Val Kilmer Steps Out with His Lookalike Son After Being Cast in the Top Gun Sequel

Val Kilmer is returning to the big screen in the upcoming Top Gun sequel, but all the attention this week was on his 23-year-old son, actor Jack Kilmer.

The Heat star, 58, stepped out with Jack at a private screening of his son’s new film Carte Blanche. The duo, who share an uncanny likeness, posed for pictures together alongside the film’s director, Eva Dolezalova at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel on Thursday.

The film tells the story of a young actor who is suddenly launched into stardom as the lead in a major movie franchise. “Attending a high-profile Hollywood function, he comes across a mysterious man from his past, which begins his downward spiral as he is pushed to the brink of his sanity,” Dolezalova explained in the film’s tagline.

Meanwhile, Kilmer will return as hotshot fighter pilot Iceman in Top Gun: Maverick alongside his costar in the original, Tom Cruise, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed.

Kilmer’s comeback role in the film follows what has been a mysterious Hollywood hiatus for the actor.

Eva Dolezalova, Jack Kilmer and Val Kilmer.

His health issues first became apparent in January 2015, when a spokesperson told PEOPLE that he was rushed to the hospital “for a possible tumor.” Soon after, he took to Facebook to deny having a tumor, saying only that he “had a complication.”

After denying the illness for years, Kilmer finally opened up about his cancer recovery to The Hollywood Reporter in December 2017 in an interview alongside his children with his ex-wife Joanne Whalley: Mercedes, 26, and Jack, 22.

The article revealed that the actor’s two-year fight with throat cancer had “taken its toll” on the family and noted that Kilmer had undergone a procedure on his trachea which made his voice raspy and left him short of breath.

Kilmer credited his Christian Scientist faith in helping with his recovery and has undergone chemotherapy, according to THR.

Top Gun: Maverick is scheduled for release on July 12, 2019.


PEOPLE.com

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Small Steps Lead to Big Change

After Rosario Santillan of Ontario, California suffered an accidental injury that made physical movement challenging, she began gaining weight. As her feelings of sadness and frustration increased, so did the numbers on the scale and her blood pressure. To make matters worse, her doctor diagnosed her with prediabetes.

Santillan wanted to take charge of her health. As her injury improved, she began taking free Zumba classes offered at the Dorothy A. Quesada Community Center. The center is one of five health hubs created in Ontario as part of a Kaiser Permanente initiative designed to make healthy choices more accessible to individuals and families in areas of need.

Rosario Santillan working outDoing regular workouts and connecting with others soon inspired Santillan to take advantage of the center’s free gym and nutrition classes. “I feel so much better – I’ve lost over 67 pounds,” said Santillan proudly after finishing a Zumba class she now teaches. “I have normal blood pressure without medication, wonderful new friends and I’m not prediabetic or depressed anymore.”

Santillan’s positive experience showed her firsthand how small steps can lead to big change, and how social support helps encourage success. The concept is one the city of Ontario knows well. In 2007, it launched Healthy Ontario – a long-term initiative that strives to make Ontario a model for healthy communities by improving physical, social, environmental and economic health and well-being – one action at a time.

To help support Ontario’s ongoing efforts, the city of Ontario and Kaiser Permanente Southern California began partnering in 2012 to engage residents and local organizations to create meaningful change through the Ontario HEAL Zone initiative. Neighborhood residents as well as representatives of the city and local school districts, community clinics, businesses and higher education collectively identified priorities to focus on together.

Kaiser Permanente’s Healthy Eating Active Living (or HEAL) initiative is one of the many ways Kaiser Permanente goes beyond traditional health care to help improve health outcomes for everyone in the areas Kaiser Permanente serves.

“Communities are vital settings that create the conditions of health, as well as feature the non-medical resources that promote wellbeing and prevent disease,” said Roberta Tinajero, manager, community benefit, Kaiser Permanente Southern California. “We know excellent medical care alone isn’t sufficient to create good health, and we must collaborate with others to develop health-promoting physical, social and economic environments.”

Children gardening.Ontario receives a major boost

Over the past six years, the city of Ontario, Kaiser Permanente, and other public, private and nonprofit, community-based organizations have worked diligently together to put $ 2 million in Kaiser Permanente HEAL grant funding to good use. From making street routes safer and offering free exercise classes and health education assistance through the health hubs, to improving parks and developing a national award-winning, 2.5-acre urban garden, the city continues to progress toward its Healthy Ontario goal.

In fact, the California Strategic Growth Council recently awarded the city a $ 35 million Transformative Climate Communities grant that targets the HEAL Zone. The funding will enhance public transportation, bike lanes and sidewalks, build affordable homes, promote energy efficiency, increase food security and provide new green spaces to improve residents’ health and quality of life.

“The changes in the HEAL Zone community are noticeable – the health hubs are bustling, the residents are more involved,” said Karen Thompson, associate planner, city of Ontario, who is also the city’s HEAL Zone lead. “We’ve built trust and deep relationships in the community. The funding from the state will allow us to take what we’ve done in the HEAL Zone and expand it.”

“The city laid the foundation for a Healthy Ontario, but Kaiser Permanente’s partnership certainly helped us get the $ 35 million grant,” said Ontario Mayor Paul Leon. “Kaiser Permanente didn’t just give Ontario a lot of money and walk away: They listened to us and engaged.”

Because of everyone’s good work to help create a healthier Ontario, residents like Santillan are reaping the benefits. Today, Santillan helps other community members through the HEAL Zone effort as a promotora, providing free basic health education to fellow Hispanic/Latino community members.

“Change takes time – it’s a shift in thinking,” said Santillan. “But the results are so worth it.”

To learn more about Kaiser Permanente Southern California community health programs, visit http://community.kp.org.

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NEW PARENT ESSENTIAL UPDATE:

How to get your legs summer ready in 7 simple steps

Because they are essential to any summer look

OK, so it’s now warm enough for us to forgo tights and opt for shorter hemlines if we so desire, but there’s a big issue that comes with this new freedom. Legs that have seen better days. You see it isn’t just bears and small rodents that go into hibernation over the winter months, so to do regular tans and strict hair-removal regimes. What’s needed is an easy step-by-step of how to get legs summer-ready. Luckily, that’s exactly what we’ve created here for you.

With the help of leg-expert Kate Shapland, creator of Legology – the beauty brand created as a high performance solution to cellulite and heavy legs – we’ve come up with the simple way to ensure that you won’t get caught out on sunny days this summer.

Step 1: Body Scrub

Sanctuary Spa Salt Scrub, £13 Boots

prep legs for summer

 

‘Skin which has been covered for months doesn’t look its best,’ Shapland explains. ‘Legs are usually a bit dry and dull, and even if you’ve religiously exfoliated and moisturised throughout winter, the expanse of bare skin from ankle to knee can demand an extra dollop of confidence to pull off.’ And so the first step is to buff away any dead skin. Not only will this create a clean, smooth surface, it will help boost circulation and get rid of any dullness. Dullness comes because dead skin can’t reflect light, do you want to get rid asap. ‘You need a power buffer – something super-crunchy that will send a rush of nutrient-rich blood to the skin’s surface to give it tone and colour, and plants plenty of suppleness back in there.’ You can beat Sanctuary Spa’s Salt Scrub, but we also love Espa’s Invigorating Salt Scrub, £38. If you don’t think either of these are for you, you could choose the best body scrub for your skin type.

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Step 2: Dry Body Brush

Mio The Body Brush, £14.5o Cult Beauty

prep legs for summer

 

 

This is one of those things that we, as beauty editors, repeatedly tell people to do because the benefits are phenomenal. But this is also one of those things, that in all honesty not many people can be arsed to do. However, we are going to preach about it again in the hope that this time you will take note and segue it into your routine. In a recent BBC documentary, The Truth About…Looking Good, it was revealed that the best way to treat and get rid of cellulite is dry body brushing. Brushing from the ankles upwards in the direction of the heart in quick, swift motions boosts circulation and helps lymphatic drainage. Trapped fluid emphasizes cellulite and makes legs feel heavy, but by brushing twice a day you decrease fluid retention and toxins are drained away. This Mio Body Brush has additional nodules, which help to massage on a deeper level.

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Step 3: Moisturiser

Kiehl’s Creme de Corps, £18.50 John Lewis

prep legs for summer Kiehls

 

If you want supple and smooth legs, you have to moisturise and you have to do it on the reg. This is not a step you want to skip. Nothing will leave legs in a better condition that super duper hydrated skin. Shapland recommends steering clear of oils, because not only do they sit on top of skin and don’t sink in as well as a moisturiser, but they’re also unflattering. ‘It’s the shine – the only acceptable area for sheen on your legs is a line down the shins because it helps make this area look longer and narrower.  All over shine gives you barrel legs in the same way that gloss volumises a lip.’ Kiehl’s Creme de Corps is a cult classic. It’s been around for years and it just does the job so well. It also sinks in quickly, so you don’t have to wait around for long before putting your clothes on.

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Step 4: Hair Removal

Venus ComfortGlide Spa Breeze Razor, £7.99 Boots

 

prep legs for summer Venus

 

The thing about hair removal is a person typically falls into one of a few camps – laser, epilating, waxing or shaving. Laser can be pricey, epilating could be compared to a Medieval torture technique and waxing is for those with a high pain threshold. Which leaves shaving. Shaving is simple, pain-free and more importantly, purse-friendly. You really can’t go wrong with a Venus razor. They’ve been reliable since we were teenagers and they just keep getting better – this razor has two moisture bars either side of the three blades meaning that whilst you get a closer shave, your skin is treated to a nourishing boost of shea butter. Sometimes the most simple options are the best.

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Step 5: Cellulite Treatment

Remodelage treatment, from £180 at Grace Belgravia

prep legs for summer

 

‘Cellulite is not a life sentence,’ says Martine de Richeville, creator of the body treatment Remodelage, which helps to detox, refine and tone. Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a relaxing-you-might-fall-asleep-during massage. It’s not. It’s a deep-tissue technique that incorporates the specially created 8 shaped motion and it pinches. Like a lot. But don’t be put off, because the therapist needs to get down into the lower levels to reach the older fat deposits. By doing this, it allows for better circulation to the area, which in turn reduces excess fat in the tissue. Not only does it tone the silhouette (which is excellent if you suffer from saddlebags at the top of your thighs), but it rather cleverly helps to filter the metabolic waste and flushes out toxins, so your digestion improves too. Shapland completely agrees that massage is vital to getting killer legs, ‘If it’s good, it won’t be comfortable, but your legs will look less puffy & feel lighter; so book a course of sessions.’

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Step 6: Gym Class

prep legs for summer

Nothing will prep your legs for summer better than exercise. We know, snooze. But Shapland suggests we embrace exercise: ‘Get up and cross the office to speak to someone instead of
emailing them, take the stairs at a run, do a handstand – anything that promotes circulation and maintains flow.’ Whilst a HIIT session or a spin class is a brilliant full body workout, there are now more and more classes that are specifically aimed at toning. From your classic Legs, Bums and Tums class to Barre-style workouts that combine traditional ballet positions with repetitive movements from Pilates, you’ll find something similar in most gyms. Virgin Active just launched a new Barre class that’s said to strengthen, lengthen, tone and tighten. If that isn’t incentive, we don’t know what is. GymBox has a hilarious class called Thunder, which don’t worry, does the opposite to giving you thunder thighs. It’s a class that uses the old 90s Thigh Masters (remember them?!) to work on toning quads and glutes. There’s plenty out there, so there’s really no excuse.

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Step 7: Tan

Legology Sun-Lite Sheer Lingerie for Legs, £38 Space NK

prep legs for summer Legology

‘One of the biggest mistakes women make with their legs through the summer is with self-tan, because inevitably it’s too dark,’ explains Shapland. ‘Too many of us make this mistake at the start of the summer when we’re desperate to improve the look of skin too quickly.’ Even if you have the best fake tan or follow our fake tan tips, it should still be incredibly subtle. Still unsure? ‘You’re aiming for the kind of sun kissed shade skin develops after a long hot weekend, when skin has just ‘turned’, not full on tropical tan.’ For those with pale skin, something like the Legology’s Sheer Lingerie For Legs will work perfectly. Think of it as like the best cc cream – it makes your legs look better, rather than completely changing their colour. If you can’t give up the darker shade, then we recommend leg make-up products like Becca Luminous Body Perfecting Mousse and Vita Liberata tktktktktkt

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So there you have it. Your complete guide to getting your legs ready for the summer.

What are you waiting for? Begin with step 1.

The post How to get your legs summer ready in 7 simple steps appeared first on Marie Claire.

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Trump’s prescription to reduce drug prices takes small steps

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump’s long-promised plan to bring down drug prices would mostly spare the pharmaceutical industry he previously accused of “getting away with murder.” Instead he focuses on private competition and more openness to reduce America’s prescription pain.
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How to Clean White Mesh Shoes in 5 Steps

If white shoes notoriously attract dirt and mesh shoes absorb virtually any substance they come in contact with, then white mesh shoes are the perfect storm. Fortunately, keeping your favorite white mesh shoes clean may be easier than you think. From your favorite summer slip-ons to the latest athletic footwear, all you need is a few simple materials to keep them looking good as new. Learn how to clean white mesh shoes in just five simple steps.

Using a soft shoe brush (a soft-bristled toothbrush can also do the trick), gently brush away exterior dirt. Use light, simple motions, and be sure to use a softer degree of pressure than you might with a heavier material like leather.

In a small bowl, combine warm water and a small amount of gentle laundry detergent. The consistency should be lightly soapy but not overly frothy or sticky. When cleaning white mesh shoes, it’s important to avoid bleaching agents since these can cause discoloration or damage to certain types of material.

Using a soft cloth, apply your cleaning solution to the shoes in gentle, circular motions. If you’re dealing with difficult grass stains or embedded dirt, it’s perfectly acceptable to bring your brush from step one back into the picture. Keep a second bowl of clean, warm water handy to periodically rinse the cloth to ensure you don’t spread existing stains on the material of the shoes.

When cleaning white mesh shoes, it’s important to fully remove all excess cleaning solution. Simply wet a second soft cloth so that it’s damp (not soaking), then wipe down the exterior of the shoes. Avoid fully dunking the shoes in water since this could affect their shape (and certain adhesives used in shoe design don’t respond well to this level of moisture).

Choose a cool, dry spot out of direct sunlight and allow your shoes to fully air-dry. If they got especially wet during the cleaning process, it might not hurt to fill them with paper towels to better retain their shape as they dry.

Up next, learn how to style white heels 10 different ways.

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Sainsbury’s Tu Steps into the Designer Arena

TWO FOR TU: Sainsbury’s Tu, a fashion range from the British supermarket chain, has partnered with Graduate Fashion Week’s award winners on two collections — including its first line of men’s wear — that will launch on May 29.
Tu Womenswear Scholarship winner Laura Gillings has created a 16-piece collection that features tailored trousers and coordinating jackets, shirts, dresses, skirts and T-shirts in monochrome shades as well as orange, dark green and lilac. The Bath Spa University student said she took her cue from Sixties tailoring and the Rolling Stones. There will be another 16-piece drop later this year.
“Working with the team has been the best part of this experience,” said Gillings. “I’ve realized that I want to make my career designing for the high street. I want my designs to be accessible to everyone.”
London-based designer Henry Holland was her mentor for the project. “I think Laura adds lots of femininity to the androgynous. She has a really strong sense of color and print and an amazing level of design. Her approach to print is quite graphic, and she’s got an instinctive way of designing within a brief and a very strong signature, which I think is really good for Tu.”
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Sleep mode? Tech giants’ kids’ ‘fixes’ amount to baby steps

NEW YORK (AP) — Facebook is adding a “sleep” mode to its Messenger Kids service to let parents limit when their kids can use it.
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Oasis of calm in shattered region, Dubai steps out as art hub

DUBAI (Reuters) – As traditional centers of modern Arab art in Damascus and Baghdad have imploded amid disastrous wars, the sheeny city-state of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates has stepped into the vacuum as a major hub for art sales.


Reuters: Arts

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‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’ Boss on Next Steps in Time’s Up Movement: ‘Jobs, That’s What We Need’

In order to keep the momentum of movements like Time’s Up and Frances McDermond’s Oscar night plea for inclusion riders, the key next step is to create jobs, “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” showrunner Aline Brosh McKenna says. “There’s so much solidarity in being together but we need to offer each other economic opportunities. Hashtags, tweeting, that’s all great, […]

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Stay Balanced: 10 Easy Steps to Prevent Falls

Infographic - 10 Easy Steps to Prevent Falls

Click here to see full infographic

Did you know that falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries in people aged 65 and older?

A study published late last year in the Journal of American Medical Association shows we already know how to stop these falls. For example, encouraging physical exercise and correcting poor vision are extremely beneficial. And older patients also do better when health care teams tailor fall prevention advice specifically to them. All we need to do is use that knowledge, says Eric B. Larson, MD, MPH, vice president for Research and Health Care Innovation, Kaiser Permanente Washington; executive director, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute.

Dr. Larson knows this to be true because of his own mother’s experiences — she had suffered broken bones from past falls. After starting a daily habit of walking and leg-lifting exercises, she became stronger, gained better balance, and experienced fewer falls.

Gleaned from these learnings with his mother, his own work and research elsewhere, Dr. Larson shares 10 simple tips to help prevent falls.

The post Stay Balanced: 10 Easy Steps to Prevent Falls appeared first on Kaiser Permanente Share.

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Joe Jackson’s Secret Daughter Steps Out To Promote Memoir ‘Bastard Child’

The half-sister of Michael Jackson has a new tell-all book in which she details years of being treated coldly by the Jackson family, snubbed directly by the King of Pop and bullied at school because of her family ties.

Joh’Vonnie Jackson, born the day after Michael Jackson’s 16th birthday, is the product of a 25-year affair Joe Jackson had with her mom Cheryle Terrell, according to the Daily Mail.

“I was very aware that I was in the Jackson family growing up, I saw them on TV, I listened to their music,” she explains. “But I was hidden away, kept secret for years, not able to become part of that family. It was hurtful.”

Eventually Joe Jackson’s secret daughter was revealed to the rest of the family, but the Jacksons wouldn’t accept her, Joh’Vonnie claims. Now 43, Joh’Vonnie is still close to her father and to his credit he tried to integrate her into Jackson family life. But despite his best efforts she faced years of rejection by those she longed to be near.

Instagram Photo

 

“I have met every single last one of them, but for some reason there has always been something stopping them from accepting me, from being close to me,” she says. “Of course when I was around them there was a show of love, but once I was gone there was no phone calls asking how I’m doing or how is my daughter doing, it’s upsetting, real hurtful and I still feel rejected.

