SheSavvy Discover | Share | Inspire Fri, 23 Jun 2017 12:40:58 +0000 en-US hourly 1 When The Ride Of Your Life Drops You Off Without Notice Fri, 23 Jun 2017 11:00:44 +0000 Sometimes life happens when we’re not paying attention, and we’re caught off guard tending to things that weren’t exactly on...

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Sometimes life happens when we’re not paying attention, and we’re caught off guard tending to things that weren’t exactly on our schedule.

It is because every day can be another ride on another roller coaster, at another themed attraction in life; that even when we are giving life our undivided attention, the turns of the ride have been known to suddenly happen without warning. It’s an adrenaline game. This is life’s way of checking your pulse, your impulse, your patience, your vitals. Are you still alive? Of course!

How do you cope? Well, since there’s no way to measure all the things, all the time and there’s no manual on life- you can be as well-organized and put together as you would like to be, and still be caught off guard a time or two. Planning is good, and at best it works. Having a schedule and making lists, checking off things to do, has been the golden rule, implemented and executed in a lot of homes and offices across the world.


width=300But does it always work? No. So, what do you do? You brace yourself and expect the unexpected. At least, prepare for it, so that you’re not hauling ass at the end of that ride (that day) where you find yourself sprinting down the ramp, away from the roller coaster, falling to the ground and having an anxiety/panic attack, in the middle of your, “Wait What Just Happened” Moment.

When we were planning our life, we thought we had it all figured out. It was one of the most beautiful 5 sentences we could have imagined for ourselves. We were young and we had the answer for adulthood- early 30’s, 40’s and some of us even had a plan for when we traveled over the hill. The American Dream. A home, with a white picket fence, a dog, a loving, kind and faithful husband who we blessed with two amazing kids, who mastered the art of the honor roll and never got into one trouble at school. The kids went off to college on full academic scholarships and are now successful business women and men, respected in the community they serve and are loved everywhere they go. Life was great on paper, wasn’t it!

width=300GOD gave us imaginations so that we could know that anything was possible. He gave us dreams and visions, so that we could see it. But then he gave us reality, so that we could get the big picture.

Somewhere in the middle, we got on the wagon, we got off the wagon, we took one more trip than we planned for, we ate a little more than we should have, we took the wrong way home a few times, we ran into a few people who were no good for us, we tried shortcuts that set us back, we had an extra kid that wasn’t a part of the plan, or we weren’t able to get pregnant at all, unfortunately.

width=300Our once loving husband, (or never a loving husband) or drop dead gorgeous boyfriend and love of our life whom we never married, may have turned abuser or is now somewhere with another family all together and we are raising three kids alone. We completed college, but we’re so engulfed in bills that piled up while we waited for that job, which while in college, promise would be there upon graduation – never came. And when it did, the salary was not what we planned for. It was far less than what we would need just to get by. Or- we got the job, but then some other things happened that we didn’t plan for, all except the promotion that we were banking on, to soak up the mess, never came through. Gap insurance doesn’t have an app for that! We were unemployed for the duration of our unemployment, we took a road that took us on another road, that lead us to a dead end, and then we were lost. Then we found ourselves stuck again. This is the stuff that we never wrote down on that paper. Probably because no one wants to write down failures?

width=300Well, perhaps you shouldn’t look at it like this. In SWOT analysis and other diagrams that present strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; which allow for you to look at your plan with a realistic eye, helps you with this. That doesn’t suggest that you’re speaking undesirable things into existence by being honest about your threats and weaknesses in a plan. What it does is, forces you to address it early on, so that you can be better prepared in your plan or your approach. It also gives you a formula to continue to use, as your plan updates itself, to comply with the changing world we live in.

You don’t have to throw your plan out the window. You just have to be as aware as you can, about the fact that you may not come right out of college with a job. You may not get the corner office or the executive suite in 2 years. You may not move into your dream home within 6 months. You may not live a life with or without children, and you just may love either.

width=300Your Knight in Shiny Armor may ride up in a delivery truck with the proposal of a lifetime and your well-dressed businessman may never show up at all. Love may find you when you weren’t looking, life may hit you when it does. Know what you want, plan to get it, do what it takes, and leave room for things to shake up a bit every now and then. Because it’s inevitable! Try not to repeat mistakes, learn from experiences, trust your gut, lead with your heart, but use your head!

Follow Niedria on Twitter and visit her Blog

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Cutest Summer Designs For In-Home Decor Fri, 23 Jun 2017 11:00:34 +0000 Top Interior Designs for Summer The design of your home’s interior setting is a reflection of your personality and taste....

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Top Interior Designs for Summer

The design of your home’s interior setting is a reflection of your personality and taste. It’s important to create an environment that complements the current season and is welcoming to your guests. When you want to redesign your home for the summer season, there are a few trends to follow.

Nude Leather Furniture

Nude leather furniture is sleek and classy when you want to update your home with neutral decor that will allow each room to look light and airy. The minimal design of the furniture will allow you to use it with your accent chairs or headboard.

