti-Tanning MethodsGetting Rid of WrinklesAn Oil PolishPapaya TreatmentThick Brows and EyelashesPreventing Chapped LipsDark ElbowsSmoothing Rough SkinGetting Rid of CornsGetting Rid of Warts and Moles. Healthy NailsConclusionAuthor BioPublisherIntroductionI was reading one of my favorite authors, Rex Stout, and Archie Goodwin, my favorite narrator spoke about one of their clients who he did not like. She was loudmouthed, rude, overdressed, and he was glad to see that he had an excuse not to like her. She had an unwashed neck.I gave a grin of smug and superior pomposity. Washing behind my ears, and washing my neck properly every day when having a bath had been drilled into me when I was a baby. So I had a squeaky clean neck, hurray, hurray. But it looked like I had been neglecting my elbows and my knees and also my feet. That comes of having no time for leisurely showers because one is in too much of a hurry to shower, get ready, and get out of the house in time to catch the morning’s rush to the rat race. Even if you are not rushing around, and you have all the time in the world to have a long leisurely bath with all those lotions, potions, bath salts, and all those chemical-based stuffs, let us look at natural methods which are going to add to a clean body and exterior. These notions of elementary hygiene and cleanliness were disregarded, in many parts of the world, especially in Europe for centuries, but in other parts of the world, especially in ancient civilizations like Egypt, Persia, Babylon, China, Japan, and even ancient Europe, traditional beauty recipes to take care of the body and keep it young, youthful looking, and beautiful were handed down from grandmother to grandchild, and

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The Inside Track of 161 Ways to Live a Bountiful Life Volume 2

The Inside Track of 161 Ways to Live a Bountiful Life Volume 2


I had noticed on the internet and many of the inspirational websites that I was interested in that there were list posts where advice was given in a list format. I love these lists so decided to do some of my own for my website. At the time of writing (June 2014), I started to produce my own lists of 7 and I did 70 lists of 7, it was a challenge to me to produce these. They are scheduled to be published on my website from November 2014 onwards. However I also thought that these would be great to combine into eBooks and this is the one of three volumes. Why 161 ways? Well, because 70 divided by 3 volumes is 23 lists x 7 in each list equals 161. Easy! Some lists/blog posts I did more than 7 items, so these are marked in the headings below with “!” so that I can be satisfied in my train spotter mind that 161 is the total! My intention is with this eBook is to give the insight and knowledge that I have gained over my life (I am 55 years old) from my travels, working overseas (I am English), from reading, from studying and trawling round the internet. I hope that you will find something here for you from this eclectic list that will enhance your life. In this second volume on reflection I have veered off path a little and I have put in some things in life that I have really enjoyed. So I have used these blog posts and adapted them slightly to explain why this has made my life more bountiful. I have cheated a bit, but my blog is my blog and sometimes I go down different routes but then come back on course, hopefully. I hope you enjoy the journey anyway and some of the writing in here will make your life more bountiful or if not, that you enjoy the journey anyway. Please enjoy your reading and I hope that this eBook helps you in some way and adds to your health, wealth and happiness. Thank you all so much for your support.

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You Are Now Less Dumb: How to Conquer Mob Mentality, How to Buy Happiness, and All the Other Ways to Outsmart Yourself

You Are Now Less Dumb: How to Conquer Mob Mentality, How to Buy Happiness, and All the Other Ways to Outsmart Yourself


Author: McRaney, David QUALITY PAPERBACK BOOKS (309 pages) Publisher: Gotham Books, August 2014
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9 Simple Ways to Nail Spring Style

It’s easier than you think.

Style – Esquire

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5 Unexpected Ways Kids Can Strengthen Your Marriage

Before my husband and I had our three children, we frequently went out to dinner, slept late on weekends, went to the movies, and were free to have sex whenever the mood struck us.

We were married for almost six years before our first child was born, and we thought we had a good thing going. Joe learned to find my habit of loving a particular food until I decided, without warning and usually after he bought a month’s supply of it, that I would never eat it again, somewhat charming. Likewise I learned to endure his need to set the alarm clock for an hour earlier than he ever got up.

We felt our relationship was tested and strong. We thought we were close.

We were fools.

People may tell you that having kids will put stress on a marriage. And they are not wrong, it does. But after 23 years of (mostly) wedded bliss, I have learned that sometimes it’s all in the way we look at things.

Here are five ways that having children has strengthened our marriage. They may not be the ways you might think.

  1. Love it or hate it, once you have kids you never will never lack a topic of conversation. There is always something to talk about. Whether it is the epic mess junior made in the living room or the newest project that he has to bring into school on Monday made out of three pinecones, a milk container, and glue, or where the heck are Max and Ruby’s parents, there is always a topic to discuss.
  2. You will never take sex for granted again. The days when you and your spouse could just decide you needed each other are gone. Kaput. A distant memory. Now you will need to not only schedule time for each other, you may actually have to sneak into the laundry room for a quickie. This could explain why I now get turned on by the scent of dryer sheets. There is something very sweet about making time for each other.
  3. Boredom is a thing of the past. Your life will be filled to the brim with excitement. Late night trips to the ER with a sick kid, frantically searching for a lost ballet slipper before the big recital, or trying to find the family hamster that made a break for it are just a few things that have kept the thrill alive for us. Peace and calm are highly overrated and do little for deep bonding.
  4. There will come a time — it’s usually when at least one of your kids becomes a teenager or you have the nerve to serve veggie pasta — that you will need somebody in your house that actually likes you. These are the times where you will be grateful that there is a person who vowed to love you for better or worse, in sickness and in health, and especially in our case, a 17-year-old’s term paper.
  5. When you have a newborn with colic or a toddler who requires potty training, it can seem like the trials and tribulations of parenthood are endless. But time really does fly. I honestly can’t believe our first child has only one more year until he begins college. It’s awfully nice to have another person who has shared these memories with you and can remind you that no, you were not dreaming, you really did spend the whole first year of his life sitting in the backseat of the car because you were both worried that since he was in a rear facing car seat he would feel lonely.

This piece was previously published on Kathy’s site, My Dishwasher’s Possessed!

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4 Ways the Most Productive Parents on Earth Get Sh*t Done

For those who want to pass a billion-dollar startup down.

Lifestyle – Esquire

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Review: 12 Ways the 9.7-inch iPad Pro Is Different

Review: 12 Ways the 9.7-inch iPad Pro Is Different

Considering upgrading to a new iPad Pro so you can use it as your only computer and kiss your laptop goodbye? Here’s what you really need to know. The post Review: 12 Ways the 9.7-inch iPad Pro Is Different appeared first on WIRED.
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�berhacker II: More Ways to Break Into a Computer (No.2)

�berhacker II: More Ways to Break Into a Computer (No.2)


Be warned: If you don’t like our quest for freedom in cyberspace, or if you have a broken funny bone, stay away from this book – it will just make you mad. Is this book a one-stop school for computer criminals or a solid piece of work on crime prevention? What it is, is the best hacking book ever written, now completely revised, expanded and updated. The author says “To become a Uberhacker, you learn from other hackers – the real hacker type – not criminals. You learn by experimenting on your own computers and the computers of hackers who invite you to play war games with them. You learn by watching them do amazing things to your computer. By lifting each other up through this process of play and experimentation, you can eventually learn how to break into almost any computer, or secure it from almost any attack.
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6 Cool Ways to Wear Your Scarf This Spring

Spring might as well be deemed the season of jeans and a white tee. But when your go-to uniform starts to feel tired, take a note from Olivia Palermo’s playbook and put a scarf on it. And no, we don’t just mean the stale infinity iterations of seasons past. This spring, opt for a long, skinny version that takes the place of a necklace, or try a silky neckerchief that’ll become part of your outfit rather than a layer you strip off once you’re inside. Ahead, six ways to get in on the trend right now.
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OK, we get it: Earth Day isn’t sexy. Informative? Yes. Important? Hell yes. But cool, exciting, and holy-wow glamorous? Not so much. Until, of course, you clicked on this article. Because the indie products on this carefully curated list aren’t just eco-friendly, nontoxic, and natural; they also work insanely well, feel amazing, and are filled with the most effective ingredients found in nature. And best of all, they’ll have you thinking about the environment long after April 23 (ahem, Earth Day) has come and gone.
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Doug’s Dozen: 12 Ways to Soften Income Inequality Without Taxing 62 People

News Item: 62 richest people have as much money as the poorest 3.5 billion.

Five years ago, in 2010, it took about 380 rich people to equal the wealth of half the world. So this situation is getting worse. And as we all know, raising taxes on the super-rich is just crazy talk.

But I have suggestions how to fix this. In fact, I have…

Doug’s Dozen: 12 Ways to Soften Income Inequality Without Taxing 62 People

1. Enter 3.5 billion people in mandatory Powerball pool.

2. Have Oxfam study figures reworked by kids who were home-schooled.

3. Give world’s poor water as clean as in America (or to save $ 100, as clean as Flint, Mich.)

4. Allow super-rich couples to adopt small countries.

5. Make lots of movies about the angst felt by the rich.

6. Free drugs!

7. New reality show: The Billionaire Bachelor.

8. Allow Third World hovels to trade vacations on Airbnb.

9. Give the poor restaurant coupons they can use as soon as they turn 99.

10. Cut taxes on those 62 guys, ’cause this time, we promise, it’ll work.

11. Governments hire people to fix infrastructure…wait, no, that’s socialism. Never mind.

12. Let the 62 hunt the poor till there are only 62 poor left. Then half of us will be super-rich!

____________________

Read Doug’s comic novel, Memoirs of a Time Traveler,

Now available in paperback or on Kindle.

“You couldn’t ask for a finer guide to the future — or the past — than Doug Molitor. Having so thoroughly enjoyed his ‘Memoirs of a Time Traveler,’ the next book I read is, without a doubt going to be his ‘Memoirs of a Time Traveler’ again.”
— Larry Gelbart (A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, TV’s M*A*S*H, Tootsie.)

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7 New, Super-Pretty Ways to Wear Sparkle Makeup

There is no middle of the road with glitter makeup. Or is there? This season, makeup artists introduced new ways to shine: Bold dashes of shadow, minimalist liner, and one full-on YOLO sparkle party.
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Instagram: Thanks for the fun times this year. You gave us a lot to like. But these were the beauty and pop culture moments that we truly loved.
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10 Ways to Update Your Bun This Season

Basic topknots seem to be getting all of the attention lately. And we get it; we love them, too. But there’s also a whole world of bun versatility out there just waiting to be explored by those outside of the ballerina community. Here, ten celebrity-inspired bun upgrades to try now.
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Your job, your roommate, your significant other—a lot of factors conspire to keep you up at night. But when you need to relax, these ten beauty products are much better than counting sheep.
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Move Over, Plain Diamond Halos: 3 New Ways to Wear Sapphires In Your Engagement Ring

With all due respect to Kate Middleton and her royal engagement ring, we’re ready to see some variations classic sapphire engagement ring she made so popular: a large sapphire (often round or oval-shaped) surrounded by…


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Sweater Up: 10 Ways to Find Your Knit

Pumpkins, yes. Boots, sure: all signs the weather is turning. But when you fumble in your drawer for your favorite knit, it’s a telltale sign that fall is on the move or what we also affectionately call “sweater weather.”

Designers this season are getting downright cozy with all kinds of knits and expanding the regular repertoire of what we’d normally see. From cardigans to duster coats and everything in-between, the sweater is getting reworked. While aran and cable knits were certainly celebrated down Altuzarra and Carvens’ runways, there are additional twists to this seasonal favorite that extend to accessories too.

LEG WARMERS
Having grown up in the 80’s, I never knew that leg warmers could be so tasteful, but their resurgence proves that a rebirth can sometimes be for the better. Here, far more streamlined and feminine than I wore back in the day.

2015-10-13-1444757302-7228989-GrayRibbedLegWarmers.jpg

HOODED CABLE KNIT DRESS
Thinner yarns perfectly suit early fall dressing and layer well with other pieces and under jackets.

2015-10-13-1444757345-219606-GrayCableKnitHoodedRuffleHemDress.jpg

DUSTER
How low can you go? Well, to the length of a sweater duster of course! Look for flat-pockets or seamless collars that flatter, built-in bonuses like a scarf and knits that run vertically to maximize visually lengthening.

2015-10-13-1444757381-560974-RedCableKnitConvertibleDuster.jpg

2015-10-13-1444757418-6215597-CharcoalMlangePocketDuster.jpg

MUSTARD CABLE KNIT
Mustard anyone? A favorite condiment to some, mustard is a favorite hue for fall and will complement any number of colors in your wardrobe such as navy, cream, brown and black. For thicker sweaters on top, pair with a streamlined silhouette below like a pencil skirt, fitted pants or jeans.

2015-10-13-1444757456-1228457-MustardCableKnit.jpg

CAPLET
Part scarf, part cape, this knitted caplet with its two-toned yarns hits another styling high note with the fringe. Throw this over your shoulders and head to a bonfire.

2015-10-13-1444757490-6917437-BlackWhiteFringeCapelet.jpg

CAP WITH POM POM
I adore when it gets cold enough to grab a knitted cap and pull it over my ears (namely to control my wild mane!). A pom pom adds just the right level of sweet chic.

2015-10-13-1444757522-4434192-GrayCableKnitPomPomBeanie.jpg

SWEATER DRESS
Plenty of women might balk at the idea of the sweater dress, claiming it adds bulk in all of the wrong places. But depending on the way a piece is knitted, the thickness of the yarns and how it lies on your body, the end result can flatter your silhouette. Don’t rule one out without trying it on.

