7 WAYS TO GET AN IMMUNE SYSTEM LIKE WONDER WOMAN

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Who has time to be in bed for a week with the flu or a cold? None of us. The season is here and I am bound & determined to keep my immune system as strong as possible. There are bad habits many of us have that weaken our systems and make us susceptible to germs and viruses. It takes a bit more effort than merely using hand sanitizer or taking extra vitamin C although both of those are good habits.

Join me in being as strong as possible this winter:

  1. GET MORE Zzz’s. When we have poor sleeping habits it lowers our immune system and reduces the numbers of killer cells that fight germs. If you’re a night owl, try going to bed earlier. If it’s possible- take a catnap during the day.
  2. CHILL OUT. Chronic stress does a royal number on your immune system and there’s a major decline in the system’s ability to fight disease. A hot bath is not going to do the trick. Try creating a lifestyle of stress relieving activities like painting, kickboxing or yoga.
  3. NO COMMUNAL PENS. I’m guilty of using the communal pens at the bank and we can’t get around using the credit/debit card machine touchpad pen. (that’s when the hand sanitizer comes in handy) Carry your own pen for bank deposits and to various meetings in your office. Politely tell co-workers your pen is off limits due to it being flu season. Encourage them to use their own pens as well. Keep a box of inexpensive ballpoint pens in your office for co-workers. Tell them they can keep it!
  4. GET YOUR GIGGLE ON. Because the days are shorter, darker and colder- our mood takes a dip during winter. Laughing actually activates stress busting hormones and increases immune cells.
  5. LIMIT THE BOOZE. Ok, I know this is a challenge during winter because of all the holiday parties, but be mindful of limiting your intake.  Alcohol can actually damage the immune system because it prevents nutrients from feeding the immune system. Once the alcohol gets into the blood stream, it begins reducing the number of white blood cells making it difficult to fight off disease.
  6. GIRL TIME. It’s a scientific fact that women who create regular genuine friendships and connect on a regular basis have stronger immune systems. With the busyness of the holiday season on top of cramming in work before your time off, it’s easy to bypass quality time with friends. If you can’t grab coffee, at least have a fun phone chat. You’ll both benefit from the boost.
  7. POP THE SUPP’S. We will never get the amount of immune building nutrients we need from meals. It’s important to consistently take the proper supplements to strengthen your system. Last week with the first temperature dip, I ordered a great supplement filled with immune boosting nutrients like camu camu which has antiviral properties and 60 times more vitamin C than an orange. It’s also filled with amazing nutrients for mental alertness, mood balance, anti-inflammatory properties, energy and healthy skin/hair/nails.

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What habits do you need to change?

Take good care of you, sista.

Love, Tiff

As A Woman Thinketh, So Is She

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Every word spoken and action taken – all begins with a thought. We mold and design our lives with the way we think. Our thoughts have both creative and destructive power.

Are you creating the life of your dreams or do you sabotage and destroy anything good that comes your way?

What are the dominant thoughts you have toward yourself?

Regardless if we are conscious of it or not, our underlying beliefs about ourself shape our character, our health, our appearance, our relationships, our circumstances, and our destiny. No matter what their age, self-love is a sensitive subject with the women I mentor. Too many women are living life with a deep sense of hatred, shame and disappointment toward themselves. The choices we make, the men we date, our level of passion and purpose are all a product of either loving or hating ourselves.

What do you really think about you?

Since the beginning of SOS, I’ve shared how throughout my 20′s I lived in shame, fear and brokenness. I was trying my best to carry a ton of baggage that nearly broke my spirit all while appearing like I had it all together. I know many of you relate. Women are numbing themselves with dangerous things that appear to be harmless like self- medicating with alcohol, prescription meds, shopping and food. I know, I did it all.

Most of my decisions and actions came from a negative viewpoint of myself. I was not conscious of my thought patterns at all and would wallow in anxiety, complaining and misery. When I was tired of wallowing, I would numb myself. It’s simple – if we think high, noble and pure thoughts our lives will go that direction. On the opposite hand, if we think lowly, dark and hateful thoughts- well, you get the picture. It took years to realize I had to begin by forgiving myself for some of the stupid choices I made.

