6 Simple Ways to Make Your Outfit Look More Expensive Part THREE


4. Invest in Classic Coats

Find yourself a good coat, wear it over everything, rinse, and repeat. A good leather bomber, a classic trench, a statement winter warmer — you need a great coat. Your closet should play host to a few solid neutrals as well as a more elaborate coat (think pattern, embellishments, or a unique shape) that works over those monochrome outfits I mentioned earlier.

5. Invest in a Hand Steamer

Wrinkles for sure don’t go with your outfit. I love a good hand steamer for last-minute smoothing and to help make your outfit looks their best. And while ironing is great, steamers are much gentler on your clothing, allowing for less wear and tear over time.

6. The Right Accessories

A structured bag, silk scarf, or gold accents (think military buttons or a fancy belt) can easily elevate your look. The right accessories can make all the difference. Choose wisely and wear often.

6 Simple Ways to Make Your Outfit Look More Expensive Part Two


2. Add Texture

 Faux suede and leather, boucle, tweed, jacquard, oh my! Give me all the texture! Not only do these materials add visual interest to your outfit, but the special details instantly elevate the simplest of looks.




3. Get it Tailored

Probably the most underrated tip of them all: fit is your friend. (But it can also be your worst enemy.) Take the time to nip a waist, drop a hem, or pin a shoulder. These small changes can make a drastic difference in your overall look.



6 Simple Ways to Make Your Outfit Look More Expensive Part One

Spoiler alert: you don’t have to drop tons of cash on clothes to look like a million bucks. In fact, it’s easier to get a polished, pulled together, this-looks-way-more-expensive-than-it-actually-was look with just a few simple styling tricks. Because, let’s be real, we’ve all got bills to pay. And while some say there’s an art to mixing and matching your wardrobe to achieve this style, these ways to make your outfit look more expensive are tried and true.

These are a few of my favorite tips for when you’re ballin’ on a budget.


1. Go Monochrome

Whether all black everything is your thing, or you want to do my personal favorite — an all ivory combo — creating a fully monochromatic look is a simple and effective way to make your outfit look more expensive. Opt for different hues within the same color family or choose a navy and black, or black and brown combination. It’s a luxe color pairing that will never go out of style.



How Eating for Balance and Nutrition Is Better Than Dieting PART 4


Cope with your emotions with kindness

The phrase eating your emotions is one that hits home for many women. We turn to ice cream and pizza and other favorite comfort foods when the going gets tough: a painful menstruation, a sad breakup, an exceptionally hard day at work or with the kids. So how does one reconcile intuitive eating with the problem of emotional eating?

Tribole and Resch warn readers that emotional eating “may comfort for the short term, distract from the pain, or even numb you. But food won’t solve the problem. If anything, eating for an emotional hunger may only make you feel worse in the long run.”

As a safeguard against perpetuating a cycle of overeating in time of duress, nutritionists commonly advocate for increased self-awareness, urging health-minded people to consider possible aggravating factors that can lead to emotional eating. For example, do you retreat from social support during times of emotional need? Do you not engage in activities that might otherwise relieve stress, sadness, and so on? Do you not understand the difference between physical and emotional hunger? Do you use negative self-talk? Learning to eliminate patterns of behavior that increase negative emotion, and implementing other healthy practices to deal with negative emotions and stressful situations will make you less reliant on food as a source of emotional comfort.

Respect your body

It’s hard to reject diet culture and embrace the inner wisdom of intuition when plagued by body image issues. Nutritionist Brenna O’Malley offers advice for how to realistically respect one’s body, noting that “it’s unrealistic to think we will love every single thing about our bodies.” Instead, one should focus on dressing in clothes that fit, feel comfortable, and make you feel good, as well as talking to oneself with “compassion and kindness” and “moving your body in a way that feels good to you.”

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How Eating for Balance and Nutrition Is Better Than Dieting PART 3

continued. . .

Discover the satisfaction factor

Perhaps the most enjoyable principle in intuitive eating, the satisfaction factor is about making the act of eating a pleasurable and sensory experience. As Resch and Tribole explain, “When you eat what you really want, in an environment that is inviting, the pleasure you derive will be a powerful force in helping you feel satisfied and content.”