Nautical Mirrors suggests using nautical mirrors to decorate your home for the summer months ahead and add a touch of ocean inspiration to your interior setting with a unique style. Consider hanging a nautical mirror in your guest bathroom above the sink or using it in the living room as a piece of decor on the walls. There are a variety of different nautical mirror styles, which includes porthole shapes and nautical ropes.

Sea-life inspired accessories are also trending and can be used to decorate your bookshelves or as centerpieces on the dining table. Consider using plenty of coral shades and fish prints, which will create a casual environment that is appropriate for the warm summer months.

Wicker Furniture lists wicker furniture as one of the top styles for summer due to its retro design that nods to the 1970s. You can use wicker both inside or outside of the home and can dress it up with pops of color that draw more attention to a wicker chair or sofa.

Crisp White Walls

Make a statement with your walls by painting them a crisp white color that is refreshing and makes the home appear larger in size, suggests The white walls will look stunning next to bold furniture colors or wall art. You can also incorporate a few metallic colors to create a chic interior setting that looks modern. Mixing chrome and copper pieces will look stunning and will prevent the home from appearing too bare with the white walls.

Muted Neutral Pieces

Muted neutral pieces are refreshing and will create a calming and breezy setting that allows you to unwind after a long day. Use fleece fabric for bedding that features muted colors that are matte but still add plenty of detail to the room. You can also neutralize the space with sisal rugs and woven baskets.

Bring the Indoors Outside

Bring a touch of the indoors outside to your patio by adding outdoor furniture that is warm and inviting when you want to entertain your guests or host a party. Use poufs and chaises to lounge outdoors and soak in the warm weather. Add area rugs to dress up bare floors and make it easier to walk barefoot while spending time in your backyard.

You can also bring the outdoors inside by incorporating flowers and plants that will add a touch of greenery to the space. Centerpieces can also be created with fresh fruit that comes from your backyard, which will draw more attention to the dining room.

Lucite Furniture

Create a chic home setting with lucite furniture that won’t take away from the size of your interior environment. Consider using a lucite console in your entryway or a coffee table in the living room, which will look beautiful and can appear high-end. The clear material of the furniture will appear modern and original when you want to mix up the different textures that are used in the home.

When you want to dress up your home for the summer season and get ready to entertain, there are a few trends to follow with your decor. By following the right trends, you can feel proud to show off your house and allow it to look updated.

Follow Mia on Twitter for more ideas.

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Celebrate The Break-Up Fri, 23 Jun 2017 11:00:14 +0000 Break-ups really suck. There is no way around it. If you want to experience love, then you also open yourself...

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Break-ups really suck. There is no way around it. If you want to experience love, then you also open yourself up to the pain of that love coming to a close, which is no fun. Everyone has to experience heartbreak. Even Beyoncé has been broken up with! Isn’t that thought sort of comforting?

It doesn’t matter who you are or how much you have. Some people will never appreciate all that you have to offer. And guess what? That is okay! Because for every one person who passes up on you there are many more who would feel lucky to even be in your presence.

I’ve found that changing the way I view a break-up is one of the healthiest things I could’ve done. Of course I still feel sad initially. I’m only human after all. But by changing my perspective and taking the following steps I am able to gain back some power in a situation that feels uncontrollable while also showing myself just how resilient I can be.

If you’re going through a break-up consider the following:

Feel everything then let it go. Feeling the heart-wrenching pain and the vast loneliness is scary, but this is one of the most crucial steps when it comes to moving on from a relationship in a HEALTHY way. We all know those people who act like they’re fine and shove their emotions deep down inside never to be seen again. Until they come exploding out like a volcano.

You see, here’s the thing. We can only ignore our emotions for so long. Although we would like to think so sometimes, we are not invincible and we need to face how we’re feeling in order to move on. Addressing your pain may seem hard, but ignoring it and having to deal with it later on is far worse. Let yourself be sad. Grieve. This is normal. You just lost an important part of your life. Bawl your eyes out. Scream into your pillow. Go punch a non-living object if you have to! Feel angry and betrayed and disappointed. Then LET IT GO.

Going through a break-up is like being on an emotional roller coaster. Some moments you will feel great, other moments you may feel nothing, and then there will be moments when you will feel as if you won’t make it through the day. Let yourself feel whatever it is you need to, go to that dark place, then move on.

Being able to feel the emotion and then let go is the most important thing. Do not become a victim to your break-up. Don’t let the negativity win. You’ve got far better things to be doing with your time. I think you’ll be surprised just how strong you are. Soon that emotional roller coaster will begin to even out and you’ll forget why you were so upset in the first place.

Be proactive (dealing with technology and belongings). We all know what happens nine times out of ten when your ex sees that you are moving on without them and doing just fine. They try to come back into your life. Set yourself up for this ahead of time so that you don’t get sucked back in to their manipulative game. If you can handle being friends with them on social media then fine. But if you are constantly checking up on them, be proactive and remove them from social media.