2015-10-13-1444757589-7125925-HeatherGrayCableKnitWoolBlendSweaterDress.jpg

ARM WARMERS
Keep the cold an arm’s length away with stylish pointelle arm warmers: great for driving or when you need your fingers free to use electronic devices.

2015-10-13-1444757618-3492192-IvoryPointelleArmWarmers.jpg

HI-LOW DRESS
Playing against symmetry, a hi-low dress isn’t just for summer: here in a flowy, marbled knit. Pair with leggings and riding boots and you’re ready for a day of fall foliage viewing.

2015-10-13-1444757666-9276840-OatmealMlangeConvertibleHiLowDress2.jpg

INFINITY SCARF
I’m actually not too huge a fan of the thinner infinity scarf that you have to manipulate and figure out how to twist to get to look good. A thick, braided variety allows for an easy, over-the-head look that you can throw on and dash out the door: more my speed.

2015-10-13-1444757700-6737754-MintCoralMarledInfinityScarf.jpg

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8 Ways to Get Over Him Besides Hitting “Unfollow”

Undeterred, we’ve collected some tried-and-true tips for moving on in the Instagram age. If these don’t work…just, um, put your phone in the garbage disposal.


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7 Ways to Wear Fall’s Best Nail-Polish Hues

OK, maybe we’re a little biased, but we happen to think that the Allure x Butter London Arm Candy Collection is the best of the season. And at least seven people agree with us! See how these Instagram stars style the collection.
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A sparkly collar plus floral print is a whole lot of look. Pretty Little
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Shay Mitchell shows us how to pull off an embellished top from Kate Spade New York.
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11 Un-Boring Ways to Wear Black This Fall, Courtesy of Style Icon, Kate Moss

Though this fall is all about rich, jewel-tones (think ruby, topaz, and sapphire), if you’re a. in a rush and don’t have time to contemplate what colors match before speeding out the door, or b. just simply aren’t into color, a black outfit tends to be your go-to.

The trouble is, sometimes black can read a bit boring.

Leave it to Kate Moss, whose style we pine over by the day, month, year, and decade (seriously, we’re still trying to copy her outfits from 1992), to find fresh ways to wear black for fall. Whether you’re aiming for a head-to-toe look, or just want to include few simple black pieces in your outfit, here, Moss offers 11 innovative fall outfits that are guaranteed to have you out the door and looking fabulous in 5-minutes or less. Hey, they don’t call her a style icon for nothing!

03-kate-moss-leopard-coat-belt-burberry-spetember-15-lfw

The supermodel tops a basic black top and trousers with a spotted coat and matching belt. Easy!

01-kate-moss-jeans-august-2015

She makes black jeans look more put-together with a fine-striped T-shirt, a black blazer and a mini scarf.

11-kate-moss-striped-shirt-red-bag

Here she rocks a striped T-shirt again, this time it’s with black trousers, thigh-high boots and a peacoat.

07-kate-moss-utulity-jumpsuit-february-2014

We love a good utility jumpsuit and here, Moss cinches her’s with a black belt and tops it with a black jacket, giving it a bit more edge.

06-kate-moss-bomber-jacketnovember-2014

For another un-boring black jeans outfit, pair a white or blue button-down shirt and top with a bomber jacket in army green, black, or navy.

08-kate-moss-printed-pants-september-2013

Moss tones down a pair of leopard-print pants with a gray T-shirt and a black blazer.

02-kate-moss-jeans-casual-outfit-june-2015

A printed skinny scarf adds some dimension to an all-black look. Be sure to choose accessories with texture or embellishment, like these fringed booties.

12-kate-moss-cape

Capes can be a bit dramatic, so by pairing her fringed black cape with skinny black trousers, she makes the look less runway, more real.

04-kate-moss-loepard-coay-black-jeans-march-2015

If you love wearing head-to-toe black, consider investing in a statement coat to make every single one of your outfits pop. Leopard may seem like a busy print, but it takes on a neutral vibe when paired with black.

09-kate-moss-leather-pants

Pair your leather trousers with a subtly-printed silk blouse and a faux fur jacket.

13-kate-moss-green-pants

When in doubt, choose one item in your outfit to focus on and keep the rest to black. Moss makes her high-waisted army green trousers more tame with a black top and shoes.

For more fall outfits see:
Work Outfits for the First Day of Fall
Style Inspiration from Brooklyn’s Most Fashionable Women
15 Ways to Style Your Turtleneck



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The Creepy Ways American Horror Story: Hotel Connects to Season One

Let's face it: Most of the time, we're too terrified by American Horror Story's on-screen antics to hunt for the sneaky hidden clues that reveal the seasons' intricate connections. Luckily for us, creator Ryan Murphy…


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8 Easy Ways to Guarantee Your Wedding Pictures Don’t Suck

We’ve all seen awful wedding pictures—the awkward faces, the forced poses. {Why are those bridesmaids straddling the groom? Why?! } But if you’ve ever been on the business end of a bad wedding photographer’s camera,…


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3 Ways to Increase Positivity With Your Wardrobe Mindset

How many times have you walked into your closet and thought, “I have nothing to wear” all while you’re staring at a closet that is overflowing with clothes? You then frantically search for an outfit that ends up being the same old thing you always wear, but because you’re running low on time, you just deal with it and go on with your day.

This frantic minute or two is impacting your entire day. By starting the day with a negative thought, you block your own ability to make this day the best one yet. If you start your morning with a positive mindset, you open yourself up to more positivity throughout the day. This leads to greater clarity on what your desires are and how you will achieve them. If you’re ready to add more positivity and clarity into your day, it’s time to start with the one thing that you do every single morning- getting dressed.

Detox Your Closet

Every morning you pick out an outfit and get dressed, regardless of how much time and effort you put into it. With an activity that happens so frequently in your life, it’s important to make sure that it’s not creating a negative impact on your day. The fastest way to add more joy and positivity into your day is by identifying the parts of your daily routine that are chaotic and stressful and eliminating or adjusting them so that they better serve you. By eliminating the frustrations that you have with your wardrobe, you will feel excited about what’s inside your closet door.

The best way to detox your closet is to start with baby steps. Give yourself small challenges either daily or weekly. If you’re planning to do a major closet cleanout, only do this when you know you have the time to do it. A closet cleanout always looks scarier halfway through the process, so you want to make sure you have time to complete it because if not, you’re going to have a giant pile of clothes haunting you for the rest of the weekend.

One of my favorite detox tips is to wear a pair of shoes that you haven’t worn in a while. At the end of the day, ask yourself this, “did you fall in love with them all over again?” If so, by all means keep them! However, if you realized you haven’t been wearing them because they’re uncomfortable or don’t go with any of your outfits, it’s time to get rid of them TODAY. If you plan on donating or reselling clothes or shoes, never put them back in your closet. Set them aside so that you make it a priority to get them out the door!

Define Your Signature Style

When you define your signature style, you know exactly what to wear because you know what pieces of clothing represent your best self. When you are dressed as the best version of yourself, you radiate confidence.

Defining your signature style is not about incorporating the latest trends into your outfit. It’s about identifying what colors and silhouettes you feel best in. When you look and feel your best, the rest of the world sees this.

A great way to identify what colors and silhouettes look best on you without hiring a personal stylist is simple. Here’s something you can do today: head over to your Facebook profile pictures. These pictures were chosen by you as representation of how you want the world to see you, so it’s a good indicator on what outfits you feel confident in. Take a look at each picture and ask yourself which colors and style of clothes suit you best. Hint: it’s important to look past the trends. Just because something isn’t in style anymore doesn’t mean that the color doesn’t look amazing on you!

Open Room for Clarity and Positivity

By eliminating your wardrobe frustrations and curating your closet so that you only have pieces that best represent you, you’ve opened up space that was once taken up by negative thoughts. You’ve saved yourself from a frantic and chaotic morning! This is going to open room in your life for those moments of clarity. The less you are focused on the things that aren’t going right, the more you can focus on all that you can achieve. And when you live this mindset everyday, you know that your goals are achievable. When you have a positive and clear mindset, asking for a raise or moving to a brand new city is no longer as scary as it once was. You see the outcome in the most positive way, knowing that you are acting on this decision because it’s what serves you best, instead of focusing on all of the things that could go wrong.

In the time that you used to spend searching for something in your closet, take this newfound time for a positive thought or think about what you’re grateful for that morning. By regaining control over your morning through your closet, you are bringing in positivity, allowing yourself to focus your energy on achieving your desires.

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Style – The Huffington Post
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Fall 2015’s Most Versatile Trend Is the Suede Skirt: 17 Ways to Style It

The suede skirt might be our favorite part of the ’70s trend that’s swinging in for fall 2015. Whether done as a mini or midi, the luxe material (real or faux) has the ability to make any outfit instantly more fashionable. Style it with absolutely everything in your wardrobe from now until next summer, and plan frequent wears. Whether you’re headed to the office, out on a date, or hanging out on a Saturday, it’s a wardrobe winner.

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We Wore What

For crisp fall days, pair a midlength fringe skirt with a cream cable knit sweater.

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Fashion Me Now

Dress an A-line mini down with a striped T-shirt; add some flair with lace-up heels.

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Style Scrapbook

For the office, pair suede with a bright blazer and flats. If your workplace is more formal, do classic stilettos.

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Life of Boheme

Tuck a navy sweater into a belted midi skirt for fall.

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The August Diaries

Should Indian summer days hit your area, balance the heavier suede with a lightweight tank.

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A Constellation Journal

Go full-on retro with a ringer tee and lowtop sneakers.

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The Pearl Oyster

Mix textures by tucking a thin silk blouse into a button-front mini.

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Fashion Zen

Style a bold fringe style with a simple black sweater and basic accessories.

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Initials LA

Channel your inner Parisienne with a striped sailor tee atop a suede mini.

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The Northern Light

For colder days, style a gray midi with a chunky turtleneck sweater, leather jacket, and ankle boots.

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The Blonde Salad

Jump head-first into the fringe trend by doubling up; top your skirt with a fringed jacket in a contrasting color.

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Adenorah

Suede makes colors appear their absolute richest—take advantage with a multicolor patchwork style this season.

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Where Did U Get That

Make a neutral suede skirt weekend-casual by tucking in a slouchy cotton tee and slipping on sneakers.

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Getty Images

For a polished look, pair a high-waisted A-line style with a fitted top and heels.

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Penny Pincher Fashion

For a girly twist, counter the suede’s earthy tone with sweet pastels.

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Nette Nestea

On casual days, style a mini with a denim jacket and a bright oversize scarf.

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Collage Vintage

Our favorite throw-on-and-go styling tip? Tuck a chunky knit into the waistband of the skirt as you would a basic T-shirt.

Shop the trend below!

For More Fall Fashion:
14 Ways to Wear White Jeans in the Fall
50 New Denim Outfit Ideas
6 Fall Pieces to Buy Immediately

Speaking of fall fashion, watch Dance Moms star Maddie Ziegler dance the trends:



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18 Really Simple Ways To Make Today Better

On days when things seem a little dark, a change of perspective, a mantra or a loving reminder is sometimes all it takes to see a little light. Chocolate cake is helpful, too.

The hashtag #MakeLifeBetterIn3Words has been trending on Twitter lately, highlighting the fact that simple actions, thoughts and reframing can be all it takes to pull yourself out of a rut. We scoured a bunch of tweets and selected 18 inspirational three-word phrases that help those figurative rainclouds dissipate. Check out the words that make life better below, then share your own on Twitter or in the comments section. 

Also on HuffPost:

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

99 Cent Solutions: Easy Ways to Save Thousands of Dollars

99 Cent Solutions: Easy Ways to Save Thousands of Dollars


You don’t have to be rich to live well; now you can outfox the high cost of living the old-fashioned five-and-dime way. Don’t be tempted by all of those “new” products on the shelves; instead, rediscover the power of those time- honored, thrifty household items your grandparents and parents used. You’ll save a bundle with over 1,300 of these clever hints and tips: A Frisbee is a handy item to keep around the house and can be used as a portable pet dish, paint palette, and paper plate holder Hair spray is an inexpensive way to preserve flowers, remove pet hair from a couch, kill bugs, and stop static cling Cedar chips will drive fleas from a pet bed, keep snails at bay in your garden, and repel moths from your wool sweaters Furniture polish will spiff up hubcaps and bicycles, add shine to shower doors, and stop squeaky door hinges Glass cleaner will make your jewelry sparkle, relieve bee sting pain, dry out pimples, and shine patent leather shoes Aluminum foil makes a stunning wrap for a wedding gift, works effectively as a substitute for hair curlers in a pinch, and when placed under your ironing board cover will increase the efficiency of your iron An ice cream scoop can be used to measure the perfect amount of potting soil, shape butter into fancy shapes for a holiday dinner, and form perfect meatballs and cookies A pillowcase will dry lettuce in seconds, makes a cute summer dress for a child, covers a baby’s changing pad, and functions as a travel laundry bag Knitting needles make stylish hair accessories, can serve as kebab holders for a fun fruit snack, function in place of toothpicks to test a cake’s doneness, and can be used to protect your garden from invading critters

Price: $
Sold by Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

5 Ways to Show Your Appreciation to Your Partner (and Save Your Relationship in the Process)

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Appreciating your partner on a daily basis is a great way to protect your long-term relationship from any number of bummers: cooling off, infidelity, breakups, etc. There are no guarantees, of course: that’s just not the way life and love work. But doing your best to be good to the one you love — and to make them feel good, at least once a day — is a pretty good way to bolster long-term fidelity (however you define “fidelity” in your own personal relationship). Because, let’s face it, fidelity could use a little help these days.

