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  • 4 Ways to Lighten Yourself Up for the Rest of the Summer

    Summer is about being light, boundless and free. For the rest of the summer, use the following tips to lighten up--in every way possible.

    1. Lighten Your To-Do List. What's eating you right now? A dreaded task? Unwashed dishes? A conversation you need to have but don't want to do? An appointment with the doctor that you keep procrastinating? Whatever it is, get it out of the way and as a reward, spend the rest of your day enjoying all the summer sunshine.

    2. Lighten Your Spending. Less is more. Get drug-store ice cream instead of expensive frozen yogurt. Get a cute summer dress second-hand. Bus to the beach instead of driving. Have a picnic in the park instead of eating lunch in a restaurant. When you are in the midst of a beautiful summer day, you really do not need to spend much money to increase your enjoyment of the season.

    3. Lighten Your Eating. No, and this isn't because we want to make you feel anxious about swimsuit season. You want to have lots of boundless

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  • Top 10 Things - Kids Most Want and Need from Their Parents

    1. Patience
    2. Understanding
    3. Listening
    4. Soft voices
    5. Structure
    6. Consistency
    7. Love
    8. Freedom connected to responsibility
    9. Family and extended family
    10. Role models

    Patience: Things take time. It's a simple and frustrating fact of life. You want your child to learn faster, change quicker, get unstuck sooner, and move ahead in life. But kids learn and change as fast as they are able, and no faster. If you can accept that, allow yours to be exactly where she is, and help her move, slowly and steadily, toward her goals, she might surprise you. Impatience, and its sidekicks Anger and Frustration, actually slow change, eating up energy and time. Tools like the Balloon Breath and a Special Place can help you keep your cool and gain perspective.

    Understanding: Childhood is a profound and challenging time, yet we quickly forget what it's like to be a kid. With your

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  • User post: 8 Healthier Alternatives to Our Favorite Junk Foods

    In case you weren't aware, tuesday was National Junk Food Day. As if we really needed another excuse to binge on junk food to begin with.

    The next time you are feeling the junk food munchie attack, consider these 8 healthier alternatives to the following junk food cravings all of us are susceptible to.

    Craving a chocolate candy bar? Have a square of dark chocolate instead. Dark chocolate is said to lower blood pressure and is a potent antioxidant--qualities that are not found in milk chocolate or white chocolate. Plus, a simple, elegant square of dark chocolate lacks the caramel, oily peanuts, toffee bits and other not-so-healthy things that are found in most chocolate candy bars.

    Craving ice cream? Have plain yogurt with fruits, honey and nuts on top. Go for non-frozen yogurt because the nutritional difference between ice cream and frozen yogurt isn't very big to begin with. Also, it is highly likely your body is just craving something cold and sweet--so make it

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  • 10 ways to find purpose in the job you already have right now

    Finding purpose in your career does not necessarily mean you have to drop your current employment to build orphanages in Cambodia or become a community organizer à la Barack Obama. And considering the rising unemployment rates that won't go back down anytime soon, most of us do not have the time or the financial resources to make a career change right this moment.

    So what can we do? We may not necessarily be in the purpose-driven career of our dreams, but that should not stop us from finding purpose in our current jobs starting today. If everything happens in this universe for a reason and right now the universe is telling you to stick at your current gig, here are 10 action steps to bring more purpose to the job that you already have.

    1. Be Thankful. Think the universe is depriving you of the job of your dreams? Think again. Nearly 1 in every 10 people in the United States are unemployed. If you have a job right now, the universe is generously providing you with the

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  • 9 life lessons we can learn from Harry Potter

    The tale of Harry Potter is no doubt one of the most beloved stories of all time. The world, the characters and the stories are loved by people of almost every age. You might see a young school-goer reading it one day and an elderly woman another day. One of the most frequent (grossly incorrect) misconceptions about the books is that it is a "children's book" or you have to be a child to truly enjoy it. Not at all! The themes, stories and lessons in the book transcend age and that is why it is so loved.

    9 Life Lessons We Can Learn From Harry Potter:


    Even though Harry lives in a world of wizards and witches and incredibly amazing magic, love is the single most important factor, is what saved his life. When Lord Voldemort attacks his family, Harry's mother Lily sacrifices herself to save her only son and that sacrifice of love is so powerful that it saves Harry's life against the killing curse (making him the only one ever) and destroys Voldemort, one

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  • 10 Tips for Healthy Skin

    That's right. You don't see the word acne in the title of this chapter. And although the subject comes up here, it's not my primary focus. As a dermatologist, healthy skin is my thing. So, I wanted to provide you with some tips and tricks to keep your skin healthy throughout your life. Just think -- you're going to get your acne under control one day, but you'll have the skin you're in for the rest of your life. So, treat it right. In this chapter, I show you how.

