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Oprah Winfrey takes everything that happens, even something tragic, as a learning experience.

Even when it comes to her own mothers passing. 

She is a successful businesswoman who came from a poor rural American upbringing to build her own brand. 

So she's definitely someone we would be happy to take advice from. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Her mother, Vernita Lee, died a month ago and Oprah is opening up about how she is dealing with it.

She told People, ''I said, ‘I don’t know if you’re going to make it. Do you think you’re going to make it?’ She said, ‘I don’t think I am.’ I had a conversation with her about what that felt like, what it felt like to be near the end.''

She continued, ''I started telling all the people who cared about her that, ‘She knows it’s the end, so, if you want to say goodbye, you should come and say goodbye.’”

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Oprah says that saying your goodbyes is an extremely special moment. 

She said, ''I said to her, ‘What a wonderful thing to be able to say goodbye,’ because she’s completely coherent and perfectly understanding everything.''

However, the 64-year-old did say that she struggled to find the right words to say to her mother – so she played music instead. 

She continued, ''What I said was, ‘Thank you, because I know it’s been hard for you. It was hard for you as a young girl having a baby, in Mississippi. No education. No skills. Seventeen, you get pregnant with this baby. Lots of people would have told you to give that baby away. Lots of people would’ve told you to abort that baby. You didn't do that.''

She added, ''I want you to know that no matter what, I know that you always did the best you knew how to do. I would say to anybody – and if you live long enough, everybody goes through it say the things that you need to say while the people are still alive, so that you are not one of those people living with regret about what you would’ve, should’ve, could’ve said,” she explained.

Words of wisdom, thank you, Oprah. 

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Men.

Can't live with 'em, can't live…hang on. .

Scratch that.

Why can't we live without them? 

All they really do is cause us stress, worry, irritation and heartache tbh.

And if you needed solid proof of that, than look no further than Mary Norris, who celebrated her 100th birthday on December 3. 

Born days after the First World War ended, Mary is the last surviving of her ten siblings and credits her long life to a few things. 

Number one, is the fact that she never married – and I think we can all agree that that lifted significant emotional worry and stress from her life.

What's that old quote again?

''I used to be married…but I’m much better now'' – rings true doesn't it? 

She was 22 when the Second World War started and she was working in a munitions factory in Edinburgh – in fact, she hasn't stepped out of Scotland in her whole life. 

Now living in St Andrew's Court, the housing manager Lynn McCusker said, ''Mary is always on the go. She’ll occasionally treat herself with a trip to the hairdressers, too.''

She added, ''She loves to dance and enjoys a sherry, so maybe that’s the secret.''

Sherry and avoiding all men?

Sounds like the dream life to us. 

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If we wanted to get advice from anyone, the Former First Lady of the United States would probably be on top of our list. 

So it's the Duchess of Sussex' lucky say as Michelle Obama has been dishing out a few pearls or wisdom to the former actor. 

The women have in common many things – largely that they have had to adapt to a life that is more pressurised than they could have ever imagined.

Michelle said, "Like me, Meghan probably never dreamt that she’d have a life like this, and the pressure you feel – from yourself and from others – can sometimes feel like a lot."

She continued, ''So my biggest pieces of advice would be to take some time and don’t be in a hurry to do anything. I spent the first few months in the White House mainly worrying about my daughters, making sure they were off to a good start at school and making new friends before I launched into any more ambitious work."

She went on to say that choosing projects is important and is to be done wisely.

She said, "I think it’s okay – it’s good, even – to do that….What I’d say is that there’s so much opportunity to do good with a platform like that – and I think Meghan can maximise her impact for others, as well her own happiness, if she’s doing something that resonates with her personally."

Nice one, Michelle. 

Michelle is currently in the UK to promote her newly-released memoir, Becoming, and has been generous with her nuggets of wisdom, especially when it comes to the myth of ''having it all.''

During an appearance at Barclays Centre in Brooklyn, Michelle spoke about the modern concept. 

She said, “Marriage still ain’t equal, y’all. It ain’t equal. And I tell women that it’s not equal – that whole ‘so you can have it all’? Nope, not at the same time.''

She added, “That’s a lie. And it’s not always enough to lean in, because that s**t doesn't work all the time.” 