Discovering the satisfaction factor requires careful attention the experience we create for ourselves when we eat. Resch and Tribole point to the culinary culture of Japan, as an example of how food and eating can be a form of ritualized pleasure—even an art form. Mukimono, for instance, is the art of carving vegetables, fruits, and other foods into interesting shapes. Moritsuke is the art of dish presentation. Both practices emphasize and contribute to eating as celebratory experience.

Fortunately, you don’t need to relocate to Japan in order to enjoy the sensory pleasures of the art of eating. There are practices you can implement every time you sit down to eat to make your meal a more enjoyable experience. Cookbook author, and registered dietitian, Ellie Krieger advises: “Slow down instead of shoveling it in mindlessly. Employ all of your senses to fully experience it and how it makes you feel. Before you eat, take in the food with your eyes, appreciating its colors, textures and presentation, and inhale and enjoy its appealing aroma. When you take a bite, chew well, allowing all the flavors to unfold.”

Another easy way to help you appreciate your food is to take time to set your table before you sit down to eat. It literally sets the scene for your meal. And that little act of time and intention also puts you in the right frame of mind to then eat with intention.

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How Eating for Balance and Nutrition Is Better Than Dieting PART 2

continued. . . .

Make peace with food

Related to the idea of rejecting diet culture is the practice of making peace with food. The fact is, each new dieting trend has its own list of “good” and “bad” foods, and after decades of diet culture almost no food groups have been spared some censure. As Virginia Sole, author of The Eating Instinct: Food Culture, Body Image and Guilt in America, observes, “Our catalogue of ‘bad’ foods has been getting bigger and bigger—gluten! red meat! anything in a package!—until we’re apologizing for eating, period.”

Colleen Christensen, a registered dietitian nutritionist and “food freedom” expert, details her own battle to make peace with food, sharing: “I was over my head in diet culture madness (all of that low carb, low calorie, don’t eat after 8 p.m. madness) I knew I couldn’t live the rest of my life that way.”

But how, exactly, do you make peace with foods that diet culture has been making war on for decades? Christensen used “mantras, affirmations, and journaling” to rewire her attitude toward certain foods like bread and pasta. Among her recommended affirmations are “I will treat my body with respect and nourish it with what it asks for,” and “I give my body permission to change.” Another practice Christensen recommends is working to get past your own personal food rules in a systematic fashion. She focused on letting go of one “food rule” at a time, so as not to trigger her desire to restrict her eating—and because it helped her truly appreciate the food she had previously labeled as “bad.”

Challenge the food police

The “food police” according to Resch and Tribole, are stationed deep in our psyche. They “monitor the unreasonable rules that diet culture has created. They shout “negative barbs, hopeless phrases, and guilt-provoking indictments.”

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How Eating for Balance and Nutrition Is Better Than Dieting PART 1

Weight loss and dieting comprise a multibillion-dollar global industry. Yet, as the World Health Organization reports, “worldwide obesity has nearly tripled since 1975” and “in 2016, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight. Of these over 650 million were obese.” Something is not working here. In fact, some research has shown that dieting may work against our goals of maintaining healthy bodies.

On the one hand, a 1999 study found that dieting “is the most important predictor of new eating disorders,” in adolescents. Adolescent girls who severely dieted were found to be 18 times more likely to develop eating disorders than those who did not. On the other hand, a 2015 study based on an Australian sample found that the odds of obesity were actually higher for those who had dieted in the past year than among those who hadn't—and in fact increased the more regularly a person dieted.

In the face of the failure of diet culture, the philosophy of intuitive eating has gained increasing popularity in the last thirty years.


Research designates ten principles for reshaping one’s attitude toward the role of food in a balanced lifestyle. If you’d like to take a step in a balanced direction this National Nutrition Month, consider some of the principles behind this healthy lifestyle.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART SEVEN


15. Deep breathing

Mental stress activates your sympathetic nervous system, signaling your body to go into “fight-or-flight” mode.

During this reaction, stress hormones are released and you experience physical symptoms such as a faster heartbeat, quicker breathing and constricted blood vessels.