“Even when my mother died in 2014 the first person who called me was their mother Katherine, the only sibling to call was Rebbie, she’s the only one who really cares,” she said. “I later said to my brother Jermaine, ‘my mother died.’ He started stuttering and said, ‘I was gonna call.’ It was a wake up call, it let me know my position in the family. As far as I’m concerned they can all kiss my ass.”

Joh’Vonnie recalls meeting her older brother Michael at his Neverland Ranch in 2003, when she was 29. The entire Jackson family was there for a family reunion.

“It was a big moment for me,” Joh’Vonnie recalls, “but Michael was looking at me and seemed cold and standoffish, he just said hi and then he saw my daughter Yasmine, and he was just fascinated with her, in awe. He said ‘Hi Jasmine’ and I said, ‘No, Michael, her name is Yasmine with a Y,’ I had to correct him. He said ‘Okay, Yasmine with a Y,’ and then that was it. He never acknowledged that I was his sister, there was no hug or kiss, not even a hand shake, no physical contact at all. I wanted to embrace him, I thought that he would wanna go some place quiet and sit and talk with me and ask me about my life and get to know me a little better. It was very hurtful, he wasn’t interested at all.”

Instagram Photo

 

Joh’Vonnie’s heartache was compounded by Michael’s continued interest in his then eight-year-old niece: “With my daughter he was totally different, she got hugs and kisses, everything I didn’t get, I’m woman enough to admit I was jealous. We met outside by the movie theater, there was a bunch of people there. I never did get a chance to speak to Michael properly. At the time it was very hurtful, again there was this theme that I felt shut out.”

Joh’Vonnie stayed with her cousin at a hotel in Santa Barbara, California that night rather than on the sprawling 2,700 acre ranch. She returned to Neverland the next day with a renewed hope of achieving a break-through with her older brother.

“I didn’t see Michael all day, he was in the main house,” she said. “Yasmine and Paris [Michael’s daughter] were off playing for hours, she was playing with her little cousin, Paris is such a sweet girl. I sat with the rest of the family. Jermaine and Rebbie talked with me for a while. None of my other siblings acknowledged me much though.”

Joh’Vonnie said that she was constantly taunted in school because she was Michael Jackson’s sister.

Instagram Photo

 

“I got beat up every single day because I was Joh’Vonnie Jackson.”

Joh’Vonnie and her mother lived just five miles from the Jackson home and Joe would visit most days, lavishing Joh’Vonnie with gifts. This was made worse when Michael’s parents ended up living separate lives and Joh’Vonnie, then in her early 20s, moved in with Joe in Las Vegas and worked as a baggage handler at the airport.

Unusually Joh’Vonnie is no stranger to the Jackson family home in Encino, having been there with Joe several times. She is also on surprisingly friendly terms with Jackson matriarch Katherine and even calls her ‘mother’ like her siblings.

Katherine knew of Joe’s affair which began in the early-1970s but her devotion to the Jehovah’s Witness faith led her to forgive him and accept Joh’Vonnie.

But for her siblings, acceptance didn’t come so easy.

‘I would be shopping in an apartment store and would see LaToya, but I couldn’t go to talk with her because I didn’t feel she wanted to talk to me.

In LaToya’s book, ‘Growing Up in the Jackson Family’, the singer wrote that her mother Katherine had referred to Joh’Vonnie as a ‘bastard child’ – now the title of Joh’Vonnie’s own book.

She explained: ‘That’s just how LaToya is, she just likes to create drama, she was setting me up for failure, she wanted ultimately for me not to like her mother and for there to be issues. I hung on to that and then I met Katherine and I couldn’t even see her saying anything like that about me. She was really nice to me, I think she was very hurt at the time of the affair, that’s totally understandable. No woman likes for her husband to go cheating on her and produce a child, it was probably heart-breaking. But you know she had come out of that, she let me live in her home, me and my daughter, we didn’t have to pay any rent. I worked to support my daughter and I took care of her home when she was not there. We have cooked together with have had good conversations.”

Instagram Photo

For Joh’Vonnie, she wishes the rest of the family could take a leaf out of ‘Mother’s’ book. Other than Rebbie and Tito, she doesn’t feel comfortable in any of her other sibling’s presence.

“I’m not interested in having any of them over for Christmas dinner, in cooking anymore German chocolate cakes for anybody, or any peach cobbler, Jermaine likes for me to make those for him, I’m just not even… no I’m good.”

Joh’Vonnie works in the timeshare industry and lives in Las Vegas with her 23-year-old daughter Yasmine who is studying to be a nurse. She lives just a few miles from dad Joe, 89, and sees him at least once a week.

Joh’Vonnie’s book ‘Bastard Child’ is available for order from Amazon.

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FBI deputy director steps down

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5 Steps to Take if You Think Another Government Shutdown Is Imminent

If there was a time to hoard your pennies, it is now.

A government shutdown may not affect you directly, but for many, it could mean going without a paycheck for an undetermined amount of time

We don’t want you to shoulder that financial stress alone, so we’ve compiled a list of five ways to pinch your pennies and maybe earn a few until we’re on the other side of this crisis.

1. Revisit Your Budget and Cut Where You Can

If you don’t have a budget, it’s OK, but you need to make one soon.

If you do have a budget, but you spend outside of it and never get around to adjusting it, you need to be honest with yourself and your wallet. Start tracking as many expenses as possible so you know where you stand.

Once you get that in order, get out the scissors and start trimming the fat.

You might start by downgrading your monthly cell phone plan or cutting the cable bill.

Then you can move on to more aggressive tactics — like paying only the minimum on bills, pausing investments, changing your W-4 withholdings, skipping the monthly subscription boxes or magazines, bringing your lunch or experimenting with DIY gifts and personal care — to help save for some of those expenses you can’t avoid.

Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be a budget ninja, and you might just find a new way of life. And depending on how long you remain unsubscribed from a service, you may qualify for a sign-up bonus or a new customer deal if you decide to subscribe again and save more in the long run.

2. Stash Your Cash

All your budgeting and cutting will help keep your cash flow heading the right direction.

Since you may not know when your next payday will be, the best decision is to have as much cash on hand as possible.

Think of it like an emergency fund: That cash will be there to help cover your most essential expenses, like food and shelter.

If you’re a federal employee or service member, consider a no-interest loan from a federal credit union or the no-interest payroll advance loan USAA offers members during a shutdown to keep the income stream flowing.

With a few tricks, you can get cash positive and work toward building up bucks to guarantee your physical and financial survival during the shutdown.

3. Talk to Your Creditors

Scared to let the payment slip or worried about making just the minimum payment?

Call your creditors, no matter how embarrassing, annoying or inconvenient it may seem.  

Many credit card companies offer hardship programs that include reduced fees, lowered interest rates, structured payment schedules and lower minimum payments. But use these cautiously, and make sure to ask your credit card company plenty of questions because these programs may result in negative marks on your credit score.

If you’re unable to get hardship assistance, you may want to consider applying for a new credit card with a zero-interest promotion. You can roll some or all of your credit card debt onto this card to help lower your payments and accrued interest.

Mortgage companies offer a variety of loan modification programs that assist qualified borrowers with reduced interest rates or extended loan terms.

Reaching out directly to the creditor shows you care and intend to pay. Most will work with you and your budget, and some may even allow you to defer payments. Wouldn’t that be a relief and totally worth the call? Yeah, we think so too.

4. Find Alternative Income Sources

We have your back. We write a lot about the many ways to keep a stream of income flowing and opportunities to make extra cash on the side.

You can consider quick cash grabs, like selling some of your collectibles online or having a yard sale. You may also find a side hustle that’s right for you, like a temporary gig serving at a restaurant or bar, doing odd jobs or even selling your plasma.

You can also make money from home doing something as simple as babysitting or renting out an extra room to ease the shutdown blues.

Don’t be afraid to talk to your family and friends about your shutdown situation. They may have the perfect odd job for you or know someone who does. Get all the feelers out there to help you stay afloat during uncertain times.

5. Have Sense With Your Cents

Ultimately, be smart with your money. You know yourself and what you can afford. If you need to trick yourself into spending less or saving more, do that.

There are apps that save money for you automatically and others that help you find the best deals on the things you have to buy.

As much we’d love to see you go slash-happy on your debt, now’s not the time to go gangbusters. Stick to the minimums to keep your creditors at bay and stack as many Washingtons, Lincolns and Benjamins as possible.

Having sense is using your better judgement and willpower to resist those impulse buys and hold off any treat yo’ self splurges.

Limit your temptations, and remember that if a shutdown happens, it will only be temporary. You’ve got this!

Stephanie Bolling is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She prefers to stay cash positive.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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33 steps to surviving a snow day at home with kids

by

Sabrina Garibian

posted in Parenting

Since December 22nd my children have only been in school one day, and not even all my kids went to school that day. I haven’t had a kid-free hour in weeks!

In the summer I soak it up, spending every day outside swimming, playing in the grass, and visiting local hot spots. But over this winter break we’ve been stuck inside with nothing better to do than sit on our bums.

In case you’re wondering what a winter day is truly like at home with three kids, here it is in all its glory.

33 steps to surviving a snow day at home with kids

1. Wake up at 6:15 a.m. to a robocall from the school district canceling school. This means that all of your children will be home, again.

2. Decide today is going to be productive and quickly shower and make your bed before the children wake up. This will be your greatest accomplishment of the day.

3. Head downstairs to find all three children made their own breakfasts. This means there are about a million Cheerios all over the family room floor, and there’s a milk puddle next to the kitchen counter.

4. Hear “can we watch a show?”

5. Set up some markers and paper before quickly emptying the dishwasher. Turn around to find marker caps everywhere and little bits of paper lovingly ripped up by your 2-year-old.

6. Clean up the paper while the three gremlins play in the basement.

7. Repeat step 4.

8. Enjoy two solid hours of no fighting or yelling while the kids play in the basement. Do all the laundry, prep dinner for the night, and check Facebook for snow updates about a million times despite being able to look out the window.

9. Realize that you just had two solid hours of no fighting or yelling so something must be wrong. Head down to the basement to investigate.

10. Find this. This is basically every piece of furniture and toy jammed onto the basement trampoline.

trampoline toy bomb

11. Sit on the steps and direct the kids to clean up and put away every single thing. Listen to four complaints for every one building block put away.

12. Repeat step 4.

13. Everyone’s already hungry even though it’s only 9 a.m. Head to the kitchen and prepare big bowls of cantaloupe that no one eats.

14. Clean up the snack.

15. Repeat step 4.

16. The snow has stopped so the kids are ready to go out and play. Pull out all the snow gear.

17. Spend 30 minutes getting everyone dressed in enough layers for this Arctic cold.

18. Send the kids outside with strict instructions to stay within view of the kitchen window. Watch them have so much fun throwing snowballs, eating snow, and building a snowman.

19. FIVE minutes later hear the door open and all three kids barrel in. Sigh at the bomb of snow gear that has vomited all over the entryway.

20. Repeat step 4. Again.

21. Throw all the snow gear in the dryer. Make hot chocolate with marshmallows for everyone.

snow day hot chocolate

22. Mop the floors after three hot chocolate spills in a row.

23. Laugh because there’s nothing else to do but laugh on a day like this.

24. Repeat step 4 and consider giving in. Hold strong.

25. Make lunch because everyone’s hungry again. Realize the dishwasher is already full from the multiple snack times and drinks of the morning.

26. Run the dishwasher.

27. Make all the kids clean up from lunch because you’re just done for the day.

28. Clean up the water all over the kitchen floor thanks to an overenthusiastic dish washer.

29. Hear the question “Can we watch a show?” for the millionth time and finally give in.

30. Put the baby down for the nap and listen to annoying cartoons while your older kids zone out in front of the TV.

31. Spend a few minutes sitting on your bed and looking through your phone, contemplating what to do for the rest of the afternoon.

32. Head downstairs to find a trail of crushed fishies from the kitchen to the family room.

33. Give up and call it a day.

I rock at summer time and maybe one day, one day a long time from now, I’ll figure out how to keep my kids entertained at home on a winter day without incurring a million messes.

How do you spend your snow days at home?

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How I Thrive: Small Steps, Big Results

Sometimes, small actions can have a major impact. Cheyenne Pickel, a dental hygienist at Kaiser Permanente Northwest’s Clackamas Dental Office, was tired of the extra 100 pounds she was carrying and decided to do something about it.

In February 2017, Cheyenne shifted her diet to focus on lean protein and plenty of produce. Then she added exercise. She has two young children, ages 1 and 3. She didn’t want to spend hours away from her family at the gym, so she tackled a half-hour exercise video on most days.

Inspiration to colleagues

Her coworkers began noticing a change and complimented her. That, in turn, motivated her to keep going and share her experience with others. As of October 2017, she has lost 60 pounds.

“Cheyenne has taken Kaiser Permanente’s Thrive campaign to a whole new level, and we are so happy and proud of what she has accomplished,” said Sandra Goddard, Clackamas Dental Office manager. Her Kaiser Permanente coworkers agree, calling her an inspiration for leading healthy lifestyle.

So how did she do it? Cheyenne shares her healthy approach to weight loss and wellness.

What changes have you made in your eating?

I was a breakfast skipper because I get up really early in the morning and leave the house at 6:15 a.m. My stomach would feel way too queasy for breakfast. I started drinking meal replacement shakes, so I can get some calories and nutrients in the morning and jump-start my metabolism.

I’m snacking. I used to eat three big meals. Now I have a midmorning snack and one at about 4 p.m. of maybe a banana and some almonds or carrots or celery and hummus, a nectarine and string cheese. Lunch is a protein with vegetables, carbohydrates and fruit. I might have chicken, fish or ground turkey and every so often lean steak or venison, with brown rice or quinoa. Dinners are about the same. Even the kids like it. I’m really getting into a mindset that this isn’t a temporary fix. This is what my lifestyle needs to be. I have cake or pasta now and then on a special occasion.

What’s your go-to dinner?

Anything in one pan. I bake chicken, zucchini, red peppers and onions with a little garlic, olive oil, Himalayan pink salt and pepper on a sheet pan and serve it with quinoa or brown rice.

What about exercise?

I find a lot of online workout videos that are 30 minutes. It’s easier than packing up the kids and going to the gym. I don’t want exercise to take me away from my family. I try for 30 minutes a day five times a week. I try to walk on my lunch break or at least take 5 to 10 minutes to pace the office. I’m not as tired as I was. With kids, I don’t get a ton of sleep, maybe six-and-a-half hours a night. I would be so fatigued toward the end of my day. Trying to play with my kids was really difficult. Now we can go to the park and I’m not feeling like I’m going to pass out.

Do you have advice for others?

If you don’t see results right away, don’t give up. Gaining weight didn’t happen overnight, so the success isn’t going to happen overnight. Just keep going. There is no one right way. What may work for some might not work for others. Reach out for support. You’d be surprised who’s willing to help.

The post How I Thrive: Small Steps, Big Results appeared first on Kaiser Permanente Share.

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Top 10 Healthy Tips for 2018 Include Not ‘Drinking’ Your Fruit, 10,000 Steps a Day and Maintaining a Gratitude Attitude

Source: University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center

Roy Buchinsky, MD, director of wellness at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and the Robert and Susan Hurwitz Master Clinician in Wellness, has these 10 tips to help maximize your chances of a long, strong and resilient life.

#1 “If the food is white, it’s probably not right.” Avoid processed white carbohydrates such as white bread, bagels, rice, pasta and pizza. Replace with whole-grain products such as whole-grain bread, brown rice – or try pasta made from quinoa or brown rice.

#2 “Don’t drink your fruit when you can eat your fruit.” Fruit in its natural form is healthiest. It is filled with fiber and antioxidants with their inherent benefits. When fruit is liquefied, you lose much of the fiber and increase the concentrated sugar load on your body. An apple a day will keep the doctor away, but a glass of apple juice might not.

#3 Sitting is the new smoking.” Increase your daily physical activity by moving more every day. Aim for 10,000 steps per day – no ifs, ands or buts.

#4 “Don’t skimp on sleep.” Aim for seven to eight hours per day. This will allow you to function at your best and ward off many illnesses that are associated with sleep deprivation.

#5 “Maintain a gratitude attitude every day.” Looking at life with a positive attitude can help you deal better with everyday hassles. Remind yourself that from challenges, come opportunities.

#6 “Don’t sweat the small stuff.” Don’t get upset over minutia in life and focus on the big-ticket items – health, family, work, religion.

#7 “Avoid toxins such as tobacco, excess alcohol and BPA.” Take care of the environment and the environment will take care of you.

#8 “Prevention is the best intervention.” Vaccinations might not be foolproof, but they are very powerful in preventing common illnesses such as influenza, pneumonia, HPV, hepatitis, shingles, diphtheria, etc. Remember these ‘bugs’ are devilishly clever.

#9 “Control the controllable.” So much energy is spent worrying about things that are out of our control. If you focus predominantly on items that are actually within your control, you will be able use your energy productively.

#10 “Take your work seriously, but don’t take yourself too seriously.” As the inimitable Charlie Chaplin said, “A day without laughter is a day wasted.”

The post Top 10 Healthy Tips for 2018 Include Not ‘Drinking’ Your Fruit, 10,000 Steps a Day and Maintaining a Gratitude Attitude appeared first on Women's Health.

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Top 10 Healthy Tips for 2018 Include Not ‘Drinking’ Your Fruit, 10,000 Steps a Day and Maintaining a Gratitude Attitude

Top 10 Healthy Tips for 2018 Include Not ‘Drinking’ Your Fruit, 10,000 Steps a Day and Maintaining a Gratitude Attitude

Source: University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center Roy Buchinsky, MD, director of wellness at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and the Robert and Susan Hurwitz Master Clinician in Wellness, has these 10 tips to help maximize your chances of a long, strong and resilient life. #1 “If the food is white, it’s probably not right.” Avoid processed white carbohydrates such as white…

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4 Steps For Black Entrepreneurs to Build Their First Business Credit Report

While every business owner has a personal credit report, not every business has a business credit report. A personal credit report is created the moment an individual with a Social Security number accepts their first job or applies for their first form of financing. However, a business credit report is not automatically created and there are a variety of steps that must be followed in order to establish this very important business financing tool. Here are the preliminary steps you must take to build business credit:

 

  Properly Establish Your Entity

Operating as a sole proprietor would make it very difficult to establish and build a quality business credit profile. So the first thing that you want to do is plan to incorporate your business as either a C-Corp, S-Corp, or Limited Liability Company (LLC).

This will also involve obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN), opening a dedicated bank account for the business, setting up the business telephone line, setting up the business website, setting up the business location, and making sure to have a clear separation of personal and business affairs. Other aspects associated with properly establishing your entity include having proper levels of insurance, developing a quality business plan, and making sure your legal advisers are in place.