Hear hear, Michelle – I think we all need a friend like her tbh. 

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We all know the feeling of sitting down to get some work done on your laptop, and then before you know it it's hours later and all you've done is watch multiple documentaries on YouTube and put in an ASOS order.

The power of procrastination is strong, and we need all the help we can get when it comes to keeping our minds focused when sitting down to a task. 

Here are a few handy hints to keep the procrastination at bay: 

7. Stop multitasking

While it may seem like a good idea to spread your attention out over multiple tasks, stopping and starting on a task disrupts the creative flow.

Seeing a project through from start to finish, if possible, before moving on to another is the best way to go. 

Image result for multitasking

6. Establish a good to-do list

Having a to-do list is always a good idea. A personal tip of ours is to put one or two things you've already finished on the list for that added sense of accomplishment.

However, don't put every little task on the list, otherwise you may start to feel overwhelmed. 

If there are any tasks that can be completed in five minutes or less, such as making a phone call or doing laundry, then do them straight away. 

5. Work out efficiently

Rather than doing an hour at the gym at mid-intensity, doing a high-intensity half-hour class will save you time while also getting your workout in.

Classes also give you different exercise options, and the opportunity to try new things. 

Image result for work out funny

4. Stop distractions

Honestly, how often do you check your Instagram at work when you should be, you know, working? 

Turning off all your social media notifications can minimise distractions from the online universe, and help you get sh*t done. 

3. Make the most of commuting

Got a long commute? Use this time to your advantage.

If you're in college, read over your notes or reading materials on the go. 

Your commute is also the perfect place to listen to informative podcasts, or learn a new language, although reciting French verbs on the Luas may get you some funny looks.

Try an app like Duolingo where you have the option to tell the app that you are not available to speak, but can still do the other language exercises. 

Image result for commuting

2. Maintain a tidy workspace

Keeping your space tidy can help you maintain your focus, as you won't be distracted by things getting in your way.

Keep your pens and notebooks or any other materials you may need in your desk so you don't have to waste any time by getting up and searching for them as you go. 

1. Take a break

Taking breaks is really important for productivity levels to give your brain a rest.

Once you finish a big task, don't go straight on to the next one, take some time to have a cup of tea or go for a walk before sitting down to the to-do list once again. 

 

Feature image: Instagram/isetups 

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Queer Eye fans will agree that Karamo Brown is a beacon of positivity. His empowering words and heartfelt advice has touched many contestants on the beloved Netflix show.

Karamo has encouraged followers to seek help for mental health issues after revealing he attempted suicide 12 years ago.

He opened up about his struggles in a moving Instagram post: “Today in 2006 I was sitting on my couch alone, attempting to commit suicide.”

 

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The activist said he believed life was over for him, however with the support of his friends he sought out help: “I got mental health support and worked each day to believe again.”

He reminded people that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. “Here I am happy and healthy. I made it and If you’re going through something you can make it too!”

The lifestyle coach was showered with love and support when he opened up about his personal struggles.

 

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Fans praised him for his strength and courage. Using his public platform to raise awareness about suicide and mental health will make a huge difference.

“As a mental health professional I believe we all need to make our mental health a priority,” the dad stressed.

Karamo told those struggling to never give up, no matter what: “Whether you’re sad, depressed or suicidal like I was… you can make it through.”

 

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He added: “There is a better day around the corner with support.”

Discussing such a personal and harrowing struggle with the public takes a lot of courage. Karamo’s story is bound to touch many people across the globe. Knowing you’re not alone in this battle can be one of the most reassuring things for those with mental illnesses.

We are so in awe of Karamo’s honesty. Here’s to breaking the stigma surrounding mental health.

Contact Samaritans on 116 123 if you're suffering from mental health issues or feeling suicidal. 

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Scientists have found a solution to sleepless, anxiety ridden nights. A new study revealed that yoga music has a positive impact on our mood and can help reduce the symptoms of anxiety.

There have been many nights where we spend hours tossing, turning and wishing we could just doze off peacefully.

As time whizzes by we become increasingly aware of how little sleep we’re going to get which makes us feel even more anxious.