I did not think very highly of me. 

Because my mind was so polluted, it took a lot of work and God’s Love & Grace to clear it out. It reminds me of a car that has been smoked in for years. Yuck! It takes so much work and fumigating to clear it out and there’s always that tiny bit of residual smoke smell. So, you’re always spraying perfumes and hanging deodorants to mask the smell. My mind needed serious fumigating to get rid of the pollution I had accumulated over the years.

Love really was the ultimate fumigation system. My broken, shame-ridden heart had to be so filled with love again that it squeezed out all the pollution in my mind. Psalm 23:7 is a short, but profound verse, “For as a man thinks in his heart, so is he”. Get it? The verse is referring to the heart thinking when we typically view our mind as the starting point of our thoughts. God loved me all along, but I didn’t realize it. I had to learn to receive it.

The truth that you cherish about yourself in your heart (your private thoughts) create the vision in your mind then determines what you become.

Loving yourself and allowing God’s Love into your life is the foundation of you becoming who you are destined to be. What can you begin doing today to fumigate any lingering pollution? M. Scott Peck, M.D. – author of The Road Less Traveled describes self-love so clearly. “Self-love implies the care, respect and responsibility for the knowledge of the self. Without loving one’s self one cannot love others. But do not confuse self-love with self-centeredness.” 

  • Begin with forgiving yourself.
  • Take better care of your basic needs. Eat & sleep well, exercise, interact in healthy activities.
  • Set healthy boundaries in your relationships.
  • Learn to say no.
  • Live with intention & purpose. 

LET THE LOVE IN.

Xo, Tiff

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KEEPING THE “HAPPY” IN THE HOLIDAYS By Guest Blogger Tina Hamilton

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There is no doubt that the holiday season is crazy for everyone. From entertaining family to buying holiday gifts, there seems to be so many things to do and never enough time to do it. However, many women tend to feel like this any time of the year. Women are selfless in nature, always wanting to give more and do more for the people they can about. These desires are often the most intense around the holidays when women want to make everything perfect for their friends and family.

Many women forget that the holidays are about so much more than just giving the best gift and having a perfectly decorated home. The holiday season first gained its popularity because it was a time for friends and family to relax and enjoy each other’s company, being thankful for everything they have been blessed with that year. Every woman should take some time to stop worrying about pleasing everyone in her life with tangible things and think more about how she can show appreciation for them.

Here are some ways women can stay grounded during the holiday season:

Make a list

No, not talking about a holiday gift list. Women should make another list, a list of all the things that they were grateful for this year. This can be a great activity for women to do with their families to bond or on their own for some self-reflection. This list can be a great way to remind women of all the special things in their lives and help them appreciate everything they are blessed with.

Use some props

Many women can benefit from using some tools to help them remember why the holiday season is important. Tangible items can be very helpful as reminders for women of their goals and blessings. Women can use pictures around their home, an inspirational app on their phone or even a piece of  jewelry that has special meaning to help remind women of their goals and what it most important in their lives.

Take some weight off those shoulders

Women are often left feeling like that they have to do everything during the holiday season. Women feel they have to take care of everyone, but that is not always practical. Women should try to take some of that pressure off by delegating some other friends or family members to take on some of the holiday responsibilities. For example, instead of cooking an entire meal for a group of people along, women can ask each guest to bring an item to the dinner to take away some of the stress. This adds more personality to the dinner and makes for good table conversation for the holiday meal.

How to Stay Grounded During the Holiday Season

 

Focus on new goals instead of failures

Women can sometimes beat themselves up too much for not accomplishing everything they wanted too. They think that they should have been there for their family more over the past year, or they should have lost more weight before those holiday parties arrive. Instead of beating themselves up over and over for ‘failing’, women should focus on the goals they can set for the next year and what they have accomplished this year. This can help women feel more confident as they face old family and friends over the holidays and help them stay positive when entering into the New Year.

Never let guilt rule holiday decisions

Women forget sometimes that they always have control over their decisions, especially during the holidays. Women feel guilty to turn down a party invite or not give someone a gift, but they need to keep the big picture in mind. Women need to remember not to spread themselves too thin over the holidays and instead focus their attention on a few things. When giving gifts, women should not focus so much on the price of each gift, but instead on the meaning behind each gift. Giving an inexpensive gift that preserves a special memory is much more meaningful than an expensive gift that will be forgotten about by next year.