    1) Steering Clear of Excessive Sun Exposure

    The sun is an immense nuclear reactor. As well as producing heat and light, it also sends out other types of radiation that can sometimes damage your skin. The Earth's atmosphere filters out much of the more dangerous solar radiation, but some of it gets through -- mainly in the ultraviolet (UV) band. The UV radiation in sunlight can cause painful sunburns and certain types of skin cancer, and can also age your skin.

    If you have a personal or family history of skin

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  • 4 Steps to Get Over Your Weight Loss Plateau

    Lately, I've been loving watching a reality show, "Ruby", on the Style Network. It's a show about Ruby Gettinger a 500-pound blooming Steel Magnolia from Savannah weight loss journey. I've become her fan, and am passionately rooting for her success.

    The first season she managed to lose over 100 pounds. This week on episode 2 of Season 2, she's hit a weight loss plateau at about 350 pounds. (Emotionally she's never weighed less than 350 during her entire adult life, and she's having back and knee pain when exercising on the treadmill.) So what's the hitch as she is working out diligently, and eating a prescribed, healthy meal plan?

    One of the most common frustrations in weight loss is when all progress halts, despite the fact that you are diligently following a smart plan. Such plateaus are predictable and explainable.

    Why? Because Basal metabolic rate (BMR)-the energy required to keep the heart pumping, lungs expanding, kidneys filtering and all other vital bodily functions going

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  • 7 Ways to Survive the Long-Distance, Long-Term Romantic Relationship

    Being in a long-distance relationship can kind of suck. I know this because I've been there.

    I met my current boyfriend three months before my pre-determined departure date to work abroad in Japan for an entire year. Not exactly the best timing in the world.

    And yet... we decided to take the long-distance plunge anyway. And though it got difficult and lonely to maintain a committed relationship with a 17-hour-time difference and the entire Pacific Ocean between us, we made it fun as much as we possibly could.

    If you are in a long-distance relationship, or are about to transition into one, my heart goes out to you for all the sacrifices you have to make and the unique challenges you have to endure.

    Here are my 7 tips, from someone who's been there and done that.

    1. Skype is Your Best Friend. You can drop a lot of money on long-distance overseas phone calls. Or you can download Skype for free with your significant other and talk as much as you possibly can. If you

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  • 11 tips for dealing with criticism

    Criticism sucks. If you're being rightly criticized, your ego needs to shake it off like a wet dog and keep wagging it's tail. And if you're being unjustly 'dissed, you've still got to keep your ego limber so that you can objectively fight for your dignity. Either way, criticism is a call to be your classiest self.


    1. Expand. Sometimes criticism stings because we know the criticizer has a valid point. After you've done the inner wince, take a deep breath and get back in the ring. And look, just because you may need to clean up your act a bit, it doesn't mean that you're a full scale loser. We're all just bozos on the same bus, as my dear friend Donna would say. So literally, take a deep expansive breath, with your fists unclenched. You sustain less injury when you do NOT brace for impact. I guess that's why they call it "rolling with the punches."

    2. Admit that it stings. "Ouch. That's hard to hear. But I'm up for it." Honesty when criticized Read More »from 11 tips for dealing with criticism
  • User post: 5 Colors You Need to Eat Routinely (and Why!)

    Did you know that eating healthy is as easy as following the rainbow?

    That's right, if you incorporate a rainbow array of colored fruits and vegetables in your diet, then you'll be well on your way to a well-rounded and nutritious diet.

    Here are the five colors you need to eat on a regular basis to enhance your health!

    As you read through these colorful food options, we will provide guidance on the foods that are best for Stage 1 of Body Ecology (the initial healing stages of Body Ecology) and the foods to add during stage 2 (once your inner ecosystem is healed). For more on Stage 1 and Stage 2 of Body Ecology, read: The Quick and Easy Guide to Improving Your Health on the Body Ecology Diet Part II


    The Nutrients:

    Yellow and orange fruits and vegetables pack a powerful nutritional punch. They are rich in beta carotene, vitamin A and vitamin C, powerful antioxidants that neutralize the free radicals that roam around your body and damage your

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