149 people took part in the study. The participants listened to three types of music before going to bed. Firstly they listened to soothing yoga music. Secondly, they listened to pop music with steady beats and during the final session they didn’t listen to anything.

The group revealed that they felt more uplifted and at ease after listening to the yoga music. The study also found that their anxiety levels were lower too.

Speaking of the impact music has on the mind and body, study author Dr Naresh Sen explained that music has a positive impact on your heart rate

Listening to soothing music before bedtime is a cheap and easy-to-implement therapy that cannot cause harm,” he said.

Due to the small number of participants in this study, he said they want to further their research: “This is a small study, and more research is needed on the cardiovascular effects of music interventions offered by a trained music therapist."

He added: “Science may have not always agreed, but Indians have long believed in the power of various therapies other than medicines as a mode of treatment for ailments.”

We’ll certainly try out this technique to help us get a good night’s rest.
 

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One glance at social media proves that lip fillers are on the rise in Ireland, and a set of perfectly pouty lips is the most sought-after new accessory. 

However, with the rise in demand for the procedure, it is important to be completely informed about the cosmetic choice that you are making.

Here are 10 things to keep in mind before opting for the injection: 

10, Research your aesthetician

The action of administering lip fillers is a mostly unregulated practice in Ireland, meaning that anyone with access to a pack of filler and a cannula could hypothetically do it.

However, there are major risks involved with this, and only registered doctors, nurses and dentists should be administering the cosmetic procedure. 

"It angers me that people who aren't medically trained don't know what can go wrong with these procedures. I have had to correct lips that are the result of unethical practice," April Kavanagh, the trained nurse behind NurseCare Aesthetics, so ask to see credentials. 

Nurses should be registered with the Nursing And Midwifery Board Of Ireland (NMBI), dentists with The Irish Dental Council (IDC) and doctors with the Irish Medical Council

9. Don't think of it as just a beauty treatment

Lip fillers have become completely normalised thanks to social media and celebrity culture, but don't think of them as another chore to add to your beauty regimen. 

"Because fillers are available in beauty salons and hair dressing salons, it makes it look like these are beauty treatments when in fact they are medical procedures," said  Claudia McGloin, founder of The Claudia McGloin Clinic. 

8. Consider your budget

Properly applied lip fillers can cost anything from €300-€500, so ask yourself if you can really afford them. 

 

A post shared by Cosmetic Surgeries(@botoxvideos) on

7. Get informed about what they are made of

Lip fillers are made of a substance called Hyaluronic Acid (or HA), which naturally occurs in the body. 

The actual filler that is injected is a synthetic substance that mimics this, and can be found in plenty of beauty and skin care products.

The substance is very safe to use as it is naturally according, making allergy rates extremely low. 

6. Consider why you want them

"Lip injections are good for anyone who wants to alter their lip shape, or just plump their aging lips," Dr Richard Swift told Good Housekeeping.

However, plenty of girls come into lip aestheticians brandishing a photo of Kylie Jenner or their favourite social media influencer. While bringing a photo is fine, getting them for the wrong reasons is not. 

"I have absolutely turned away clients who want work done for the wrong reasons. Some people come in for a procedure, then call me up two weeks later looking to get more," said April. 

5. Watch videos of the process

Squeamish people, look out. 

The results of lip fillers may look pretty, but the procedure can involve small amounts of blood, multiple injections and an intense lip massage after the product is injected. 

 

A post shared by Kerry Hanaphy (@kerry.hanaphy) on

4. If a deal looks too good to be true…

If the price of a deal looks too good to be true, that's probably because it is. Beware of cosmetic cowboys. 

Untrained administrators can buy cheap filler off the internet on the international market with no clue what's really in the syringe. 

3. Consider your pain tolerance

Depending on your personal pain threshold, fillers can range from a mere pin prick to quite uncomfortable, though they should never be extremely painful.

The lips should feel slightly tender and swollen after, with and bruising or swelling disappearing after a week. 

2. If you ever get cold cores, read this!

Getting fillers can trigger a cold sore outbreak if you are prone. 

"If you are prone to cold sores whenever you have any treatment of the lips or surrounding area it may reactivate it," said Dr Tatiana Khrom, Dermatologic Surgeon, at Real Self.