Stay happy this holiday! 

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Tina Hamilton is a journalist, blogger and social media guru. You can usually find her online or walking along one of Southern California’s beaches with her dog, Joey. Look for her on Twitter

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Brrrrr In Style

I’m freezing and my teeth are chattering so I’m making this quick! It’s time to crank the heater, jump into my cute leggings, uggs & sweatshirt. It got below freezing this morning in Dallas and of course, I had to traipse around downtown in it on the way to a photoshoot. I wasn’t ready for it. There’s still a little bit of LA in me, I guess. My beanies, berets, faux fur scarves and gloves still need to be dusted off from the top of my closet.

Brrrrrrrrr.

I layered up. My trusty American Apparel V-neck Tee under a flannel plaid shirt gave me instant comfort and warmth factor.  Just because we’re getting hit hard with the low temps doesn’t mean we have to sacrifice style.  

Here are a few things I can’t live without in winter: 

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PLAID FLANNEL SHIRT

You may be thinking frumpy lumberjack, but there are so many cute flannel shirts at Target that are tapered to show your figure. I love these because you can layer them and throw them over a T-shirt. Because they button up, it’s easy to take it off once you’re in the warm indoors. Pair with skinny jeans, cute boots and a scarf and you have a great casual winter go-to outfit.

 

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LONG PUFFER COAT

This is a savior and is always in style. I’ve had a long puffy coat like this for nearly 10 years and it’s saved me when I’ve had to take trips to colder climates like NYC or Aspen. Your bootie and legs are covered, plus they usually come with a belt or are tapered at the waist so you don’ look like the michelin man.   

 

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FLOPPY FEDORA

I don’t care what you are wearing, if you add a floppy fedora - you look instantly glam. With the crazy winds & freezing rain during winter, a great hat will keep your hair in place as well as keep your head warm.

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TOUCHSCREEN COMPATIBLE GLOVES 

Since we lives on our phones, it’s a pain to keep taking our gloves off and on to return texts. I love these rouched microfleece gloves from Target (on sale right now for only $6. 40) with special touchscreen thumb and index fingertips. Of course, when you are getting dressed up- opt for a beautiful pair of leather gloves instead.

 

There are several other winter items I can’t live without, but these things were fresh on my mind today.. the first true wintery day. All of these items are timeless so invest in the good stuff. 

Stay warm. Stay stylish sistas! I’m off for a big bowl of hot soup.

Hey, what is the one item you would die without during winter? Comment and let us know. 

Love, Tiff

 

 

PURPOSE GONE WILD by Guest Blogger Ashley Brown

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The Gift you are meant to give…

You are a rare specimen. I know that’s a random way of starting this blog, but its true! The fact that you are alive is confirmation that you have purpose. Out of MILLIONS of sperm and hundreds of thousands eggs, YOU WERE SELECTED TO BE HERE. This is simply amazing. In case you didn’t know, it only takes 1 sperm, and 1 egg to create a baby, and in that particular moment, you were created. This is phenomenal. There is a specific reason why you are here, and your purpose is directly linked to your passion.

Let’s talk passion today…

We all have our passions & interest. The problem comes when we fall into a hypnotic rhythm of imitating the lives of others, and fail to realize our own uniqueness. Those who are truly great and legendary are the ones who pursed their curiosities even when it was contrary to what everyone else was doing around them. They did not fear the opinions of others, they simply acted on their hearts desires and in turn, they made a significant contribution to the world. The problem with mass media and social media is that when you are so focused on the lives of others it can be a distraction and distort your thinking, making you believe that you are supposed to be in a position that you are not.

Truth is…

you are right where you need to be and as soon as you take your eyes off everyone else’s purpose you can start pursuing your own.

Don’t be afraid of your own happiness or success.

The world NEEDS that authentic thing you have to offer.

Imitating the masses is a sure way of neglecting your true calling. Dig deep to find your OWN creative voice. Copying is easy. Many people can do it and it makes money, but there is no rewarding feeling at the end of it. When you pursue your passions, that “rewarding” feeling is worth more than any dollar amount.