Here are five ways to demonstrate your appreciation to your partner — in other words, this is how to remind your partner that you still notice them. Trust us, noticing goes a long way in a relationship.

1) Notice the Little Things
In the division of household labor, perhaps you always load and unload the dishwasher and your partner always does the laundry. Perhaps you mow the lawn and your partner cleans the bathrooms. But just because you have established a fair breakdown of chores that demonstrates the admirable equality in your relationship, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be grateful. So say thank you for these things. You can say, “Thank you for folding my clothes better than a Gap salesperson,” or you can say, “Thank you for always doing more than your share around the house,” or you can say, “Wow! The lawn looks amazing!” You get the idea. Those chores can become, well, a chore over the years, and everyone assumes that their partner doesn’t notice the jobs they do that are solely their responsibility. Make a point to notice this stuff.

2) Notice the Big Things
Sure, you can say, “Thank you for driving the kids to the bus today,” or “Wow, you must be tired after working all those extra hours this week.” But it’s also nice to go bigger picture sometimes, too. Think: “When I fell in love with you, I believed you’d make an amazing mom/dad. But I didn’t know quite how much you’d rock this role.” Or, “I know you’d rather be writing a screenplay/trying out for a reality TV show/doing CrossFit full-time, but I really appreciate you working for a sucky boss so we can, you know, eat and stuff.” Or, “You have no idea how it improves my mood each morning when you make that awesome pour-over coffee.” Or, “I don’t know how you attend so many kids’ birthday parties, you must be some kind of saint.”

3) Support Your Partner’s Passions
Speaking of that screenplay or that reality TV show or that CrossFit obsession: make time in your relationship to support your partner’s true passions. Many of us — most of us? — aren’t lucky enough to get paid to do what we really love, so do this for each other, instead.  Tell your partner, “Why don’t [fill in the blank: I take the kids/we skip church/you bag your house chores] on Sunday morning, so you can work on your novel/paint/scrapbook/paddle-board/ballroom-dance.” Giving your partner time to pursue these beloved hobbies shows that you still care about their happiness and satisfaction, and that you respect their talents and passions.

4) Compliment Your Partner
It’s simple, basic and old-school, but that doesn’t mean that anyone tires of being complimented on their looks, especially when they’re in a long-term relationship and are not getting that regular flirtatious feedback via the pickup scene. Try, “You look so beautiful this morning.” Or, “You’re hotter than when I met you.” Or, “I love the way your ass looks in those jeans.” And yes, this is a gender-neutral recommendation — men need to hear this stuff just as much as the ladies.

5) Date Your Partner
Life is hard, and life keeps you busy, especially when you’re married with kids. But life was hard and busy in its own way back when you were dating, and you still found time to do stuff and plan stuff then. Make a dinner reservation somewhere. Bring, yes, flowers. (It’s not a cliche if you never do it, right?) Dress up a bit when you go out together (that includes the dudes, too). Come up with new ideas/positions/toys to try out in bed. Send sexy texts. Send romantic texts. Read out loud to each other in bed (not necessarily erotica, though that’s cool, too). Discuss culture, politics and your hopes and dreams as well as day-to-day logistics. Make a five-year plan together, and a ten-year plan and a twenty-year plan. And make sure that these plans include big dreams and life goals as well as the practical stuff like saving for kids’ college educations. Most of all, though: ask your partner questions, and really listen to their answers. It’s called conversation. Remember it?

Want more appreciation tips?

10 Things to Say to Your Partner Instead of “I Love You”

photo via Pixabay

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4 Ways to Cuff Your Sleeves (in GIF Form!)

In this four part series, we’ll show you how to up the cool factor of everyday pieces with easy styling hacks. This week, we’re focusing on how to cuff the sleeves of a basic button-down shirt.

cuffiing-Sleeves-01
The Basic Cuff: Unbutton both buttons, roll cuff once to the wrist. Roll cuff again to the forearm. Repeat on other arm.

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The Stylish Cuff: Unbutton all cuff buttons. Fold the sleeve up, right above your elbow. Fold the sleeve up again, allowing some of the cuff to peek through. Repeat on other arm.

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The Let’s Get-to-Work Cuff: Fold up the sleeve so that it’s just below the crux of your arm. Push the rest of the sleeve up to your preferred height on the arm. Repeat on other arm.

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The Off-Duty Cuff: Unbutton both cuffs and loosely roll your sleeves a few times to the desired height on the forearm. Repeat on other arm.

Check back in next week when we tackle how to cuff your jeans!



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5 Easy Ways to Elevate Your “Mom Style”

Being a mom is hard work! We have a million and one things to worry about and honestly our style is often at the bottom of that list. Here are five ways to easily keep up with your style as an on-the-go mom!

Go To Summer Outfits
I’ll admit I hate the term “mom style,” but there are definitely go-to outfits in my closet for certain occasions. This post covers my must have looks for moms.
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Boots For Summer
I love wearing boots but summertime isn’t the best weather for them. That is until until you find the perfect peep-toe bootie for all seasons!
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Bathing Suits For Moms
If you’re a mom you know there’s a difference between the bathing suit you wear frolicking on the beach with your main squeeze, and the one you wear headed to the water park with a brood of children.
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How To Style A Vintage Scarf
I love almost anything vintage! Here’s how I style my favorite vintage scarves I’ve collected over the years.
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Style Your Hair Between Washes
Want to know a secret? I don’t wash my hair every day and neither should you! Try some of my tricks to styling between washes.
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Need a laugh? Watch these Momfessions:
My Two Year Old Is A Jerk
Sometimes I Hide From My Kids

BONUS Mom Posts:
I Cut My Toddlers Hair
I’m Not Like Other Moms

For more great content hop on over to The Chic Site now! You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram!
2015-08-07-1438972160-3263575-Signature.jpg Need a good read? Buy my books HERE!

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Style – The Huffington Post
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These Photos Show The Beautifully Unique Ways These People Express Their Gender

The world is certainly changing for queer people.

From more and more people being able to live as their authentic selves to ensuring rights for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community via legislation, the last few years have seen especially overwhelming progress in terms of the growing cultural awareness surrounding this community.

A new photography book from Bernd Ott and Emily Besa aims to capture this reality through photos and stories of over 36 individuals who identify at different points along the spectrum of gender identity. Called All The People, the book features individuals from the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Germany and the United States who all uniquely transcend traditional notions of gender.

“We hope that some will see that your identity is not defined by socially introduced categorizations,” Ott told The Huffington Post. “Once we can see categories as being arbitrary and meaningless, some may realize that we all share very similar fears and emotions and the same worries and feelings determine our existence. We actually share the same human experience despite what we look like, who we love, or how we love.”

Check out photos from All The People below, as well as an interview with Ott and Besa. All The People is also engaged in a Kickstarter campaign in order to fund its publication — head here for more information.

Head here to visit the All The People Kickstarter page. 

 

 

 

 

 

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10 Ways Gratitude Makes Your Life Better

It’s no accident that all of the major world religions employ some form of gratitude in their rituals. It’s simply because it makes our daily life better, even if you’re not religious nor spiritual.

Gratitude is the feeling of being thankful and showing appreciation for what is in our lives. And thankfulness and appreciation are a pathway to a life of happiness and well-being. When you pause and recognize all of the wonderful things in your life, you feel happier. Appreciation keeps us focused on what is already good in our lives, and opens up the doorway to more goodness to flow into our lives. Gratitude also equips us to handle setbacks and failures in a more resilient way. Science is producing mounting research that our lives are much better when we practice gratitude.

And indeed, gratitude does make your life better in the following ways…

1. You Feel More Satisfied
Not completely happy with your life? Gratitude is a lasting feeling that sustains you longer than other fleeting sensations. Grateful people are more satisfied with their lives because they focus more on what they do appreciate in their life. When you practice gratitude, you take time to appreciate the things that you’re thankful for in your life. And this means that you won’t be longing as much for what’s missing in your life, because you won’t pay as much attention to it.

2. You Motivate Others
When you say “thank you” to someone, they feel that you appreciate what you did for them, even if just a little bit. Saying “thank you” is therefore a powerful motivator for others to keep helping you again, because you are rewarding them with your appreciation. Have you ever noticed how it feels when someone doesn’t appreciate what you did for them? It makes you not want to help them again in the future because they don’t appreciate it. Small thank you’s go a long way, whether it’s a simple text message or a thoughtful email, you can never show someone enough gratitude.

3. You’re Happier
Grateful people are happier. They’re more in tune with what’s going well in their lives and focus more on the positive. When you actually count your blessings (I’m grateful for today’s beautiful weather, for my new shoes, for my close friends, etc) it puts you in a positive and uplifting mood. It’s very enjoyable to recognize the things that you might have been taking for granted, and to feel joy for having them in your life.

4. You’re More Resilient
Throughout your life you’ll experience many setbacks and failures. So having good coping skills is vital for us to have a thriving and successful life. When life knocks you down yet you still practice gratitude, you can humbly appreciate the temporary defeat as a learning lesson. When you’re faced with challenges, you can thank God or the Universe for giving you an opportunity to practice your patience and strength. When you’re grateful you focus more on the opportunities that failures give you, rather than its negative consequences.

5. You Deepen Your Social Ties
Gratitude has the power to deepen your social bonds and connections with others. When you live in a state of gratitude, you have better relationships with your peers. It also enhances your ability to form and nurture relationships, as your friends and family members experience the positive vibes of your appreciation for them and for life. Your energy changes when you’re grateful, and you go from being a “downer” to being a positive person. And this is very attractive to everyone else around and strengthens your relationships.

6. You Have Better Health
Gratitude has been linked to better physical health, as well as better sleep and reduced stress levels. You can live a much better life when you’re grateful because as you improve your relationship to the world, you feel better within your body. Grateful people take better care of themselves as they appreciate their health more.

7. You Increase Your Self-control
As David DeSteno says, “When you’re faced with a chal­lenging temptation in the moment, rather than solely trying to exert willpower, simply stop­ping and thinking of some­thing you’re grateful for should enhance your ability to make a wiser decision.” As life coach Peter Lambert says, gratitude gives you more patience and makes you less selfish.

8. Your Relationships Improves
When you’re more grateful and generous to the people who you care most about, your relationships improve. Not only will they feel more appreciated by you, but when they feel more appreciated and cared for, they’ll reflect positive feelings back towards you. As opposed to taking each other for granted, when you truly appreciate your significant other, your relationship becomes more magical again.

9. You’re Less Materialistic
When you appreciate what you already have, you realize that a bigger house or a new car are not the things that will really make you happier deep down. In fact, material things can actually feel sort of empty and meaningless. But when you’re thankful that you have a roof over your head and plenty of food to eat — something not everyone around the world has — you won’t be as tied to physical things anymore.

10. You Enrich Your Children
Research has shown that when you encourage gratitude in children, it has some remarkable effects. It turns out that kids who are grateful are happier, experience less volatile emotions, and feel that life has more meaning to them.

Gratitude is an emotion that’s worth cultivating as it will make your life better. You can start simply, by thinking of five things in your day today that you’re grateful for. There’s no doubt that we all want to be happy, have good relationships, and good health. The only thing you need to do to create more of these good things in your life, is to cultivate the gratitude within you.

Do you want to feel more grateful and happier in your life? A life coach will teach you how to practice gratitude and be happier. Click here to learn more about life coaching and how it can change your life. With an online personal life coach you can find your path in life, reach your goals, and be happier.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.




GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

Play It Cool: 13 Easy Ways to Keep Your Wedding Guests From Over-Heating When It’s Sweltering Outside

If you’re getting married in the next couple months and your venue is anywhere but Alaska, there’s a good chance it’s going to be hot, hot, hot, especially if you’re planning to be outdoors for…


All Weddings

Girl's Best Friend - SuperJeweler.com

18 Easy Ways to Wear Your Favorite Summer Prints

Wearing prints doesn’t have to be daunting. With a little bit of outfit inspiration, gingham, floral, and graphics prints can be just as easy to style as any solid colors you have in rotation this summer. Here are 18 ways to wear them, so now you have no excuse not to give them a try.

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BFA

Go for ’50s flair and pair a gingham midi skirt with a button-down shirt knotted at the waist, like Hannah Bronfman.

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A Pair & a Spare

A retro print is a whimsical way to make tailored shorts feel youthful. Team it up with a simple tank top and some neutral brown or tan accessories, like a fedora and cork heels.

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Tyler Joe

For the more daring dressers, reach for a bold, graphic print. With prints of this nature, seek a dress silhouette that is elegant in shape, like this waist-defining sundress. Try it with metallic shoes and a sleek black clutch to modernize the look.

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Dress Up for Armageddon

Why not go for a matching set, like this culotte-and-camisole number? The length and cut of these culottes makes the printed look seem more ladylike than a shorter matching bottom. Feel free to mix prints with a contrasting accessory, like this striped bag.

katie-sturino-12ish-style-3

Whether you’re headed to the office or drinks with friends, a micro print is just the thing your tailored shirtdress needs to pack a bit more punch. Grab a leather jacket and chunky sandals and you’re good to go!

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Corporate Catwalk

For the office, opt for a more monotone, abstract print. This midi skirt pairs perfectly with a white camisole and classic pumps. Not to mention that with a black-and-white look, it leaves room to mix in some brighter accessories.

