Want Quick Happy tips? Head over to Marc and Angels Hack

Practical Tips for Productive Living - Wonderful Quick and effective reading articles around the wellbeing, happiness and positiveness in bullet points numbers. I personally use it for easy reference

Want quick inspiration? Inspiration Peak is the place to go!

Check out and subscribe to Inspiration Peak in my Fav Websites for everyday quotes. Works a charm every single day. You're more than welcome to suggest a quote too!

Mind, Body, Green - Ultimate Wellness articles

I love their articles for it is written by various authors coming from wellbeing, yoga, holistic nutrition background that brings you closer to nature and serenity...

Lifehacker - Tips, tricks, and downloads for getting things done

Slightly drawn towards IT tips but they do also have tips about anything and everything you need under the sun, including tips for baking and cleaning! Check them out

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

What Does Your Food Craving Mean?

It is quite true that cravings are indeed linked to emotions. Although I don't really believe in the chocolate bit hahaha since I LOVE chocolate all the time :P

Enjoy =)

Every food corresponds to a certain mood. When your cravings are out of control, it’s because you want to feel more energetic, happier, or more relaxed. Your cravings are for the food that will produce the desired effect.  Hunger and cravings are two very different things: if you were just hungry for a bowl of ice cream, you’d stop eating it at the first sign of satiation instead of finishing off the bowl, having another, and then maybe two more spoonfuls right from the carton. Or maybe you would’ve opted for something else.

Every food contains minerals, amino acids, textures, smells and other mood- and energy-affecting properties. Some are stimulants, some are depressants, and some activate the pleasure centre in our brains. Many mood-altering or “psychoactive” properties of food are identical to those found in prescription medications for depression, anxiety and asthma! For example, the feel-good chemical in chocolate is phenylethylamine (PEA). This is also the main ingredeint in Ecstasy and MDMA. Actually, it’s found in such high amounts in raw cacao that people have “cacao parties” and get buzzed off of this chemical, naturally (I’m not kidding, you can Google it). Tyramine and pyrazine, found in foods like nuts, coffee, pickled foods, sour cream, and aged cheese are the main ingredients in antidepressants and asthma bronchodilators. There are also reasons behind craving certain textures (crunchy, soft and creamy, and chewy). Two people that crave the same food, but with different textures, would have two very different issues. (More on food texture cravings here.)

Chocolate: Hungry for Love

The chemical I mentioned before, PEA, is the chemical that the brain creates when we’re feeling romantic love. “Chocoholism” is way of seeking love, intimacy and romance.

Dairy for Antidepressants

Tyramine (found in higher levels in cheese) is a stimulant. Choline (found in milk) has a soothing effect.  L-tryptophan (also found largely in milk) combined with carbohydrates stimulates the production of serotonin, creating a happy sensation. This combination is found in ice cream, pizza, creamy sauces, and a long list of other common foods.

Salty Snacks for Stress

Well, actually for stress, anger, and anxiety. Craving salty foods is a sign of adrenal weakness. Your adrenals manage your stress response. Often salty snacks are also crunchy - the crunch gives your jaw a physical outlet for stress (people usually hold anger in by clenching their jaw).

Spices for Excitement

Chances are if you like to spice up your food, you like the rest your life to follow suit. Feeling stuck, bored or generally dull might make your body convert this frustration into cravings for spicy foods. Bernard Lyman, a psychologist, researcher and author writes that “sensation seekers [are people who] seem to need extra excitement and often enjoy taking risks.” Sensation seekers have been correlated with cravings for spicy, crunchy or sour foods with strong cravings for novelty and change.

Breads, Rice and Pasta for Comfort

Comforting and calming. Usually craved in times when you need a friend to talk to or some way to express your feelings. 

Fat for Fear

These kinds of cravings indicate a fear of feeling empty, being alone, of facing the truth of taking responsibility…basically, a feeling of fear in general.

Everyone is different. Your cravings could also be very physiological, so take a second to check in with yourself and see how you're feeling. Are you hungry, or are you emotional?

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

8 Things You Must Give Up to Find Peace

Let go , let it all goo

By Marc and Angel Hack

"Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.”
–Albert Einstein
Peace of mind transpires and thrives when you let go of the things that limit your growth and happiness.
You work for this peace every time you give up…
Reminder:  We just released our new ebook 1,000+ Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.  It makes a perfect starter kit for the new year.  Click here to find out more.

1.  Old regrets and excuses.

You can’t always choose what happens to you, but you can always choose how you feel about it and what you do about it.  You don’t have to be defined by the things you did or didn’t do in the past.  Don’t let yourself be controlled by regret.  Maybe there’s something you could have done differently, or maybe not.  Either way, it’s merely something that already happened.
Be done with these old regrets; they’re just an excuse for people who have failed, and failing only happens if you learn nothing and give up.  Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from people who have a habit of making these empty excuses.
Think about it, you rarely fail for the things you do.  You fail for the things you don’t do, the business you leave unfinished, the things you make excuses about for the rest of your life.  Read Awaken the Giant Within.