"So you always have to inform your provider about your history so we can give you prophylactic treatment for the outbreak which usually involves taking a few antiviral pills."

 

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1. Don't be surgery-shamed

There seems to be a bit of secrecy among some influencers and celebs about the surgery status of their lips, but don't let anyone make you feel bad about seeking an aesthetic tweak.

"Lip fillers are not a bad thing," says Kerry Hannaphy, who has worked on numerous clients looking for a subtle improvement in lip volume or symmetry. 

"I've had numerous emails about how it's improved the confidence of people, they feel so much better about themselves and they don't feel so depressed."

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Opening up about our insecurities is never an easy thing to do. We often try to cover up our flaws rather than drawing attention to them.

However, we need normalise our flaws, because we all have something we don’t like about our appearance, whether that’s our curly, frizzy hair or our freckles.

Chloe Grace Moretz has bravely opened up about her struggle with cystic acne and we love her for it. Speaking about our skin struggles will help show women that there’s no such thing as perfect, we all suffer from blemishes, zits and blackheads, it’s a completely normal thing.

The 21-year-old actress opened up about the impact cystic acne had on her confidence.

Chloe shared: "I think what people don't talk about is the psychological element to having skin problems, and that was the hardest thing for me. It strips your self-confidence in a lot of ways; you know you can't hide from it at all, and you lose a little piece of yourself.”

The If I Stay star said she put a lot of pressure on herself to look ‘perfect’: "When I was younger, I lost a piece of myself by being so self-obsessed with my skin blemishes or what people thought about them.”

“As I grew up, I realised that half the battle was myself, and my own self-infliction of what I thought 'beauty' and 'perfect' was. But then, you realise there's no such thing as perfect, and your skin will go through ups and downs.”

The Carrie actress added: “All you can do is try and be as self-accepting as possible."

When it comes to her skincare routine, Chloe said she likes to keep it simple, only using water, honey and olive oil.

 

A post shared by Chloe Grace Moretz (@chloegmoretz) on

Chloe’s empowering message about embracing your skin is vital for women today. We put far too much pressure on ourselves to look perfect and often knock ourselves down if we have a spot or two.

We need to remember that acne doesn’t define who you are and that Chloe is completely right, there is no such thing as looking ‘perfect’.

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Anyone who is scared of flying will know that no matter how many 'reassuring' statistics you hear about air travel, they don't amount to much when you're desperately gripping your armrest before take-off.

Acknowledging this, US Captain Ron Nielsen has provided nervous flyers with two simple (and practical) techniques to alleviate stress during air travel.

Appearing on the Today Show on NBC, the pilot firstly focussed his attention on take-off and urged the passenger to use their own body to calm themselves.

As the plane makes its way down the runway, you should tense your muscles, hunch your shoulders, clench your fists, cross your legs and clench your jaw. 

Then as the plane takes off, hold the pose before releasing after approximately 30 seconds.

By physically relaxing your body, you will releases stress hormones namely cortisol and adrenalin and will automatically feel calmer.

And when it comes to turbulence?

Distract yourself by writing your name with the wrong hand repeatedly as this will focus your attention elsewhere thereby distracting you from the disturbance.

Dare we say it, these actually sound like they'll work.

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So, when going through break-ups, people often turn to their favourite songs for some wise words of encouragement.

But, what if we could here those words directly from our favourite artists' mouth?

Wouldn't that be a million times better?

Well, one lucky Twitter user knows the answer.

Rhianna fan, @WaladShami posted a conversation between him and the songstress, in which she offered some pretty sound break-up advice.

He asked, via direct message, "How did you get over your first heartbreak? I've been struggling."

To which Rihanna replied, “Just believe that the heartbreak was a gift in itself!”

“Cry if you have to, but it won't be forever! You will find love again, and it will be even more beautiful!”

She finished off her heartfelt reply by saying: “In the meantime enjoy all that YOU are!!!!”

Rhianna – Grammy award winner, shoe designer, healer of broken hearts. 

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My torturous four weeks of not spending any money are finally drawing to a close, and frankly, I couldn't be more delighted.

Having free reign over my financial choices has always been something I've taken for granted, frittering away my wages on exorbitant rental prices, ordering in, and glasses of gin that are much too fancy for the likes of myself. 