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Luella & June

Date night may call for a sexier number, but that doesn’t have to mean a micro-mini! The cutout detail and waist-defining silhouette of this printed dress is certainly after-hours-approved. Style with simple accessories to keep all the attention on that cutout!

prints-what-the-chung

What the Chung

When hitting the beach, grab a printed caftan or cover-up to allow yourself to feel a little bit more festive. This polka-dot maxi is an easy poolside pairing for your favorite summer suit. Belt it or wear it loose and add some scrappy flats to finish off the look.

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Something Navy

Sure, we love a pair of blue jeans and a white tee, but sometimes we yearn for a little bit more pizzazz. Opting for a bright, printed blouse is an easy way to make an otherwise simple look more eye-catching.

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Getty Images

Every girl should have a printed dress to throw on and go for summer. For a piece that will take you from morning to night, we suggest a micro print in neutral tones.

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Merrick’s Art

Try a blousy printed silk T-shirt with a midi skirt for work. The proportions are perfection.

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Atlantic Pacific

A rule of thumb when mixing prints (or shopping for a piece with two prints, like this dress) is to make sure the prints are of similar color families, but different scales. Try a micro print with an oversize print to maximize the effect.

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The Blonde Salad

Try a sophisticated romper in printed silk. It has the ease of a sundress and the functionality of shorts. Pair with espadrilles.

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Cupcakes and Cashmere

Anchor a matching set with a denim jacket. It helps to prevent your print of choice from feeling too overwhelming.

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Damsel in Dior

With simple silhouettes, like a flowy silk midlength dress, look for a large yet understated pattern. With this much surface area, graphic prints in pretty pastels flatter best. Wear with neutral suede sandals, nothing too aggressive.

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Pursuit of Shoes

A sweet patterned top softens up edgier pieces. Try a half-tuck of your top and style with a black mini and ankle boots (it’s also a great look to transition to fall).

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Hello Fashion

A fun way to play with pattern this summer is to look for a dress with both a print and a texture. The design gives a colorful print interesting dimension.

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BFA

If you’re itching for a way to wear a large, bold pattern but still feel ladylike, look no further than the silk pencil-skirt-and-cami combo. Reach for a large-scale print with a neutral base color and tuck in a coordinating top.

For more summer outfit ideas:
13 Ways You Can Still Wear Denim on Hot Summer Days
4 Fun and Flirty Ways to Show Some Skin Without Baring It All
12 Summer Weekend Outfit Ideas for People Who Don’t Wear Shorts

Think you know your summer trends? Test your knowledge here:



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5 Ways to Have More Pleasurable Sex

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When we get sex ed as young people, we almost never get information about pleasure. Much of the early messaging we get is shame-based and only highlights the dangers of sex. We might be taught to avoid sexually transmissible infections and pregnancy, but we’re rarely taught how to discover and negotiate our pleasure.

As the pursuit of pleasure is the primary reason most of us have sex, here are five ways to have more of it in your sex life.

1. Use lube with condoms.

I have a public health background, so I’ve seen my fair share of condom demonstrations. It’s amazing to me that condom use is so often taught without mentioning lube.

Using lube with condoms makes them feel so much better. It’s night and day. A drop in the tip before it’s rolled on, plus a bit on the outside once it’s unfurled, can do wonders.

The lubricant that the condom comes with is just enough to keep the condom from drying out in transport — not enough for it to stay lubricated during intercourse. Add other variables like a wider penis, longer-than-average sex play, or medication that reduces vaginal lubrication, and lube becomes an even greater need.

Do yourself (and your genitals) a favor: if you’re using barriers of any sort, get a high-quality, latex-friendly lubricant.

2. Give the vagina time to tent.

When a vagina is getting aroused, the area around the cervix lengthens and widens creating a “tenting” effect. This allows the vagina to accommodate a penis or toy with more comfort and ease.

Key thing: It takes at least 10 minutes of foreplay for tenting to occur. You can’t rush it. For most women, this means clitoral stimulation happening in a context that is sexually exciting.

In my workshops, I’ve had many women ask me what to do when their male partners get immediately aroused but it takes for them longer to get there.

My answer? Communicate that foreplay is key for your enjoyment and make the foreplay mutual. Do things to each other that turn you both on, either in turns or at the same time. It’ll be so fun that no one will be looking at the clock.

3. Strengthen (and relax!) your pelvic floor.

Most of us know it’s important to do our Kegels — the exercises that strengthen our pelvic floor. A strong pelvic floor increases bladder control as we age, supports our posture, and – here comes the pleasure part – helps us have stronger orgasms. You can even get vaginal weights to upgrade your Kegel workout.

But here’s what often missing from how-to-do-your-Kegels articles: Relaxation is just as important as strengthening your pelvic floor. Muscles only build when they are at rest. It’s like how you can’t fix a car while it’s running.

If you’re practicing your Kegels, make sure to take deep breaths and fully relax those muscles after your workout.

Note: If you have pelvic pain, you should ask your healthcare provider before starting a pelvic floor workout regime.

4. Want to find the G-spot? Don’t give up on it after one go.

A lot of mainstream adult sex ed talks about the G-spot as though it’s a magic button that when pressed, transmits immediate waves of bliss. It doesn’t work this way for many folks. It may take a couple weeks of regular massage to wake up the area. And some people never find the G-spot super erotic (also totally normal).

Often, when people first go about finding the G-spot, they just felt like they have to pee. It makes sense — the G-spot is a nexus of tissues right in front of the bladder.

But some folks are determined and push past those initial need-to-pee feelings. Many of them empty their bladders beforehand and with time, they find that the area wakes up to pleasurable feelings.

Lesson: Take your time. Some things don’t happen over night.

5. People vary in what they like. Ask, “What would delight you?”

So many sex articles and books frame good sex as a combination lock; just get the right moves and it will magically unlock. But the reality is that humans vary widely in what they enjoy in bed.

What one person goes crazy for will feel weird and unpleasant to someone else.

If you want to upgrade your sex life, ask questions like, “What would delight you?” and “What would totally turn you on?” These questions can open lots of pleasurable possibilities.

Know your own answers to these questions, too. Part of what makes one a good lover is knowing what one likes and having the communication skills to articulate that to partners.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.



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The Incredible Ways Art Is Helping Charleston Unite After Church Massacre

Early last week, a few artists painted murals on the walls of a warehouse around a vacant lot in Charleston, South Carolina, preparing for a celebration intended to fill the neglected space with sunlight, art and joy.

Then they learned about the racist attack at Emanuel AME Church, a historic black institution, that killed nine residents of their city.

Reeling from shock and sorrow, leaders of the community arts nonprofit organizing the event had to decide whether to cancel festivities planned for the solstice. It was a clear choice, Enough Pie executive director Cathryn Zommer told The Huffington Post.

“We felt that more than ever, the community needed to come together,” Zommer said. They added a vigil with candle lighting, songs and prayer. Artists made changes to their pieces. On Saturday, people gathered for an experience that mixed joy with sorrow, surrounded by art.

enough pie vigil

Adam Chandler

In the week since the shootings, many other Charleston residents have expressed their emotions in powerful and creative ways, from thousands of people joining hands in a unity chain to making handmade signs honoring the victims.


“People use creativity to make sense of all of this. They use the arts to express these deep emotions of sorrow and pain and loss,” Zommer said. “The arts can do that. They can help us heal.”

From designers and dancers in Charleston’s tight-knit creative community to musicians who live hundreds of miles away, artists have addressed the killings. Their work, below, shows how art helps us survive and strengthen amid tragedy.

Artists used their craft to honor victims, and to grieve.

jia sung
Jia Sung

Jia Sung, a recent graduate of Rhode Island Institute of Design, said painting watercolors of each victim was her way of mourning.

It is primarily a process of grieving, trying to externalize the hurt. I didn’t know what else to do, really. Taking the time to do those portraits, and spend those moments of intimacy with each person was my own laying flowers. It was my own small gesture of tenderness in the face of violence.

They illustrated the muddied pain that follows tragedy, in the flood of grief, anger and glimmers of hope.

Charleston
Jake Reeves and Evan Lockhart/HuffPost

HuffPost created this artistic take to remind Charleston and beyond that #BlackLivesMatter.

Their work helped spread the victims’ names and stories far and wide.

slim clementa
Panhandle Slim

hurd slim
Panhandle Slim

ethel lance
Panhandle Slim

Scott “Panhandle Slim” Stanton has painted each of the nine victims, sharing snippets of their rich lives.

I started this series with Rev. Sen. Clementa Pinckney and ended with Ethel Lance. One preached the word from the pulpit of Emanuel AME church and he worked hard to keep his congregation’s soul clean. One worked in the Emanuel AME and she worked hard to keep the entire sanctuary clean and she preached the word too. What an amazing group of people these 9 people are.


Some turned to the past to find insight into the present.

mario
Mario Andres Robinson

Painter Mario Robinson is represented by a Charleston gallery and visits the city often. In 2010, he painted “Sixteen Broad Street,” a portrait of a boy he met in Charleston.

I told him I’d buy a rose if he would be kind enough to pose for a quick sketch. He agreed and after a few minutes, his eyes began to wander as potential patrons walked by us. I realized that he was counting the sales he was losing by posing for me. I reluctantly aborted the sketch and opted for a photograph. His demeanor sums up the entire experience. When I look at this portrait today, I wonder what his life is like as a young man. We are living in tumultuous times and there’s no guarantee that he will be treated as a harmless preteen, in search of a few extra dollars.


Children too young to understand the killings use art to help cope.


Before 7-year-old Madeleine made this drawing, she kept asking her mother questions, WCIV reported. “Why is the world full of broken people?” asked the girl, who lives in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.

Art gives solace to those who need it because they are old enough to understand.

umbrellas
Kris Manning

In Kris Manning’s “Our Unified Heart,” a bunch of nondescript white umbrellas become a silvery, sunlit heart. Manning created her public sculpture at the Unity Music and Arts festival, which she organized last weekend to support her music education nonprofit. They instead will donate funds to the victims’ fund.

“When the tears of our community are falling, we unite and together we create shelter from the storm with love,” Manning said.

Some illustrated the history of hatred that fed the killings.

avery
Mark Avery

Charleston artist Mark Avery’s illustration of protesters in Marion Square was infused with his city’s legacy of racial oppression.

Last night as I walked with my black brothers and sisters, we took over the streets that our ancestors built. Rattling the houses that our people built, our voices spoke power on the forever, “Holy City.” Activists from around the country came together at Marion Square to get our black people to unify and stand up for the black community in Charleston, and spoke nothing but facts about the psychological and systematic downfall of black people not only in Charleston, but around the nation. We are tired of forgiving these animals that kill our brothers, sisters, uncles, grandmas, aunts, grandpas, and even children. Here in Charleston, black people are the roots of the roots, so tell me who is, has, and still to the day, “taking over our land”? We need to really wake up and recondition our daily lives, until we do, our people will continue to perish on the land that we built, from the ground up.

Others took a closer look at the historic church, where the killings occurred.


In a moment when there is too much to feel and no words that seem right, poets have done justice to the unspeakable.

“Because I would rather hang a black cloth on a flag pole / than give the Confederate flag another glimpse of the sun,” Charleston poet Marcus Amaker writes in “Black Cloth.”

South Carolina poet laureate Marjory Wentworth wrote “Holy City” for Charleston’s Post and Courier. She reads it in a video for the BBC: “As bells in the spires call across the wounded Charleston sky, we close our eyes and listen to the same stillness ringing in our hearts, holding on to one another, like brothers, like sisters, because we know that wherever there is love, there is God.”

A dance performance demonstrates emotion, strength and collaboration.

dance
Adam Chandler

Charleston Characters Dance Co. member Megan Joanna Pue danced at Enough Pie’s solstice event with other women in her troupe.

dance 2
Adam Chandler

Some designers made simple graphics that resonated widely on social media, putting Charleston into the thoughts and timelines of people all over.

yallsome
Y’allsome

The night Craig Evans found out about the shooting, he couldn’t sleep. Feeling helpless, he created the “Charlestrong” image, posted it to social media and finally went to bed. He woke up to an onslaught of messages.

I have been contacted by so many people saying how much they loved it and even thanking me for capturing a certain sentiment. The craziest moment was when I received an email from one of the track teammates of Sharonda Coleman-Singleton (one of the victims) telling me how much it meant to her and said it had touched her. That blew me away and made me happy beyond belief. I truly can’t believe my little design had such a huge impact on people.

Evan’s company, Y’allsome, is selling shirts and posters with the design. Profit will go to the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund.

buff ross
Buff Ross

When Charleston designer Buff Ross saw that his image had begun to spread on Facebook, he made a poster-sized version that included a link to donate to the victims and the church, free for anyone to use.

Our streets here famously flood as our alluvial geographic nature continually pulls us back into the swampy miasma of our history. The flooding is something we all share and contend with here in Charleston. However on this brutally hot and dry morning the city felt flooded with tears. At least that was how I processed it and envisioned the image. … I truly believe that one of the unintended but beautiful consequences of social media is its power for collective grieving.

Others around the country called for change with songs and symbols.



Milwaukee musician Peter Mulvey wrote a song pleading for South Carolina to remove its Confederate flag and asked friends to make their own version. Dozens have since recorded it, including Ani DeFranco, who pays tribute to victim Tywanza Sanders.

Many local artists, struggling with the same grief as fellow Charleston residents, are making work specifically for their city.

oh no not us
Sully Sullivan

Charleston artist Tim Hussey’s mural-turned-memorial is vibrant and colorful, but intended to address “hidden class and race struggle in the city.”