2.  The burning desire to have all the answers.

Accept the feeling of not knowing exactly where you are going, and train yourself to love and appreciate this sensation of freedom.  Because it is only when you are suspended in the air, with no destination in sight, that you force your wings to open fully so you can fly.  And as you soar around you still may not know where you’re traveling to.  But that’s not what’s important.
What’s important is the opening of your wings.  You may not know where you’re going, but you know that so long as your wings are spread, the winds will carry you forward.

3.  The false hope of a pain-free life.

Pain is a part of life, and life’s pains have many shapes and sizes.
There’s the cold feet pain of moving on ‒ graduating, taking the next step, walking away from the familiar and into the unknown.  There’s the sharp growing pains of trial and error, of failing as you learn the best way forward.  There’s the immense, dizzying pain of life slapping you in the face when everything you thought you knew wasn’t true, or everything you had planned for falls through.
There are the more ambiguous aches and pains of successes, when you actually get what you had hoped for, but then realize that it’s not quite what you had envisioned.  And then, from time to time, there are the warm, tingling pains you feel when you realize that you are standing in a moment of sweet perfection, a priceless instant of achievement or happiness which you know cannot possibly last ‒ and yet will remain with you forever.
Even though so many folks forget, pain is actually a good thing.  It means you’re breathing, and trying, and interacting with the endless possibilities in this world.  Pain is for the living only; it’s worth fully accepting and dealing with while you still have a chance.  Read Radical Acceptance.

4.  Ties to insensitive people.

People are extremely difficult to change.
Throughout your lifetime people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad.  Don’t consume yourself with trying to change them or win their approval.  And don’t make any space in your heart to hate them.  Simply walk away and let karma deal with the things they do, because any bit of time you spend on them will be wasted, and any bit of hate in your heart will only hurt you.

5.  Obsessing yourself with negative news.

For every prominent newscaster who howls about how bleak and unjust life is, there are thousands of other people behind the scenes working tirelessly to make a positive difference in the world.  For every disheartening crisis that is breathlessly reported, there are thousands of real, meaningful success stories that don’t get the attention they deserve, but that have an enormous positive ripple effect on humanity.
Try not to obsess over the negative news; learn from it and use your knowledge to work your way eagerly toward a brighter tomorrow.  Life does get better and better when you choose to make it so.

6.  The belief that fulfillment resides in the end result.

Fulfillment is not a matter of achieving a specific goal.  It is a matter of mindfully enjoying the process required to achieve that goal.  Fulfillment flows from focusing your life around specific and authentically held intentions – ideas and activities that genuinely speak to your purpose.  When these intentions are clear, consistent and meaningful, you have sufficient means to bring fulfillment and joy to your life, whether you ever fully achieve your intended goal or not.
In other words, the right journey is the destination.

7.  Measuring your success in material wealth.

We’re bombarded with images of stuff, with the implication that this stuff somehow elevates personal value and success.  So I encourage you to think about how much of your self-worth is connected to owning, giving, and getting STUFF.  Because truthfully, success, happiness, and peace of mind have little to do with STUFF.
So what does help create these things?
To laugh often and love genuinely.  To respect others and judge less.  To win the affection and sincere smiles of children.  To earn the regard of honest peers and endure the betrayal of fake friends.
To appreciate the beauty surrounding you wherever, whenever you are.  To find the good in people and situations.  To give what you can and leave the world a little better than you found it.  To have explored ideas and passions and sung at the top of your lungs with jubilation.  To know that at least one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is what makes a life successful.  This is how happiness and peace of mind are attained.  Read The Untethered Soul.

8.  The need to keep everything the same.

Things change.  People and circumstances come and go.  Life doesn’t stop for anybody.
Life moves very fast.  It rushes from calm to chaos in a matter of seconds.  It happens like this to people every day.  It’s happening to someone right now.
Sometimes the shortest split second in time changes the direction of our lives; a seemingly innocuous decision rattles our whole world like a meteorite striking Earth.  Entire lives have been swiveled and flipped upside down, for better or worse, on the strength of an unpredictable event.
Most of the time these changes come when you’re not asking for them and not expecting them, but they happen.  So are we helpless?  Are we puppets?  No.  These changes are going to come; you can’t help that.  But it’s what you do afterwards that counts.  That’s when you grow; that’s when you find out who you truly are.
So when you find yourself standing on a threshold, the crossing of which will seemingly change everything, don’t fight it.  Begin the next chapter in your life.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Is It Time To Marry Yourself?

Concentrate....on....yourself....before...others. And Carl Jung is awesome!!! What is it? Go find out ;)

Once upon a time, I believed that all aspects of my life would fall into place if I committed myself topersonal growth

I spent a lot of money on workshops and courses. I thought it was just a matter of time until my life would transform. 