Embarking on the 30 Day No Spending Challenge was definitely no walk in the park (though I took many of those, seeing as it's free), but I definitely learned quite a bit about my personal spending habits during my fiscal fast.

For those who don't know, the 30 Day No Spending Challenge focuses on benefiting your bank balance through a tight budget for four weeks. 

Most adventurers into this monetary management challenge stick to a budget of about €50.00 a week, to spend on groceries, transport and socialising.

The challenge omits things like rent and utilities, as it is all about making the most of your disposable income rather than getting you evicted.  

The most difficult part was willing myself not to give in to my random splurges. 

Seriously, the list of things I didn't buy this month because I was embarking on the challenge includes a gold coin festival bra, a faux Gucci belt (I was looking at too many bloggers' Instagrams that week) at least eight takeaways, a series of ASOS items and a selection of cacti. 

As someone who takes Carrie Bradshaw's famous quote about liking to see her money hanging in her closet quite seriously, not purchasing clothes for an entire month was actually a lot harder than I thought it would be, but hey, the gold coin bra is still available so once pay day rolls around, it's mine. 

Not caving to my food cravings was also pretty hard, and I'm not going to lie, there was an occasion where I did order in, completely blowing my weekly food budget on one delicious but ultimately unworthy meal. 

The most valuable part of the whole venture wasn't the money I saved (though we will get on to that later) but the realisation and clarity that the challenge gave me when assessing where my money would have been going. 

I kept a record of the things I didn't buy, a hangover from my oh-so frugal life as a student when I used to jot down all my expenses in an Excel sheet on my laptop, and I saved around €400.00 just by not giving in to my random coffee cravings and willing myself away from the computer screen during the ASOS sale. 

To anyone considering taking on the challenge, I strongly recommend keeping track of everything you do spend and everything you don't spend on the way. 

If opportunities come your way that you know are out of budget, jot them down to give yourself a better idea of how much you are saving per day or week as you go along to help keep you motivated. 

My only other tips are to get used to public transport and make budget supermarkets your second home, but for a lot of people, those are very normal aspects of their lives anyway, myself included.

The trick here was to plan your journeys to be as cost efficient as possible, and also prepare your meal plans in advance so there is no opportunity to get side tracked at the supermarket.

Honestly, one day I had an intense longing for a pain au chocolat, and had intense separation anxiety from the bakery section after my trip, and that was because I hadn't quite prepared well enough for my grocery shop.

Avoiding the junk food and bakery aisles like the plague is a must.  

As soon as I finish this final week of no spending, I'm buying enough pain au chocolats to block out the memory of my pastry-free month. 

So, the big question, how much did I save and what am I going to to do with my freshly stashed dosh?

Well, if you must know, I saved €800.00 over the course of the month, most of which I'm going to put straight back into my student loan and get three or four months ahead in those loan repayments. 

The rest is going on a good hair cut, a trip to my eyebrow technician, a packet of pastries and an absolute vat of gin. 

Was it worth it? Absolutely.

Would I do it again? Well, as a means of saving for something big like a rental deposit or a holiday, this challenge is ideal, so I'd never say never to undertaking another fiscal fast in the future.

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Have you ever heard a couple cooing and fawning over each other, calling one another vomit-inducing nicknames that put your lunchtime Starbucks at high risk of reappearing?

Or, are you in one of those couples, and rather than finding the nicknames heave-worthy, you find them cute AF thanks to the personal back story they symbolise?

Well, apparently now there is a scientific reason for the nicknames, and they are actually good for the relationship. 

According to the Scientific American, silly nicknames can help to create a sense of intimacy between partners.

This is backed up by a study in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, which describes how the development of romantic nicknames helps to establish an intimate little world where the couple are in charge of the narrative, separate from the outside world. 

'I think it's a really human, natural behaviour to take language and shape it for our own purposes. I think that's how nicknames evolve,' said Carol Bruess, author of the study. 

'We name things, we give things symbols, and over time we tend to naturally manipulate those symbols toward a certain outcome.'

So salty singletons, look away, because cutsie nicknames are here to stay. 

Oh, and while we have you; don't forget to have your say in the inaugural SHEmazing Awards this May! It's time to vote, and you can do it right here!

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