It’s important to be honest with yourself for this step. If you feel strong enough to see their posts without feeling any desire to contact them then that’s great. But if not, REMOVE THEM. Do not think twice about it. Do they really deserve to know what’s going on in your life anymore? And I doubt their posts are very interesting, let’s be honest.

I don’t usually block someone’s number after breaking up UNLESS they are constantly bothering me trying to get back together and it isn’t something I want. Once again, this is all very subjective and you have to be real with yourself. If you know you’re the type of person who will feel tempted to text them unless you block their number, then without a doubt block them. If having their number in your phone doesn’t bother you unless they start contacting you, then so be it. I also find that changing their name in my phone to something that reminds me why we broke up is really helpful along with changing their ring/text tone to silent. This way you’re getting rid of anything that might trigger you.

If you have anything that they gave to you I highly recommend getting rid of it. Of course there are always a few things we can’t bring ourselves to throw away, so pack that stuff up where it won’t be seen for a long time. The most important thing here is the concept “out of sight, out of mind”. But there’s something that feels utterly satisfying when it comes to throwing their things in the trash! Try it. 

Talk it out. It’s really important to open up to the people you trust and you know really care about you, but choose these people wisely. Some people are interested in the break-up simply for the drama. Choose a few close friends or family members and hash things out with them. Get everything off of your chest and then brainstorm how you can begin to move on. It’s always nice to get some advice from the people who most know you and have your best interests at heart. Just remember these people have their own lives to live too and their own problems. Make sure you aren’t constantly talking about your ex and be conscious of asking them how they’re doing. I find that focusing on other people always makes me feel a little bit better.

Look at it with a new perspective. Hopefully by this step you have cried your eyes out, gotten rid of any reminders of your ex and have talked with your loved ones. Now the fun part. One of the greatest things about life is that we have the power to choose how we want to see our situation. Accept that you will be sad on and off for a little while, but that it’s normal and it won’t last forever.

People say that it takes half of the time you dated to get over the relationship and I think that’s complete BS. There’s no way in hell I’m going to sit around moping over someone who probably isn’t even that great for that long. I mean come on! Why give them so much power? A break-up should be a celebration. It’s a new beginning for you. You’re free. You can do whatever you want and you don’t have to run it by anyone else. Chances are, you probably dodged a bullet too!

You had an experience that has taught you a lot and will continue to teach you, but you’ve outgrown it and are now ready for something so much better. You’re one step closer to finding not only yourself, but also someone who truly deserves you.

 Don’t romanticize the relationship. We all do this. I know I have many times. We start to miss that person or the memories and we begin to think of all the great times together. But what about the bad times? The truly awful times that you would never want to relive? What about all of the bad qualities in that person? We’re so quick to remember the good, but it’s the bad that will quickly remind you why the break-up is for the best.

I recommend making a list of all the negative details about the relationship/person and keep it handy so when you start to romanticize you can read it over and get a dose of reality. Don’t dwell on the negative, just use this as a reminder when you start to feel weak. It’s easy to miss the idea of the person or the idea of the relationship. Soon you won’t need to look at the list ever again.

Put yourself first. I know, I know. This sounds so cliché, but it’s hard to move on from someone when they have occupied so much of our time and thoughts and suddenly are gone. Why not fill this void by making yourself the priority? Although some people jump into a brand new relationship, this is usually pretty self-destructive (of course it all depends on the situation). So rather than diving into a new relationship, why not move on from your ex to yourself? For once, be selfish. Your ex probably was! Now it’s your turn. What do you want? What will make you happy? 

Take time to reflect, but don’t obsess over why things ended the way they did. This will only drive you crazy and we don’t have time for that! Focus on your career, your friends and family, your hobbies. Develop new interests. Set small goals for yourself and make progress. Achieving something, even if it’s small, always helps make me feel like I’m getting back to my happy self. Spend time reading, writing, exercising. Do whatever you can to better yourself. But do it for you. Not in the hopes that it’ll get your ex back. Who wants to be with someone that has to be convinced your worth it?

I hope these tips help anyone who has just been broken up with. It’s not fun, but it happens and all we can do is try to handle it in the best way. Be resilient. Don’t let someone who can’t see how amazing you are get you down.

I strongly believe that everything happens for a reason and one day you will be able to look back and understand exactly why things had to happen this way. Don’t lose faith. You will meet someone better than you could even imagine, and when you do, you won’t believe you were even sad over this break-up! You should be jumping for joy. Okay, maybe you’re not quite there yet, but one day you will be, I promise.

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Three Daily Habits That May Be Sabotaging Your Energy Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:00:53 +0000 Habits are an important labor saving device. Without habits we would be greatly limited in our freedom to accomplish anything....