I learned a lot about myself, gained great insights and spiritual wisdom. I also prayed. Prayer definitely brought me more serenity. Yet it still wasn’t bringing me I wanted on a more basic level.

I wanted an ideal relationship full of love and support.

I wanted to make my seemingly elusive income goals.

I wanted to pay off my student loan debt.

And then I had a surprising dream. It was the scene from the movie Sex and the City in which Carrie gets stood up at the wedding by Mr. Big. Instead of being helpless, Carrie and her friends empowered themselves by carrying out the marriage ceremony and they all married themselves.

Influenced by Carl Jung and my years of studying psychology, I knew that this dream had a meaning for me.

I was meant to marry myself.

So at the age of 37, I had a heartfelt, private ceremony by a beautiful waterfall in the woods in Big Sur, at Esalen, California and married myself.

I wrote Soul Vows and committed to living my heart’s deepest desires whether I got what I wanted or not.

I committed to never abandoning myself in relationships again.

I committed to honoring my soul’s calling.

I committed to loving myself always and in all ways.

After my marriage, I felt an energetic shift. I decided to let go of the vision I had for my life and have faith. I decided that I would be happy whether or not I ever was legally married. I let go of the elusive income goals and focused on enjoying my work. I decided that loving myself would be my new number one priority.

Once I surrendered the vision of my life and made a commitment to myself, everything transformed. A new clarity emerged, and to my astonishment, in the following eight months everything has changed. I started to live "happily ever now" instead of happily ever after.

My soulmate came suddenly, and miraculously, into my life and I am now in a loving and supportive relationship. My work has soared in new and unexpected ways bringing me closer to my income goals. This month was my highest earning month ever, and I have a feeling of control over my student loan debt.

I do know that the energy behind my Soul Vows and saying “I do” to self-love had everything to do with creating a new foundation for my life. I have to admit that I didn’t follow my vows perfectly all the time, but they have become my True North Star, guiding my decisions and every aspect of my life.

And to bring the story full circle, last week my beloved, surprised me proposing to me at the spot in Big Sur where I married myself. 

The lesson I learned is that saying “I do” to my soul’s calling unveils the magic of wholehearted living and attracts a life beyond one’s wildest dreams.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

7 Ways You Can Learn From Pain

It's not just for those whose relationships didn't go to what's expected, it's also a sense of defeat, be it at work, on our own, even to the point of not getting what you want from a workout programme. It is for those who are disappointed. I find this really useful to pin point the root of it and to actually go through with it.

Embrace it :). I will be here to listen or give you a hug if you're close!

We often work so hard to get rid of pain. We might ignore it, look for distractions and joy outside of ourselves, hoping that it would help the storm pass faster and easier. 

Little do we know that, the more we push it away, the more it comes back to us stronger.

Every single human being on earth suffers. We are who we are, and what our feelings can be catalysts for growth and awakening. 

Think about when you touched a hot pot for the first time. You were probably curious about this object in front you. The moment you touched it, you experienced something unexpected that was painful and scary. 

You developed a fear of being hurt by hot pots. However, if you were to touch the hot pot again, you would know how it feels, You will still experience pain, but your reaction to it would be different. 

The same thing is true for emotional pain, the more you let yourself face it and feel it, the more you go beyond it and experience joy and softness in your heart.

Here are 7 tips to make friends with yourself when you are facing pain:

1. Be curious. 

Where is this pain coming from? Why is it showing up now? Be 100% honest with yourself at all times, even when the truth is unpleasant.

2. Embrace what you feel. 

Allow yourself to feel whatever you need to feel, whether it was heartbreak, anger, resentment, sadness, loneliness and so on.

3. Comfort yourself. 

Whether it is through talking to your partner, friend, coach or even a random stranger, open your heart and express your feelings.

4. Notice any self-talk you have with yourself. 

Are you punishing or supporting your feelings?

5. Forgive yourself. 

You are a human being with negative and positive emotions. It’s healthy to make mistakes - they only bring you a step closer to deep self-awareness and gained strengths.

6. Pray, meditate and do yoga. 

Whatever spiritual ritual you practice, practice it more and allow the divine energy to heal you.

7. Focus on the moment. 

Listen, smell, sense and experience every moment of your pain. The more you do it, the more you become fearless.
Understanding the pain that is within us and all the softness that comes through when it breaks our heart open is a big step towards making friends with the self. The moment we shed our tears, is a moment of freedom towards experiencing compassion and love towards our human nature. 

So, what actions will you take today to embrace your emotions? Share at least one thing you will do today in the comments, then come back and share how it felt tomorrow.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

There is No Work/Life Balance: Just Living the Life You Love

Awesome article!!!

