Bully_movieWhat doesn't kill you makes you stronger.

I believe this is true with bullying. Taking on a situation where someone is trying to take you down can make you feel stronger. Unfortunately when you aren't successful - whether due to skill, wit, strength or being up against too sophisticated a foe - it can kill you. It can kill your spirit, your sense of self worth or in extreme cases make you think that killing yourself is the only answer. That is why we all need to take this issue seriously.

Recently, I went with my 18 year old son to see Bully a newly released movie that attempts to shed some light bullying and its effects. Here are my thoughts: ...continue reading

bald_beautifulDear Annie,

We have this little cousin 7 years old that has brain cancer and she is getting chemotheraphy every week. She is starting to lose her hair and we do not know what to do or say to make her feel better. She says that she does not want to lose her hair and cries. Please help us and let us know what to do.

~ At a loss over child's hair loss

Dear At a Loss, ...continue reading

happy posterDoes money buy happiness? Well, yes and no!

Money can buy things that give temporary pleasure but because we are adaptive creatures by nature, things only bring fleeting joy.

However when money is used to help you survive – food, shelter, safety – or when you are using it for experiences or to help others, it effects your happiness levels more deeply.  ...continue reading

Happy_posterIf you are lucky enough to have seen Happy: The Documentary by director Roko Belic, you've already learned some powerful - and surprising - findings about what truly contributes to happiness. (If you haven't seen the movie, I hope you do. Its strength lies in finding happiness even when the world does not cooperate.)

The movie has so many inspiring ideas that you might not know where to start. So here is a list of ideas to help you on your journey. But don't get overwhelmed - just pick one that you can see fitting into your life and get started. (You are always welcomed back for another): ...continue reading


According to the book Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives your odds of being happy increase 15% when friends in your immediate circle are happy.

Not only that but the happiness of your friends' friends (people you may not even know) increases your happiness potential by 10%. And perhaps most surprising, the friends of your friends' friends still impacts your happiness by 6%! In contrast increasing your income by $10,000, according to author Nicholas Christakis only increases your chance of being happy by 2%. ...continue reading


Viewer-submitted question from theDear GMA Advice Guru Contest.

Dear Annie: I am the mother of twin pre-teens and I am ready to start navigating the mine field of inevitable puberty. I am amazed that some of their friends have hit puberty at such a young age. How do I best prepare my girls for the changes they will soon see in their bodies? At what age should they first see a gynecologist? ~ Wondering Mom

Dear Wondering Mom, ...continue reading

Christmas presents under the tree

Ahh... School is out and your kids have two weeks for fun, relaxation, getting bored, fighting with each other and spending up to 100 hours on some kind of screen. Sounds like a wonderful 'break'! Especially because that last one - which creates crankier offspring - is the default solution for many kids these days.

Fortunately with a little planning - you can help avoid some of the vacation pitfalls and all have a better time for your efforts. Here is a list of 10 things (from easier to more planned) that can help:

  1. Have a deck of cards with paper and pen on the kitchen table
  2. Have baking supplies handy - muffin or cookie mix ...continue reading


I know it was a joke. Someone posted one of those Christmas photos showing a dad and three kids all in the same matching jean colored shirts and pants. But in this photo no one is looking at the camera because they are all looking down at some electronic device.

I chuckle for a second until I remember that it's too true to be that funny. There is just something about embracing our weaknesses that bums me out.

But then I remember the good news... ...continue reading

5050_AdventureDear Reader,

In case you've been wondering why I haven't posted lately here's what's going on. Without going into detail, this year has had a few too many setbacks, sadnesses and life stresses. Not all bad of course but just a lot crammed into a short period of time.

Now I am big on living life with purpose but I found that trying to keep it all together was not working. So I went the other route and let a lot of it go.

Fortunately, this has made room for me to create my latest, greatest adventure... ...continue reading

You_Can_Do_ItIf you think you can or you think you can't, you're probably right. ~ Henry Ford

The 'I Can't' mindset is something I come across often. Sometimes it's from my children when I asked them to get up for school or my husband when he doesn't find time to exercise. Sometimes it's from a discouraged client who can't get behind his or her own goals. And sometimes it's from my own mind focusing on all the problems, all the reasons why not, all the barriers to success.

When I was considering going back to grad school at age 38, there were plenty of reasons why that was a bad idea. I'm too old. The kids are too young. It will be too hard. I don't have the money. Fortunately I worked through those obstacles because had I let them guide me, I would not have gotten that degree. And I would not be doing the work I love today. ...continue reading