“We all know there is a huge gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ here, but have no idea how to address it without having to move out of our comfort zone and leave the ‘celebration’ of everyday Charleston,” Hussey said. “Well, it’s not a celebration for everyone.”

After the killings, Hussey added the silhouette of a man with nine tears to the piece, entitled “Oh No Not Us.” He collaged notes from a nearby church’s old ledger to emphasize “the personal and humanness of this tragedy.”

Musicians and artists are using their work to inspire generosity in others.

allison williamson
Anne Darby Parker

Gallery Robert Lange Studios is organizing a silent auction that has received 100 donations so far, including Anne Darby Parker’s “Unity of Nine.”

Earlier this week, a few thousand people attended a sold-out music benefit put on by Charleston’s Pour House. The 25 bands that played helped raise more than $ 30,000 for Emanuel AME and the victims.



#chsmusicheals

A photo posted by Charleston Pour House (@chspourhouse) on

On makeshift canvases, people in Charleston have revealed hopeful visions of the future.


I love you! #charlestonstrong #charlestonlove #charleston

A photo posted by Sara York Grimshaw (@sygdesigns) on


One Love One Charleston #CharlestonStrong #Charleston #ExploreCharleston #Folly #FollyBeach #FollyBoat

A photo posted by The Folly Beach Boat (@thefollyboat) on



#CharlestonStrong

A photo posted by @kengallagher81 on



#charlestonshooting #charleston #southcarolina #bentnotbroken #prayforcharleston #alllivesmatter

A photo posted by Christine Pettigrew (@pettigrew4fun) on

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Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

Artistic offerings are just one way Charleston has rejected the hate that spurred a man to kill nine churchgoers who had been kind to him.

The actions of many in Charleston echo the Rev. Clementa Pinckney’s call in April to “resurrect and revive love, compassion and tenderness.” Pinckney was among those slain.

Enough Pie’s Zommer knew Pinckney through the interfaith group Contemplative Alliance. She choked up as she called Pinckney a “sacred activist of the highest order.”

“We’re trying to move forward with the recognition that love is really what does unite us, and we find that creativity is an incredible way of showing love for this world and for life,” Zommer said. “Reverend Pinckney says it best when he says, ‘Only love can conquer hate.'”


#holycityheartproject #charlestonstrong

A photo posted by Stu&Drew (@stuanddrew) on

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The Hidden Ways Dior and Chanel Inspired Minnie Mouse

Minnie Mouse has been having a major fashion moment as of late, but when you look back through Disney‘s history you realize…she’s pretty much always been having a moment. Vans is the latest to immortalize her as a fashion icon, including the fabulous little rodent in its special Disney capsule collection, released earlier this summer. But long before the world had ever heard of a fashion collaboration, Minnie was brushing elbows with some of the style world’s biggest names.

minnie-mouse-1937

Minnie and friends in 1937

The iconic polka-dot skirt? It was inspired by Coco Chanel‘s designs from the 1920s. Twenty years later, her original outfit became a touch more voluminous due to Christian Dior‘s infamous New Look (the same postwar runway styling that influenced women’s wardrobes around the globe). And while you’d be forgiven for identifying the pillbox hat exclusively with Jackie Kennedy., Minnie can lay some claim to it too.

“She’s always evolved through the decades. Like in the ’30s, her pillbox hat with the daisy was such an icon that women’s hats started to reduce in size significantly,” Soo Koo, a vice president within Disney’s Consumer Products division, told Glamour. “The character has really aligned itself with fashion.”

Shoppers and fashion-observers might have noticed the recent spate of Minnie-connected offerings (like Lauren Conrad for Kohl’s and Dazed‘s high-fashion photo shoot), but don’t be confused: =The character has been in this game for a long time.

minnie-mouse-shoes

A look at the process from Vans’ recent collaboration with Disney.

“She’s one of our most universally recognized characters,” Koo said. “We’ve been collaborating with designers for the past 10 years, from Comme des Garçons to a high-end Italian furniture designer. Lanvin even did a dress for Minnie to celebrate her 20th anniversary in the parks in Paris.”

The Vans connection itself might have fresh stock to offer, but it’s a relationship that’s familiar to Minnie and friends.

“We have a relationship that dates back to the [Vans founder] Van Doren days, which began in the late ’60s, early ’70s,” explained Vans’ head designer Rian Pozzebon. “Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Winnie the Pooh were actually featured on Vans footwear back in the ’80s, so when we worked with the Disney group [this time], it felt right to blend their classics with our classics.”

disney-vans-minnie-mouse

The Vans team deconstructing Minnie’s signature shoes.

More Disney News:
Reese Witherspoon Will Star as Tinkerbell!
The Very First Picture from the Future Live-Action Beauty and the Beast
15 Celebrities You Forgot Were in Disney Movies





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6 Ways to Get More Love in Your Life

The Beatles said it best: “Love is all you need.” But do you feel you have enough love in your personal life? According to a 2010 survey by the Fetzer Institute, 68 percent of Americans say they need more meaningful love in their lives and 95 percent believe that we need more love in the world.

Since love is one of the most basic human emotions, how can it be that so many of us find it lacking in our lives? We see the word “love” used everywhere these days in advertising for material goods like hamburgers, cars, shoes, eyeglasses and cosmetics. But the genuine love that so many of us long for in our lives involves so much more than the excitement we feel over our favorite footwear.

True love is a powerful, creative force that can inspire humans to write symphonies, trek for months on foot, build a massive mausoleum, and make superhuman sacrifices. But love also leaves us feeling vulnerable and opens us up to possible rejection. Love requires courage, patience and effort, which are difficult to maintain in our fast-paced, superficial society.

While many of us are searching for romantic love, remember that true love comes in many different forms and circumstances. Getting more love in your life requires more than dating tips; you’ll have to work at it and make some inner changes to find love that has deeper meaning. Here are some steps you can take to help you cultivate true love:

# 1. Love Yourself First

Before you can share love with others you have to feel it within yourself. That means you need to find practices and routines that help you genuinely love who you are, just as you are right now.

Try taking yourself on a “date” once a week and spend time alone, doing something you thoroughly enjoy. For example:

  • Linger with a latte and a good book at your favorite coffee shop

  • Take a walk in nature

  • Visit an art gallery or museum that inspires you

  • Attend a concert

  • Watch a video about love

As you spend this time with yourself, focus your intention on truly loving YOU and filling yourself up with positive feelings and energy. The more you concentrate on loving yourself the more you will radiate positive feelings of love toward others and attract their love in return.

#2. Recognize Your Barriers to Love

The Sufi poet and philosopher Rumi wrote: “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

Whether you realize it or not, you may have barriers hidden within you that prevent you from giving and receiving love. Perhaps you have been hurt or betrayed by a past relationship or you fear being vulnerable to other people.

Spend some time in contemplation and write in your journal about your past experiences with love and how you feel about giving yourself over to love. Once you identify your own internal barriers to love you will be able to heal your wounds from the past and rise above them. This is an important step if you want to deepen your ability to genuinely love others.

#3 Practice the Lovingkindness Blessing

This Buddhist blessing (also called “Metta”) can be a powerful reminder to love yourself and others if you use it as a daily practice. Here are the five phrases of the blessing:

  • May I be at peace.

  • May my heart remain open.

  • May I realize the beauty of my own true nature.

  • May I be healed.

  • May I be a source of healing for this world.

Repeat this blessing every day as part of your daily practice and you will begin to feel your heart expanding with compassion for yourself and others. Next change the “I” in each phrase to “you” and use the blessing to send love to someone else.

#4. Give For the Sake of Giving

One of the best ways to bring more love into your life is to give your time and energy to others who need your help. Volunteer at an animal shelter, Head Start program, homeless shelter, or nursing home and you will find ample opportunities to share your love with others who need to be loved.

When you give of yourself with no expectation of return, you will find that you are blessed in many ways and love will begin flowing through you freely. You will begin to attract others into your life who can appreciate your loving and generous behavior.

#5. Open Your Heart

The HeartMath Institute teaches a simple method for opening your heart to love called the Inner Ease Technique. Use this practice as part of your daily routine (along with the Lovingkindness Blessing) and you will soon be able to overcome the barriers to love you have identified. Here are the steps:

  • Place your hand on your heart area and imagine you are breathing in and out through your heart.

  • Breathe slowly and gently until your breathing feels smooth and balanced, not forced.

  • With each breath draw in a feeling of inner-ease, balance and self-love into your heart.

You can do this practice in any place at any time to reduce anxiety and open yourself up to others.

#6. Find Love In Every Situation

As you open your heart to love and expand your capacity to express love for yourself and others, you will begin to see love everywhere you go. Then love can become your “default mechanism” so that you will choose love whenever you are in a situation of doubt or uncertainty.

For example, if a conflict arises with coworkers or a friend, choose the solution that contains the most love. If you face a crisis and must decide on your next steps, let love be your guide. When you need to give feedback to another person, be motivated by love rather than anger.

As you practice embodying love in your life in various ways, you will discover that you have always had all the love you need — you just couldn’t see it before. When you become a walking, talking vision of love you will become irresistible to other people who will be drawn to you by your beautiful presence.

The entire world will benefit from the love you put into practice, as you radiate love out to others and create more happiness and joy wherever you go. The love the world needs is right there inside you — now, go find it!

About the Author: Dr. Karen Wyatt is a hospice and family physician and the author of the award-winning book “What Really Matters: 7 Lessons for Living from the Stories of the Dying.” She is a frequent keynote speaker and radio show guest whose profound teachings have helped many find their way through the difficult times of life. Learn more about her work at karenwyattmd.com.

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Aisle Style: 39 Inspired Ways to Decorate Your Wedding Ceremony Space

Before they see you at the top of the aisle, your wedding guests will get a first impression of your wedding based on the ceremony space. Is it flower-filled, bright, and bountiful, or is it…




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13 Ways to Wear Long Shorts and Still Be Stylish

Every summer the inclination to reach for a pair of cutoffs seems to arise, leaving longer, Bermuda-type lengths relegated to the “trends we’re not interested in trying” pile. This season, though, something has changed. Longer shorts have taken brands like J.Crew by storm, urging women to step out of their comfort zone and find new ways to work the trend. Need some inspiration? Take a cue from the style playbook of the any of the following ladies—there are more stylish possibilities than you think.

long-bermuda-shorts-damsel-in-dior

Damsel in Dior

A pair of tailored Bermuda shorts makes for the perfect summertime office outfit base. Tuck in a crisp shirt, add high heels, and accessorize with a chunky statement necklace.

long-bermuda-shorts-thank-fifi

Thank Fifi

Don’t be afraid to mix and match prints. Stripes on stripes in similar hues but in varying widths is a good place to start. If you’re feeling more ambitious prints, keep accessories as neutral and classic as possible.

long-bermuda-shorts-pandora-sykes

Pandora Sykes

Transform an old pair of skinny jeans into knee-length shorts that are on the tighter side. Balance the fit with an oversize button-down and flats to create a chic weekend look.

long-bermuda-shorts-human-again

Human Again

Get bold in brightly colored shorts. After all: If not summer, then when? Loose silhouettes read as more modern than a tighter pair of Bermudas.

long-bermuda-shorts-emerson-fry

Emerson Fry

It’s all about the pantsuit for work these days, but when the weather is super hot, go with a shorts version instead. The style is equal parts youthful and fresh.

long-bermuda-shorts-fashion-guitar

The Fashion Guitar

A pair of slouchier shorts instantly feels more chic if cut in a classic pattern like stripes. Take it one step further and style yours with a white top for optimal tailored appeal.

long-bermuda-shorts-babble

Babble

Polish up a T-shirt and distressed-denim pairing with a classic blazer. Styling trick: Cuffing the hems of the shorts will lend a pulled-together touch.

long-bermuda-shorts-awed-by-monica

Awed by Monica

Traditional suiting feels new again when shorts are teamed with a sleeveless vest.

long-bermuda-shorts-camille-over-the-rainbow

Camille Over the Rainbow

An athletic drawstring pair becomes party-ready when styled appropriately—think mixed with a sharp blazer, pumps, and an oversize clutch.

long-bermuda-shorts-we-wore-what

We Wore What

Long shorts are date-night-approved too. Match a high-waisted pair with a crop top and stilettos for an unexpectedly sexy summer evening look.

long-bermuda-shorts-song-of-style

Song of Style

Go the monochromatic route in an all-white look. Tailored wide-leg shorts and a clean cotton T-shirt should cover you from a summer Friday at the office to weekend brunch with friends!

long-bermuda-shorts-this-time-tomorrow

This Time Tomorrow

Floaty shorts are a great alternative to below-the-knee-length skirts. Find a pair you love in a bold, summery pattern and keep the rest of the look simple to ensure your shorts are the star of the show.

long-bermuda-shorts-two-for-the-show

Two for the Show

Channel your inner schoolboy with a slim—but not tight—pair. Fully immerse yourself in the collegiate-inspired look by slipping into a varsity sweater and finishing with a cross-body bag.

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6 Ways to Improve Your Career as an Artist in the Music Industry

I was walking down the aisle of our local grocery store focused heavily on the items on the shelves on either side while my wife strolled a few paces behind looking at our shopping list. My cell phone rang a familiar ring tone of a close industry friend. “Patrick, I need you to call this number when we hang up. Are you sitting down?”, he asked. I replied, “No. I’m in the grocery store.” He continued to share that Spencer would have a shot at being in a feature film if we could work out the logistics on short notice. Of course my jaw dropped as I tried to pantomime what I was hearing to my wife who was perplexed why I was stalling our evening excursion to talk on the phone. I held my phone out so she should see who was on the line and she waited for me to hang up so I could explain why I had a look of shock on my face. “I have to call the director of a film that starts shooting this coming weekend in Baton Rouge because they requested Spencer to have a cameo and perform one of the singles off his album. I have to call them now.”