Work/Life: How many times have you driven yourself to tears by trying to make that awful phrase work? Have you ever run out of a meeting early determined to "have a life?" Or maybe you ruined a perfectly good evening because your thoughts were still at the office. Perhaps you called your friends at the last minute to pull out of a party because you were excited about your headway on a new project. Where was the balance in any of these, you may ask? It was there, just not in the way you might think.

The concept of finding a balance between your work and your life balance was created in the ‘80’s. It was an effort to bring order to the changing world. Think about it. Cell phones weighed almost two pounds, the personal computer had just appeared on the scene complete with a monochromatic green screen, and the idea of a gold watch upon retirement had died. When you wore a suit, you were at work. When you were at a BBQ, you were living. So amidst all the turmoil, someone created the phrase work/life as a way to soften the misery everyone was having with the changing world.

Instead of saying “I’m unhappy with my life,” people got a get out of jail free card by saying “its okay, I just have to find my work/life balance.” For many that excuse is still alive, and that’s a shame.  Because there is no work/life balance, there is just life. I’m not being mean or pessimistic when I say this. I simply say this because we were not put here to work. We were put here to live.

Work should just be another component of your life. It is no different in many ways than the time you set aside for the gym, or for your family, or for your weekends. Each of these is just a part of your life. They support your life, not compete with it. They should help you to create the life YOU want to live.

Think of it this way. If you had a horrible marriage would you be happy? If your financials were a mess, would you be stress-free? If your home-life was a disaster would you enjoy your time there? The obvious answer is no. Yet nobody calls it a marriage/life balance or a home/life balance. Have you ever wondered why people who love what they do never worry about their work/life balance?  Because to them, it’s just a part of the life they love.

So stop thinking in terms of work/life, and start thinking in terms of living the life you love. Instead of trying to find balance between each aspect of your life, focus on finding balance within each aspect of your life. If you can find harmony within each component of your life, the rest will sort itself out by itself.

Take a moment to think about what you want. Think about what would bring you happiness. If your goalis to make more money to support your lifestyle, why not change your lifestyle so that you didn’t have to work as much? Imagine what it would mean if you worked a job that you loved, even if it paid less. Imaging how great it would be to wake up every morning excited by the opportunities of the day. Wouldn’t that create a life worth living even if it was “out of balance” by those 80’s standards?

Whether you tend too much focus on work or too little, the real issue is not finding balance between work and life, but on building something you love across all aspects of your life. So don’t worry about balance. Instead think about harmony in each part of your life. The balance will find its way all on its own.

Here are just a few ideas to help you find the harmony that's best for you:

Learn to respectfully say no. It’s your life, so it’s okay to say no every once in a while, as long as you do it respectfully. It’s okay to say you don’t have the time to bake cookies for your child’s school. Its okay to tell a client you can’t get something done right away. Just be honest about why.  People understand. After all, they’re human too.

Make good choices. Watch yourself when you respond by rote. Every time you do, you usually end up regretting it later. Next time, take a few seconds to think before you respond. Train yourself to pause so that you can make the kind of choices that work for you, rather than against you. After all, you have to live with the small choices you make every day. So make good choices.

Don’t stress about what others think. It’s not their life. You live in a brave new world. Your ideal life may not include a retirement home in Boca Raton or a corporate job. Who knows, your life may just revolve around doing what you love – be it yoga, finance or raising chickens in the country.

Create feel good goals. Life is not just about retirement goals. Take time to set up some weekly tasks that you will feel good when you’re done. Start small. They don’t have to be banner waving accomplishments. They just have to be realistic, attainable and something you can smile about.

Make sleep a life component. You carve out time for dating and shopping. You carve out time for work and play. So why not carve out time for sleep? It is undoubtedly one of the most important parts of your life. So set aside eight hours just for you.

Allow yourself to enjoy your job. Many of us have been raised to think our jobs are inherently bad. They don’t have to be. So give yourself permission to love what you do, or at least part it.
Remember, give to others, but keep in mind that it’s okay to be a little selfish with your time. Be compassionate to others, but also be compassionate to yourself.

After all, balance doesn't mean doing everything. It means doing just one thing – living.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

75 Relationship Quotes to Live By

Thank you Marc and Angel :)