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Habits are an important labor saving device. Without habits we would be greatly limited in our freedom to accomplish anything. Most of our daily habits simply allow us the freedom to not stop and think about every move we make. We get up, make the coffee, shower and get dressed in a ritualistic fashion without much thought. We call it our routine and because we repeat it over and over again it becomes habit.

There are habits that support us and then there are habits that enslave us. If we repeat an unhealthy action often enough the subconscious mind will direct us to keep repeating it without being consciously aware of its power.

Now we would think that since we all desire health and happiness that we would always choose habits that lift us upward. But habits are powerful influencers and so a bad habit has a lot of control over how we think and act. Humans are hardwired for pleasure so when a false sense of pleasure is the reward for a so called bad habit, the habit gets ingrained.

Pleasure and pain are simply two sides of the same coin. The itching pain of a mosquito sting draws our energy to a certain spot. But when we scratch the spot we receive the pleasure of relieving the itch. It’s the same spot; holding both pain and pleasure.

Thoughts and actions frequently repeated form habits. These habits can be either positive or negative. Positively they free us to concentrate on other things. We habitually tie our shoes while chatting with our friends. We don’t need to think about how to tie the shoe. So we tie our shoe while being able to focus on other things. It’s an ingrained habit.

The first habit that is sabotaging our energy is stress. Yes, stress is a habit most of us have embraced. Without stress we often feel empty, incomplete and bored. There must be something missing if we are not feeling overwhelmed, overtaxed and exhausted by the end of the day. But is it a habit we need?

Stress is an important part of being human. The stress response has been ingrained into our being as an escape or survival mechanism. You see a threat and the stress response immobilizes the body and the mind to protect itself by either flight or fight. The problem is that most of the stress we experience is self-imposed and not a direct threat to our survival.

The second habit that is sabotaging our energy is sleep. It’s not whether you go to bed early or get up late that counts, but the number of hours you sleep and how restful a night’s sleep you get. With less than seven hours the ability to concentrate diminishes and we are more prone to mood swings. Both of these are a waste of energy. Concentration and a balanced emotional state are necessary when it comes to feeling energized and maintaining good habits.

The third habit that is sabotaging our energy is not eating breakfast. You might think this saves you time, but sprinting out the door on an empty tank is sure to deplete your energy. We all know we should eat breakfast, but really most of us skip it. A quick stop at Starbucks for coffee gives us a false sense of energy. What the body really needs is fuel in the form of carbohydrates and protein to maintain balanced energy. Think of your body as a high performance car. You wouldn’t put regular gas in the tank and expect it to run at top efficiency?

There are several ways to gain the upper hand over our energy zapping habits. One way is to make sure we give our habits only good commands by performing good actions and entertaining uplifting thoughts. Take a breath and let go of the stressful tension in your body. Remind yourself to get a good night’s sleep of seven or more hours. Eat breakfast. An empty tank stresses the body, clouds the mind and diminishes energy. These habits require discipline.

Another way is to starve the subconscious mind of bad impulses by refusing to feed it any more bad thoughts and actions. When stressful thoughts arise, push them away. Remove the obstacles that are preventing you from getting a good night’s sleep and get up a little early so you can make and eat a simple breakfast before you dash off to work. These habits require detachment.

Although these sound like good ways to change a habit, you must first recognize what is draining your energy. However, merely recognizing an energy zapping habit is like trying to fill a bucket that is riddled with holes. You have to patch the holes or else even your best efforts will be in vain. What hole is keeping you from filling your energy bucket?

Habits free up our energy. They also take it away. Now if all we are is energy in physical form can’t we change our habits by changing the focus of our energy? By consciously thinking about habits that energize the body, mind and soul we instill discipline and detachment and those are the secrets to changing habits. Remember habits are powerful influencers. They can uplift you or bring you down. Energizing habits are like happiness and joy. They plug the holes in your bucket so that your bucket is always full of positive energy. Be energized. Its’ a positive habit!

Doctor Lynn

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Overcoming Office Stress Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:00:51 +0000 It’s that time of the year again- the time of year where our obligations seem to be calling our name...

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It’s that time of the year again- the time of year where our obligations seem to be calling our name from all directions. As workers, it’s often difficult to manage our stressors because of the various distractions that consume our thoughts. With that said, here are five tips to help manage stress more effectively in the workplace.

1) Acknowledge Feelings of Stress

A constant feeling of being overwhelmed, health problems ranging from abnormal heart rate to hair loss, or racing thoughts running a hundred miles an hour in your head- stress can manifest in a number of ways that harm your emotional and physical wellbeing. The first step to eliminating these negative effects is to acknowledge your stress and be willing to find ways to manage it. Feeling constantly overwhelmed or under pressure doesn’t make you weak or incapable, but it is a sign that you need to make your mental and physical health a priority.

2) Identify the Stressors in Your Life

Although this may seem obvious, it’s much harder than it appears. Usually we get stressed because of the various projects, assignments, or tasks that are due. However, pinpointing the exact source of stress, such as a particular work project or a personal challenge, is crucial to reducing or even eliminating stress. So, prioritize a time to sit down and identify the primary cause of your stress, and work on reducing that stress one step at a time.