My wife had an equal stunned look on her face as she watched me dial. “Aren’t you going to tell Spencer first?” I shook my head and simply replied, “Um, no.”

There it was. A two minute phone call and a 7-day notice to arrange a 15-hour drive to Baton Rouge to appear in a film. We didn’t even know the potential pay for such a thing, but learned it wasn’t bad for a day’s work. But the opportunity, exposure and networking this would create for Spencer was all worth the time and investment to do it.

The longer I am in the ocean called the music industry, the more I’m learning about the moving tides, the sharks, undercurrents, and the opportunities to catch a wave versus the stagnant areas of a lagoon or oxbow. I’ve watched artists get pulled under, swimming too fast and too far away from shore only to not have the energy or ability to make it back. I’ve seen those who are content to build castles by the water’s edge or splash around in the knee-deep tide pools near shore. I’ve also witnessed the giant luxury liners in deep waters who represent the major stars in the industry who have enough money to have a full crew navigate them through the choppy waves to connect with many shorelines throughout their career. As far as metaphors go, sorry to be so funny, but the music industry is simply a sink or swim reality. You have to keep moving either under your own power or using some device or vessel to assist you if you want to remain in the water.

The phone call was nothing I was mapping out or planning to pursue for Spencer. But when the call came, we had to be ready to adjust our current plans to ride a wave that may carry him somewhere beyond his current area of the ocean. Subconsciously, an artist should be prepared to do this. That leads to my first tip to improving your career as an artist.

2015-06-22-1435016086-5703047-puzzlePieces.jpg

1) Practice Being A Contortionist
The difficulty of many artist’s lives is the most valuable resource you have, which is time. Many artists are chained to a regular job or some other life circumstance that makes it difficult to respond when opportunity presents itself. Being extremely flexible (contorting) is not meaning to never commit to anything in hopes of something better, but it’s more about knowing your goals so clearly that when the right opportunity presents itself, you are able to rearrange your life to accommodate. The more you network and meet people along your journey, the more likely one or more of them will call on you someday to participate in an opportunity they refer or have for you. Be prepared to respond to a sudden wave that presents itself.

2) Become A Mind Reader
If you are fully aware of your target fan base, you’ll be more able to focus your energies to meeting their wants and needs. Even though the artistic and creative side of music sometimes causes an artist to remain inward focused, the reality is that without your fan base, you are creating for an audience of one. Take time to connect with your fans through social media, live events, or arrange meet and greets when you can. Unfortunately, knowing who listens to your music isn’t the only goal of knowing your audience. The word KNOWING requires interaction, and that is where your personality and the human side of you can trigger a deeper connection. Taylor Swift is infamous because of how hard she has worked and continues to make personal connections with her fans. That process takes time and in the end it will build a stronger loyalty for your music and artistry.

3) Define Your Makeup
I’m not talking eye shadow here. I had a conversation with a 20 year music industry A&R veteran who shared a great piece of wisdom. He explained that an artist is both creative and entrepreneurial in their makeup. Some are more of an artist than entrepreneur and visa versa. So if you had to make a pie chart of your split, what would that look like? For example, if you find yourself enjoying creating music but also enjoy babysitting your cash flows, then you may have a 50/50 split. Some are 80 percent artist, only 20 percent entrepreneur. The essence of defining this has everything to do with how you spend your time most effectively. If you are more artistic driven, then you will need a team of support around you to handle the business on your behalf. This will mean you are likely going to rely on others to make sure your cash flows are happening. But the trade off is that while you are immersed in your world of creating, you’re paying others out of your income flow to handle the business. If you’re more like a 60/40 split, then that means you’ll have to allocate more time to watching the business side of your career and less time in the studio creating. It’s a very simple formula, but once you’ve been doing your career a while, it is likely an epiphany that could really help you. A great example is if you find yourself more driven as a creative artist split, then you’ll likely want to cozy up to a record label to handle everything else. This seems obvious, but many artists that do this end up regretting the bank balance down the line because the label’s is significantly more than their own. But when you take on the indie artist route so you can keep more of your pot of gold, then you also are the one having to finance everything. So either side has it’s benefits and unfortunate negatives.

4) Develop Your Role As A Politician
As much as you may not like politics, it’s real and not going anywhere. Every business that has any financial upside has politics. It’s naive to take on the attitude that you can avoid it, because either your own team or the people involved in a new opportunity are going to have a myriad of personalities to navigate. I’ve learned the hard way that the words I use in phone conversations, emails, or even texting can help or seriously hinder a relationship. How you interact with industry people, including fellow artists and managers, can seriously impact the path to reaching your goals. It’s a people-centric industry where relationships dictate everything. Knowing how to adjust your expectations and communication role to appeal to the audience you’re in front of (whether on stage or off) can seriously affect your future if you don’t practice flowing with the current that you’re around. There’s a time to go upstream in your career, but that’s usually after you’re well-established and have enough relationships to cash-in on your chosen position.

5) Become A Sprinter
There seems to always be a season of a music journey where the ground beneath you starts to shake and shift. It’s in those times you need to quickly move to solid ground to avoid losing what you’ve built. Usually this involves carefully defining those monuments and stable things around you that aren’t necessarily going anywhere. For Spencer, it has been his faith in God, his family and a few industry peers who have been through the same journey or on the journey with him. Having the ability to quickly rely on those stable places when your career or life are being jolted by circumstances, is essential. A lot of artists become jaded and isolate themselves or burn bridges so much that when troubled times happen, they have nowhere to run. Sometimes the stable people they thought they had, end up not being so stable. Or sometimes they relied too heavily on others to handle their career and when those people are no longer involved, they don’t know what to do. Perhaps the one stable person is you. You are absolutely able to control your own choices even when circumstances may seem that you have no choice. Every choice just has a consequence you have to live with, good or bad. Running quickly to a stable place can often times avoid disaster because you steered clear of certain doom.

6) Beware Of Getting Hooked
While I’m in the midst of a trivial “ocean” metaphor, why not discuss fishing. Most artists, at one time or another, are tempted by amazing lures that many industry related people throw in the water nearby. Some industry types use very attractive bait to gain your attention and it’s very easy to get excited about what is dangling in front of you. First off, the bait has a hook. It always does. As I’ve experienced, you’ll get tempted by bait hundreds of times when you’re starting out. Sometimes it’s logical to take a bite and see what happens. However, the majority of the time you’ll get reeled in… be taken into a place completely out of your environment… and, sadly, get examined for a while and then thrown back in the water. Just like a fisherman, you go to the water with a bucket full of bait and keep fishing until you find the big catch you’re looking for. These industry people are fishing 24/7 and will catch and throw back many artists before they decide to keep a few. As a potential fish, just keep in mind that you should be particular about shiny objects trolling your water and equally be aware that if you decide to put yourself in a new and larger body of water, the bait gets more sophisticated.

While there’s never an immediate knowing of how a decision can impact your career, the longer you’re in the business, the more you learn about how to navigate choices toward hopeful results.

Spencer showed up on the movie set and within 24 hours of hearing the director declare a wrap on the scene and day of filming, Spencer was lying in his bed back at home. The picture of a music career is more of a puzzle being assembled where the shape and quantity of pieces lying in your view over time aren’t always understood at first glance, but as they are assembled, it becomes more obvious how they all interconnect.

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6 Ways to Honor Dad on the Big Day

Calling all Father of the Bride fans! Planning a wedding? Don’t send dad running wildly for the hot dog buns.

Just in time for Father’s Day (which also happens to fall right in the middle of wedding season), here are a few ideas for honoring Dad on the big day. No need to stick to tradition – there are countless ways to include the father figure in your life that don’t include walking you down the aisle.

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A Special Note in the Program
Including a sweet note to your dad in the wedding program will not only give him a precious memory he can physically hold onto, but it’s a great way to honor him on the big day. That special, public shout-out will give him some widespread recognition for the role he has played and the ways in which he has influenced you.

Father-Daughter Photos
It is common for couples to do first look photos before the wedding, so why not do a quick series of pre-ceremony photos with your dad? You can share some sweet one on one time together before you walk down the aisle and the photos will help you remember those precious moments forever. Pop a favorite photo in a frame for a great future Father’s Day gift!

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Image courtesy of Julie Whitlock Photography via Pinterest

Share a Secret Toast
Those final moments before the wedding can be nerve-wracking. An intimate toast with just your dad is a great way to calm your nerves before the ceremony begins and the festivities whisk you away.

Have Dad Officiate
The wedding officiant is such a meaningful role – why not give the honor to your dad? Having dad, or your future father-in-law, perform your wedding ceremony will surely make for an emotional and memorable day for all!

Invite Dad to do a Reading
If you’d prefer to have a rabbi, priest, minister or other loved one officiate, but still want your father involved in the ceremony, invite him do a reading. It can be a poem, a scripture, something he wrote or even a passage from a favorite childhood book. Your dad will still feel included without having to take on the responsibility of getting ordained and officiating.

Keep his Memory Close
Dad can’t be with you for the big day? Keep his memory close by tying a miniature framed photo to your bouquet, mentioning him in the program or playing his favorite song on the dance floor.

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Image courtesy of Alisha + Brook Photography via Pinterest

At the end of the day your dad (or the special father-figure in your life) wants the best for you and just seeing you glowing and happy throughout your big day, is enough to melt his heart.

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5 Ways to Prevent Last-Minute Skin Woes

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5 Ways to Prevent Last-Minute Skin Woes

If something has to go wrong at your wedding, let it be the best man’s toast—not a spotty complexion that will live on forever in photographs. Dermatologist David McDaniel has a few suggestions for staying picture-perfect in the home stretch.
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7 Ways to Carve Out Time to Meditate

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Photo: Pond5

By Alex Orlov for Life by DailyBurn

Establishing a meditation routine can be difficult. You’re busy! Who has time to breathe, let alone sit and breathe? But if you think the only way you’ll learn how to meditate is with a 25-hour day, think again.

Plenty of busy people are making time for meditation. Media guru Arianna Huffington makes it a part of her morning routine. Rapper 50 Cent uses meditation to help him remain positive when faced with negative personalities. And Jerry Seinfeld won’t let anything get between him and his meditation time — he allegedly takes time between TV shoots to get zen.

Cultivating Calm, On Your Time

“I have a really chaotic schedule so I do it whenever I can,” says Dan Harris, a correspondent for ABC News and the author of the New York Times bestseller 10% Happier. “I don’t freak out if I can’t fit it in but I do think it’s important to do something every day.” Harris has been meditating ever since he experienced a panic attack on air nearly a decade ago.

He credits meditation with helping him control knee-jerk reactions to frustrating situations. Thanks to improved patience, Harris says he’s a better listener and is able to hold shorter, more fruitful meetings. Meditation, he says, is “fighting a lifetime pattern of letting your thoughts lead you by the nose.”

Dina Kaplan, founder of The Path, a weekly meditation seminar in New York City, says meditation allows her to have more “mental agility” during her day. She’s much more calm when faced with stress, and feels as though she makes better decisions. And science confirms these benefits: Your brain will actually change if you stick with meditation, just as your body changes when you exercise regularly. You’ll be rewarded with improved memory and other cognitive benefits.

“Don’t put the pressure on yourself that you have to do it forever,” Harris says. It’s okay if you fall off the wagon for a few weeks, so long as you muster the grit to return to your practice. The power of meditation, he says, is derived from practicing daily. Watch the video below for a short meditation exercise from Happify, featuring Harris and Sharon Salzberg, a meditation teacher and author.

So what’s the secret to actually making time for meditation? We asked Harris, Kaplan and David Ngo, a behavioral designer at Stanford University and behavior consultant for The Path, for their best tips on how to actually create a meditation habit.

7 Ways to Start Meditating Today

1. Type it into your phone cal.
Instead of simply hoping you’ll be able to squeeze in meditation on the fly, try setting aside a specific time for it. “If I carve out time to [meditate], that’s the space for my practice to go,” says Ngo. When you create that space, the habit can grow. But rather than thinking of meditation as another item on your to-do list, think of it as a gift to yourself, says Kaplan.

2. Do it in the morning.
“If you’re starting out and you’re struggling with developing the habit, I do think you should do it first thing [in the morning]” says Kaplan. She meditates right after she brushes her teeth. By doing it right away, she has no excuse. Especially for parents with young kids, doing it before the day gets underway is your best bet for fitting in some “me time,” she says. Kaplan recommends not setting your goals too high in the beginning. “If you can do five minutes, that’s better than nothing.”

3. Start with one breath.
Don’t underestimate the power of small behaviors. By focusing on taking one conscious breath when you have a spare moment, you can pave the way for creating a meditation habit. Ngo says this philosophy comes from BJ Fogg, Ph.D., behavioral scientist and founder of Stanford’s Persuasive Technology Lab, who pioneered the idea of creating tiny habits. For example, to create a habit of tidying up at home, you might start by making your bed each morning. A tiny habit should be a behavior that requires little effort and can be performed in less than 30 seconds. “That seed of the habit can then grow into a full-blow tree,” says Ngo.

4. Perform meditation after an existing habit.
After you get into your car for your daily commute, try meditating for a few breaths instead of racing to turn on the ignition. Or quiet your mind after you go to the bathroom at work. “The pattern is always after,” says Ngo. “This is called anchoring.” Ngo recommends choosing a daily occurrence or existing activity to remind yourself to meditate.