Register the Entity With the Major Business Credit Bureaus

To make sure your payment history from vendors, suppliers, and creditors that report to business credit bureaus is recorded, you have to make sure to set up a business entity profile with the two major business credit bureaus. This will include both Experian Business and Dun & Bradstreet (D&B). With D&B you will receive a D-U-N-S number and a D&B PAYDEX Score; with Experian you will receive an Intelliscore Plus. Both are measured mainly using a scale of 1–100, with a score over 80 considered the best tier. It’s best that once you establish your profile, that you also set up some sort of credit monitoring; that way you can verify each month that everything is being reported properly and efficiently.

Begin Building the Business Credit Profile

This process could be a bit difficult, as not every creditor reports their information to business credit bureaus. So your research here would be to find those creditors that, in fact, would report your on-time payment information, so you could build your report history. Some vendors to look at to begin include the following:

  • Shared Secured Loans and Secured Credit Cards

These can be provided by your local credit union. With both, you will deposit money into a bank account and then with the shared secured loan, you will take out a loan on the money deposited, using the deposit balance as security. As you pay back the loan, that amount of the secured balance becomes “available.” This product is great because it’s reported to the business credit bureaus as a regular loan from the credit union. The same would work with the secured credit cards, where you establish a line of credit using money from your deposit account, with the reporting showing up as a regular credit card on the business credit report from the credit union. A business would find that using one of these products would prove to be much easier to establish a business credit history than using one of the various companies below.

  • Various Companies

These can include companies such as Grainger, Uline, Quill, OnDeck, and a variety of other companies that would report the on-time payments to the bureaus.

Continue Building Your Business Credit Profile

After a solid six to 12 months of using the above beginning basics of building, you could now try to apply to the variety of business credit card companies to add additional trade lines. In addition, seek to reach out to various vendors, suppliers, and consultants for your business as many times they will offer trade credit, which could also be reported on your business credit report for building aspects. Note that as you go forward, you want to make sure to continue making all payments on time and never miss a payment. It’s also best to make payments much earlier than scheduled.

After a solid 12 to 24 months of utilizing the above strategies, your options for business lines of credit, leasing, term loans, asset-based lending, lower APR business credit cards, more attractive trade credit structuring, etc., open up as your business maintains its well-structured business credit report.

The post 4 Steps For Black Entrepreneurs to Build Their First Business Credit Report appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise

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5 Simple Steps for Creating a Life That Sparkles

Better break out your shades, because your future is about to look oh-so bright.

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6 Simple Steps to a More Profitable Estimate

As a home improvement professional, you know that keeping track of your finances is one of the most important parts of owning your own business. When you’re pitching a project to a new or existing lead, it’s crucial to communicate a clear and comprehensive pricing plan that will satisfy your clients while maximizing your own profit. If the financial side of business isn’t your strong suit, don’t worry. Here are 6 simple steps that will give you a more profitable estimate every time.

contractor-finance

Itemize your spending

If you’re looking to decrease your spending across the board, or if you just want a clearer view of where your money goes during a particular build, it is essential to keep track of every last detail of your finances. Setting up a spreadsheet that includes all of your regular costs—including labor, materials, and other incidentals—will help you get a better idea of your financial situation and therefore make more accurate estimates. It’s a good idea to keep a record of your past average spends for these items (for builds of similar types and sizes) so you can more accurately forecast costs with each new building project.

Utilize technology

Whether or not you love technology, most modern businesses use some type of online platform or program to help them get a handle on their finances. You can make this part of your job much easier by putting all of your data into an integrated business program or app designed in order to cut costs, maximize profits, and make accurate estimates. Here are some of the top programs pros like you are using:

  • QuickBooks: perfect for logging and calculating your spending and profit margins
  • Asana: a timekeeping app that tracks work and keeps you in touch with your colleagues
  • Xactimate and ProContractor Estimating (among others): comprehensive, industry-specific programs that help you estimate projects and provide support from start to finish

contractor-budget-list

Keep orders to a minimum

Once you’ve compiled a detailed list of your running costs and average spending (and maybe even enlisted the help of a web-based estimating program), you can more accurately tailor your material orders to cut down on overspending and help minimize waste. While only you know exactly what you need for a particular building project, we recommend only purchasing materials you know you will use. It’s often easier to purchase more materials later on than it is to dispose of excess items after a build is finished. After all, only some companies accept returns, and this often only applies to certain types of materials.

Recycle whenever possible

As accurate as your purchasing may be, there are times when you will have materials to spare after a building project. There are several ways to deal with this excess:

  • Find ways to reuse your excess materials: basic building materials can be used again, as they are common to most building projects
  • Sell back unused items: as explained above, only certain suppliers will accept returns and this will depend on the type and condition of the material
  • Recycle your offcuts and unused materials: you can do this at your local recycling center, or hire an industry-specific professional recycling company to take your unwanted items away (but remember that this will cost you).

Set up a fixed price scheme

If you complete the same types of jobs often, a fixed price scheme will make your estimating much simpler. By striking a deal with suppliers, subcontractors, and even clients, you can maximize both your profits and everyone’s satisfaction. Just make sure to factor in wastage, timescales, and any other incidentals; hidden costs such as unforeseen issues in remodeling projects and the availability of materials can drastically alter the cost of a build. It’s also worth noting that a fixed price scheme may not be the best way to go with bespoke projects and complicated builds, so including a caveat for individual pricing when necessary will help you keep everyone happy.

contractor-website

Stay transparent

One of the best ways to help your business grow is to keep your clients and the professionals you do business with informed about your prices. Posting an updated and accurate pricing structure on your website and across all social media accounts will make everything crystal clear and eliminate any gray areas. Potential leads will especially appreciate your honesty here. After all, most homeowners are looking for companies that either advertise their prices or have clear lines of communication (including web forms, email addresses, Facebook Messenger, to name a few) to quickly answer their pricing questions.

An accurate estimate is a key component of a profitable build. By following these simple steps, you can become better acquainted with your financial situation and make every building project better for your business.

The post 6 Simple Steps to a More Profitable Estimate appeared first on Modernize.

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4 Quick Steps That Can Help Turn Around a Poor Credit Score

It’s no secret your credit score is important. The better your score, the better deal you get on a mortgage or a car loan or credit card.

We’re talking big money here.

Even if you’re not buying a house anytime soon, a lousy credit score means you’ll get mugged for a high security deposit whenever you rent a car or move into a new apartment.

But improving your credit seems like such a long-term project, doesn’t it?

After all, it can literally take years for negative information to finally come off your credit report. That one phone call you got from that rude bill collector can stain your record for up to seven years.

Seven years? Shoot, you’ll probably be a completely different person by then.

Don’t get discouraged. There are quick ways to start healing your credit. If you make the right moves, you can get your credit score back up around 670what most lenders consider “good.”

Here’s a fast, easy way to see your credit score: Sign up for Credit Sesame, a free service that shows your score and explains it to you.

Now that you know your score, here are four things you should do right away to improve your credit.

How to Fix Credit Fast: Start With These Strategies

1. Use Your Credit Card

Just don’t overuse it, that’s all. Buy something with your credit card every month. Even one or two purchases, like a tank of gas or a gallon of milk or, you know, a bottle of wine. Whatever.

Get a credit card with a signup bonus, cash rewards and no annual fees. Just make sure to pay off your balance every month so you can avoid paying interest. That’s a money drain right there.

This way, you have positive activity on your credit report every month. The credit reporting agencies that calculate your credit score really like that. It’s like petting a cat and making it purr.

2. Don’t Max Out Your Cards

An important part of your credit score is “credit utilization.” That’s a fancy-pants way of saying “how much of your credit you’re actually using.”

Let’s say you have a credit card with a $ 2,000 limit on it, and you have a balance of $ 1,000 that you haven’t paid off. You’re using half your credit. Your credit utilization is 50%.

It should really be lower. The lower, the better. This makes more difference than you might think.

3. Dispute Wrong Information

One out of every five credit reports has an error in it, according to a study by the Federal Trade Commission.

So take a look at your credit report, and dispute any incorrect information in it. Don’t worry if you’ve never done this before. It’s really not that hard. If you set aside a little time, you can do this today.

The three major credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — are each required to give you a free credit report once a year. If you want, you can go to the website Annual Credit Report to get all three at once.

So what are you looking for, here? Well, if you find an “unpaid” credit card that you know you paid, or a bill in collections that you know never existed, you should file a dispute with the appropriate credit bureau.

That can be done online for free. You’ll go to Equifax’s disputes page, or Experian’s, or TransUnion’s.

4. Consolidate Your Debt

To have good credit, it’s important to pay your bills on time. Don’t fall behind.

If you’re drowning in credit card debt and hemorrhaging money on interest payments, consider refinancing your debt with a personal loan.

Once again, it’s easier than you might think. A good place to start is Even Financial, which can help you borrow up to $ 100,000. Once you type in your info, compares interest rates from several lenders. There’s no charge for this.

Use that loan to pay off your high-interest credit cards. Then you repay the lender a fixed amount every month for a set time period — usually two to four years.

See? Improving your credit doesn’t have to take seven years after all.

Your credit score is a number that ranges between 300 and 850. It’s like a grade that tells lenders how well you manage money and repay debt. Ideally, you want your score to hit at least 670 or so.

Taking steps to improve your credit is worth it. Especially when it comes to major life purchases — houses and cars — the higher your credit score, the better off you’ll be.

Mike Brassfield (mike@thepennyhoarder.com) is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. His credit is OK, but it could be better, frankly.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Evan Peters steps out of comfort zone for new film

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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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Macaulay Culkin Steps Out With Brenda Song in Paris

Paris adventures! Macaulay Culkin was photographed with his girlfriend, Brenda Songand his goddaughter, Paris Jackson, in Paris on November 22.

The trio enjoyed dinner with Seth Green and his wife, Clare Grant, at the Joël Robuchon’s restaurant L’Atelier last month.

Culkin, 37, and Song, 29, were first spotted holding hands in September at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, California, where they were on a double date with Green and his wife.

“They were spotted holding hands and being cute with each other,” a source told Us at the time.

Scroll through the photos of the couple’s trip to Paris below.

Us Weekly

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Sundial CEO: 3 Steps to Taking Your Business from Mom-and-Pop to the Big Leagues

When Unilever announced an agreement to acquire Sundial Brands, (No. 10 on the 2017 BE Top 100 list with $ 300 million in revenues) for an undisclosed—but surely landmark—amount, many wondered whether the company behind SheaMoisture and Nubian Heritage would remain loyal to its consumers, values, and mission.

CEO Richelieu Dennis assures that it will.

But others in the business world—especially those among the fastest growing population of entrepreneurs in the world: black women—may also be wondering: How can I take my company to the next level to even be noticed or invested in by the Unilevers of the world? How can I expand my company’s mission and resources in the same way Sundial has? What’s the key to attracting lucrative partnerships or investors?

 

(Image: iStock/mapodile)

 

In an exclusive interview with Black Enterprise, Dennis shared three vital steps for women entrepreneurs to take in doing just that. The formula is actually fundamentally more simple than you’d think:

 

Determine your true north.

 

“Be very clear in what you’re trying to do and then go out and do it. Stick to it,” Dennis says. “Once you have a true north, it gives you great guidance. Mine has been investing in my community, and we’ve done that for 25-plus years. I make decisions around what I need to do for this business that will allow me to invest in my community.

 

Make sure you’re creating and offering a product that is truly adding value to your consumer’s life.

 

“When nobody was making natural products that worked for women of color, SheaMoisture was,” he says. “We’ve remained true to that for over 25 years. We’ve evolved over that 25 years, scaled, but we have not lost sight in making a great product for our consumers.”

 

Think and network outside the box, and be fearless in finding ways to expand and grow.

 

“Stand in the gap and do not be afraid to build your business, even in the face of adversity or critics. If you’re doing the right thing and for the right reasons, do not be afraid,” he says. “We see a lot of competition that comes through when we don’t have access to resources and we don’t have the freedom to go after other consumers. Every day, people from different cultures go into our communities and do business there. … at the end of the day, every night, they leave our communities and take those dollars and invest in their communities.”

 

 

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Did Y’all See? Matt Lauer Fired, Russell Steps Down And Meghan Markle Is Bride-To-Be

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On this episode of “Did Y’all See?” we’re discussing Matt Lauer being axed from NBC, Jennifer Hudson’s ex, David Otunga awarded primary custody of their son and it’s official, a Black woman is about to be in the royal …


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How to Get Rid of Love Handles in 3 Simple Steps

Banish stubborn belly fat with these tips.

Health – Good Housekeeping

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Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

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How to Perfect Your Pose in 3 Steps

Last week, we shared the below video on Instagram Stories, walking you through how to get Who What Wear–worthy photos every time. Since this was one of our top-viewed stories and we received such great feedback, we wanted the tips to live here on the site as well. The video provides four simple steps to keep in mind when crafting a photo. One of the tips is “perfect your pose,” and within that tip, we shared three things to keep in mind when in front of the camera (watch the 60-second video below to find out). The most DM’ed question from this story was which app we used to edit the photo. Drumroll, please: Snapseed is the photo-enhancing tool shown below in step four. And our second most DM’ed question was about my sweater (shop it below!). Whether this is your first time watching the video or you’re back to save each helpful tip, be sure to give these tricks a try the next time you post on Instagram, and don’t forget to share your photos using #WhoWhatWearing.

Watch the clip below to find out the easy steps that will majorly improve your next photo.

Available in sizes XS to L.
Available in sizes 28 to 31. Shop the items fashion girls are buying from Revolve right now.

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How to Protect Your Leather Boots in 7 Steps

It was a sad day when my favorite pair of leather ankle boots that I bought while studying abroad in Italy finally gave into the salt-covered streets last winter. I made the grave mistake of not cleaning them properly and before too long, the salt stains wouldn’t come out. This winter, I will not be making the same mistake with the rest of my leather pairs. Once I came across the right tips to keeping my boots as good as new, I had to share now that winter is quickly approaching. With just a handful of products, a few of which are already in your home, you’ll never question again how to make your leather boots last for seasons to come.

Read on to learn how to protect leather boots in seven essential steps.

What you’ll need

Do you have salt stains potentially damaging your boots? Maybe you have general dirt that’s built up? Or perhaps your boots got wet walking around in the rain. There are different methods of cleaning leather boots depending on how dirty they are.

No matter which type of damage your boots have withstood, the best thing to do is to clean them off as soon as you get home. before your boots dry off. This will prevent your stains from setting in and any future damage.

For salt stains, mix white vinegar and water in equal parts and wipe off the stains with a soft cloth. For general dirt, use a saddle soap and wipe off the dirt with a damp rag.

Though this is self-explanatory, your boots really do need to dry off completely after a cleaning but before taking away scuff marks. One important thing to note is to let them air dry out in the open somewhere warm but without direct heat on them.

Taking a soft cloth, dap with water to dampen and then dap into baking soda. Rub off the scuff marks until they’re all gone and then wipe the boot clean.

Applying the conditioner is super simpleyou’ll just need a clean cloth, anyone will do. Dab it with your conditioner or leather oil and be sure to spread it all over your boots so that it touches every inch and corner of the leather, including the seams and stitches.

It’s a good idea to spray your boots with a protective barrier after every time you cleaning them off and when you start wearing them each season. Use waterproofing spray on your boots when you first get them before you start wearing them and after you’ve cleaned them each time (only once they’re dry).

Leave your boots out to dry after cleaning them in a warm place. Avoid any harsh or direct heat on them, as it will damage and may ruin the leather. Your need to breathe! Avoid storing them in a plastic bag and instead leave them out in the open somewhere safe, like on a shelf.

Now that you know all the tips and trick to keeping your leather boots spotless and long-lasting, shop a few pairs we’re lusting after this fall.

Need to know: how to clean white Vans in 4 steps.

Celebrity Style and Fashion Trend Coverage | http://www.whowhatwear.com

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Head designer of Burberry steps down — here are his best designs

Burberry creative director Christopher Bailey is stepping down from the renowned luxury label, known for its trench coats and distinctive check print, by the end of 2018. Since joining the brand in 2001, Bailey — who was the company’s CEO for a stint — has been credited for helping escalate the transformation of the company…
Fashion | New York Post

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5 Tried-and-True Steps to Building Great Business Relationships

Building business relationships that will propel your career does not come naturally to most. Face it: superficial networking leaves some professionals wondering what could be a better use of their time. What is required in building great business relationships is having great people skills.

 

(Image: iStock/mapodile)

 

Before you say to yourself, “I have that,” are you wondering what to do with all the business cards you’ve collected? Does LinkedIn still have you perplexed? Your people skills may need tweaking. According to a Harvard study, 85% of professional success comes from people skills. Plainly stated, professional success relies on your ability to build good relationships.

Here are five meaningful and actionable keys that will help establish your reputation, navigate the “people chess,” and boost your understanding of the basics of solid relationship building.

 

 

Establish a Solid Rapport

 

The beginning of good, solid relationships begin with rapport building, but how do you spark interest in someone you may not know? Many professionals spend countless hours at networking events, accumulate stacks of business cards that just sit there, and spend time waiting for people to acknowledge and accept their LinkedIn invitations. But what’s next when they finally connect? Like in dating, it really only takes a spark, but you can be deliberate about it. Check out five keys to power rapport building and learn how a great first impression can lead to more than just a passing recognition.

 

 

Leverage the Influence of Others

 

Some say that you are only as powerful as your network. It’s true. Here is where your personal board of directors can provide you with the air and ground cover you need to provide that credible influence you are looking for to get others to want to build relationships with you. If you know that there is someone in another division, department, industry, or business that you’d like to establish a relationship with, check your linkage to that person. LinkedIn provides a visual means to do this with notes that show how many mutual connections you have with someone else. Those people can not only make an introduction, but they can also provide the credible recommendations you may need to get your relationship off to a good start. Apply that context to how you network in real life, and it still works. But it is very important that you establish your board of directors in an effective way so that they can support you in your quest to build meaningful relationships.

 

 

Deliver and Over-Deliver. Merchandise. Repeat.

 

Do something for the people with whom you want to establish relationships. Tackle a problem; make their work easier for them. For example, provide some smart advice or insight on how to improve their social media presence. In short, do good work and follow up. When our parents were navigating business environments, they would wholeheartedly espouse doing great work. In fact, they were proponents of going over and beyond.

They were right. Do what your parents say.

When it comes to executing, you need to kill it each and every time. But here is where your parents may give you the “side-eye”: You need to merchandise your work in a way that reaffirms it. The key that our parents missed when they said, “keep your head down and work hard” is this: How will anyone know your work if they never see it? It is your job to help them to see.