Deep breathing exercises can help activate your parasympathetic nervous system, which controls the relaxation response.

There are several types of deep breathing exercises, including diaphragmatic breathing, abdominal breathing, belly breathing and paced respiration.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART SIX


13. Cuddle

Cuddling, kissing, and hugging can all help relieve stress .

Positive physical contact can help release oxytocin and lower cortisol. This can help lower blood pressure and heart rate, both of which are physical symptoms of stress.

Interestingly, humans aren’t the only animals who cuddle for stress relief. Chimpanzees also cuddle friends who are stressed (21).


Positive touch from cuddling, and hugging may help lower stress by releasing oxytocin and lowering blood pressure.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART FIVE


10. Learn to avoid procrastination

Another way to take control of your stress is to stay on top of your priorities and stop procrastinating.

Procrastination can lead you to act reactively, leaving you scrambling to catch up. This can cause stress, which negatively affects your health and sleep quality (16).

Get in the habit of making a to-do list organized by priority. Give yourself realistic deadlines and work your way down the list.

Work on the things that need to get done today and give yourself chunks of uninterrupted time, as switching between tasks or multitasking can be stressful itself.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART FOUR


7. Spend time with friends and family

Social support from friends and family can help you get through stressful times.

Being part of a friend network gives you a sense of belonging and self-worth, which can help you in tough times.

One study found that for women in particular, spending time with friends and children helps release oxytocin, a natural stress reliever. This effect is called “tend and befriend,” and is the opposite of the fight-or-flight response.

Keep in mind that both men and women benefit from friendship.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART THREE


5. Write it down

One way to handle stress is to write things down.

While recording what you’re stressed about is one approach, another is jotting down what you’re grateful for.

Gratitude may help relieve stress and anxiety by focusing your thoughts on what’s positive in your life.


Keeping a journal can help relieve stress and anxiety, especially if you focus on the positive.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART TWO


 Light a candle

Using essential oils or burning a scented candle may help reduce your feelings of stress and anxiety.

Some scents are especially soothing. Here are some of the most calming scents:

  • Lavender
  • Rose
  • Vetiver
  • Bergamot
  • Roman chamomile
  • Neroli
  • Frankincense
  • Sandalwood
  • Ylang ylang
  • Orange or orange blossom
  • Geranium

Using scents to treat your mood is called aromatherapy. Several studies show that aromatherapy can decrease anxiety and improve sleep (7Trusted Source8Trusted Source9Trusted Source).


Aromatherapy can help lower anxiety and stress. Light a candle or use essential oils to benefit from calming scents.

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16 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress and Anxiety PART ONE

Stress and anxiety are common experiences for most people. In fact, 70% of adults in the United States say they feel stress or anxiety daily.

Here are 16 simple ways to relieve stress and anxiety.


Exercise is one of the most important things you can do to combat stress.

It might seem contradictory, but putting physical stress on your body through exercise can relieve mental stress.

The benefits are strongest when you exercise regularly. People who exercise regularly are less likely to experience anxiety than those who don’t exercise (1).

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How To Survive A Narcissist PART FOUR


Find the good in the narcissist.

One of the most important tips I can give you to survive the narcissist is this, find the good in them. I remember as a little girl, my father would tell me that if you look hard enough, you can find the good in anyone. Maybe the narcissist is great at keeping the yard looking good, Maybe the narcissist likes to throw the ball with your son or play dolls with your daughter. Find a good trait and focus on that when the going gets tough.

For example, the narcissistic parent in my life taught me to be independent and as my friends say, “a boss chick.” I am glad because if this parent had taught me that, I would’ve been destitute after my divorce.

Have no expectations.

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How To Survive A Narcissist PART THREE


Establish strong boundaries.

We often hear that you need to establish boundaries with a narcissist, yet many survivors don’t know what those look like. First, make a list of what’s important to you. What are your values, morals, and standards? Then, establish your boundaries around these.

Henry Cloud said that boundaries teach others how to respect and love us. Although the love may look different from a narcissist, at least there’s an invisible barrier as to where you start, and the narcissist ends.
One of my boundaries with the narcissist was established around therapy. A narcissist and I went to see five marriage counselors over ten years. When the narcissist gave up, I continued, even though it made that person angry. I knew what I needed, and I stuck to my rules.