3) Strike a Balance

According to WebMD, stress is often induced by taking on a lot of responsibility at work or having a high workload. Because our minds tend to be consumed by work-related tasks which consume time, we put the “excess” things, like our personal lives, on the back burner. Finding that balance, and taking the time to enjoy activities, like spending time with loved ones or going for a run, helps reduce the perceived salience of the stressor. When we actually take that minute to recognize and indulge in important life events, we become happier, and as a result, less stressed.

 4) Talk Therapy

Share the burden. According to ExperienceLife, the effects of bottled-up stress are decidedly negative and reduce our long term well-being. By discussing the problems with a friend, relative or registered therapist, we can confide and share concerns. Talking to someone who can also relate to the issues is a large part of coping with stress; usually speaking to a similarly situated coworker, or someone in the same field has proven more helpful than someone dissimilar.

5) Exercise

Walk, run, jog, swim, cycle, do yoga – do anything. Scientifically speaking, exercise releases endorphins which make us feel happier, or in a better mood. If our spirits are lifted, we’re more productive and do not associate negative feelings with the workplace. Additionally, exercise is a great time for reflection.

6) Express Yourself!

Go to slam poetry, an acting, comedy or other show to relieve stress. Expressing your emotions to people you do not know is cathartic because you can vent without any strings attached . Catharsis is important in reducing stress levels significantly. Participating in an artistic activity alleviates negative feelings in times of stress.

Sharon Schweitzer and Sophia Syed co-wrote this post. Sharon Schweitzer, J.D., is a cross-cultural trainer, modern manners expert, and the founder of Protocol & Etiquette Worldwide. In addition to her accreditation in intercultural management from the HOFSTEDE centre, she serves as a Chinese Ceremonial Dining Etiquette Specialist in the documentary series Confucius was a Foodie, on Nat Geo People. She is the resident etiquette expert on two popular lifestyle shows: ABC Tampa Bay’s Morning Blend and CBS Austin’s We Are Austin. She is regularly quoted by BBC Capital, Investor’s Business Daily, Fortune, and the National Business Journals. Her best-selling book Access to Asia: Your Multicultural Business Guide, now in its second printing, was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2015. Sharon is the winner of the British Airways International Trade, Investment & Expansion Award at the 2016 Greater Austin Business Awards.

Sophia Syed is a Spring 2017 cross-cultural communication intern with Protocol & Etiquette Worldwide. As a third-culture kid who has lived abroad in countries including Dubai, Jamaica, and Singapore, she has interacted with many different nationalities in both a professional and personal setting. She was a Dubai student representative for the Global Issues Network Conference in Luxembourg in the Spring of 2015, where she discussed economical, environmental and human rights issues with representatives of 70 countries. She currently attends the University of Texas at Austin as a double major in Corporate Communication and Communication Sciences. Her most recent project is working with the Room to Read organization, which raises funds for children’s literacy efforts and girls’ education in Asia and Africa. 

Sharon Schweitzer SheSavvy Expert Contributor

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What Shoes Should You Pack For Vacation? Thu, 22 Jun 2017 11:00:37 +0000 What shoes will you pack for your upcoming vacation? Your feet want you to give this some serious thought as...

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What shoes will you pack for your upcoming vacation?

Your feet want you to give this some serious thought as shoes are one of the most important items you can pack for any trip. If our feet aren’t happy, we’re not happy! Wearing the wrong shoes can do serious foot and back damage. Just ask Sarah Jessica Parker. After wearing all those gorgeous shoes during the popular TV show, Sex & the City, she ruined her feet. She has sworn off stiletto heels, but the damage has been done.

Most of us tend to do more walking and physical activities than usual on vacation. This can be hard on our feet.

So here’s what your feet expect from the shoes you choose:

  1. They should be comfortable, practical, and stylish. COMFORT. No matter how far or long you walk, your feet should not scream “Help!” PRACTICALITY. Most of us only pack 2-3 pairs of shoes when traveling, so your shoes need to do double duty. Don’t waste space with a “maybe” shoe. Either you need it or you don’t. Show some tough love when selecting travel shoes! STYLE. There’s absolutely no reason why a shoe can’t be comfortable, practical, and stylish.
  2. If you’ll be doing a lot of walking, consider foam or gel insoles. These go inside your shoes to provide added support for your entire foot.
  3. Buy shoes designed for the purpose, such as trekking (hiking boots), walking (walking shoes), or kayaking (water shoes). I have seen women in Disney World wearing heels. Seriously? Do you think high heels were meant to walk in for miles in a theme park? You don’t have to wear sneakers. There are plenty of stylish shoes designed for walking, such as Jarlif’s.
  4. Never pack shoes you haven’t “broken in” prior to your trip. If you need new shoes for a trip, buy them in advance and wear them for at least a week or two beforehand. If you’ll be hiking, take a short hike to make sure your feet tolerant them well. If you buy a new pair of shoes to go dancing while on your cruise, be sure to boogey before you go!
  5. Good athletic socks are as important as good shoes. Be sure to buy socks that wick moisture and provide added cushioning in the toe and heel areas. Good socks help prevent blisters and chafing.
  6. Make sure your shoes are waterproof if you’ll be encountering wet conditions.
  7. Make sure you’re clear about what kinds of activities you’ll be doing so you pack the right shoes.
  8. Flip flops are not shoes! They are meant for locker room showers and a short walk to the beach. Period. Foot doctors advise against prolonged use of flip flops as they are not meant for that purpose and can cause permanent damage to your feet.
  9. Wear the one pair of shoes you couldn’t replace (live without) on your trip in case your luggage is lost or delayed. I always wear my hiking boots because they take up the most room in my luggage and are irreplaceable on most trips. Also, there is always a chance of theft of valuable shoes, especially since we can’t lock our suitcases these days except with a universal lock.
  10. Buy fabric and colors that are serviceable. Buying cream-colored suede is not prudent! Go with darker colors, such as camel and tan, and sturdy material, such as rubber soles and leather uppers.
  11. Last, but not least, invest in yourself. Buy high quality shoes. The investment is worth it because you will be protecting your feet and saving money. I have shoes that cost good money but they have held up for years, making them a good investment. One pair of hiking boots is going on seventeen years now!

The human foot is a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.

-Leonardo da Vinci

Follow Terrance on Twitter and visit her blog Terrance Talks Travel

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Transparency – What Does It Really Mean? Wed, 21 Jun 2017 11:00:54 +0000 TRANSPARENCY! In being the Ratchet Professional that I am, I value transparency in all aspects of my life and strive...

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In being the Ratchet Professional that I am, I value transparency in all aspects of my life and strive to always be ME, my true self.  I would prefer you be honest than to protect my feelings and lie; I’d prefer you be upfront about your goals and motives instead of playing sly and being manipulative. I would assume, most of us would like the benefit of the doubt and the right to be given a choice over having our feelings TEMPORARILY spared.

So what exactly is transparency, and why is it important? The Business Dictionary defines it as:

The lack of hidden agendas and conditions, accompanied by the availability of full information required for collaboration, cooperation, and collective decision making; or the minimum degree of disclosure to which agreements, dealings, practices, and transactions are open to all for verification.

That’s more from the business sense. From the humanistic approach, being transparent is not being pretentious; not fully projecting or putting forth your true self, your true feelings, motives, objectives, thoughts, etc.

Being transparent means being and accepting your authentic self, controlling your ego, and being honest and trustworthy. It’s a sense of freedom in being who you are. Being you with no pretense and no ulterior motives gives others the opportunity to be fully informed and encourages them to be themselves.

Transparency helps you build trust and respect among those you interact with. It gives you the freedom to do what you’re passionate about without having to censor yourself. It gives you the opportunity to work on YOU. And we all benefit from a great YOU!

When you’re transparent, you invite trust by revealing that you have nothing to hide. You establish yourself as an honest, credible person in the eyes of others.                      ~ John Hall, Co-founder and CEO of Influence & Co.

✹Side note✹:

I have a hard time believing people who say I lied to protect your feelings, because the sole purpose of a lie is to reduce your own discomfort in responding to the perceived discomfort of another. In other words, you lie because you don’t want to deal with the reaction or the consequences of that reaction, which more times than not are uncomfortable. Lying puts up a wall that prevents communication, trust, and building respect. ~LB.

Start being your authentic self, Fam! Strive for transparency so you can focus on what makes you great.

Photo credit: JJ DiGeronimo

Follow Legacy Bound on Twitter and check out her website.

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Because of Him: A Father’s Legacy Wed, 21 Jun 2017 11:00:25 +0000 I would like to share with you a little about my Dad. He was and always will be the person...

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I would like to share with you a little about my Dad. He was and always will be the person who influenced my life the most and nurtured me to become who I am today and why I do what I do. 

My Dad passed away just a few short weeks after Father’s Day eight years ago; he was only seventy six. Some days it seems like yesterday, other days it seems like forever. I miss him dearly each day of my life, yet I know his spirit lives on in me. 

My Dad was a man of integrity, wisdom, perseverance, a never-give-up attitude, and had a huge heart for God. He had the greatest patience of anyone I have ever known…and believe me, I’m sure I was the one who tested that patience quite frequently.

He was my rock, made me feel safe, and I knew that I could count on him for anything. No matter what kind of challenges I brought to him, he never gave up or stopped loving me.

He taught me that God was more than a religion, his own spiritual journey set my heart on fire to search for more.

My daughter was his best friend as he always said, they had a precious relationship and I am always grateful that he retired early and had that time with her. But he didn’t stay long enough to see her graduate from high school, college, or get married. And these are the times I miss him the most, miss his smile through his tears of happiness, for he had that kind of emotional heart.