A recent DiversityInc video focuses on how to build your personal brand. Business relationship building is personal brand building, inside and outside of your company. The second piece of advice in the video is to promote yourself.  Yes, many of you clutched your pearls. It’s time to get over it. There is a way to do it that won’t make others cringe, and if you do it correctly, you’ll find that others will respect you and the work that you do. Merchandising your work can happen with the thought leadership that reinforces your work on that blog that you write, that panel where you spoke, even in an insightful LinkedIn post that you share. This is really about providing a credible context for your work from which you want your new contact to draw. Just make sure that the person you want a relationship with is in a position to be exposed to your message.

 

 

Stack Your Deck With Sponsors Who’ll Speak For You

 

Sometimes, it’s all about wielding the influence you have with sponsors who will gladly sing your praises to the person with whom you want a relationship. This is your air cover. Sponsors are those people who are likely in senior leadership roles who have earned the right to kick down doors for you, simply by the sheer heft of their position within the organization. This is very different than a mentor, one who is there to coach you along your journey. Sometimes a mentor and a sponsor can be one and the same, but frequently, these are two totally different people. How do you obtain a good sponsor? It’s a lot like dating. It takes two parties to express an interest and a pursue a relationship. With few exceptions, it’s probably not the best idea to approach someone and simply ask them to sponsor you. It is also reciprocal. Be willing to help your sponsors in ways that only you can, uniquely and often.

 

Plan to Invest Time

 

Ever looked at that plant in your house and wondered why it’s withering? Chances are it needs a little more sunlight, or a bit more water. Ultimately, your plant is telling you it needs more time and attention. Relationships require that as well, personal ones and business ones. It takes dedicated time and energy. If you don’t make the time, know that you won’t foster great, career-propelling relationships. If you neglect the relationship, it will not grow. Like the plant, it will wilt. Schedule time with them, especially doing things with a mutual benefit. This doesn’t always mean coffee or golf. Sometimes, it is pitching in on a project, or supporting them in some way that will save them time. Think before requesting time from your new contact. Be mindful that they have a busy schedule. Ask yourself, what’s in it for them? Then be prepared to extend yourself before you ask them to extend to you.

Building meaningful business relationships should be intentional. Don’t leave it to chance because your career journey depends on it.

Career – Black Enterprise

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How to change a diaper at 30,000 feet (in only 31 steps)

by

Becky Vieira

posted in Parenting

Changing my child’s diaper is challenging, at best, on a good day. I’ve never wrestled a greased pig, but I imagine that would be easier.

He squirms, turns, and flips, and it often ends with him standing. While holding one leg to keep him from running off I try to secure the diaper with the other hand. If you are keeping score, yes — that is indeed a one-handed diaper change.

When my husband suggested a family vacation to Europe I had one question.

 “How can we expect a baby to go almost eleven hours between diaper changes?” I asked (with sarcasm hanging from each word). Yes, I was that anxious about changing a diaper in an airplane bathroom.

Luckily my fears were unwarranted. Changing a diaper in an airplane bathroom is easy. Which is surprising, because there have been times when I felt so claustrophobic in one that I wasn’t convinced there was enough room in there for only me. Yet somehow I managed to make it work for a diaper change with my husband by my side, no less.

How to change a baby's diaper on an airplane in just 31 steps

I chronicled the process in the hopes that someone else will be able to duplicate my method and enjoy equal success. This was a total diaper blowout, so I imagine a “regular” diaper change should be even easier.

The best part is that I did it in only 31 steps. Yes, I know what you must be thinking. And you are welcome!

1. It all begins with a whiff. The unmistakable smell hits you, followed by everyone else in a five row radius. It’s time to get to work.
2. Gather supplies, only half of which are under the seat. After a few choice words you discover the rest somehow endued up in the overhead storage. Simultaneously blame and glare at husband. Take baby and wait in line for bathroom.
3. After waiting in line for nearly ten minutes you discover only one bathroom has a changing table. And it’s not the bathroom you are now standing inside.
4. Wait in line a second time for the correct bathroom.
5. Child screams and tries to leap from your arms as the total line wait time passes the 14-minute mark.
6. Return to seat for reinforcements (a.k.a. husband).
7. Wait in line for third time.
8. Once inside the bathroom realize you forgot the changing table cover and begin laying out paper towels while child screams. Husband looks at you and asks, “really?”
9. Glare at husband.
10. Lay down child who kicks off carefully arranged paper towels, ending up directly on changing table that you’re positive hasn’t been sanitized to your liking. Or at all.
11. Child screams.
12. Husband decides this is the perfect time to mention that there is enough room to join the mile-high club once child returns to his seat
13. Repeat step 9.

Exhausted parents on airplane

14. Child arches back and screams even louder, then contorts with ninja-like speed into a standing position.
15. Hand child to husband and begin to undo diaper while child is being help under armpits, essentially dangling in the air.
16. Pants and offending diaper are removed.
17. Husband begins squirming even more than baby, claiming he is worried baby will pee on him.
18. Diaper contents transfer all over mom.
19. Repeat step 9.
20. Husband says, “Better you than me!”
21. Repeat step 9.
22. Attempt to put clean diaper on child.
23. Child squirms, diaper twists and becomes a thong.
24. Pull diaper out from between child’s butt cheeks.
25. Pull up child’s pants and pat self on back for a job well done.
26. Send husband and child back to seat.
27. Spend next 10 minutes cleaning self, bathroom and quadruple bagging offending diaper.
28. Return to seat.
29. Husband says he thinks child pooped again
30. Smell child’s rear, confirm it’s just gas and ask husband why he was unable to do that.
31. Repeat step 9.

For more of my mom shenanigans follow me on Instagram at Witty Otter.

Have you changed a diaper in an airplane bathroom? What tips can you share with others?

Images by Becky Vieira

BabyCenter Blog

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Kanye West Steps out in Never-Before-Seen adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runners

The current king of dad fashion, Kanye West, was spotted rocking an unreleased pair of his latest adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runners. Unlike the blue-accented “Gray/Chalk White/Core Black” colorway that was offered for pre-order in August, this iteration sports a mix of lighter shades of grey and muted green tones. The shades are then complimented with neon orange accents on the midsole and a gum rubber outsole.

So far there is no further information or release date on this colorway of adidas YEEZY BOOST 700 Wave Runner, but for those who have already pre-ordered the “Gray/Chalk White/Core Black” model can expect the sneakers sometime in November.

In case you’ve missed it, Kanye West’s YEEZY Runner fronts Vogue Australia‘s editorial.

Click here to view full gallery at Hypebeast.com


HYPEBEAST

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg holds event to ‘discuss next steps in protecting election integrity’

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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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Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

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Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

11 Steps to Creating the Perfect Bedroom for Sleep

It’s time to get your best rest ever.

Health – Good Housekeeping

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Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Colin Farrell Shares Moment His Special Needs Son Took His First Steps | TIFF 2017 | People

PEOPLE

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

CHARITY UPDATE:

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

5 Steps To Creating Content That Successfully Attracts Customers

Whether it’s producing videos, taking photos, hosting a podcast or writing articles, creating engaging content is one of the best ways to attract new customers. But before you hit publish, your content should focus on four key components: your expertise, company values, content that teaches your customers, and content that empowers them to take action.

(Image: iStock/robeo)

Here’s a five step process to creating content that attracts customers:

Identify the needs, desires, and challenges of your audience

 

To survey your audience, you can use an email list, Twitter, or Facebook polls.

Create niche content for your blog

 

Create niche content for your blog, YouTube channel, or podcast. Turn your audience’s problems into solutions by creating tutorials, how-to guides, and lists.

Tell compelling stories

 

Stories are an excellent way to humanize your brand. Collect customer testimonials, before and after stories, and share your perspectives about the industry and lessons learned as a business owner.

Repurpose across social media channels

 

Amplification across social media allows you to reach a wider audience. For instance, let’s say you host a podcast as a primary means to reach your audience. From one simple podcast you can:

    1. Transcribe audio into a written article for your website.
    2. Pull a quote from your article and turn it into a Tweet.
    3. Turn text into visual media for Instagram.
    4. Transform your article into an infographic for Pinterest.
    5. Turn your article into an animated video or slide share presentation.

Offer actionable content for free

 

Offering something of value for free is a perfect way to encourage your audience to take action. Freebies can include a helpful ebook, templates, resource guide or tools to make their lives easier. Just make sure you capture their email addresses in exchange for the freebie.

Small Business – Black Enterprise

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Spotify Takes Steps to Remove Hate Music From Streaming Service

Spotify announced it has removed "hate bands" identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center from the streaming service.

The removal comes after Digital Music News, in the wake of last week's white nationalist

This article originally appeared on www.rollingstone.com: Spotify Takes Steps to Remove Hate Music From Streaming Service

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Pandora names new CEO after founder steps down

Pandora named an over-the-top TV executive its chief executive on Monday, ending a search that began in June when co-founder Tim Westergren stepped down for a second time. Roger Lynch, the founding CEO of Sling TV, will take the reins of the Oakland, Calif., music-streaming company and join its board on Sept. 18. Naveen Chopra,…
Business | New York Post

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Despite Recently Having Twins, Beyoncé Steps Out In A Crop Top And Short Shorts

On June 13, Beyoncé welcomed twins Rumi and Sir Carter. On August 6, she attended the Kendrick Lamar DAMN. tour stop in Los Angeles wearing this: What kind of wizardry is this?! But really, the 35-year-old mother of three looks pretty great nearly two months after welcoming the twins. She’s been attending SoulCycle classes regularly with Jay […]

The post Despite Recently Having Twins, Beyoncé Steps Out In A Crop Top And Short Shorts appeared first on MadameNoire.

MadameNoire

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Millennial Women: 4 Steps to Ensure the Retirement of Your Dreams

Most retirement savings advice can be beneficial to anyone, no matter their sex. But, young women, in particular, need to start early in creating their retirement plan.

Why?

Recent research by the National Institute on Retirement indicates that women ages 65 and older typically have incomes 25% lower than men, and as men and women age, men’s income advantage widens to 44% by age 80 and older. Because of this, women are 80% more likely than men to be impoverished by ages 65 and older, and women ages 75 to 79 were “three times more likely to fall below the poverty level.”

Jennifer Streaks, money and lifestyle expert, offers ways young women can change these statistics and be proactive—and realistic—in planning how they will live out the golden years of their dreams:

 

1. First, Determine Exactly What Retirement Truly Looks Like for You

 

Self-assess and ask the important questions. “What type of life would you like to have in your late 50s, 60s, 70s?” Streaks says. “Do you love experiences over things? Do you want to quit, and have the option to do nothing but relax? Do you already have medical expenses, such as eyewear, physical therapy, fitness, or prescriptions that might carry into those years?”

 

2. Get Your Side Hustle On

 

“Look at retirement savings as a pie. There are three slices: investing, personal savings, and income from a small business or side hustle,” Streaks says. “So many millennials are now starting side businesses or becoming entrepreneurs. They’re also not staying at jobs for 10, 15, or 30 years, in order to get a pension or a fund of that nature.”

Streaks also adds that a side hustle or any money-making activity you can do part-time, such as freelancing or consulting, is great because it brings you “another level of income.”

“I have a friend who works a full-time job, and has a side business. Last year, she brought in an extra $ 29,000,” Streaks says. “If you can do something that’s sustainable and that you love today, it can be a great avenue for funding your retirement later.”

 

3. Scale Your Savings Goals and Be Flexible in Adjusting How You Save and What You’re Saving For

 

Streaks recommends setting short-term goals and focusing on those. This could include building up a rainy day fund or saving up six months to a year’s worth of living expenses to cover you, in the event of a financial emergency. Once you reach those goals, shift your savings for the long-term goal of retirement.

“It’s all in how you allocate your savings. Set up those automated drafts, where a portion of your paycheck goes to a savings account, with a specific purpose and goal amount,” Streaks says. “As you get older and become more financially stable, you can continue to re-allocating and saving for retirement.”

Also, when you get a raise, you can act like you didn’t. “Budget like you did when you made the lower salary, and save the difference, or take a percentage of the raise for yourself—as a reward—and put the rest toward saving for retirement,” she says.

 

4. Be Proactive and Ask Your Financial Advisers and Retirement Fund Administrators the Right Questions

 

“That 10-year window between 25 and 35 is a period where you can be the most aggressive with your investments. You have extra money to invest in stocks, but be aggressive in the stocks you choose,” Streaks says. Also, when it comes to an employer-provided 401k, Streaks urges young women to ask employers to match their contribution, even if working for a startup.

If you’ve consulted with or hired an adviser, ask about fees and risks associated with your investments. “You don’t want a large percentage of your money going toward fees that advisers can sometimes charge,” she says.

“Also, ask if stocks and other investments in your plan seem vulnerable. If something starts to happen with your investments, what will [your adviser] do to minimize your risk? Make sure you’re working with someone who is going to be monitoring this, and that you don’t just have your money sitting there with no one on top of watching your investments.”

Money – Black Enterprise

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Learn the Art of Effectively Mastering Time Management in 4 Steps

time management

Have you ever said, “I’ll do that later,” only to find that there were at least three more things waiting for you to complete…later? For the next two minutes, read this carefully and take notes. Here are four free tips to help you master managing your time more effectively. These tips will help you to truly transform your chaotic day into a calm experience.

 

The Benefit of Learning These Tips

 

For years I had an issue with proper time management. It’s not that I couldn’t arrive on time; I struggled with making sure that what I was leaving had been completed.

For example, I hate leaving the house with tasks undone, like cleaning up the kitchen, putting a load of clothes in the wash, or finishing one of my tasks as an entrepreneur. I suffered from that syndrome, which many working mothers experience in their everyday lives: perfectionism!

I don’t know about you, but I was taught that having a clean, orderly home was my responsibility. Nobody told me to go out and be successful, and—by the way—you don’t have to always worry about your house, because it’ll take care of itself eventually. What I was not taught—and I won’t be teaching this today either—was how to manage household activities as a successful entrepreneur. (That’s one of the lessons in my “Kick the Chaos” training.) Also, if you have children at home, getting them out of the house on time can also impact your schedule.

Managing your time is a skill that you want to develop into a habit. Being successful in business may mean you won’t have a clean house. Look at your guy friends or your spouse; when they have appointments or meetings, they are out the door. I know this is true for my husband. It doesn’t matter what’s not operating perfectly or imperfectly in our home, he practices good time management—ALWAYS!

Clearly, in business, timeliness is next to godliness. Having a reputation as someone who is chronically tardy to meetings or events can hurt your credibility.  You’re ready for success, aren’t you?

 

Four Ways to Effectively Budget Your Time

 

  1. Start the Day With the Intention to Manage Your Time BetterDecide today that you are going to manage your time. I learned a long time ago that thoughts are things, and if you want to attract specific things into your life, change your thinking. It works!
  2. Do It Now, or Plan Ahead for Later With a Reasonable Time FrameDon’t obsess over what needs to be done. Decide what your most urgent tasks are, and do them first. If time does not permit this, schedule the remaining tasks on your calendar.
  3. Make a List of What You Want to CompleteI am a big proponent of creating lists, because my dominant learning style is visually based. Seeing a picture of my daily to-dos keeps things fresh on my mind. Depending on how urgent certain tasks are or how many I may have to accomplish, I will schedule them in my phone.
  4.  Give Yourself Time to be on Time: I learned this habit before my kids were born. I’ve found that giving myself the time to be on time means I have to work strategically. For instance, if you know you have a hectic day at work ahead, but want to allow yourself time for prayer, meditation, and exercise, plan to get up a few hours earlier than usual to complete these tasks before you take your shower, apply your makeup, and head into the office to conquer those professional challenges. Successful entrepreneurs and business women also give themselves enough time to commute to work. Speeding down the highway and honking your horn before the light turns green is not going to help you make that meeting in a timely fashion. Always try to give yourself at least an extra 15 minutes to compensate for any unexpected delays.

Imagine what it’s like to have great time management and work-life balance! Become a master by practicing these four time management tips daily, and you will be well on your way to transforming your life.

 

 


This article was written by The BOSS Network Influencer C. Lynn Williams.

Lynn Williams is an award-winning author, motivational speaker, educator, and business owner. Her passion is helping parents create the kind of home life that welcomes communication and trust with their tweens, teens and adult children. Believing working moms can have better work-life balance, she created Finding Superwoman, a mentoring program to help women kick the chaos out of their life. Her motto is, “Providing parenting solutions. Building solid foundations. Securing promising futures.”

Learn more about C. Lynn Williams by visiting her website at www.clynnwilliams.com.

Follow C. Lynn on Twitter @msparentguru.

Career – Black Enterprise

EMPLOYMENT UPDATE:

Kendall Jenner Steps Out Amid Backlash Over Vintage ‘Rap vs. Rock’ T-Shirt Line

Supermodel Kendall Jenner was spotted at Los Angeles International Airport on Friday. And with all the controversy she’s found herself in this year — including the outrage this week over her recent vintage rap T-shirt line — it’s no wonder she wasn’t smiling wide.

The 21-year-old model, who was accompanied by sister Kourtney Kardashian, looked very serious as she entered the airport.

She wore a cropped teal top with matching hoodie and black Adidas track pants. Her hair in braids, Jenner kept her accessories simple — a pair of black sunglasses and high-heeled snakeskin boots.

Kendall and her sister Kylie introduced a line of limited edition $ 125 “Rap vs. Rock” tees as part of their latest Kendall + Kylie collection drop earlier this week — which featured the K.K. initials, Kendall’s superimposed face, and a silkscreen reproduction of an Instagram of Kylie in a bikini over images of Biggie and Tupac, Metallica, and Pink Floyd, among other iconic musicians.

The shirts quickly sparked backlash across the internet, with many users on Twitter calling the sisters out for being culturally and racially insensitive.

RELATED VIDEO: Nina Dobrev Without Makeup Is Just as Beautiful as Nina Dobrev with Makeup

Aside from that, the Keeping Up with the Kardashians stars also failed to reach out to the estates of these musical legends to secure the legal rights to the images — a fact Biggie’s mother Voletta Wallace made crystal clear writing on Instagram, “The disrespect of these girls to not even reach out to me or anyone connected to the estate baffles me.  I have no idea why they feel they can exploit the deaths of 2pac and my Son Christopher to sell a t-shirt.  This is disrespectful , disgusting, and exploitation at its worst!!!”

She wasn’t the only celebrity to speak out. Kelly Osbourne and Paris Jackson also took to social media to express their distaste for the reality stars’ designs, as did Kelly’s mom Sharon Osbourne — who tweeted one of the t-shirts featuring Kendall’s face overlaying an image of her husband Ozzy Osbourne yesterday, writing, “Girls, you haven’t earned the right to put your face with musical icons. Stick to what you know…lip gloss.”