75 Relationship Quotes to Live By

Here are 75 relationship quotes gathered from our sister site, Everyday Life Lessons, to help you keep things in perspective and move your relationships in a positive direction.
  1. In life you’ll realize there is a purpose for everyone you meet.  Some will test you, some will use you, and some will teach you.  But most importantly, some will bring out the best in you.
  2. Keep people in your life who truly love you, motivate you, encourage you, enhance you, and make you happy.  If you know people who do none of these things, let them go.
  3. Love is not about sex, going on fancy dates, or showing off.  It’s about being with a person who makes you happy in a way nobody else can.
  4. Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring – all of which have the potential to turn a life around.  Read The 5 Love Languages.
  5. The most beautiful thing is to see a person you love smiling.  And even more beautiful is knowing that you are the reason behind it.
  6. Choose your relationships wisely.  It’s better to be alone than to be in bad company.
  7. Being alone does not mean you are lonely, and being lonely does not mean you are alone.
  8. Fall in love when you’re ready, not when you’re lonely.
  9. Love means giving someone the chance to hurt you, but trusting them not to.
  10. You know you’ve found true love when you catch yourself falling in love with the same person over and over again.
  11. Don’t wait for the right person to come into your life.  Rather, be the right person to come to someone’s life.
  12. The one who is meant for you encourages you to be your best, but still loves and accepts you at your worst.
  13. Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option.
  14. Some relationships are like glass.  It’s better to leave it broken, than to hurt yourself more by trying to put it back together.
  15. Just because one person doesn’t seem to care for you, doesn’t mean you should forget about everyone else who does.
  16. Someone else doesn’t have to be wrong for you to be right.
  17. It is okay to be angry.  It is never okay to be cruel.
  18. Never do something permanently foolish just because you are temporarily upset.
  19. Silence is often the loudest cry.  Pay attention to those you care about.
  20. We don’t always need advice.  Sometimes all we need is a hand to hold, an ear to listen, and a heart to understand.
  21. It’s not so much what you say that counts, it’ how you make people feel.
  22. A silent hug means a thousand words to the unhappy heart.
  23. Don’t mess with someone’s feelings just because you’re unsure of yours.
  24. True happiness comes from within, not from someone else.  Don’t make the mistake of waiting on someone or something to come along and make you happy.
  25. Don’t choose the one who is beautiful to the world, choose the one who makes your world beautiful.
  26. If you feel like your ship is sinking, it might be a good time to throw out the stuff that’s been weighing it down.  Let go of people who bring you down, and surround yourself with those who bring out the best in you.
  27. Just because it didn’t last forever, doesn’t mean it wasn’t worth your while.
  28. Say what you mean and mean what you say.  Don’t expect others to read your mind, and don’t play games with their heads and hearts.  Don’t tell half-truths and expect people to trust you when the full truth comes out.  Half-truths are no better than lies.  And don’t ignore someone you care about, because lack of concern hurts more than angry words.
  29. Lies help no one in the long run.  So… 1) Don’t say “I love you” if you don’t mean it. 2) Don’t say “I understand” if you have no clue. 3) Don’t say “I’m sorry” if you’re not. 4) Be honest with yourself and your loved ones.
  30. Tell the truth, or eventually someone will tell it for you.  Read The Four Agreements.
  31. Good relationships don’t just happen; they take time, patience and two people who truly want to work to be together.
  32. Falling in love is not a choice.  To stay in love is.
  33. Love doesn’t hurt.  Lying, cheating and screwing with people’s feelings and emotions hurts.
  34. When it comes to relationships, remaining faithful is never an option but a priority.  Loyalty is everything.
  35. A great relationship is about two things: First, appreciating the similarities, and second, respecting the differences.
  36. Jealousy is the art of counting someone else blessings instead of your own.  Don’t waste your time on jealousy.  The only person you’re competing against is yourself.
  37. Do not become possessive.  The purpose of a relationship is to complement each other, grow together, and achieve your common goals as a couple.  At the same time, you must each maintain your individual identity as a human being.
  38. Don’t ever change just to impress someone.  Change because it makes you a better person and leads you to a better future.
  39. Give, but don’t allow yourself to be used.  Listen to others, but don’t lose your own voice.
  40. Don’t look for someone who will solve all your problems; look forsomeone who will face them with you.
  41. You don’t really need someone to complete you.  You only need someone to accept you completely.
  42. Speak when you are very angry, and you’ll make the best speech you’ll ever regret.
  43. Grudges are a waste of perfect happiness.  Let it go.
  44. As we grow up, we realize it becomes less important to have more friends and more important to have real ones.
  45. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick.  Your friends will.  Stay in touch.
  46. Respect is earned, honesty is appreciated, trust is gained, and loyalty is returned.
  47. Never waste a moment, it may be the last with someone you love.
  48. If you love someone, tell them.  Forget about the rules or the fear of looking ridiculous.  What is really ridiculous is passing up on an opportunity to tell someone that your heart is invested in them.
  49. Nobody gets through life without losing someone they love, someone they need, or something they thought was meant to be.  But it is these losses that make us stronger and eventually move us toward future opportunities.
  50. Never stop doing little things for others.  Sometimes those little things occupy the biggest part of their hearts.
  51. The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you.
  52. A real person is not perfect, and a perfect person is not real.
  53. To the world, you might be just one person.  But to one person, you might be the world.
  54. Just because you have a past with someone, doesn’t mean you should have a future with them.
  55. No relationship is a waste of time.  The wrong ones teach you the lessons that prepare you for the right ones.
  56. The first to apologize is the bravest.  The first to forgive is the strongest.  The first to move forward is the happiest.
  57. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
  58. Characterize people by their actions and you will never be fooled by their words.
  59. When the pain of holding on is worse than the pain of letting go, it is time to let go.
  60. If a friend is in trouble, don’t bother them by asking if there is anything you can do.  Think of something appropriate and do it.
  61. Sometimes it is better to be kind than to be right.  We do not always need an intelligent mind that speaks, just a patient heart that listens.
  62. Be the friend that you want to have.
  63. There are times when family are like strangers, and strangers are like family.  Both sets of people are priceless.
  64. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation.  Don’t bring up the past.
  65. Instead of judging people by their past, stand by them and help repair their future.
  66. Don’t try to be everything to everyone.  Be everything to someone.
  67. Let us remember that we can’t force anyone to love us.  We can’t beg someone to stay when they want to leave and be with someone else.  This is what love is all about. However, the end of love is not the end of life.  It should be the beginning of understanding that love leaves for a reason, but never leaves without a lesson.
  68. When things fall apart, consider the possibility that life knocked it down on purpose.  Not to bully you, or to punish you, but to prompt you to build something that better suits your personality and your purpose.  Sometimes things fall apart so better things can fall together.  Read The Road Less Traveled.
  69. Everyone wants a perfect ending.  But over the years I’ve learned that some of the best poems don’t rhyme, and many great stories don’t have a clear beginning, middle, or end.  Life is about not knowing, embracing change, and taking a moment and making the best of it without knowing what’s going to happen next.
  70. In human relationships, distance is not measured in miles but in affection.  Two people can be right next to each other, yet miles apart.  So stay in touch with those who truly matter to you.  Not because it’s convenient, but because they’re worth the extra effort.
  71. Never neglect the people who are most important to you simply because you think they will always be there.  Because one morning you might wake up and realize you lost the moon while counting the stars.
  72. True love isn’t about being inseparable; it’s about two people being true to each other even when they are separated.
  73. True friendship and true love do sustain the tests of distance and time.
  74. When someone gives you their time, they are giving you a portion of their life that they will never get back.  It’s one of the most precious gifts you can receive.  Don’t waste it.
  75. Good relationships are not just about the good times you share; they’re also about the obstacles you go through together, and the fact that you still say “I love you” in the end.