5. Use headphones.
As a TV correspondent, Harris has a packed schedule that involves a fair amount of travel. “People think you have to sit in some position, but that isn’t true,” he says. “There are four ways to do it: walking, standing, sitting or lying down.” No matter how busy life gets, Harris tries to fit in 30 minutes of meditation each day. His secret weapon? Headphones. He puts on a pair to cancel noise when he meditates in airports and on planes. “As long as you’re somewhere that’s reasonably quiet, you’re good,” says Harris. (And if you’re lying down and you fall asleep, that’s okay, he says.)

6. Siphon time from superfluous activities.
Think about it: Do you really need to hit “reply all” to every email that hits your inbox? “I would have considered myself busy at my last job, but it was just an excuse to procrastinate from what was really important,” says Kaplan. As a successful start-up founder and Emmy award-winning producer, Kaplan says she was writing redundant emails and taking meetings that were unnecessary. “If you’re answering emails you don’t really need to respond to, that would give you 15 minutes,” she says. With that extra time, she suggests finding a quiet park bench to relax, or even sneaking into a hotel lobby for a few minutes.

7. Practice mindfulness when you’ve got time to kill.
Resist the urge to scroll through Instagram the moment your friend or dinner date heads to the bathroom. “I think it’s very healthy to have all sorts of moments in the day where you’re just being,” says Kaplan. It’s tempting to use our phones as entertainment during those “black spaces” during the day, but Kaplan recommends pausing and just letting the moment happen instead of gluing yourself to your Facebook feed. Look around, smile at other people and enjoy some momentary calm. While it’s not the same as doing a seated meditation, being fully present during these small moments can help you feel more comfortable confronting the thoughts rattling around in your mind.

More from Life by DailyBurn:
4 Science-Backed Ways to Motivate Yourself to Work Out
9 Simple Tricks to Eat More Mindfully — Starting Now
6 Signs That You’re Exhausted (Not Just Tired)

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3 Uncommon Ways to Maintain Your Real Focus

2015-06-05-1433514790-4550924-AlmaArtePhotography.jpgPerfectly healthy young people have been taking themselves to doctors, worried that their forgetfulness is a sign of Alzheimer’s, according to a report last month about doctors in Australia who are studying the phenomenon. But for most of us, growing forgetfulness is little more than a natural reaction to information overload.

Our brains are simply not wired to process the vast amount of information and choices we are exposed to these days–and the impossible effort to do so can lead to indecisiveness, bad decisions and stress, according to Lucy Jo Palladino, Ph.D., a psychologist and author of Find Your Focus Zone.

Information overload can also tempt us to tune out or simply slide across the surface of life — like a water strider on a pond, robbed of the pleasure of a place to land. So what genuinely helps people navigate this Information Age (which, perhaps not coincidentally, has also been called the Age of Anxiety?)

There are lots of suggestions out there in publications such as, Fast Company, Forbes and Aeon. Many discuss the dangers of email and multitasking and the value of daydreaming, taking breaks, going for walks, writing things down, and doing the most important things first. Daniel Goleman also recently wrote about the topic in Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence, in which he explores the benefits of mindfulness meditation, focused preparation and recovery, positive emotions and connections, and mental “prosthetics.”

As someone who has an insatiable desire to know and do everything, I’ve also come to find three insights particularly helpful. Rather than concrete actions, they serve more as mindsets or perspectives to take on all that is available to us now — and stay centered on what truly matters to us as individuals.

What’s new is not (necessarily) important. In a recent interview on Krista Tippett’s podcast, On Being, Maria Popova, the creator of Brain Pickings, observed that the way information comes to us today via the Internet constantly reinforces the idea that what is new is what is important and valuable. But this, of course, is not true. Much of what is delivered up as new is neither important nor valuable. To the contrary, it can be a great distraction from what is meaningful — which is often old, timeless, contained in books, in music, in art, and in the hearts and souls of human beings who need only the expanse of quiet, leisure, stillness, and each other to bring their wisdom to life. Put another way: It helps to remember that trying to keep up with what is new is not necessarily what’s most likely to make you happy, healthy, or successful.

Sensitivity to other people’s expectations can spin you in circles. Being overly influenced by other people’s expectations can make us vulnerable to being reactive instead of deliberate; and those of us who are sensitive to other people’s expectations need to figure out how to manage that. When I was growing up, for example, my father on more than one occasion became furious at me for reading a book rather than volunteering to help around the house. While he clearly did not remember what it was like to be a kid or enjoy himself, his reaction had an impact on me. And to this day, I need to remind myself to be conscious of my motivations before I act so I do not unconsciously relinquish the reins of my life to the helter-skelter whims of others.

Focusing on what makes you feel like you is the best guide there is. Like most writers, I have spent a lot of time living a dual existence: “professional” by day, and “writer” by any early or late hour I have to myself. I am fortunate that I am adept at my professional work, I enjoy it, and I find it meaningful. But when I think it is me, instead of what I do, I tend to lose my focus–and, often, lots of things start to go wrong. But when I am know that I am a writer first–because that is where I feel most fully me–I make smarter decisions, my energy flows more smoothly, and things tend to go better in my working life, my writing life, and my personal life. I can look at the information that comes my way and not feel overly reactive and spun about by distractions because I am acting from what I can only describe as the core of my being.

In short, it comes down to those familiar words: Know yourself — and then trust yourself. It is as simple and remarkable as that.

(This post appeared in an earlier version at http://lisabennett.org/blog/ Photo credit: AlmaArte Photography.)

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9 Ways to Smell Amazing This Summer

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Getting Unstuck : 3 Simple Ways to Get Back in the Groove

Has this ever happened to you?

You’re cruising. Business is good and the days fly by. You’re accomplishing a lot. In fact, getting stuff done is almost effortless! Life is satisfying and fulfilling.

You’re physically strong, energized and healthy. Your relationships are solid and secure. Life feels joyous. You’re happy and in the flow.

Then, all of a sudden, something happens and kapow! Everything comes to a screeching halt.

Maybe you get physically sick and can’t get out of bed for two weeks. Maybe you lose a major client and it sends you into a tailspin. But suddenly, you’re out of the flow. Now life feels hard.

Where did that energy, that desire, the vibrancy go?

From the vantage point of this new lackluster place, your former “productive” self feels like a dream.

If this sounds familiar, it’s because we can ALL relate.

Similar scenarios occur on and off throughout our lives in both small and huge ways. Maybe it’s a day of feeling off your game, maybe it’s six months.

I used to think, “when this issue is gone, it’ll be smooth sailing from here on out.” But then one day I realized, NO. Life is always providing challenges for us to overcome and some of those are curveballs.

The question is, how do we get back into the game?

Here are Three Ways I’ve Learned to Get Out of the Funk and Back in the Flow:

1. Stop Judging
Part of what happens when I slip out of my groove is that I judge myself. Suddenly I feel less productive, less energetic, and a lot more apathetic.

When I judge that place, and make it wrong, it becomes much harder to move through it. However, if I can accept and acknowledge what it is — just a moment rather than a weakness – I’m more easily able to step out of it.

2. Ease Back In
Think about yourself like a car. Very few can go from 0 to 60 mph instantaneously. We have to regain that speed over time. Ask yourself, what’s the first thing I can do to resume my regular schedule?

If you typically run two miles a day, can you start with one or perhaps even a half a mile?

If you normally make 20 calls a day, how about starting with five or maybe even ten?

3. Recognize It For What It Is: Temporary
What we’re experiencing is simply a reset. All of us want to be going strong 24/7 but the reality is we can’t. Sometimes we need breaks.

So ask yourself, What does self-care look like?

Is it a late evening walk, a relaxing bath, a quiet chat, uplifting music?

Incorporate self-care and small ways to relax into your regular life. By scheduling these, you’ll likely be able to maintain your groove longer and more easily without getting blindsided.

And even when you do need a timeout — remember that it’s temporary and necessary.

Life is full of ups and downs. It’s just that most of us like the ups more than the downs. But when we remember that it’s all part of the journey, we can accept those down times and embrace them for what they are — a reminder to go slower, a reset or some time to stop and think.

When you find yourself in a down cycle, be gentle and see if incorporating more self-care will enable you to move through them a bit more quickly. Most importantly, remember that what you’re feeling is what we all feel and is part of the human experience.

Shakti Sutriasa is the Founder of DecideDifferently.com, offering life coaching, counseling and workshops that combine modern psychology and spirituality. Shakti is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, and has an MA in Education. To learn more Click Here

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10 Ways To Spot A Wedding Crasher

By Ivy Jacobson and Jeff Wilser for TheKnot.com

Not to blow your mind or anything, but “Wedding Crashers” will be 10 years old this year! Even so, the movie has been inspiring and empowering crashers for almost a decade, which is why these tips for how to pick uninvited guests out of the crowd are more useful than ever.

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The wedding crasher is dancing with your grandma.
He’ll dance with an elderly guest — whose memory may be a little foggy, so she might assume he’s a family friend — and this will have the twin effects of: a) scoring instant credibility; b) looking charming in front of all the bridesmaids. Don’t trust this guy.

The wedding crasher’s stories keep changing.
The go-to crasher trick: If he’s talking to someone from the groom’s side, he’ll say that he knows the bride; if he’s talking to the bride’s side, he’ll say that he knows the groom. It can be sneaky and effective — unless the bride and groom confront him together. Checkmate.

The wedding crasher’s personality is larger-than-life.
The go-to crasher trick: The ultimate Vince Vaughn/Owen Wilson-driven crasher fantasy is to bro-hug the groom, dance with the bride, catch the garter and then give a rousing speech (with a side of liquid courage). And you know as well as we do that at 99.9 percent of weddings, people you barely know don’t really act like that. So if someone does, keep your guard up.

More from The Knot: 10 Lipsticks Perfect For a Summer Wedding

The wedding crasher came in late or pushed through the receiving line.
Crashers make their entrance at one of two times: a) boldly jumping into the receiving line, where people are too distracted to say anything; or b) joining the reception after the speeches, when the party becomes a free-for-all. Keep on alert.

The wedding crasher is a great faker.
The Crasher will have a premade alibi like, “I went to high school with Larry,” and then back it up with, “You know, Laarrry, that craaazzzy ol’ such-and-such!” and then good-naturedly clasp your shoulder, coasting on his charisma.

More from The Knot: How to Seat Your Wedding Reception Guests

The wedding crasher is never sitting down.
Something you just can’t fake are seating arrangements and escort cards, so if the wedding has assigned seats, the jig is up. Unless, of course, he just never sits down. Time for dinner? He’s in the bathroom, at the bar — anywhere but at a table.

The wedding crasher seems to be dodging the wedding planner.
Your planner knows that guest list by heart and knows how to spot a crasher too, so you can expect them to not be hovering by anyone in charge.

The wedding crasher says he’s a fifth cousin.
Not many couples invite such extended family members (unless it’s a gigantic wedding). So chances are, he’s probably not Philipo, the groom’s fifth cousin who’s been trout fishing in Alaska for the past few years.

The wedding crasher wasn’t at the ceremony.
The crasher’s here for the party, and there’s no chance that he wasted time at your ceremony. (No offense!) So ask him questions about the actual ceremony, like, “Did you see the blimp that passed by overhead? So cool, right?” An actual guest would be confused; a crasher would play along, saying how much he loved the blimp.

The wedding crasher is a really good dancer.
What’s the point of going to a wedding if you’re not dancing, drinking and eating? Now imagine spending all of your weekends at weddings (that’s what crashers do). You’re going to pick up a few moves — and you’re not going to be shy about jumping on the dance floor when you hear “Sexy and I Know It.” Remember, it takes a certain confidence to crash a wedding, after all.

More from The Knot:
7 Dos and Don’ts For an Adults-Only Wedding
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5 Easy Ways to Become More Empowered

Caitlyn took the Internet by storm earlier this week, setting herself apart from men, women and other celebrities with facades, simply by copping up to who she really is and always has been. Oh- and that’s Caitlyn with a “C”, not a “K”. Sorry not sorry, Kris? I think we have an empowered woman on our hands and I couldn’t be more delighted!

The Vanity Fair teaser released on Monday gets me all sorts of excited and emotional. Caitlyn Jenner — the former Bruce Jenner — describes her transformation as finally becoming free. Feeling free and embracing your true self is all I can hope for- for anyone. It is a freedom worth fighting for. When you give yourself the space to love who you authentically are, you are able to live your life wholeheartedly.

Jenner compares her Vanity Fair cover shoot with winning the gold medal in the 1976 Olympics: “That was a good day, but the last couple of days are better… This shoot was about my life and who I am as a person.” Who would think that celebrating your own realness could feel better than becoming a world-class champ?

Well I’m all for it! And anyone can allow themselves that sort of satisfaction and independence because we all have the power to become the best versions of ourselves. So here are a few easy steps to take toward your own journey of accepting and loving who you really are as an individual and finding your personal sense of freedom:

1. F**k what people think of you
Understand that when people judge or criticize you, they are saying more about themselves then they are about you. I advise you to listen to what others say, but consider deeply — is this about you or them? Sometimes criticism can be helpful and beneficial for you. Other times, it may be directed toward you but not about you, so leave the purposeless stuff behind.

2. Don’t let society define you
This has to do with what’s expected of you. Courageous individuals and groups are breaking down the old-school compartments and labels, and have been for decades. Women were expected to be homemakers, men have to be the major ‘breadwinners’, same sex marriages aren’t acceptable, and more. Those ancient-minded ‘faux pas’ are becoming the new normal if they’re not already. You must do what brings YOU fulfillment.