RELATED PHOTOS: 16 Stars Who Have Spoken Out About Designers Who Won’t Dress Them

On Thursday, Kendall tweeted out an apology, which Kylie also shared:

“These designs were not well thought out and we deeply apologize to anyone that has been upset and/or offended, especially to the families of the artists,” she wrote in a note. “We are huge fans of their music and it was not our intention to disrespect these cultural icons in any way. The tee shirts have been pulled from retail and all images have been removed. We will use this as an opportunity to learn from theses mistakes, and again we are very sorry.”


PEOPLE.com

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Your Next Steps Should One Of Bey And Jay’s Twins Be Given Your Name

Hi. I’m sure you’ve heard the news: Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s twins are here. And now we play the waiting game until the first official photos are released and the baby names are announced.

But what happens if one of the tiny Beys has your name? I’m glad I pretended you asked, because this is where things get serious.

Here’s where you go from there. You may want to sit down for this.

 

1. Accept that you are no longer you.

At least not in the way you once knew yourself. Over the course of your life, your name gains a reputation to those around you. The mention of this name evokes a strong character impression for people, and that’s something you earn over years of interactions.

But this is all gone. Beyoncé has need of your name.

 

2. Choose a new name.

Whether you accept it or not, your name has vacated the spiritual residence once known as you. It’s never coming back. But don’t look at this as an end, think of it as a beginning. A new beginning. Not many people get to choose their own name. But that’s exactly what you’ll be doing. Because your name no longer exists for you. 

Eventually though, people will learn this new name as they did your previous one, and you’ll once again become a whole person. Which, at the moment, you are not. 

 

3. Choose a new home.

“Home” is a concept you will have to get reacquainted with. You don’t have to physically move away from your current home, but it will never be the same. The moment those mini Beys are given names, and assuming one of those names is the same as yours, you become spiritually homeless. Your essence is siphoned away. Slowly, your familiars will begin to fade and the place you once called home will become alien.

Finding a new place in the universe won’t be easy, but fate has decided that you’re strong enough. Years down the road, perhaps even decades, your belief in “home” will become comfortable again. And though you’ll often wake violently in the night trying to recapture images or ideas of what you once were, some semblance of peace will be yours.

 

4. Make a new life for yourself.

Take a good, long look in the mirror. The person you see should look like a stranger to you. This is the new you. This mammalian husk is your home now. Within this human suit is where you will be born again. You’ll form new bonds with people and make new memories in the world. Your previous life will be a distant star over the horizon, to all intents and purposes out of reach, but still a tiny twinkling reminder of an infinitely shifting universe.

 

5. **Alternate plan of action should Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s twins’ names somehow match your first and middle name.**

Your tenure in this universe has completed. It’s time to phase out of this reality and into the next. Good luck on your journey, cosmic adventurer. 

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Trevor Noah Steps Up to Defend His Best Friend, Tomi Lahren

Last night Noah tackled the hypocrisy of her suspension.

Lifestyle – Esquire

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How To Take Your Marriage From Sexless To Steamy, In 7 Steps

Don’t feel guilty if you can’t remember the last time you and your partner got it on; sexless marriages have become almost endemic in modern society. According to data scientist Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, the top-searched marriage complaint on Google is “sexless marriage” ― and it only takes a second to stumble upon advice forums, like the Dead Bedrooms board on Reddit. 

But couples in sexless marriages don’t have to go on quietly suffering. Below, psychologists and sex therapists share their best advice for revving up your sex life. 

1. Work out your marital issues first. 

Nothing kills your sex drive quite like unresolved relationship issues. If there’s emotional baggage between you and your partner, address it head-on, said Chris Maxwell Rose, a sex educator and the creator of the Pleasure Mechanics online courses. 

“Practice radical honesty and forgiveness outside the bedroom,” she said. “Take a walk or a drive together and share all of the emotional baggage that has been getting in your way. Then, make a joint commitment to move forward together.” 

2. Acknowledge that there’s a problem in the bedroom. 

The most effective intervention to a sexless relationship is surprisingly simple: Partners need to acknowledge the problem and express interest in reconnecting sexually, said Kimberly Resnick Anderson, a sex therapist in Los Angeles, California. 

“Just having an honest conversation can quickly shrink the elephant in the room,” she said. “Honoring the value of sex in a relationship is the first step toward reconnecting. Believe it or not, it’s not uncommon for couples who have avoided sexual contact for years to leave my office after just one session and go home and have sex.” 

3.  Spend a few hours every week getting touchy-feely.

Sex isn’t always going to be spontaneous. To get things started again, carve out two windows of time a week where all you do is touch. Think of it like a grownup makeout session, said Gracie Landes, a sex therapist and marriage and family therapist in New York City.

“Focus on your own sensations while you touch your partner, then gradually add in more mutual touch and slowly build up to intercourse,” Landes said. “But only pursue that last step when you’re both ready, comfortable and confident.” 

4. Use your memories to your advantage. 

It’s going to take some time to get in a sexy frame of mind. To get there, New York City sex therapist Megan Fleming recommends reminiscing about a really hot sex experience from your past. 

“Replay it in your mind’s eye, like watching a movie,” she suggested. “You have to really allow yourself to reconnect with how the experience felt, incorporating all five senses. It’s important to realize you have the power to turn yourself on long before your partner enters the room.” 

5. Read erotica or watch porn together. 

It helps to have an active imagination during sex, but if you’re struggling to imagine something that gets you or your partner off, outsource the job, advised Ian Kerner, a sex therapist and the author of She Comes First: The Thinking Man’s Guide to Pleasuring a Woman.

“Many of the couples I work with are surprised at how hot it can be to read erotica together,” he said. “Others enjoy watching porn and letting their fingers do the talking.” 

Kerner’s top erotica recommendations include old-school works like Emmanuelle by Emmanuelle Arsan, the Story of O by Pauline Reage or Delta of Venus by Anais Nin. If you’re more of a visual person, you may want to give ethical, women-friendly porn a chance. (Kerner recommends the films of Jackie St. James or Erika Lust.) 

6. Find out what your partner is craving sexually, and learn how to give it to them. 

Chances are, your turn-ons have changed over time. The same is probably true for your partner. Take the guesswork out of the equation by talking openly about your sexual interests, said Keeley Rankin, a sex therapist in San Francisco, California.

“Sexual needs can change over time and it’s important to ask every once and a while, ‘hey, what have you been craving sexually?’ Once you find out, learn how to give that to them,” she said. “If they want something you’re not familiar with, let them teach you.” 

7. Develop new “sex menus” together.

Try to picture your sex life this way: Just like there are different food groups that make up the food pyramid, there’s a limitless amount of sex positions and kinks to explore to keep your sex life vibrant and healthy. Read the Kama Sutra, search sex positions online ― do whatever it takes to get excited about sex again, Kerner said. 

“I often ask couples to come up with menus that emphasize different themes: emotional connection and love-making for instance, or fantasy-based menus that emphasize imagination,” he said. “And if you’re on the run, put the ‘quickie’ back on the menu ― whatever it takes!”

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Weddings – The Huffington Post
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TURKEY NECKS AND HUMPED BACKS: How Our Mobile Devices Are Aging Us and What We Can Do about It in Three Easy Steps

TURKEY NECKS AND HUMPED BACKS: How Our Mobile Devices Are Aging Us and What We Can Do about It in Three Easy Steps


TURKEY NECKS and HUMPED BACKS: How Our Mobile Devices Are Aging Us and What We Can Do about It in Three Easy Steps is a preventive tool against the potentially harmful effects of poor posture and our hand held mobile devices. This book outlines the common causes of a turkey or tech neck and what causes a humped back and the importance of staying in the Neutral Zone, stretching and strengthening. It also looks at our children and the importance of reflecting and teaching them healthy mobile devices habits.
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Dr. Vonda Wright's Guide to Thrive: 4 Steps To Body, Brains, And Bliss

Dr. Vonda Wright's Guide to Thrive: 4 Steps To Body, Brains, And Bliss


Dr. Wright unfolds her Guide to Thrive by preparing readers for six remarkable months of body, brains, and bliss transformation, using her framework of the four practical steps. As a scientist and physician, Dr. Wright backs up each step with the latest science about the vital connections between the physical body, the mind, and emotional health and equips readers to move, eat, think, and feel in order to thrive. Additionally, readers are invited to join Dr. Wright''s online fitness and nutrition club where they can enter their own health data and receive instant interactive information and encouragement.
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VTech First Steps Baby Walker.

VTech First Steps Baby Walker.


Colourful, imaginative and action-packed this sturdy baby walker from VTech will help to support and nurture your baby’s first steps and includes a variety of activity attachments that will keep them entertained on the go. All with the added benefit of easy assembly and its small compact design, making it easy to storing in small spaces. Features a detachable learning centre packed with activities Sturdy design Supports: brain power, senses, hand to eye co-ordination and physical development Batteries required: 3 x AA (not included). For ages 6 months and over. EAN: 0050803617639
List Price: 29.99
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7 Steps to Create Giant Success and Live a Fulfilled Life in the Process

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NASA experts use what is called “the chain of events” to understand the root causes of failures. In this chain, a cause creates an effect that becomes the cause of a new effect and so on until the failure occurs. If multiple events can connect and lead to a failure, the opposite is true as well. There is a series of mental events that lead to massive success. Each event is the cause for another event. How can you apply this thinking to create authentic success, meaning and fulfillment in your life? Here’s the countdown:

Step 6
The final outcome that we want in our lives is to have great results. Nobody works for several years with the hope that maybe one day, if everything falls perfectly into place and if he’s lucky enough he will fail. We all want results and success as the final effect. What is the cause of this effect?

Step 5
Success is ensured through steady growth, exponential thinking, smart work, commitment and continuous learning. Overnight success usually requires many years of work. Nothing worthwhile is created quickly. What allows you to invest a lot of time and effort, to learn, to research and work hard until your dream becomes real?

Step 4
The mental forces that allow you to continue learning, working and growing are inspiration, drive and motivation. Educational systems are constantly looking for new ways to motivate their students to learn various disciplines; organizations are investing millions of dollars in motivational programs for their employees. These approaches create only a momentary spike of motivation that rapidly goes away with the stimulus. Neither are sustainable because they lack the rock solid inner personal foundation.

Step 3
The only way to trigger sustainable motivation, drive and inspiration is to live your life with a sense of purpose. When you make the decision to trust your heart, to live your values and to honor your passion, you will find purpose. If you don’t live your values, if you ignore your passion and if you don’t honor the intelligence of your heart, you will be empty and most likely experience a lot of emotional pain. You cannot create an inner conflict between the mind and the heart, you cannot lie to yourself about who you are, about your dreams and expect to live a fulfilled life.

Step 2
The most straightforward and probably the only authentic way to find a sense of purpose is to put your life in the honest perspective. Honesty is critical.

Step 1
You put your life in the honest (and correct) perspective by living the truth and by fully embracing reality. What is the most uncomfortable reality we all need to face in our lives?

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“I will show you fear in a handful of dust”
– T.S. Eliot

Our time here on Earth is limited. The desert fathers in the remote monasteries of Egypt, the Greek orthodox monks on Mount Athos or the ancient shamans in Central America understood that death is the wisest and most reliable guide we have in life.

Without sadness or worry, you must fully embrace the fact that you don’t have time to doubt yourself, to live in self-pity, to postpone your dreams, to delay your life. You simply don’t have time for a meaningless, empty existence. Without the awareness of our limited time on Earth, everything around us is trivial and ordinary.

“All you have to do is write one true sentence.
Write the truest sentence that you know”
– Ernest Hemingway, Nobel Prize Laureate

Honesty without judgment is the secret door to peace and fulfillment, so think and feel the answer to these questions:

1. If your life ended in this moment, would you be fulfilled with how you have lived and what you have accomplished so far?

2. Would you be able to honestly say you have lived an authentic life?

3. What regrets do you have in life?

4. How can you live from now on without continuing to accumulate more and more regrets?

Leave a comment and tell me. We’re in this together.

For hundreds of years humanity has tried to answer the question – “is there life after death?” For the first time in your life you now must honestly answer the question:
Do you really have a life before death?

Your friend,
Dr. Dragos

PS: Go do something extraordinary. Because it’s never the extraordinary people who do the extraordinary. It’s the ordinary people like you and me, who get up off their knees and decide to take the journey. Because they complete the journey, ordinary people become extraordinary.

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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

Loft Pet Steps

Loft Pet Steps


Loft Pet Steps. These beautifully crafted Loft Pet Steps feature real maple wood frosted with a non-slip sand finish, mounted on a sleek, heavy duty wrought iron frame. The non-slip finish provides your pet with added safety and the sleek, modern design makes a nice addition to home decor. Great for senior dogs or pets with short legs. . Sizing: 26.5 in. L x 18 in. W x 19 in. H Each wooden step board is 18 in. W x 8 in. D
List Price: $ 240.00
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35 Items In Your Wardrobe is All You Need: 7 Steps

My interpretation of a “minimalist wardrobe” was recently challenged when my girlfriend Jenn Mapp told me about her 35 items. I have known her for years (pre toddler and infant, pre house), and have always thought of her as a “fashionista” in the best sense of the word. I rarely saw her wear the same outfit twice, she always looked fabulous, and she accessorizes better than anyone else. Yet, she decided to simplify her closet (thus her life), and pare it down to 35 items. And she loves the result – not just in her closet. Intrigued? Read on… After all, we all know of Steve Jobs’ jeans and black turtleneck uniform. President Obama has discussed owning shirts of just a few colors, to simplify his mornings. And most business men in effect have their own uniform (suit and shirt). Perhaps they are on to something… I may just have to try this myself…

• AP: What made you decide to reduce your wardrobe to 35 items?

• JM: For most of life shopping was my favorite pastime. Now I have a toddler and an infant, a full time job and own a small (but charming!) house. This translates to no time, minimal storage and considerably less discretionary income. Earlier this spring, while searching Pinterest for closet organization tips, I discovered several boards dedicated to the idea of a minimalist wardrobe. The notion of turning my massive, unmanageable closet into a curated collection of seasonal apparel just felt right. Within a few days I ruthlessly edited my clothes down to 35 items and consigned, donated or stored the rest. My life has improved immeasurably.

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Credit Jenn Mapp

• AP: What are your 35 items? Does this include accessories, shoes, lingerie – everything?

• JM: I define “35 items” as the apparel hanging in my closet — business casual separates worn mostly to work. My 35 items do not include accessories because these are my signature outfit makers and without them this would not be a plausible fashion experiment – for me. Workout clothes, lingerie and sleep items do not count. However, my entire fashion collection now fits in one side of an Ikea Pax wardrobe. This makes me very proud.

• AP: How has your life changed since undergoing this fashion experiment?

• JM: In so many ways! Obviously I’ve saved money and time but I’m also happier and more present. You don’t realize how much energy it takes to manage possessions. Most tangibly, my fashion experiment motivated me to start a blog. I assumed #jennmapp would be a fashion blog cataloging multiple outfits created from 35 items but I’ve found that I am more inspired by the psychology of the process. Curbing the impulse to shop parallels instinctive behavior in every aspect of my life. My 3 year old son AJ has emerged as a noteworthy muse.

• AP: Any tips on how others could reduce their wardrobes?

• JM: Sure, how about a random numbered list? The internet loves a list.

1. Purchase or borrow an inexpensive rolling rack.

2. Assemble your entire wardrobe in one place.

3. Automatically move formal or cocktail attire, out of season clothes, ill-fitting or damaged items to the rolling rack.

4. Consider every item that remains. These will make up your current season collection. If you love it, you will know in one second – leave it in your closet. If you experience any hesitation towards an item, put it on the rolling rack.

5. Ruthlessly edit until you are down to a collection that feels right. You will need an adequate assortment of tops, bottoms and outwear. Consider your lifestyle. Depending on the size of your wardrobe, you may require several rounds of edits.

6. Store, repair, consign or donate the rest. Just do it.

7. Repeat every three – four months, filling in gaps as needed.

As I listen to Jenn in awe, she concludes: “You only think you need hundreds of items. You don’t! I guarantee you only wear 30 – 50 pieces as it is. Closet reduction is an excellent exercise in defining your value system. If you read this and are inspired to act, you are ready. Take the plunge. If the idea doesn’t resonate at all or seems inconceivable, well someone has to keep the economy afloat, right?”

Right!

Resources to help you achieve this minimalist wardrobe:

http://jennmapp.tumblr.com/
Project333.com
Theunfancy.com

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Style – The Huffington Post
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Pregnant Kim Kardashian Steps Out With A Plunging Neckline

Kim Kardashian doesn’t let something like pregnancy interfere with her personal style.

The 34-year-old reality star, who just revealed she’s expecting a baby boy with husband Kanye West, made quite the statement as she arrived at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York on Monday.

Photographers snapped photos of Kardashian, who was busy taking a phone call — but it was her clothes that did all the talking. The “Selfish” author stunned in a ultra-low-cut nude bodysuit paired with high-waisted pants and peep toe booties, making everyone in the airport feel simultaneously over- and underdressed.

kim k

kim k

— 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.

Style – The Huffington Post
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Parents Who Drive You Crazy: Four Steps for Handling Emotionally Immature Parents

Do you ever feel like the mature one in your relationship with your parents? If so, you are like countless others who are hurt and frustrated by their emotionally immature parents. It is difficult to deal with parents who have not developed enough empathy to care sufficiently about the feelings of others. These immature parents focus on their own interests to the point where they make their children feel inadequate, unseen, and chronically guilty.

While the emotionally immature parent may act like a normal adult in the outside world, their self-involved and controlling behavior comes out full force at home. They ignore their children’s emotional needs because they are focused on their own consuming desires for attention and control. As a result, their children end up feeling insignificant and emotionally alone.

Like small children, emotionally immature parents are fixated on their immediate demands. They expect others to anticipate their needs first. They undermine their children’s confidence and self-esteem by acting like the child can never do enough to make them happy. Their children become anxiously vigilant as they try to avoid the emotional backlash that comes if they don’t guess correctly what their parent wants.

It is much more useful and accurate to think of these parents as emotionally immature rather than through the lens of a clinical diagnosis, such as narcissism. Their emotional immaturity can take different forms — not all of which are diagnosable categories — but all the types cause emotional pain and deprivation in their children. Once you get the idea that these are psychologically underdeveloped personalities, it is much easier to handle them rather than thinking about them diagnostically.

Most of us instinctively know how to handle upset toddlers, but we don’t think to apply that to our gray-haired parents. Few of us would expect a preschooler to consider our needs or react sensibly if we ask them to do something they dislike. Yet with immature parents, we expect a reasonableness and empathy they don’t possess and never will. As a result, we are repeatedly confused and shocked by their lack of cooperation or sensitivity. Why must they make everything so hard? Why can’t they think about us for a change?