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Right (And Wrong) Way To Juice

Ahem, to the juice lovers...something to note but check out the recipes!

Juicing has gained notoriety for its ability to energize, alkalize, detox, and rejuvenate both inside and out. Green vegetable juices fill you with beneficial nutrients and antioxidants. Proponents claim juicing has the ability to improve skin health, reverse degenerative disease and even slow down or reverse gray hair! I am a big fan of green juicing, but there is a right and wrong way to juice. Let's take a look.

Go easy on fruit juices. Be especially cautious with tropical fruits like mango and pineapple, which are very high in sugar. Fruits offer plenty of antioxidants and beneficial enzymes, but they are best eaten whole with their fiber. I don't recommend regular juicing with fruit, especially if you are on a weight loss plan. Pineapple mango juice sounds delicious but contains almost 8 teaspoons of natural sugar! 

That will send your blood sugar and insulin levels soaring, increasing fat storage. The exception is using the occasional green apple or kiwi to sweeten some of the more bitter green drinks. Green apples are relatively low in sugar.

Focus on organic, raw green veggies for maximum nutrition in freshly pressed juice. This is a great way to sneak more veggies in concentrated form into your diet. Juices should not be a substitution for eating your vegetables, however. 

Man cannot rely on juicing alone. Vegetable juice should be used as an accompaniment to a meal or in between meals (great afternoon energy boost!), but you still need the fiber from whole vegetables, and juice doesn't provide this. With that said, juicing makes it easier to absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables you're juicing and makes it easy to get a wider variety of veggies you may not otherwise eat.

Stay away from juicing raw cabbage, collards, bok choy, kale and broccoli. All cruciferous veggies are goitrogenic, meaning they contain substances that suppress thyroid function when consumed raw. They may also cause gas, bloating and stomach upset in some folks. Don't get me wrong; the cruciferous have wonderful health benefits when cooked or lightly steamed. Cooking deactivates the goitrogens. 

Use raw spinach, beet greens and chard sparingly. They contain oxalic acid, which can irritate the the mouth and intestinal tract and block iron and calcium absorption. Oxalic acid has also beed linked to the formation of kidney stones.