I lost my Dad slowly over many years prior to his death, when an undiagnosed stroke left him with aphasia, a disconnect in the brain that affects verbal communication. His mind and thoughts were there, he just could not express them any longer in words.

Thankfully, we could communicate through written words, but our conversations were not quite the same after that. For me this was the most difficult part…no longer being able to talk with him and no more phone calls just to say hello and chat…I really missed that.

Yet nothing could stop my Dad from overcoming any challenge and he took it upon himself to learn sign language, because that was the kind of person he was…never give up, make the best of any situation and always continue to learn and grow, no matter what the obstacles lying in front of you were. 

Unfortunately, the rest of us weren’t as diligent in learning this new form of communication, so writing was the way we spoke to one another…mostly. 

His health slowly declined over the next 8 years with many other unusual changes that followed, taking him slowly away…losing parts of him piece by piece. We made the best of things, but it was one of the most difficult journeys I have ever had to travel through. The tables were turning and my rock now needed me and I wasn’t ready for that…or ready to lose that person who was always there for me, but no longer was able to be. 

Today I realize more than ever, the precious gift God blessed me with. God gave me a wonderful Father for forty nine years to love me, lead me, support me and nurture me. My Dad is and always will be a part of me and that is a blessing beyond any measure. 

When I lost my Dad, I realized the most important thing that he had been trying to instill in me all those years, was that God was my rock in everything. He was the one I needed to lean on for everything. He was the one who would always be with me no matter what life brought and would get me through it all and help me keep moving on. My Dad’s example of faith and trust are what he left with me…the gift that keeps on giving and inspiring me every day of my life. 

I truly believe that my Dad was trying to prepare me for that day when he would no longer be here. But being young and thinking my Dad would be around for a very long time, at least until I was ready to let him go, kind of blindsided me. I wasn’t ready to lose him, we had so much more to experience together. But life doesn’t always turn out the way we expected, does it?

But as always, God brings something  good in everything. The loss of my earthly Dad has taught me to cherish every moment, take nothing for granted, never give up and trust God first and always in all things. To truly listen with open hearts to what our parents are trying to leave with us…their legacy of love, wisdom and knowledge from their own journeys to help us keep moving on once they are gone. 

I continue to celebrate my Dad on Father’s Day and every day of my life, with a smile and sometimes a tear, because of all that he selflessly gave me, taught me, and loved me through…and most importantly for the part of him that will always remain within me.

 Thank you Dad for everything…I will see you again someday. I love you. 

Keep up with Sue on Facebook and check out her website.

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7 Reasons You May Need To Say Bye To Bae Wed, 21 Jun 2017 11:00:14 +0000 BAE: A popular term of endearment these days, applied when speaking to the significant other. A term that was shortened...

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BAE: A popular term of endearment these days, applied when speaking to the significant other. A term that was shortened from, “Baby” or “Babe” usually Bae, is “the one” in whatever sense of “the one” he/she is, to the one referring to them as Bae. Meaning, she/he, can be in a situation ship, relationship, committed agreement, monogamous relationship or marriage. In other words, Bae, is not just the “friend.” If he or she is calling one another Bae, something has gone down between the two of them, or something will potentially be going down soon, as they are in some kind of relationship, where they’ve reached the degree of Bae.

So, when this is the case and you are Bae, with expectations of becoming something more, where you are literally waiting like you would in an emergency room waiting area, you may want to start reassessing some things. If Bae hasn’t been treating you like Bae, and unless you are okay with that, you want to consider these 7 reasons that it may just be time to say goodbye to Bae. This can apply to women and men.


1. Your Bae, still needs “time” to decide whether they want to be in a committed relationship with you, and something more than bedroom chatter. Your Bae will not answer direct questions regarding the status of the relationship. They will avoid it at all costs. They are all talk- he tells you he wants to be with you. He’d scream it all over the world, but he does nothing to show or follow through.


2. Your Bae, is still taking his ex-girlfriend/wife out on dates on intimate holidays, and is attempting to justify it by saying they have a child together, but that child is grown. They are uber friendly and you don’t have a problem with that- but he doesn’t understand the breech in boundaries. Even when he realizes that you’re not as naive and gullible as he initially thought, he continues to make attempts at pulling stuff over your head. Now this is when it’s really time to say goodbye.


3. Your Bae, is still calling and texting other women/men, in private; swearing that nothing is going on, yet they feel the need to hide it, because they know how you would feel about it. They refuse to adhere to the rules of being in a relationship. The two of you have two different takes on what a man and woman should do when they are in a relationship with someone. He obviously has some honesty issues or by nature he’s a habitual liar- and he simply doesn’t respect you.


4. Your Bae has yet to introduce you to any of their family or friends, but you’ve known them as Bae for years. You have never been to an event or outing with Bae where his/her family and friends were in attendance. You should know by now that saying goodbye to Bae is long overdue. There is absolutely no reason that could last longer than a reasonable about of time when it comes to being introduced to family and having a presence in the relationship.