Take some time to revisit the things that captivate you.

The things that make your heart skip a beat or have you up for hours, researching, studying, dreaming etc. When you are really excited or passionate about something that is a green light that you are headed in the right direction. Some people have a misconception that discovering your purpose is supposed to be a drawn out struggle. It is actually the polar opposite. You are co-creating this life with the ultimate creator (God) and he has instilled a gift in you that will spark your interest.

It is important to act and dive deeper into even the most subtle passions that may seem random and pointless. For instance, if you have a passion for drawing on the ground with chalk, you may be able to start a campaign writing positive quotes on college campuses. As crazy as it may sound, extraordinary things happen when you take time to learn what drives you. God didn’t create anything that is not gifted. Master who you are, instead of being pre-occupied with everyone else.

As we head into the new year, I want you to rediscover your passions. Take some time to reflect back on what interested you as a child, and be confident on your pursuit of purpose. I can’t stress enough how living your purpose truly serves the world.

If your passions don’t line up with all the degrees you have received or career path you’ve been on, do not fear. It’s better to start now, than to look back 30 years from now, realizing you let all your passions die.

So…join me in re-discovering our passions and unwrapping the beautiful gift God has given us. #GettingMyLife #PurposeGoneWild (Hashtag! I want to see your success & progress.)

 Follow me: @AshleyEmpowers 

http://www.ashleyempowers.com

AshleyEmpowers

 

SICK OF YOUR LOOK? 5 Ways To Get Out Of A Beauty Rut

Do you cringe when you see a photo of yourself because you’ve had the same old look since 1995?

Are you itching for a beauty change, but not quite sure what to do? 

Can’t gather the courage to make a change? 

As your personal cheerleader and instigator of change- here are 5 ways I get myself out of a beauty rut and if you’ve been watching me webisodes for a while you know I’m not afraid to change my hair. That’s the easiest and fastest way to make a transformation. I think I’ve had every hair color possible except pink or purple.

Here’s your nudge…

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1) PLAY IN MAKEUP

On your day off, take an hour to play in makeup at Sephora and ask a makeup artist or consultant to give you some fresh ideas. It can be overwhelming and confusing because there are so many makeup lines. Try different color palettes that you normally do. If your skin has been dull and ruddy, test some new illuminating foundations and powders. I tend to lean toward muted colors on the lip, but it always makes me look washed out in photos. With the holiday parties around the corner, try a brighter red lip for fun. 

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2) GET YOUR HAIR DID 

This is a difficult one for most women, but it’s also very liberating when we just go for it. There’s something emotional about cutting our hair. I’ve cut my hair in a pixie, a bob, a faux hawk (yes, in my Hollywood days when I realized I was miserable) and it’s been every shade between black and blonde. I am usually itching for a change by Fall and recently had my bangs cut and ombre highlights. That little change helped me get out of my beauty rut from the Summer. If you can’t do a total style change- at least try a more vibrant or lighter/darker version of your current color and try a few extra layers or change your part.

 

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3) CREATE A SPA IN YOUR SHOWER

With the change of season, I tend to get bored with the cleansers, body washes and lotions I’ve been using during Summer. Try a new aromatic healthy body wash that creates a spa-like vibe in the shower. Plus, if you have dry skin it’s best to change up your body washes and lotions for winter. Look for hydrating and moisturizing brands like Whish Coconut Body Wash from Nordstrom. The ingredient list is so yummy! Also, the pH levels change in our skin with the change of seasons. This is an important time of year to pay special attention to our skincare regimen so if you’re in a rut- try a new cleanser. I recently started using the chemical free, all natural, aloe based skincare line - Hard Night/Good Morning by D’Andra Simmons. I especially love the AM Cleanser!  It’s an antioxidant rich exfoliating cleanser enhanced with jojoba beads to gently slough off dead skin cells and leave skin glowing. You feel like you’re giving yourself an at home mini facial every single day! 