Don’t isolate.

Narcissists often manipulate others by slowly drawing them away from their support system of family and friends. Do your best not to let this happen. Keep those connections that are important to you. Even if your time with those people is limited, make sure it happens. You need a touchpoint in reality, and those people can do that for you.

Get emotional needs met.

Hopefully, you can find one person who understands what you are living with or going through. Lean on that person. You can tell them, “I don’t need you to fix this. I need you to listen.” Be careful and don’t let the emotional involvement turn into an affair, because that’s like throwing bacon grease on a. Campfire. But be sure to get your emotional needs met by a good friend or family member. The narcissist simply isn’t capable of meeting your emotional needs. They cannot even meet their own.


How To Survive A Narcissist PART TWO


Learn all you can about narcissism.

Narcissists have a pervasive sense of entitlement, need high control, and demonstrate low empathy. Spend time reading about narcissism and learning about the character traits of narcissists. When you are armed with knowledge, you are more likely to predict future behavior and navigate the tough times effectively.

For example, if you know that a narcissist doesn’t like animals, then don’t ask that person for help when the dog is sick. Learn to handle the canine’s care on your own.

Predict the cycle.

There is a consistent cycle of narcissistic influence in almost every narcissistic relationship. It has four stages/: Love bombing, devaluation or tension building, rage, and heart and flowers.

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How To Survive A Narcissist PART ONE

Many survivors of narcissistic relationships describe navigating it like walking on eggshells. Sure, I agree with that description, but after surviving a narcissistic parent then a husband I think it can be more like crossing a field of broken glass or dodging landmines. The bottom line is navigating how to survive a narcissist is unpredictable, painful, and messy.

The best-case scenario is to leave the narcissist, grieve the relationship and start over. However, when we look at how to survive a narcissist, there are cases when this just can’t happen. The reasons can range from financial to childcare to health issues.

Therefore, you must have some coping mechanisms to get through the worst of a partnership with a narcissist.

Learn all you can about narcissism.

Narcissists have a pervasive sense of entitlement, need high control, and demonstrate low empathy. Spend time reading about narcissism and learning about the character traits of narcissists. When you are armed with knowledge, you are more likely to predict future behavior and navigate the tough times effectively.

For example, if you know that a narcissist doesn’t like animals, then don’t ask that person for help when the dog is sick. Learn to handle the canine’s care on your own.


Are You the Narcissist’s Puppet? PART TWO


Secondly, understand that these phrases are part of a narcissist’s vocabulary because narcissists always need to be right, no matter the subject matter. They think they know everything about any subject.

Also, lower your expectations. Narcissists will seldom approve of anything you do. They believe you should’ve done it their way, no matter how well you execute a plan or action.

Finally, do what makes you feel good. Sometimes it is using non-committal phrases like, “I understand how you could feel that way” or “Interesting.” You aren’t saying yes or complying with their demands.  You do you.

Are You the Narcissist’s Puppet? PART ONE

The words “should,” “ought to,” “must,” or “need” often send survivors of narcissist abuse into a tailspin. These are terms the narcissist often uses to mandate and control their victims’ actions, thoughts, and beliefs. When such phrases become ingrained in a victim’s mind, it becomes what psychologists call “imperative thinking.”  

Survivors of narcissistic abuse in childhood or adulthood have difficulty navigating those internal thoughts of the should’ sought to’s, and needs. For example, my mother, a narcissist, taught me these should’s:

  • I should work for her approval because she is always right.
  • I should be skinny because no one will love me otherwise.
  • I should always look because it’s all about how it looks.
  • I should be smart because unintelligent people aren’t respected.

She also taught me that others:

  • People ought to like or love me, or I am a loser and must have something inherently wrong with me.
  • People should love me, no matter if I don’t love them back because if they don’t, it’s my fault.

We know that a narcissist’s standards are very high and typically unattainable.  Then, add the ever-changing criteria of a narcissist, and that combination grows into a recipe for disaster and low self-esteem.

If you are with a narcissist, you may notice that they typically mandate the following of those closest to them:

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