The best veggies to juice include the following:
  • Cucumbers, which are very cleansing and good for skin health.
  • Celery, anti-inflammatory and alkalizing; also said to lower blood pressure. 
  • Beets, a super liver cleanser and great vegetarian source of iron.
  • Carrots, rich in beta-carotene, beneficial for eyesight, and also a great liver/gall bladder cleanser. Use caution with carrot juice, as it's also high in sugar.
  • Spinach (occasionally), high in iron, very alkalizing, and great for skin health.
  • Wheatgrass, overall great detoxifier and also alkalizing.
  • Fennel, excellent for digestion, reduces bloating. Great licorice-like flavor.
  • I also throw in romaine lettuce or red bell peppers (very high in vitamin C) if I have some on hand.
  • Herbs are great, too; use parsley, cilantro (helps to chelate heavy metals), and ginger (good for digestion and cleansing). Throw in some raw garlic if you're brave or want to ward off vampires. It's great for immune health.
Make your own, or buy unpasteurized juice if you can. The heat from the pasteurization process kills the beneficial enzymes raw juice provides. 

Below are a few of my favorite recipes. Get creative! I like to add a squeeze of lime to the finished product for an extra kick. Or, try adding a pinch of sea salt for extra trace minerals. Buy organic where possible and scrub everything before juicing. I have a green drink every morning before breakfast for an energy boost. 

Happy juicing!

The Detoxer
  • 1 beet
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 thumb-size piece of ginger
Optional: 1 bunch parsley and/or 1 tbsp spriulina/chlorella blend

The Alkalizer
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 carrot
  • Handful spinach
Optional: 1/2 bunch parsley or cilantro

The Kitchen Sink
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1/2 bunch parsley or cilantro
  • 1 carrot
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 fennel bulb
  • Handful spinach
  • squeeze lime (into finished juice)
Optional: garlic cloves to taste

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Hello Monday~

Something to cheer you up!

Friday, January 11, 2013

13 Money Lies You Should Stop Telling Yourself by Age 30

For those of you who ARE at your 30s, this is kinda important. And to those of you who are getting there...take note!!

Original article here

By Mandi Woodruff | Business Insider – Mon, Jan 7, 2013 2:21 PM EST

I'm not quite 30 yet, but I'm more than familiar with the notion that this age is the new benchmark for people to get their lives together.

There are books, blogs and Twitter accounts dedicated solely to helping people cross that line in the best shape for their future. They do this by telling you to get rid of debt, stop shopping so much, start a 401(k) and brace yourself for wrinkles.

But in my opinion, it takes a lot more than a healthy bank account and nice skin to live a full and happy life, whether you're 29 or 59. Most of us know how to succeed, we just happen to let ourselves –– and a few convenient lies –– get in the way.

1. So long as my job pays well, it's OK if I hate it.

The job market may not be what it used to be, but by age 30 no one should be toiling away at a job that leaves them stressed out and dissatisfied with life.

We were inspired by a young woman who wrote about turning her back on a lucrative job on Wall Street when years of 14-hour work days made her overweight, burnt out and miserable. 

"I’m a few months into my new job [as an asset manager for a nonprofit] and it’s made my life richer. I’m making an effort to breathe, smile, eat healthier and have positive thoughts about my future," she wrote.

"I took a pay cut of about 30% to change positions, but I don’t think that I should be applauded for making the choice to accept less pay – I don’t view it as a sacrifice."

2. If I turn a blind eye, somehow my finances will figure themselves out.

The worst thing I did in my early 20s was ignore financial red flags when I saw them.

I didn't check my bank account for fear of how low the number would be; I left my credit report untouched for five years; and I didn't realize my first job even offered a matching 401(k) until I quit because I stuffed that folder in my desk and never looked at it. 

Look: If you're broke, you might as well know it and own it. It's the only way you'll ever truly be able to do something about it. 

Thinkstock3. I should get married because it's the 'next step.'

I'm a few years shy of 30 myself and it baffles me how many couples –– men AND women alike –– tell me they're planning on tying the knot by 30. 

There are few people my age who can actually afford the $27,000 the average American wedding costs these days. 

Why kick off your lifetime union with a massive pile of debt that will only cause stress and inevitable arguments down the line? If you're truly in love, chances are The One will still be around by the time you're both financially fit to face those bills together. 

4. Banks and bill collectors will get their way no matter what I do.

At some time (and for a lot of you, many times), life eventually will get in the way and you'll find yourself on the wrong side of your bank or, worse, a bill collector.

Stand your ground. I've been negotiating my way to lower credit rates, health care, cable bills, and bank fees since I took out my first line of credit at age 18. I do it mostly by phone and by monitoring my accounts dutifully, and I rarely take no for an answer. 

If you're ever in doubt, think about Kenny Golde, a 40-something Hollywood producer who managed to negotiate $220,000 worth of debt down to $70,000.

5. I should buy a home because that's what grown-ups do.

Researchers from the San Francisco Federal Reserve found people who earn 10 percent less than their neighbors are 4.5 percent more likely to commit suicide. 

The key word here: Neighbors. Where you choose to live can have a big impact on how you view yourself, not to mention your financial well-being. Don't make the move till you're prepared.