 

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4) SWITCH UP YOUR SCENT

I had an interesting chat with some ladies a few weeks ago. We discussed who wore their same scent year around compared to those who squirted a different scent every time they walked out the door. How about you? Have you worn a signature scent all your life or do you switch it up? When I was a teen, my first favorite perfume was Tatiana by DVF named after her daughter. I wore it for years. I tend to stick to one scent until I get into a rut and am completely sick of it. I remember going through the Angel by Thierry Mugler phase. I wore it to death and can barely stand to smell it now. Sorry if that’s your fave! But if you’re in a rut, take some time to experiment and squirt some new fragrances on your trip to Sephora 

 

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5) FAKE IT DON’T BAKE IT

By now, your Summer glow has turned to pasty white so add some color with a great self tanner. Nothing makes you feel better -instantly- like a tan. In fact, I’m about to exfoliate and shower then apply a good coat of the Banana Boat above. I prefer doing this at night before bed so you awake with a glow. Make sure to wear a long sleeve tee and long pajama pants to keep the color on your skin and off your sheets.

These five tips help me tremendously and I hope they help you too!  I know it takes courage to try new things even something as simple as a new hair color, but the beauty of hair is that it always grows back and you can always change the color. What have you got to lose? You may gain a fabulous new look. Life is too short to live with the same hairstyle each decade! Just sayin’…

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What helps YOU get out of a beauty rut?

Share your tip with the sisterhood!

Make sure to join us on the Facebook Page all month for #30daysofgratitude!

Love, Tiff

 

No Whiners Allowed on SOS!

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Happy Weekend Sistas,

How was your first week of November? I am loving getting to experience an actual Fall and the change of seasons for the first time in many years. In LA, it still feels like Summer at this time of year. If you’re active on the SOS Facebook Page - you know I am posting 30 Days of Gratitude this month. Everyday I am sharing one thing I am grateful for. The intention for this exercise is to recalibrate our thinking, our level of joy and how we approach life. Please join us and if not, I encourage you to focus on your level of gratitude and thanksgiving on your own –  especially if you’ve allowed the busyness of life to keep you in a mode of complaining & whining. 

Be honest…

On a daily basis, do you find yourself living consistently in an attitude of gratitude or in the opposite realm of seeing the negative in everything and then complaining & whining about it? 

I am the first person to admit that I battled negative thinking for years. You could have called me Tiffany ‘Moan & Groan’ Hendra! Just like positivity, negativity and complaining is contagious. If you are raised around complainers, typically you will grow up complaining too. This is why it is vital to be conscious of the people you surround yourself with. I’ve mentioned the importance of gratitude several times on the blog and in my candid video blogs on my YouTube Channel. This is because I believe with every fiber of my being that living in a state of gratitude is life-changing. One of the first things I have my private coaching/mentoring clients begin doing daily is to create a gratitude list. It’s amazing how quick someone’s life can change when they realize how blessed they are. 

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 SOS is all about guiding and instigating changes we need to make in order to be the best women we can be. When I created SOS, I wanted it to empower women on many levels not just with beauty and fashion tips. Let’s face it, if you are resonating in a place of ingratitude – no amount of lipgloss or Louis Vuitton’s will bring you true joy.

Your outer reality corresponds to your inner reality! Gratitude creates a miraculous and beautiful inner reality that radiates outward. Then, our outer reality will inevitably change for the better.

Therefore, no whiners or negative Nellie’s are allowed on this internet real estate! It reminds me of that great saying Oprah has on a sign when you enter her office, “Please take responsibility for the energy you bring into this space”. Make sure to join us on the Facebook Page this month and together, we will raise our level of joy and blaze into 2015 with a beautiful, radiant, peaceful & powerful outer reality. Our light will shine brighter than ever and remember, the world needs YOUR unique light.

Never forget that! 

Love, Tiff

 

 

photo-300Example of 30 Days of Gratitude: 

Today, I’m grateful for my sis and that I get to be a big sister! Like most siblings, we’ve fought like cats & dogs and had the typical growing pains- but our bond keeps getting stronger & stronger as we get older. Natalie aka NatCat is a powerful soul and bright light in this world. I’m so proud of her! WHO ELSE IS GRATEFUL FOR THEIR SISTER (sibling) TODAY? 

#30daysofgratitude