Dealing with difficult parents is especially hard on the emotionally sensitive child who can’t help but notice other people’s feelings. The immaturity of the parent means that these children develop the heavy responsibility of worrying about other people’s needs. These more emotionally perceptive children often over-perform as the go-to person in the family who cares about other people’s problems.

Unfortunately, these conscientious children usually keep trying to win their parent’s approval throughout their lives, but their immature parent will neither listen nor open up emotionally. If the sensitive child tries to tell the parents how he or she feels, the parents will clam up, mock, dismiss, or turn the tables with self-pity or blame. They are terrified of sincere feelings, and simply do not deal with anything emotionally intimate.

It works better to deal with emotionally immature parents using a four-step method that I call the Maturity Awareness Approach.

1. Use Your Observer Mind
Rather than trying to engage these parents, emotional detachment is much safer. Use your thinking function rather than your emotional reactivity, and you will no longer be their emotional victim. By objectively observing their self-preoccupation and control maneuvers, you gain freedom from the need for their approval.

2. Express and Then Let Go
One of the hardest things to realize is that trying to get a satisfying response from your parent won’t work. It is far more effective to say what you need to say using clear, intimate communication, while releasing any expectation that they will change. By practicing speaking up in a calm way, you strengthen yourself whether they respond positively or not.

3. Focus on the Outcome, Not the Relationship
You can’t expect empathy or fairness from an emotionally immature parent. Instead, think about the specific outcome you want, rather than trying to improve the relationship. Remember, anything emotionally intimate scares these parents. Decide what specific outcome you are aiming for, and keep going for it. For instance, you can ask for an apology, but you can’t ask for a change of heart.

4. Manage, Don’t Engage
Manage the conversation instead of reacting to what the parent says. Make explicit goals for topic and duration, and guide things toward where you want to end up. By managing toward the outcome you want, you avoid the frustration of having all conversations hijacked by your parent’s self-preoccupations. If you let them set the pace, you will end up drained and resentful. Instead of engaging with you, these parents will dominate with their most pressing interests, their pet beef, or their unmet needs. Don’t be sidetracked by their complaining or criticisms. Your job is to move things along toward the outcome you want.

Emotionally immature parents will drive you crazy if you mistake their physical age for psychological maturity. Acknowledge that you may have surpassed them developmentally a long time ago, and their insensitivities will begin to hurt a little less. Remember, they are just too young to think of you much at all.

Lindsay C. Gibson, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice who specializes in personal growth and individual psychotherapy for adults. She has taught psychology graduate students as a past Adjunct Assistant Professor for The College of William and Mary and Old Dominion University. Her newly released book is Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents, and her previous book Who You Were Meant To Be: Finding or Recovering Your Life’s Purpose was published in 2000. You can follow her blog at drlindsaygibson.com.

— 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

Cherry Wood Pet Steps

Cherry Wood Pet Steps


A stylish solution to making your pet at home in your home! Our Decorative Pet Steps are available in two-step or three-step sizes. Complete with protective pads to keep the floor free of scratches and dents. These luxe steps also feature carpeted treads to keep pets from slipping when going up or down. Solid cherry wood with polyurethane finish, the decorative look will be a great addition to any home. Coordinates with most home decor. Great for senior pets or dogs with short legs. Find out more about aging pets Features: – Protective non-skid floor pads – Carpeted treads to prevent slipping and minimize noise – Long-lasting polyurethane finish Sizing: 2-Step: 14 in. high x 16 in. deep x 17 wide. 3-Step: 21 in. high x 24 in. deep x 17 wide.
List Price: $ 189.00
Price: $ 114.00

Happy: Simple Steps to Get the Most Out of Life (Unabridged)

Happy: Simple Steps to Get the Most Out of Life (Unabridged)

Ian Smith has inspired millions to lose weight—through his effective and best-selling diet books, The Fat Smash Diet, Extreme Fat Smash Diet, and The 4-Day Diet; through his outreach work on State Farm’s 50 Million Pound Challenge; and through his numerous television and radio appearances and speaking engagements throughout the United States.

In counseling and motivating dieters—and in observing his feelings about his own life – Smith learned that while achieving hard-fought and worthy goals can help make a person happy, even these real and measurable achievements aren’t what makes happiness stick. In Happy, he’s discovered the keys to enduring contentment.

Happy simply and effectively explains how anyone can reach their own personal high-water mark of positive feelings. It’s not euphoria Smith is after. He understands and explains the difference between the too-brief rush that comes from getting something you’ve wanted instead of becoming someone you want to be. In Happy, Smith motivates listeners to understand the behaviors and mind-sets that work and last, including:

  • How to be optimistic
  • Why optimism and realism are not opposites
  • How to get outside yourself
  • The importance of family and community
  • Why involvement leads to contentment
  • Shedding the treadmill mentality of getting and spending
  • Tapping the power of simple pleasures
  • How to be, not just to do
  • Why changing from a scowl to a smile can have a deep impact
  • Mastering modern life (from competition to technology) to live in the moment
  • How to alter your happiness set point

A life-changing book from one of America’s most compelling and trusted voices, Happy delivers what its title promises.

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8 Steps to Truly Love Yourself — and Why It’s the Most Selfless Thing You Can Do

There seems to be a very beautiful trend taking shape that I am completely devoted to: It is starting to be popular to “be loving.” Over the last few years, health, spiritual practices and taking care of mother earth are starting to be considered a hip thing — rather than a strange “hippie” thing. I am delighted by how this is reflected in the overall consciousness of our planet: We are starting to truly care about ourselves. When I started studying yoga about ten years ago the concept of ahimsa — non-harming — was still rather unknown in mainstream society. Meditation, yoga, vegetarianism, conscious consumerism, recycling, all those trends have really only been taking root in the last few years. Of course there are issues, and they need to be addressed. But what matters is the shift that we see happening on a global scale.

What does this tell us about the individuals who make up our societies? It simply means we are starting to genuinely love ourselves more. I know we still have some work to do, but we are on the way. And as on every path, the important thing is: Keep going! Keep loving yourself! Keep pampering yourself and noticing! Keep noticing what is happening around you and how our society and the way we treat our earth is changing. Why? Because taking care of yourself, loving yourself, living your purpose will lift the entire planet.

1. Serve the world by living your purpose

What is your soul’s deepest desire? What is your biggest dream for your own life? Chances are that it’s not a 9-5 desk job. However, when first pondering this question, your dreams might seem selfish. Start by seeking out those people who celebrate you being big. In most modern societies, this isn’t a common behavior (at least not yet) and you’ll need a bit of creativity to make it work and yes, there will be a few lonely moments. But the feeling of your soul smiling is priceless. And once you experienced this feeling, it is hard to ever go back.

Consider this powerful quote by Marianne Williamson:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

2. Empower people by being confident

It ties in with the above point. It’s easier to reduce yourself to a being worthy of compassion. People will feel your misery and will try to help you. But on the contrary, how inspiring is it to be around somebody who is genuinely confident? It really makes you feel that you can do it too, right?

3. Stop the gossip. Stop the complaints.

Complaining is a negative energy that locks us into a certain way of thinking. When we look for the negative in others we zoom in on exactly that — the negative surrounding us. Once we shift our radar towards what inspires us in others we are instead looking for connection, growth, love, joy — short, uplifting energies. And those are exactly the qualities we will then be able to nurture in our own lives. It takes time and practice to achieve this shift. The road might be bumpy and you might have to redirect some conversations when you first start practicing. But it will get easier and easier, until it turns from a practice into your second nature!

4. Balance of gentleness and firmness

I struggled with anorexia in my teenage years. All through my 20s I learned to nurture my body, and myself, slowly learning to be gentle with myself. My studies of self-development, yoga and Vedanta gave me an increased feeling of being complete in myself. Yet, there was still that nagging negative voice that would keep coming up, a voice that felt so much more powerful than my other, gentle voice. It was only when my best friend and coach Kat Dawes from Nowism recommended to try out a fierce voice whenever I judged myself that I achieved the crucial shift. This practice really helped me to eliminate that last bit I just didn’t quite seem to get rid of. Now when my inner voice criticizes myself I know how to be fierce and redirect my thoughts with firmness.

The best thing you can do for yourself is finding that balance for yourself: Find out when you need to give yourself a kick, but also when you need to give yourself a big hug and a bubble bath.

5. Keep promises made to yourself

When you make a promise to yourself KEEP IT! Honor your own word to yourself, whether that is to take a break, go on a holiday, go to a yoga class, eat more healthily, or go to bed early. Imagine what your friend would say if you’d let her down as many times as you let down yourself. To make things easier, find yourself an “accountability buddy.” Tell each other the things you have planned to nurture yourself — and check in with each other once a week to see how you are doing.

6. Nourish and celebrate yourself

Having been completely absorbed in the yogic world for years, I noticed a tendency to discard materialism as something entirely negative. However, I acknowledged to myself how much I love being a girl sometimes, including all those little pretty things such as make-up, clothes and spa treatments. But instead of drawing negative energy out of this “attachment,” I achieved a huge internal shift: I started treating those things as a personal act of celebrating my femininity, as an act of gratitude for having been given a healthy body. It’s a ceremony to give thanks for the blessings in my life and for having received this life force, a force that needs to be nurtured. You need to be grateful for receiving it and honor it by living your highest purpose.
Therefore, allow yourself to nourish yourself — no matter if that means going to the gym, getting a pedicure or buying new shoes — do it with a huge smile on your face.

Living in Bali has been a huge inspiration for me in that regard — the women in Bali dress up in the most beautiful ways for their ceremonies to go to the temples or to give daily offerings. And then they change into leggings and flip-flops to go to work. It is such a sweet symbol of dressing up – for the divine, not to impress others. I went through an interesting process of reconciling my identity of being a designer with the role of a business woman. I had to truly embrace the fact that my designs are an expression of the divine energy inside me and that sharing this energy with the world is my gift to uplift others. We need to embrace the fact that we are material bodies living in a material world. Make your life a celebration of the wonderful world around you, every moment, every day!

7. Have integrity with the people who surround you

One of my favorite books is The 4 Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. The first agreement is, “Be impeccable with your word.” There is such depth in this agreement. If we make a promise to ourselves to always be true to ourselves we start having quality control in the most genuine way. We speak with love. There are certain attitudes and behaviors we don’t accept. And by doing so, we actually serve humanity. There are so many people out there — it is totally fine to not open up to all of them. But we can find ways to be respectful and friendly in all situations.
However, if somebody weighs you down by their continuous negativity it’s fine to set boundaries. It is just as much of an inspiration to watch somebody who has healthy boundaries, as it is to watch somebody to be all-embracing love. Trust your intuition. Trust your gut.

8. Step by step towards your soul’s alignment — don’t ever think you have more time

Do it now! Take a little step at a time — but don’t put it off. Take baby steps in the right direction, even if it’s just a little today, and a little tomorrow. Honored to be walking right there with 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

How to Let Go of Your Fears in Five Steps

Why is it so difficult to let go of our fears? How much easier life would be if we dared to go ahead and we would not worry about everything. You should let go of your fears, not stick to them. It is difficult to know what belongs to you, as you often do not even realize that you have adopted something, and at the same time you consider things as your reality which have nothing to do with reality. Notice what does not belong to you, that is holding you back and eliminate it from your life; do not let it slow you down. The following tasks help me each and every time I would like to conquer my fears.

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1. Write down your fears

If you have the courage to write them down, you are halfway there. Lot of fears are eating us from the inside, and we are so used to them that we don’t even realize they exist. They are hidden in our words and in our beliefs. We have made them part of our lives, but remember: you shouldn’t stick to your fears, you should let them go.

2. Go into details

Write down the main areas of your life and make lists of your blockages. This task will help you dig even deeper into your fears. I know, you still say that this task is not for you, but if you follow the five steps, you will soon realize it is only your ego tricking you. From your job to you career and to your relationships, take a look at the things that might hold you back. Think of the reasons why you are not taking certain steps.

Don’t forget:
your circumstances keep changing all the time, don’t camp in the past. Just because something could not happen last year, it might happen this year.

3. Analyze

Now that you have a list of your fears, deal with them one by one. Why are you afraid of it? Because if you don’t succeed, it’s a failure? Why are you afraid of failure? What kind of image do you have of failure? How were you treated in the past when you failed?

The attitude and the experience you associate with the specific events are important. If in your case it is negative, you only have to change that. The following stories will help you with that.

I know people who have been competing a lot since they were kids, and when they didn’t win, their parents praised them anyhow and told them that it was also a part of the journey. If you want to be very good, you have to make a lot of mistakes; it is only the cowards that don’t try. It is a myth that you are good only if you do everything perfectly. I think it works this way: you accept that you make mistakes, but you learn, because you WANT to grow.

The second story: a boy told me once that when he accidentally broke a glass as a child, his mother would start to scream her lungs out and say “how clumsy you are, son!” All through his childhood, this boy convinced himself that he is clumsy, because his mother said so, and he has been afraid he might break a glass ever since. Is it a realistic fear? No. Nevertheless, he hates eating out, since he is afraid it will happen again. I asked him to talk about this with his mother. It turned out that her mother simply got a heart attack every time, because when she was a child a wall collapsed behind her back, and since then if anything breaks around her, her reaction is like that. It also turned out that she was also worried that her son might get hurt.
You see how much depends on whether you communicate with others in a clear way? But for this, you need to know your fears and to know how the events of your past influence the present.

4. Change your viewpoint

Face them! Now that you have elaborated on the exact causes of your fears, think about it: is it a realistic fear? What will happen if you fail? Nothing – but if you don’t even try, you will think about it for the rest of your life, WHAT IF? I wouldn’t wish this kind of life on anyone. Once your attitude is changed, here comes the next step: you should face your fear.

E.g. “I’m afraid I won’t be enough.”
– Why do you think so?
E.g. “My mother always told me no-one would want me,” “My ex-partner told me I would never find anyone better than him,” etc.
– Is my fear real? What do I think?

Write down your opinion honestly, why you think you are not enough. If you always write “I’m unlucky in this”, “every man is an asshole”, “I’ll be fooled again, no matter what” and the like, than look a bit further: what happens if you don’t succeed the first or second time? Nothing. Is every man really an asshole? Surely not. If you know only one who isn’t, you should hope that there are more. This can’t be your attitude, since you will get what is in your head. And finally: why would you be fooled again? Just because you failed an exam once, you won’t fail again. Just because you got lost in a city once, you won’t necessarily get lost again. Think about it. We always learn and grow.

Why isn’t your attitude like this: the more times you are fooled and the more negative experience you have, the easier it will be in the long run to see who can stay and who should go. After a while you will be able to spot the people you have nothing to do with you in no time, and you will be able to save many weeks, months, years and great disappointments. Let things happen the way they are supposed to happen, and don’t rule out the possibility that something might turn out good at the end of the day. I know it is difficult to believe that you deserve good things, but it is worth a try.

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5. Always have a plan B

A Plan B will calm you down. It will take the pressure off of you, and FINALLY you can relax. What if, for example, you never find Mr. Right or you don’t have anyone for years? That isn’t a tragedy either. I get plenty of letters from readers saying they are alone, and don’t even have the chance to get to know people, but they would like to be with someone. What if you get to know and love yourself first? What if you discover and polish your skills? If you end up alone, make use of the valuable time you have received – let me add, not by coincidence. At times like this you can move on faster than when you have someone on your side. Shape your attitude, one without desperation. Accept the situation you are in and make the most of it. From the very moment you accept what you have and you decide that, not everyone has to live according to the expectations of society after all, you will be free from desperation and fear. This is called letting go. This is about “I’ve done everything I could and I accept what I have and won’t fight it anymore. It will happen when it happens, and until then I ‘m enjoying life.” Opportunities are stifled by clinging, but if you are open minded and receptive, miracles will come… and we have all heard stories like “it happened exactly when I had given up hope.” Well, something like this happens before that.

Have something to add to this story?
E-mail me: oravecz.nora@gmail.com
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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

7 Steps to Transform Your Life

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Below is an excerpt from Transform Your Life: 7 Steps to a Better Life.

Many people want to change some aspect of their lives. Others prefer to transform their lives by making significant, lasting changes.

Transforming your life involves going beyond the way you live, co-creating a better life for yourself, and changing the way you live. You do this by using your thoughts, visualization, words, faith, actions, or a combination of them. You use them to change some of what is happening within you and in your life, to co-create what you truly desire, and to live differently.

This process begins from within and results in significant changes in you and your life. As you change, your life will also change. You will have a better life. Your better life can be your best life ever — the life of your dreams. If you are going through a major challenge or several challenges, they may seem to go on forever, but as day always follows night, so too your breakthrough will follow your challenges if you follow some of the advice presented [below]:

1. Build and maintain a strong burning desire

Desire is the driving force that propels us to achieve our goals. If you are serious about transforming your life, you can set this as one of your major goals. However, to achieve this goal, you must have a strong desire that is like a fire lit within you and you must maintain this strong desire until your life is transformed.

2. Engage in transformative learning

Transformative learning is about changing how you think and the thoughts you think. It involves changing your perspective and acting from a new, more empowering perspective. As the apostle Paul noted, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” (Rom. 12:2) Transformative learning is one of the best ways to renew your mind and transform your life.

3. Change your self-concept

Have you ever asked yourself, “Who am I?” You are not your name. You are not your job title. You are not your body. You live in a body. What do you think about yourself? For many, these are deep questions. There is a tendency to believe who others tell us we are and this can limit us. Spend some time finding out who you really are and then change the concept you have of yourself to that of the real you. When you do this, you will change, and when you change your life will also change.

4. Understand some basics of the co-creation process

You may have heard others say that you create your reality. Really? We do not create anything. We are co-creator and we bring things into existence together with God and others. We co-create both good and undesirable things and events for ourselves and others. If you understand some basics of the co-creation process, this will help you to transform your life.

5. Co-create your better life

After you understand some basics of the co-creation process, take the time to plan your life. You can develop a strategic plan for your life. A strategic plan outlines where you are now, where you want to go, and how you intend to get there. It includes things like your mission, vision, and your major goals for the key areas of your life, such as health, wealth, success, and your relationship with God and others. Write down your plan and take action to achieve your goals. The sooner you start, the faster you will get more of them. Plan to have a better life full of the desires of your heart and enjoy your life.

6. Start living differently

To start living differently you have to start thinking, talking, and acting differently and continue doing so until your life is transformed. Implement your plans, monitor them and evaluate them on a regular basis. Revise them if you need to. Every step you take in the right direction gets you closer to your desired destination.

7. Be grateful

Many of us have a lot to be grateful for, including things we take for granted. Having eyes to read and access to the internet are among our many blessings. What do you have to be grateful for today? Who can you thank for a blessing you received recently? Gratitude releases endorphins in your body and this makes you feel good. It helps you cope with stress and it is good for your health. Gratitude opens doors in your life for receiving more — for yourself, and to share with others.