3. Observe your intuition and inner thoughts
The only way to find yourself is to pay attention to what goes on in your own mind. As mentioned before, we are shaped by what we’ve learned throughout life. Make the differentiation between what you truly desire and what you’ve been conditioned to accept.

4. What makes you happy?
Write it down, make a list, keep a journal… but answer the question! And the second part to the question is: What are you passionate about? The answer to these two questions will be what drives you. Bring these interests, ideas and beliefs into your world.

5. The “golden rule”
Treat others as you want to be treated. Taking others’ into consideration will shed light on who you are as well. As mentioned in item 1: judgments and criticisms are usually about the person doing the judging or criticizing. We can also self-reflect in our generous acts as well, such as choosing one act of kindness over another because you can relate to it. Before you direct any sort of energy – positive or negative -toward someone else, find out where the motivation comes from within yourself. As you gain more awareness of yourself and how you act toward others, you will find the root of where your intentions come from; therefore, getting to know your true self.

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
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‘Every Last Child,’ or Ways to Mistrust America

Thankfully, we have documentaries, such as Every Last Child, to open a window on what’s going on in the world, beyond Kardashians and Cait Jenner. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any nastier out there, here’s a movie about the drive to eradicate polio in Pakistan, home to the planet’s most cases — and lo, the Taliban issues a ban against the vaccination program, gunning down health workers.

Admittedly grim, the film is compelling because documentarian Tom Roberts, a sophisticated craftsman, plays the story for suspense: Will the medical personnel striving to stamp out polio succeed in the face of the Taliban’s murderous opposition? Roberts infuses his account with human interest by focusing on the dramas of several individuals affected by Pakistan’s current polio crisis. And, in infiltrating Karachi’s gathering places — at what feels like considerable risk — Roberts really gets the story’s full dimensions by presenting the side of the anti-vaccinators.

Everyone has their reasons, as Renoir has famously remarked. And though the Taliban’s actions are beyond despicable, in this film, their muddled reasons become somewhat understandable. Not only do they implicate America in this health crisis — they bring into sharp focus the double-edged role and image of this country across the world.

The human interest stories Roberts teases out spotlight the daily travails of a badly crippled beggar, struck by polio in childhood and painfully navigating the streets on a hand-wheeled bike (by film’s end, mercifully, he receives a new motorized one), a devastated father whose toddler gets fitted for leg braces, and a family struggling to come to terms with two women relatives who were shot by the Taliban for distributing drops to immunize the country’s children.

At the center of the crisis is a medical specialist from the World Health Organization, confounded at finding himself in the crosshairs of politics, bloodshed and misinformation designed to frighten the masses (such as Taliban propaganda labeling the vaccine a sinister conspiracy by the West that could cause, among other afflictions, impotence).

Child gives human contours to a country little understood in the West. The words of Habib Mehsud, the crippled beggar reflecting on his fate could be something out of Tolstoy in his Christian phase.

And lenser Ali Faisal Zaidi hauntingly captures dusty playing fields, colorful fabrics, watery byways and the beautiful faces of the country’s at-risk children. In its portrait of human forbearance Child resembles The Salt of the Earth, a must-see doc, currently in theaters, about the great humanist photographer Sebastaio Salgado.

The most illuminating takeaway from Child, however, might be the suspicion in many quarters of anything with an American or a Western imprimatur, even a vaccine to prevent polio. As one Pakistani remarks in a café: How can you trust a country that one moment dispenses medicine, and the next kills our people with drones?

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Researchers Determine the Three Ways to Well-Being

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As far as psychology theories go, University of Rochester’s Richard Ryan and Edward Deci’s Self-Determination Theory is one of the biggest out there. The theory has been used to analysis situations as diverse as the happiness of lawyers1, classroom environments2, and the training of sales-people3.

This is serious science, with hundreds of researchers using the Self-Determination Theory as the foundation of their own work, and thousands of studies backing the theory. Ryan and Deci’s foundational paper4 received an astounding 13191 citations, making it the Gangnam Style of motivational psychology, albeit with less dancing.

Getting down to the theory itself: the Self-Determination Theory is a wide-ranging theory that explains motivation, personality and well-being. The theory proposes that in order to live a good life, you must fulfill certain innate psychological needs that provide the foundations for motivation and well-being.4 These needs are not learned inclinations but fundamental parts of human nature.5

Specifically, the theory identifies three needs which underlies human goals and behaviors:6

1) The need for Autonomy: Autonomy is as a sense of willingness and choice in your actions. Note that this does not mean independence from others.

2) The need for Competence: Competence is defined as a need to effectively manage and control yourself and your environment.

3) The need for Social Relatedness: Social relatedness is defined as a need to be understood, appreciated by, connected to, relate to and care for others.

Thus, if you wondering about how to live better, Ryan and Deci would recommend setting and attaining goals that are conducive to the satisfaction of the needs for autonomy, competence and social relatedness.

Comparisons can be drawn between the Self-Determination Theory and Ryff’s model of Psychological Well-Being. Both are largely in agreement about the contents of well-being. However, Ryff uses her six categories to define well-being while Ryan and Deci posits that autonomy, competence and social relatedness are ways to achieve well-being.

The Science

These three fundamental needs predicts multiple positive outcomes. Daily changes of emotional well-being have been shown to be caused by daily fulfillment of the three basic needs.7 Increase in well-being due to the fulfillment of needs has been found in diverse contexts, such as nursing homes8 and at workplaces.9

Other studies found that the theory applies across cultures, in countries such as Bulgaria10 and Turkey.11 A study which included college students in the U.S., Australia, Mexico, Venezuela, the Philippines, Malaysia, China, and Japan found that perceived need satisfaction predicted well-being to a similar extent across all cultures.12

Balance is Better

While each fundamental need has been found to individually predict well-being,13 it is better to fulfill the three needs in a balanced way. Research shows that people with balanced need-fulfillment have higher well-being compared to those who have the same total fulfillment score but are skewed towards a particular need.14

This suggests that all three basic needs need to be fulfilled in order to achieve optimal well-being.

David is a Research Editor at The Huffington Post. This article is the second in an article-series about the Science behind Well-being. For more, visit David’s website, Living Meanings.

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Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

5 Ways Mindfulness Can Put The Spark Back In Your Relationship

Think of your marriage like a bank account: pay into it often with acts of kindness and generosity and it’ll help your relationship no end. High50 wellbeing coach Alex Blossom explains how.

Relationship problems come in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes it might feel as though the spark has gone. It might be that you are going through a stage where you feel irritable and frustrated or you could be feeling neglected or hurt in some way.

Whatever the problem, mindfulness can help you to get through the most tricky of times. These five mindful relationship fixes will help you get back on track.

1. Learn To Listen

Really taking time to listen to your partner can make all the difference. Take time to be genuinely interested in what they have to say. It is so easy to get caught up in our own little world, we can become consumed by our own thoughts and feelings.

When we learn to listen we find out things that we didn’t know, even when we have been together for a long time. By turning our attention outwards, we clear a little bit of head space and make some room for our partner.

2. Just Be

It is so easy to slip into trying to change our partners, wishing that they were different. We can hear ourselves nagging: we don’t want to do it, but sometimes holding our tongue can seem impossible.

Before you jump in and criticize your partner always, take a few deep breaths. Really think about what you will achieve by making a comment. When you next sit down for a meal together try listing five things that you love about each other.

The conversation this creates will get you thinking and feeling more positively.

3. Feel

Touch is a really important sensation, but so often we lose the closeness that we had in the early days of our relationship.

Rather than cuddling up to each other we become protective of our space, bickering over sides of the bed. Rather than taking time to kiss each other when we say goodbye in the morning our minds are perhaps already at work dealing with a situation.

So take the time to really feel next time you and your partner have physical contact. Notice the sensation of warmth and contact and enjoy the closeness, even if only for a moment.

4. Be Compassionate

If your partner is going through a tough time then put yourself in their shoes. Imagine how things are for them. Think about what you would want in their situation: it will make a huge difference.

When you learn to look at things from their perspective you can gain a real understanding of their behavior. When you get to grips with what is going on for your partner everything will seem easier. So many relationship problems stem from a lack of understanding.

5. Invest

Think of your relationship like a bank account. Making withdrawals all the time will leave you in deficit and things can start to look bleak. Paying in more often with acts of kindness and generosity will leave you feeling positive and secure.

Giving to your partner really can make you happy. While your attention is on seeking out an opportunity for kindness it is not consumed by worrying thoughts. You will be free to get on and enjoy life.

Alex Blossom offers mindfulness and wellbeing coaching through private sessions and day retreats. Revitalisedays.co.uk

Related Articles From High50

Can Mindfulness Improve Your Sex Life?

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24 Years Married: Here Are 14 Tips On How To Make A Grown-Up Relationship Last

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6 Ways to Shift Your Mindset to a Whole New Level

Have you ever felt frustrated or discouraged in your life or career? Does it seem like everyone else is moving faster toward their goals and dream life and with more ease than you are?
Sure you have had some success, but every time you have a win, backwards you go again. You’re probably thinking what is going on here? Why do I struggle so much?

And the answer is simple: Your belief system and subconscious mind needs reprogramming.

Your belief system is stored in the subconscious mind, created from childhood moments where you were taught someone else’s beliefs, or where you decided that this was the way your life is going to be. This programming runs in the background most of the time. Your conscious adult mind is competing with it, constantly!

So now you know why, when you want to bring something into your life that does not already exist in it, your body and mind get distracted, fearful, start comparing and self-sabotaging. Emotions come up or negative mind chatter takes over and you get stuck in a loop of your old programming like: I am not enough, Life is difficult, I will never find my soul mate, I am always in debt, I have to be perfect etc.

This subconscious programming does not want you to leave your comfort zone and it will do anything to make sure you stay there. It will sabotage your creativity, energy and even your health.

If you want to move past this programming so you can finally have the life and business you truly desire, you’ll have to face up to these old beliefs and start making some changes.

Here are six things you can do, right now to empower yourself and move closer to the life you deserve:

1. Allow, Don’t Judge
This isn’t just about judging your thoughts, this is about allowing them. What we resist persists. When you allow yourself to observe your thoughts, you create a space to manifest something that does not already exist. Allowing opens up the flow and creativity of new possibilities.

2. Ask Questions
We have been conditioned to not ask questions. For many, asking questions is a sign of weakness, embarrassing, wrong or it means you are a failure. Asking yourself the right questions instead of judging, opens up a space for you to receive new information that you may not have considered or allowed previously. Ask: What is possible here? What is good about this? What do I not know that I need to know to make this work beneficially in my life? How does it get any better than this?

The answers may not come immediately, and that’s okay. The point is you offered something different for your mind to focus on. What you ask, you shall receive.

3. Write It Down
Write down all the secrets about you that you do not want to reveal to anyone, not even yourself. This exercise will shine a light on everything that is in the way of your progress and will lessen its hold on you, allowing you to receive more of what you do want.

4. Visualize What You Want
Use visualization to see your worries and concerns, allow them to unfold in your mind’s eye without judgment. Thank them for showing you what is really going on.

Now ask your worries and concerns to bow out. You no longer need them. You got this!

Then play a new scene out in your mind of the success and life you desire. The subconscious mind doesn’t know the difference between real and imagined, which is why this works.

5. Use Your Energy
Now this may seem a bit different, but you’ve probably heard the phrase, everything is energy, and that’s because it is. Here’s how to use that to your advantage: Using your hands, mind and words, pull the energy of what you want towards you.

Ask whatever it is you want in your life to come play with you. Look at this as a playful experiment!

If you are new to this, start with something small like butterflies or a particular book. Then use this for manifesting things that matter like: money, clients or happiness! Use your imagination and watch what happens.

6. Value Yourself
No one can ever value you more than you can. Make yourself and your life a priority. Set aside designated times to do something to propel yourself forward in life and create what you deserve and desire.

Commit to five days a week until it becomes a habit.

Only you will really know what needs to change, and only you can make those changes. In order to design and create something different, you have to do something different.

Make this self-discovery journey a fun adventure. Imagine you are digging for hidden treasure, the treasures within.

You may want to start with just one of these exercises and master it before adding a new one. These practices will build your confidence and chip away at the old patterns holding you back.
Be consistent and persistent. Everything takes time to manifest. Just as art or sculptures take time to bring into existence, the same is true with your life creations. Stick with it ’till your art piece is finished.

When you clear the programming and beliefs deep inside your mind, your life starts to flow with more joy and ease. Less effort will be required, as the struggle with yourself is gone. More opportunities are revealed, as there is no longer any limiting program in your way. You see them and grab them! Problems are solved right away, because you naturally become solution-oriented and more creative.

So now you are strong, confident inside and out, in your life or career.

About the Author: Terry Dika Volchoff is a Progressive Neural Resolution Therapist (PNRT) and Conscious Bars® Practitioner (CB®P) who has struggled with her own past programming and limitations. Having found permanent resolutions thru PNRT and CB®, she knows that all of life’s limitations can be resolved. She works passionately with people who are ready to up their game and break free of their past programming.

Terry Dika Volchoff,
Certified, Progressive Neural Resolution Therapy (PNRT)
Practitioner, Access Consciousness Bars® (ACB®)
www.interiorfreedomdesigner.com
www.facebook.com/interiorfreedomdesigner
ifuthinkucan.win@gmail.com
Phone: 905-979-7323

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GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
Special News Bulletin-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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