5. Your Bae keeps your relationship on ice. Always in the appetizer course of the relationship, never moving into the main course. (Not talking about sex here) I am talking about substance. You’ve been at the dinner table of the beginner stages long enough to have moved beyond the appetizers. He’s still feeding you very small and non-filling portions of what you desire from the table that he asked you to sit at with him. You keep asking, “when’s main dish going to get here?” “When’s the dinner salad, the second course going to arrive?” The food is not coming!


6. Bae does not prioritize with you in mind. He/she must check on everyone else first, making sure no one else wants to do anything, before they call you. When it’s time to go out and do anything, friends always come before you. You find yourself at home waiting until he has done everything else, and now he has time for you. Or they halt plans that they had with you when something else comes up that is not of equal or greater importance. He’d/she’d simply rather be doing something else and will “hit you up” later.


7. You’re repeating the smallest of things that need to be done to create the biggest impact. He’s not getting it. Not sure if this will be one that people chalk up to men are from Mars and women are from Venus so he doesn’t understand; but even that is getting a little tired. He knows! If he doesn’t know what he’s doing differently from what you were initially attracted to, then you met his representative anyway. Or he’s met someone else altogether. And he’s just not that into you anymore.

Saying bye to Bae may not be easy because you thought that you had the most amazing chemistry. You have history together. They know you, they said they love you and you really care for them. However, when someone is leading you on, keeping you and the relationship that they have no desire to be in, in an uncompromising state, all while asking you to compromise your happiness, while they decide if they even want you or not- can be toxic. It’s time to say GOODBYE BAE.

Follow Niedria on Twitter and visit her Blog

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Developing Healthy Habits Today Tue, 20 Jun 2017 11:00:24 +0000 Habits are difficult to break. You might have a cup of coffee every morning even though your doctor suggests green...

The post Developing Healthy Habits Today appeared first on SheSavvy.

Habits are difficult to break. You might have a cup of coffee every morning even though your doctor suggests green tea as an alternative. Your habits define you to a certain degree, such as when you religiously hit the gym for that lean physique. However, it’s possible to change and improve your habits when it comes to your health. Explore how you can develop healthy habits today with a few mental tricks by your side.

Involve Rewards

According to the American Heart Association, rewarding anyone for a proper habit is reason enough to continue with the practice. Think about what excites you. A new purse, a pair of yoga pants, or a 30-minute massage might be your dream rewards. Dangle one of these rewards in front of your mind with the promise that you’ll change a certain habit.

Because there’s a pleasurable sensation waiting for you at the end of this long road, you’ll endure the process in order to reach the goal. Make the rewards positive ones too. If you reward your healthy, eating habits with a binge-eating session, you’re breaking down the habit that you just developed. Reward yourself with an item or experience that won’t negate the positivity of the original goal. You’ll continue on that healthy path after the reward as a result.

Make Small Alterations

When people commit to major changes in their lives, the goals are often unreachable. The change is too great, and people eventually fall into their original habits out of frustration and yearning for comfort.

The Washington Post reports that small changes can have a big impact. Working out at the gym may take too much time for some people so incorporate your workout into daily habits that are already established. Perform several sit-ups before you go to the bathroom. By adding this change to your day, the number of sit-ups that you complete will be amazingly high in number.

You’re more inclined to commit to a smaller goal than a bigger one. Victory is the goal, and many people don’t want to risk failure with a large goal.

Go Public With Your Commitment

Making yourself an internal commitment isn’t as strong as a verbal one. If you want to get healthy with a new workout routine, tell all of your friends about the goal. You’re verbally committing to the habit change, which makes a psychological difference. Any failures to achieve this goal will be met with stigma from your growing social group. They’ll ask you about your progress, and you won’t have a good answer. Because you want acceptance and positive reinforcement, you’ll make it a goal to achieve the healthy habits in spite of any internal frustrations.

Disturb the Loop

Scientists report to NPR that habits are formed with a three-part system. The key to developing healthy habits is by breaking the loop. The three parts consist of a trigger, the behavior, and final reward. Remove just one of these parts, and you can stop a habit in its tracks.

Your mind relies on the loop for processing ease, such as driving a car while having a conversation. Without the automatic nature of your driving, you wouldn’t be able to complete your sentences with ease. Your day is full of routines and habits so start your healthy changes while you’re on vacation. The routine is completely broken so you can start with different habits at that point. When you return home, follow those same behaviors to keep up with the habits. Eating fruit for breakfast or jogging for 20 minutes each day can be part of your habits when you have a chance to break into that loop.

Another smart trick to employ is writing down your bad habits. By making this information tangible in your mind, they’ll be easier to deal with as you alter them each day. Whether you’re a smoker or habitual eater, nearly every habit can be broken with some mental strength and psychological understanding.


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