Transforming your life can be challenging, yet exciting and rewarding. If you want a much better life with more of the things you truly desire, then take some action today to start doing so.

###

Dr. Nella Ann Roberts is a human resource development specialist and the CEO of High-Impact Consulting Group. Her mission is to help others develop themselves for success and make a difference in the world. For more information, see www.DrNellaAnnRoberts.com.

If you enjoyed this blog post, please share it.

For more on this topic, you can get a copy of Transform Your Life: 7 Steps to a Better Life available from Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com and online booksellers. This book is a practical guide with real life examples and exercises at the end of every chapter to help people transform their lives.

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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

5 Steps to Shining from the Inside Out

Many of us have heard the phrases, “shine your light,” “discover your passion” or “follow your bliss.” But what do these terms actually mean, and how can you go about doing them?

Less than a year ago, I was in a toxic relationship, working a job I hated and felt disconnected from my body and myself. My wake-up call came in the form of ugly crying in my bathtub where I realized I could no longer do things the way I had been doing them. Despite my intense fear of the unknown, I knew that it was time to truly live the life I knew inside I was capable of living. I ended that toxic relationship, left the dead-end job and discovered a deep love and acceptance of myself. The past year has stretched me, pulled me, and challenged me more than I ever thought possible, but today I am more grounded, vibrant, connected and authentic than ever before with the unshakeable confidence to match, and I teach my clients to do the same. This is shining from the inside out.

Here’s how I did it (and you can too):

  1. Eat well. Know the saying, “You are what you eat?” — turns out, it’s true! The food we eat contributes to the energy in our cells and up-leveling the quality, love, and attention of what nourishes our bodies ends up nourishing our souls as well.
  2. Get enough sleep. Sleeping improves memory, reduces anxiety, and supports weight loss. Getting between 7 and 9 hours of sleep a night can ensure you reap the benefits.
  3. Make time for self-care. In an over-scheduled world full of distractions this can be difficult, but it is a critical step. Techniques like exercise, time with friends and family, or even just a walk outside recharges your batteries and improves happiness.
  4. Get to know yourself. Practices like journaling and meditation are crucial to discovering what really matters to you. And when you know what really matters, you can prioritize and go after it.
  5. Follow your intuition. You know, that little voice that says, “apply for that job,” “send that email,” or “that guy is creepy, swipe left”?! Your gut instinct is usually right, and learning to tap into and follow it is one of the best things you can do to shine from the inside out.

Following these tips can help you feel great, look even better, and create a life you truly love. Pick one and start today!

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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

The Founder Of Papa John’s Has Three Steps To A Good Life (VIDEO)

John Schnatter, the founder and CEO of Papa John’s pizza company, gave a speech at Ball State University’s commencement on Saturday.

Among some regularly heard graduation advice (if your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough), Schnatter explained his three steps to having a good life: “You wake up, you be nice, you kick ass, and you repeat,” he said. “It’s that simple.”

Schnatter added that all graduates should “do nice things for the people you love,” including friends, family and the community at large.

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
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7 Steps To Finding Your True Purpose

SPECIAL FROM Grandparents.com

With average life expectancy now approaching 80, Americans can look forward to spending almost two decades enjoying retirement. That free time can seem heavenly at first—until the days stretch on. “[After] the honeymoon stage comes the disenchantment stage,” says Dr. Sara Yogev, psychologist and author of “A Couple’s Guide to Happy Retirement.” “People feel like everything is purposeless. They can get depressed, and we would like to avoid that stage.”

Discovering your purpose—your driving force—is a proven way of escaping that emptiness. “From what we know from research, those that have a sense of purpose are happier,” says Dr. Yogev. “Their adjustment to retirement is better and their marriages are happier.” What’s more, studies show that retirees with a defined, actionable purpose have improved cognitive function and a reduced risk of stroke.

Of course, uncovering your fundamental motivation is no small task. We asked Dr. Yogev for tips on how to get the ball rolling.

1. Write your values and interests down
Nothing helps crystallize your thoughts like seeing them on paper. Take time to contemplate your strongest-held interests and central beliefs. Then, rate them. No, really. “Put them on a scale and rate them 1 to 10,” suggests Dr. Yogev. This exercise will help you prioritize what’s most important to you, which can guide you toward your essential purpose.

#2. Ask yourself how you want to be remembered
Contemplating your legacy—the accomplishments that live on after you pass—is key in resolving your reason for being. “Imagine your grandchild is talking to his own grandchildren about you. What is said? Would he say you were generous and kind? Would he say you were reliable?” asks Dr. Yogev. These questions can help guide you towards finding a purpose for which you will be proud to be remembered, and is compatible with who you are and how you are seen by others.

To help this exercise along, remember your own mentors and idols, and consider modeling your behavior after theirs. “Think about people you admire and respect. Who are they? What is it that they do that might be realistic for you to do, in some way?”

#3. Enter your state of flow.
According to Dr. Yogev, a state of flow is, “when time goes by and it flies, since you’re so immersed what it is you do.” For some people, it’s a social engagement. For others, all it takes is a favorite solo activity, like fishing or reading. Dr. Yogev asks, “Is it a stamp collection? Is it when you write or paint something? Maybe it’s when you’re with friends.” Consider the details, and use them as a guide toward finding your purpose: “What are you doing? Who is with you?”

#4. Don’t confuse purpose with passion
While your purpose and your passion can match up, they might not. “Be careful with the word ‘passion,'” says Dr. Yogev. “Passion is stronger than purpose. Most people have or can find something that gives them purpose, but isn’t necessarily something they feel passionate about. Expect to find a sense of purpose in retirement, where you feel needed, valued and contributing—but not necessary passion. Fewer people find passion most find purpose.”

For example, you may be passionate about rescuing elephants in Africa, but it may not fulfill you as much as volunteering at the senior center. Volunteering may make you feel useful and valued, but you might not consider it a passion. Ultimately, “You want to feel a sense of productivity,” she says. “As long as you feel productive, and it’s something that gives you a sense of appreciation, [you’ll be fine].”

#5. Remember: Your purpose is your own.
If you and your spouse share similar purposes, that’s fine. However, it’s important not to enter retirement believing they must mesh. Dr. Yogev says, “We cannot force or impose our values on a spouse. He/she needs to find one for themselves. Don’t force each other to do what is meaningful to you.”

Not only will this give you the freedom to choose your own path, but it will provide fuel for your marriage. “Give enough space,” she urges. “It can make a couple’s life richer. When you have dinner together, you have something to talk about.”

#6. Devise a plan of attack.
When it comes to purpose, “It’s important to be able to translate something you’re interested in to action mode, to a timeline,” says Dr. Yogev.

In other words, it’s nice to have dreams and goals, but to make them a reality, you must create an actionable strategy, complete with concrete dates to meet objectives. If your purpose is to teach English to immigrants, for example, you might set time aside to research local programs, and then choose an exact day to begin volunteering. “Be specific in your actions,” says Dr. Yogev. “Otherwise, nothing happens.”

#7. Find a compatible organization.
Once you have an idea of your purpose, motivate yourself by seeking out similarly minded people. “I’m a big proponent of volunteering—helping yourself by helping others,” says Dr. Yogev. “Find a cause or activity you care about, and find ways to engage in it.” To get you started, here are a few of our favorite philanthropies, clubs, and groups catering to older adults:

  • Encore.org: As stated in their FAQ, Encore, “advances the idea of leveraging the skills and talents of experienced adults to improve communities and the world.”
  • SCORE: Formerly the Service Corporation of Retired Executives, this non-profit pairs mentors with small businesses, to the benefit of both.
  • Senior Corps: The U.S. government’s main service engine for older adults includes Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), Foster Grandparents, and Senior Companions, among many other groups.

Read more from Grandparents.com:
The 9 biggest health myths debunked
The 7 worst foods for your teeth
8 surprising sleep stealers

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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

12 Steps for an Excuse-Free Life

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Image Credit: stocksnap.io

If there’s one habit that cripples more dreams than anything else, it’s making excuses. Life rarely goes according to plan, but responding with excuses only turns a bad situation into worse.

There’s a big difference between giving an explanation, and making an excuse. Excuses harbor guilt and shame — a protective veneer for avoiding a deeper issue. They rationalize bad behaviors, and set the table for a mediocre life.

Here are 12 steps to permanently remove excuses from your life:

1. Awareness leads to change

How often do you make excuses? For seven days, be on high-alert for any attempts at rationalizing bad behavior. Chalk them up in your journal. Write out the incident that sparked off your excuse.

2. Remove the criticism

Excuses are produced from negative self-talk. When there’s looming judgement, you’ll scramble for justification. Removing criticism also removes the need to make excuses.

It doesn’t mean indifference toward your faults, but detaching yourself from the shame.

3. Shift to solutions

As you get better at catching your excuse-making, begin to shift your mindset from rationalizing to creating solutions.

Instead of saying you were too busy to meet the deadline, tell yourself you need to get up earlier and schedule your day better.

4. The straight-shooter

This is the friend nobody wants, but everyone needs. The one who’ll throw the flag on your faults. Give the green light to someone in your circle to nudge you whenever excuses are attempted.

For extra motivation, let them penalize you, put something on the line for every excuse you make.

5. Less talk, more action

If you weren’t so public with your goals, you wouldn’t have to backtrack with excuses when failing to meet them. While there’s evidence that sharing goals with the right people helps keep you on track, it’s more satisfying to simply get it done and avoid any possibility of excuse-making.

6. But find the sweet spot

Overcommitting leads to excuse making. To-do lists are great for clarity and productivity, but overloading leads to frustration.

Stretch yourself, but be aware of your breaking point. If you keep failing to complete tasks, you’re overestimating your ability and time. Find that sweet spot where expectation meets accomplishment.

7. Reflect before you react

Habitual excuse-making causes visceral reactions to negative experiences. Taking a moment to pause and reflect creates a mental break and allows for a better response.

Instead of immediately getting offended or frustrated, learn to take any criticism constructively. Detach yourself and don’t take things personally.

8. Live according to your standards

It’s hard to find motivation when you’re living up to other’s expectations. It opens the door to failure, and excuses.

You’ll kill the two birds of people-pleasing and excuses with one stone once you align your actions with your own beliefs and goals.

9. Take responsibility

We’re all human and prone to mistakes. But to blame others, when you’re responsible, is a destructive way to excuse your behavior.

Shirking responsibility feeds a “victim mentality,” and creates more negative traits, including passive-aggressive behavior.

10. Become “process oriented”

As opposed to solely goal oriented, where failure to arrive at a destination or meet a goal causes a sting, and subsequent excuses to ease the pain.

Becoming process oriented means seeing value and learning in every step of the journey, not just the destination. Mastery is not a static but progressive destination. It releases the unnecessary pressure you place on yourself.

11. A worthy reason

Successful change is meaningful change. You need motivation to stick to goals, and that comes from purpose–seeing the positive effects of removing excuses.

Think through the benefits of having an excuse-free life: healthier relationships, increasing productivity, living your dream.

12. Remind & reinforce your changes

As with any behavioral changes, positive reinforcements make new habits stick. Any time you check off a step on this list, have a glass of wine and give yourself a pat on the back. Give yourself a daily mantra: “I make progress, not excuses.”

Always recognize your little wins, they’ll lead to big ones.

Thai writes from the intersection of psychology, philosophy, and spirituality. Sign up for his free infographic-articles at: The Utopian Life.
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

Lindsay Lohan Steps Out Looking Chic (Yes, Really)

LiLo, is that you? We’ve sort of lost track of Lindsay Lohan over the years, which is which was why we were more than surprised when we happened upon this street-chic style shot and discovered it was Lohan. Snapped out and about in London, the actress was impossibly chic in a long elegant cream coat that she styled […]
InStyle
MillionaireMatch.com - the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!
MillionaireMatch.com – the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!

Take Steps to Avoid Winter Falls

Check the traction of your boots, keep your legs strong
healthfinder.gov Daily News
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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Steps Toward a Year of Happiness

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The new year has arrived! It’s a perfect time to make a habit of the practices that will bring you the greatest amounts of happiness and contentment.

Not sure what to try first? See if something from this list helps you get started:

  • Start moving: Develop a fitness routine that is reasonable and sustainable. Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. This is your time! Make sure to include components that will improve your flexibility and balance, as well as that cardio to get your heart pumping. And, good news! Everything you do for your physical health will also positively impact your brain health.
  • Turn off: Take some time every day to turn off technology. Give yourself a break from being tuned in and on call. Breathe deeply, clear your mind and just be.
  • Give yourself a break: Accept that neither you nor anyone else is perfect. Everyone has problems and insecurities, and everybody will make a mistake every now and then. Allow yourself to be less than perfect without beating yourself up over every little thing. And let those people around you, whether at home or work, know that you won’t explode every time they fall short of your expectations. You, and they, deserve a break. Make it a habit to cut everyone some slack.
  • Practice gratitude: Look around you and appreciate the beauty you see. Give thanks for all the gifts in your life. This of the people you are lucky to have supporting and caring about you. Appreciate that last meal you had, and that you were lucky enough to get it. Think about your home, nature, air and water. Do you take them for granted? Imagine if you didn’t have any of these things; I bet you’ll soon realize just how much they contribute to your happiness and well-being.
  • Give back: If you don’t already have a way to provide service in your community, find a way and be consistent in your participation. Giving to those who are less fortunate than you is a great way to get things in perspective. And, even better, you will soon spend more time trying to make the world a better place for others rather than moaning about whatever may be missing from your own life.
  • Practice your passions: What makes your heart sing? Give yourself time for your passion, and see if it’s possible to combine that activity with one of your other activities. Maybe it blends well with your exercise, healthy cooking, or getting back to your community. If not, it’s still well worth making time for whatever puts you in that zone.
  • Make time for mindfulness: It sounds so silly, but mindfulness is the easiest way to improve your life. In fact, it’s so easy that many feel it’s hard. It’s hard to turn off technology. It’s hard to take time away from work, television, reading, family, or anything else. It’s hard to stop thinking about whatever’s coming in the future, or what already took place. But focusing on the now, zeroing in on what’s happening in your life right this second, then the second is gone… lost forever. Lose not one second more. Learn how to practice mindfulness and reap the benefits every single day.

Now that you have some ideas, try to figure out how you’re going to put some of these ideas into practice.

And have a happy, fulfilling, wonderful year. It’s right there just waiting for you.

Dr. Wolbe can be reached via her website www.drsusiewolbe.com.
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

You’re Engaged, Now What? Six Steps to Take Right After Becoming Engaged

Congratulations on your engagement! This is such an exciting time in your life and you don’t want to be stressed out BUT you probably are. You’ve been waiting for him to propose and now that he has, everything is coming at you at high-speed. Many of my clients say that they had an idea of what they wanted their wedding to look like but once they got engaged, all of that went out the window. The engagement period really should be a time to celebrate this next step in your relationship, not a time to be consumed with planning and stress. Here are six planning steps to take within the first month of your engagement that will help take away some of that stress.

1. Pick a date or two. Picking a date gives you direction in the beginning. You may have a venue in mind that you’ve always wanted to be married in but they may be booked on your date. If you’re flexible you may find more success in booking a venue.

2. Sit down with your fiancé and put together a budget. You won’t know exactly what things cost immediately but come up with a number that you are comfortable with spending. If the average cost of a wedding in your city is $ 55,000 but you can only spend $ 30,000, that’s your number. Now is not the time to try to keep up with the Joneses.

3. Hire a wedding planner. It kills me when I hear people say that a friend of a friend or their aunt who “does events” is going to handle their wedding. There is so much more to planning a wedding than fluffing your dress right before you walk down the aisle. We’re here to ensure that you make it TO the aisle! Figure out what the most important things are that you are looking for in a planner and while you’re interviewing, keep those them in mind. Don’t hire someone based solely on their Instagram account or their pricing alone. Ask for references and talk to their previous clients. If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional, try hiring an amateur. Trust me on this one.

4. Find a venue. Your venue will help you determine your guest list. If your dream venue can only hold 100 people but you have at least 200 that you want to invite, keep looking. This part takes a little bit of time because you have to make appointments to see each venue. Put together a list of 3 that you like and start there.

5. Make a guest list. I always tell my clients to make 3 lists. Your first consists of your family and friends who you would put into your lifeboat if you were on a sinking ship. You have limited space on this lifeboat so make those people count. Second, make a list of the people who you would add onto your boat if there were a few extra seats. These are cousins who you talk to at Christmas time and that’s it. You’d like to see them at your wedding but if they aren’t there, it won’t ruin your day. The final list consists of those coworkers who you see 40 hours a week and commiserate about work with but you wouldn’t pick up the phone to call them after 5:00pm. Remember that you have to feed each guest and that’s where a huge chunk of your budget will go. If you wouldn’t pay $ 100 for their meal, don’t invite them. Making a guest list should be taken that seriously.

6. Designate a wedding-free time-zone. As involved as your fiancé may be, he doesn’t want to talk about wedding details every day for the next year. No one wants to do that, not even you. There really isn’t a need to talk about your wedding every day during your engagement. That’s why you hire a planner to handle all of the little details so that your relationship doesn’t become all about your wedding. Remember that you still have to take care of your relationship.
Weddings – The Huffington Post
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Diamond District steps up with ‘March on Washington’

A striking return to form, March on Washington puts Diamond District back on the map as one of the most vital voices in hip hop today. Their 2010 debut In The Ruff garnered fans worldwide as well as caught critics’s attention, leading to the shortlist for a Grammy. With March on Washington, Diamond District again conquers their goal of revitalizing a golden era of rap based in their unique local flavor.

Diamond District in itself an ingenious arrangement, a hip hop trio out of the Washington, D.C., area that is comprised of where the District, Maryland, and Virginia communities converge. Prolific producer Oddisee, a Muslim of Sudanese descent growing up in the Maryland suburbs, got the idea to bring together a different voice from each part of the DMV. Uptown XO, from more notorious parts of the District, has a strident, charismatic voice; yU hews his Virginia drawl to his flow with infectious precision. Oddisee, well over 6 feet, has the deepest voice, which he knows how to use with drama and urgency. Listening to their distinct voices jump in is itself a one of a kind musical arrangement.

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The group takes its name from the shape of D.C. on a map, which resembles a diamond shape, with the White House in the center. The District itself represents an ongoing disenfranchisement of its residents, who still have no direct elected representation: the U.S. Congress supposedly administers municipal necessities, while refusing to even do the job they were elected to do, while District residents can only dream of statehood, like an occupied territory.