Real estate expert Scott Sheldon points out that consumers aren't ready for homeownership until their debt-to-income ratio falls below 45 percent:  

— Calculate your DTI: Proposed mortgage payment + all minimum monthly debt obligations ÷ gross monthly income.
— Calculate your maximum mortgage payment: Gross monthly income × .45 (45 percent DTI) − all minimum monthly debt obligations.

6. If I start dipping into my savings now, I'll have plenty of time to make up for it later.

If you've managed to build a 401(k) with your employer, now is not the time to start chipping away at all that hard-earned retirement cash. 

For starters, you'll be charged a hefty fee for early withdrawal. It's also tantamount to stealing from yourself in old age. When times are tight, trim your spending, reevaluate the purchase you intend to make, or find ways to supplement your income. You'll thank yourself later on when you see how much your savings grow.

7. I'm too inexperienced to start investing.

When I started earning enough to consider long-term investing, the biggest hurdle was figuring it all out with zero prior knowledge. I started small with a savings account, then built my way up to a 401(k) and Roth IRA through my employer.

I'm glad I did. According to personal finance expert Kimberly Palmer, someone who begins investing at age 25 will only have to save $4,830 annually to reach $1 million by age 65, accounting for an annual return of 7 percent after fees. That figure triples to $15,240 if you wait until your 40s.

8. I'm a failure because I'm not getting paid as much as other people my age.

There's a reason older people are nostalgic for their 20s. They've got a mortgage and a brood of screaming toddlers and they miss doing whatever they pleased whenever they pleased. 

Perhaps they've forgotten the first few years out of college –– that frenzied time when everyone was out for themselves, scratching, clawing their way to success?

There's such thing as healthy competition, but spending every waking moment trying to "beat" your peers is a quick way to wind up alone and miserable. Do yourself a favor and focus on your ownpath, not stalking your friends' career moves on Facebook and LinkedIn.

And take heart in this fact: It's been proven that the average person doesn't get any happier after they earn $75,000 per year.

Thinkstock9. I can still afford to eat like I'm 16.

No one can predict the future, but chances are yours involves a body that has far less tolerance for chili cheese fries and 4 a.m. taco runs. 

Studies show that metabolism actually slows 2 percent for every year after you turn 30, and weigh gain can lead to a range of health issues later in life. 

Do your finances –– and your belly –– a favor and change some of your eating habits now. 

I'm not talking about whipping up five-course meals every day of the week. Niche grocery stores like Trader Joe's and Whole Foods post simple recipes on their websites to match their inventory, and there are even businesses that will send healthy 'meals-in-a-box' straight to your home. 

10. I can still pull off the outfits I wore in college.

There's a saying career experts love to toss around: Dress for the job you want, not the job you have. 

It makes sense. Unless you've managed to finagle your way into your dream job by age 30 –– and are secretly hated for it –– part of the battle is making others believe you can handle it. 

Leave the flip-flops at home, invest in a wardrobe that shows them you're ready for responsibility –– and the heftier salary that comes with it –– and you're already on your way. 

11. If I get approved for new credit, obviously I can handle it.

Four months ago, I walked into Bank of America to make a routine deposit and walked out with a rewards credit card limit that was more than six times my usual. 

It wasn't as if I hadn't earned it, I thought. I spent the last two years dutifully paying down each of my debts and it was high time I had something to show for it. 

And then I went shopping. It started as a means of paying for furniture for my new apartment (points), then a grocery fund (points), and, when I went to visit my family for the holidays, it was the card I used for gas (points). 

Before too long, I realized I'd bitten off more than I could chew. And now I'm paying for it. The point is that no matter how big your credit limit, or how fat a mortgage loan your bank offers you for a new home, that doesn't mean you have to take it. Know your limits and what you can afford. Then tell THEM how much you need. 

12. I should have kids now because I want them.

"There is nothing more destructive to one’s financial future than bringing children into the world without having an established and stable means to support them," writes finance blogger Len Penzo.

He has a point. It costs nearly $240,000 to raise a child in the U.S. –– and that's not even counting college tuition once they leave the house.

And it's not just your finances that will suffer if you're not prepared, Len Penzo notes. "...it becomes extremely difficult to start a business, or gain the necessary experience, on-the-job training and/or education required for the type of career advancement opportunities that lead to significantly increased earning power."

13. I'm pretty much invincible.

It's too bad that youthful sense of invincibility doesn't wear away with age. I'm lucky enough to have insurance and I still practically have to force myself to set up annual physicals and checkups throughout the year. 

And these days, it's becoming disturbingly common for consumers to skip medical treatment simply because they couldn't afford it. 

Preventative care is crucial, and as The Daily Finance's Nadine Cheung points out, that's still no excuse. 

"Find free or low-cost services, like flu shots and blood pressure checks, at your local drugstore," she writes. "Many areas have local clinics that are free, or offer health care at reduced prices based on your financial status. Research and choose a location before you need medical care, as some may require eligibility screening before you can utilize the clinic's services."