Oddisee works producing beats largely off a laptop, with musical guests as he sees fit for his project. He has thrived in reinventing himself for different projects based on the region, from his work with Arkansas rapper Stick Figa to his nostalgic retro instrumentals on Rock Creek Park, the scenic expanse in the heart of D.C. But with Diamond District Oddisee was able to rely on elements of music to sample from and build around that was indigenous to D.C., the go-go music from the early 80’s. D.C. has influenced the music scene nationally before, like with its thriving hard core scene, but these go-go hooks fit so naturally with the signature boom bap beats, this outing reflects a suffusion of talent and artistic support that reaffirms the DMV as a hub of talent.

In March on Washington, the lyrics are as fiercely political as you’d expect, searing with timely context in images of a police state running amok with a license to kill. The soulful grooves are like vibrant orchestras from a different time. Oddisee takes his time achieving the sound he wants, and what started years ago as a D.C. answer to Black Star is now confident and purposeful, striving for a classic stature. March on Washington might well prove to be their breakthrough to new fans and hip hop heads alike.

March on Washington comes out October 14 from Mello Music Group.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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How Not to Plan a Wedding in 7 Easy Steps

1. Before you do anything else, ask your friends and family how they think you should get married. Get as many opinions as possible — it’s always better to make highly personal decisions with the doubts of others swirling around inside your head.

2. Hire a travel agent and pay them hundreds of dollars to tell you that you’re only viable destination-wedding option is an all-inclusive resort in Mexico that he/she directly profits from. You won’t regret it!

3. Set a budget and then go back on it once you realize you’re heading down an aisle of all-inclusive disappointment (see number 2).

4. Add enough money (that you don’t have) to the budget to make you remember why you chose your original budget in the first place. Then rebel against your financial reality by saying unproductive things like, “**** it. Why don’t we just elope?”

5. Narrow it down to two to three locations, then listen to the second thoughts that are telling you to add two or three more just in case the first two or three aren’t really what you both might be wanting in the back of your minds.

6. Once you’re confident in your selected location, click over to TripAdvisor and scroll directly to the 1-star reviews. Read on until you’ve convinced yourself that you’re going to have the exact same negative experience as the reviewer, only much worse.

7. Create a comprehensive guest list that includes people you’re hoping won’t come but feel the need to invite due to pressure from your other guests.

8. Find someone who thinks of themselves as a wedding coordinator but isn’t, get their entirely one-sided feedback often, and whatever you do, don’t end any of your conversations until they’ve made you feel like you’re not doing anything right, let alone in the proper order.
Weddings – The Huffington Post
FASHION NEWS-Visit Shoe Deals Online-Fashion News today for the hottest deals online!

8 Steps to Kill Writer’s Block and Dance With the Muse

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I don’t believe in writer’s block.

There, I said it.

I do believe sometimes you write better than other times.

I was lucky. I grew up in the world of acting and had teachers who taught me that the creative process was not just about listening to your head, it was about listening from a different place, Sandy Miesner called it the impulse. So I learned you find the creative flow by opening the field of vision in order to listen with all of the senses.

After I left the world of acting and eventually learned about spirituality, it was great fun to discover the two disciplines had a lot in common: presence, listening, noticing the voice of the ego vs the voice of spirit.

It was Betty Buckley who opened my eyes to how to be a shamanic creatrix. Of course, she never would have used those words. I was lucky to work as an intern at the Williamstown Theater festival where she was performing. I will never forget sitting in her audience, feeling her song, and understanding for the first time the real power of performance. Betty anchored in the teaching that when you connect to the sacred through your creative act, when you step on to the stage with the intention to connect to the heart of your audience, you can have a profound impact.

I think of it as touching the void, that moment when you allow a universal truth to run through you. You surface something through your words/dance/acting/movement/song that your audience recognizes as true… they can feel it in a place that needs no words, and they experience the inner nod… because you are dancing with the muse.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Elizabeth Gilbert’s great TED TALK, The Elusive Creative Genius, where she discussed how the pressure of believing it is just you creating is enough to drive anyone insane.

But I digress. Lets cut to the chase and focus on the title of this post. If you are living in the illusion that you are creating all on your own and are feeling disconnected from the genius… I hope these tips help you break on through to the other side.

1. Stop Listening to Yourself

If what you are writing is crap, just stop.

Listen. The muse loves to play. All you need to do is be present enough to listen. She’ll come around often and lots when you stop pretending you are the only one creating.

Now that you stopped trying to create, go with the first thing that comes to mind. Even if it seems crazy and out of place, just go with it and see where it takes you. Trust.

2. Do Something That Scares You

I’m not saying jump off a cliff for heaven’s sake. I’m saying step out of your familiar comfort zone. Invite new experiences into your life. See what new conversations take place, what new material presents, what inspiration arises. (This is the quickest way to shake yourself out any kind of rut (right next to doing something good for someone else.)

3. Watch Robin Williams

When Robin died, I did what you did, started watching old videos of his interviews. He was out of control. Some of what he said was hilarious. Some of what he said wasn’t, but the fact that he said it was hilarious. For better or for worse, he didn’t censor what came through him. The result: We loved him for being his wild zany unpredictable self. We’ll probably love you for being your authentic self too… once you start sharing it with us.

3. Listen With Purpose

Imagine yourself surrounded by a muse/guardian angel. All she wants to do is inspire you, but the only way she can speak to you is through the physical things that surround you. NOW the annoying guy in the Starbucks line talking too loudly on his cell phone is about to say the title of your next book, the wind whispering through the pines is going to make you remember a sensation that explains your character in a way you didn’t dare to imagine. You get it. Everything is material. Everything. That little voice speaking…maybe it comes from behind you, inside of you, arrives in your mind’s eye…that is the muse my friend. Just take the first snipit and run like a banshee and don’t look back until you’re done. Edit later. It’s ok. Something will be in there.

4. Step Away

Everyone knows the most brilliant ideas arrive as soon as you get up to go to the bathroom. Why? Because when you’re going on and on for hours with your pals trying to create something epic, your line of vision can become so focused, it becomes narrow. So step away from what you are focusing on and allow your mind’s field of vision to expand again and let the muse in for another spin around the dance floor.

5. Leave No Pencil Behind

Walk with a notebook and pen everywhere you go. Write every little idea that comes to you. Put the ideas for new projects in a special place. Don’t think you will remember them. The muse can be fickle and can take what she offers right after she gives it. So write it all down. Right now. Before you forget. (You can use Evernote for this if you just. can’t. put. down. your. phone.

6. Do What You Love

If you’re still pretending you can’t get through your writer’s block or create anything of worth, then open up a new document, think about that other idea or concept or story idea that totally turns you on, and go for it. You’ll hate me in the morning. Why? Because you’ll stay up all night pacing with new ideas, high as a kite coursing with the passion for this new project, and write the first 17 chapters of your next book. Then you’ll have to decide which one you need to finish first. I apologize in advance. Meanwhile, you played in a river that was flowing and that was fun.

7. Leave Everything Behind And See What You’re Made Of

For an hour, for a day, for a month, for a year. Put the physical things that are taking up your energy aside. Clear all of your psychic debts. Deal with the people you have been avoiding. Clean up your physical space, and there will be so much more room for the muse and the genius to run though you.

8. Just Do It

I thought I had it all figured out until Paul Hawken (who has authored seven books) said something that stopped me in my tracks. He said something along the lines of how he just doesn’t buy it when people say “spirit wrote the book.” He said, YOU write the book. You are the one that sits down every day and writes.

I should add I also don’t believe in waiting for spirit to “move me.” It’s like meditating. It’s a practice, you show up every day and just do it. Some days are great. Some days aren’t as great. (And when spirit does come with a dose of inspiration, you know I right it down asap.)

Confession

Now I’m going to confess something. Last night I had a nightmare that this small being that I was caring for ran out into the street and was stabbed by a pitch fork. When I picked it up, there were holes throughout it’s body, but once it was in my hands, the holes healed. The whole day I was terrified that the dream was about the novel I just launched I kickstarter. I offered to give people one chapter at a time as I complete the final draft of the manuscript. (CRAZY.) I think my dream was pointing out my fear that people mike poke holes in this story that I was put in care of creating. I think of stories like that, as having a soul of their own that we have the good fortune of caring for.

It is inevitable, at some point, when you put yourself out there, people won’t care for your creation. But so what. Don’t let that stop you from creating. Most people don’t like the smell of your breath first thing in the morning either. Does that stop you from brushing? My point exactly.

The only reason anything happens is so the next thing can happen. So just keep on going and see what happens next.
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

7 Steps to Ease Into Meditation

As a business owner, mom of two, wife, speaker, and consultant, managing each day effectively can be a challenge. I am sure I don’t have to tell you. You know. My mind, like yours, is often filled with to-do lists, schedules, and responsibilities. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed sometimes, but my secret to mental serenity in the face of a harried schedule is meditation.

If you are a meditation skeptic, please stay with me. You might be thinking you don’t have time for one more thing. I understand. Fortunately, just a few minutes of meditation can be as powerful as an hour. When you experience all of the benefits of meditation, it will likely become a part of your life. Meditation has taught me to relax, clear my mind and has helped boost my productivity. It has made me happier as I practice focusing on the present moment, and has helped me become a better listener which is helpful in forming better connections with people at home and at work.

Here are seven steps to ease into meditation:

  1. Write it down. Chances are that you walk around every day with a list of to-do items in your head. One idea that helps me meditate is writing down my to-do lists before I begin to meditate. I write down everything that is on my mind, from small things (send mom a birthday card) to big things (work on a branding strategy for a client). I keep writing until I run out of things. It takes a few minutes but it does happen.
  2. Make an appointment with yourself. It’s important to schedule the time for meditation. If you think you’ll find time during the day it won’t happen. I usually meditate first thing in the morning. Sometimes I only have 5 minutes other times I can find 30 minutes. Just try to be consistent. They don’t call it a practice for nothing.
  3. Let go of preconceived notions about meditation. You don’t have to be in the lotus position, sitting on a fancy cushion. You can sit in a chair and be comfortable. Ask your family to give you a few minutes without interruptions. Find a quiet and comfortable spot. If you want, you can light your favorite candle and listen to some music that relaxes you. Wear comfortable clothes. Don’t put unrealistic expectations on yourself to achieve a perfectly serene mind.
  4. Pay attention to your breathing. Check to make sure you are comfortable, close your eyes and pay attention to your breathing. Once your breathing is slow and steady, visualize a ball of light around your body. Focus your full attention on the brilliance of this light. Notice if there are any colors, and notice how you feel. Bring your full attention to this experience. With each breath, release your shoulders and relax your body.
  5. Imagine yourself sitting in your favorite place in nature. You can visualize a place in your backyard or half way around the world. Notice as many details as you can. Bring your full attention to the experience. If your mind starts to wander, gently bring your attention and focus back. Relax and enjoy. Stay with the visualization for as long as it feels wonderful and warm.
  6. When you are done, allow yourself a few minutes to transition. You can set an alarm, but I would say just follow your body’s rhythm. You can stop when it feels like you are done. When you are feeling good, you won’t want to stop. So just stop when you “feel” done. Gently move your fingers and toes to bring your attention back. Move your neck and slowly open your eyes. Just stay still for a minute to get your full attention to your body. Write down your experiences while they are fresh in your mind. You can write down one word that feels right to you, or you can write down your entire experience in as much detail as possible.
  7. Realize there is no right or wrong way to do meditation. I know this advice is counterintuitive and different than many of the things you have heard and read. In 10 years of leading meditations, I have learned that many people are intimidated by the idea of meditation. When I tell them “there is no right way or wrong way, there is only your way” they seem empowered to try.

Meditation has so many benefits and some day you may be able to sit in a lotus position on a fancy cushion for 30 minutes and meditate with complete clarity, until then, try my easy methods and notice the benefits firsthand.

Fauzia Burke is the founder and president of FSB Associates, a digital publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. For online publicity, book publishing and social media news, follow Fauzia on Twitter: @FauziaBurke and Facebook. To talk with FSB and ask your book publicity questions, please join us on Facebook.
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

7 Ways Stress Ruins Your Life and 5 Steps That Start to Turn It Around

We think our problems produce the stress we experience, but it’s actually the reverse. Stress causes most of our troubles — from money, family, and work problems, to physical and mental health issues. In working with private and corporate clients, I’ve found that most people realize that stress is harmful, but few understand it as causal… at least until I review the following research findings with them:

Stress and money: When our mind is preoccupied with fears of financial scarcity, it activates stress reactions, releasing stress hormones that dampen the brain’s executive functions. This leads to a decline in fluid intelligence, which is the “smarts” the higher brain generates to solve money problems. [1]

Stress and bad decisions: The greater the stress, the greater the likelihood you’ll make bad decisions at home and at work. Knee-jerk reactions can cause you to make risky or premature decisions. You’ll drop long-range goals for immediate survival needs, and every day you’ll wonder why you keep falling behind instead of getting ahead. [2]

Stress and declining performance: Stress hormones shrink higher brain networks and break the connections between them. This inhibits you from maximizing your full measure of talent and sustaining peak performance. [3] You’ll have a good day now and then, but your brain won’t be able to generate your best day every day.

Stress and dampened creativity: Your capacity for creative insight and innovation is thwarted by stress. [4] Those sudden “aha” moments of insight, inspiration, and comprehension will be few and far between.

Stress and emotional negativity: Stress locks you into fight, flight, or freeze reactions. Your emotional set point switches to negative, predisposing you to anxiety, anger, aggression, paranoia, and depression. [5]

Stress and family: The greater the stress, the more reactive you’ll be to the normal ups and downs at home. You and your partner will argue, criticize, blame, and withhold affection, not realizing that stress is distorting how you see the relationship. Stress hormones also lower sex drive, adding to the estrangement. [6]

Stress and health: Chronic stress impairs the immune system. It wreaks havoc on the cardiovascular system. It damages chromosomes prematurely aging your body and causing the production of cancer. It kills brain cells, and if left unchecked, can eventually kill you. [7] If you add up all the deaths from stress-related illnesses, you have our No. 1 killer.

Obviously, if you want a healthy, happy and successful life, ending stress belongs at the top of your to-do list. Yet 83 percent of us are doing nothing about it. [8] Too often, the wake-up call comes on the gurney in the emergency room. Make no mistake, stress is life-threatening serious. “It is not something that maybe someday you should do something about,” says Carol Shively of Stanford. “You need to attend to it today.” [9]

There is a solution

If you have a problem with stress, it’s because genetics and hard knocks have wired you for a hyperactive stress response system. There is a solution to stress that is based on the capacity of the human brain to: a) rewire primitive neural circuits that habituate stress reactions, and b) stimulate the growth of higher brain networks that enable you to succeed fully. The process of rewiring, called neuroplasticity, is surprisingly simple. It’s achieved through a specific shift in mindset. Norman Doige of Columbia University calls neuroplasticity “the single most important change in our understanding of the human brain in 400 years.” [10]

Neuroplasticity works in real life situations, where stress abounds. It’s been studied in high pressure corporations and found to achieve impressive results in increasing morale and productivity in previously unproductive groups. [11] In an independent evaluation of a training my firm conducted at Wells Fargo, more than 300 managers making a similar shift experienced a significant improvement in their level of stress, job performance, creativity, and personal relationships… all in three weeks. [12] Who doesn’t want those outcomes? It starts with making stress a priority.

5 steps that start to turn it around

If you’re one of the 83 percent who are procrastinating, here are five simple neuroplastic steps that can get your mindset moving in the right direction:

1: Bust Stressful-Provoking Thoughts: Be aware all day of stress-provoking thoughts as they occur. Tell yourself: These thoughts are in me, not in reality. Then refuse to believe the stressful thought and see what happens to your experience. An anxious thought not believed doesn’t turn into stress.

2: Stop Worrying (The Clear Button): Imagine there is a button at the center of your palm that, when pushed, signals the brain to stop worrying. Keep pressing the button while you slowly count to three, thinking of each number as a color. As you exhale on the final breath, let your mind go completely and relax into the present moment. Repeat the process until your worries are gone.

3: Start Each Day in Quiet: Set aside five minutes first thing each morning to frame a positive mindset. Feel appreciation for the gift of another day of life. Set your intention to have a rewarding day. Commit yourself to being at peace on the inside, regardless of what happens on the outside.

4: Take Regular Breaks: A 15-20 minute break every two hours allows your brain to rebound. So, every two hours step away from your work and go outside or to a window. Watch the clouds pass, the wind blow, or the sun shine, allowing your mind to grow quiet and to connect with life.

5: Count Your Blessings: Once a week, at bedtime, recall three things that happened during the previous week for which you are grateful. Then acknowledge three things in your life for which you feel blessed.

For a print-out of the five steps plus one more, go to http://tinyurl.com/end-of-stress-six-steps

References:

[1] Sendhil Mullainathan, Ph.D. and Eldar Shafir, Ph.D., Freeing Up Intelligence, Scientific American Mind, January/February 2014, p.58-61

[2] Wesley E. Sime, MPH, PhD, Stress Management: A Review of Principles, an online series of lectures on stress management, Lecture 1, University of Nebraska, Dept. of Health and Human Performance

[3] Eduardo Dias-Ferreira et al., “Chronic Stress Causes Frontostriatal Reorganization and Affects Decision-Making,” Science 325, no. 5940 (31 July 2009): 621-25.

[4] Amabile TM, Hadley CN, Kramer SJ , Creativity under the Gun, Harvard Business Review, 2002, 80(8):52-61, 147

[5] S. T. Charles, J. R. Piazza, J. Mogle, M. J. Sliwinski, D. M. Almeida. The Wear and Tear of Daily Stressors on Mental Health. Psychological Science, 2013; DOI: 10.1177/0956797612462222

[6] L. A. Neff and B. R. Karney, “Stress and reactivity to daily relationship experiences: How stress hinders adaptive processes in marriage,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 97 (2009): 435-50.

[7] Robert M. Sapolsky, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers: An Updated Guide to Stress, Stress Related Diseases, and Coping, 2nd rev. ed. (New York: W. H. Freeman, 1998), 144-153.

[8] American Psychological Association, “Stress in America, Missing the Health Care Connection,” February 7, 2013, pg. 5

[9] Killer Stress, A National Geographic Special, PBS, 2008, produced by Stanford University and Nation Geographic

[10] Nancy Churnin, Brain has ability to adapt and change through life, March 22, 2010, The Dallas Morning News

[11] R. J. Davidson, J. Kabat-Zinn, et al., “Alterations in Brain and Immune Function Produced by Mindfulness Meditation,” Psychosomatic Medicine 65 (2003): 564

[12] Don Joseph Goewey, The Solution to Stress that Not Only Works in the Lab; It Works in High Pressure Corporations, April 6, 2013, http://donjosephgoewey.com/the-stress-solution-works-high-pressure-places/
GPS for the Soul – The Huffington Post
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