Category Archives: Tips

Nips, Tucks, Injections, Oh My!

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There are many products and procedures available to us these days in order to ensure that we are perfectly beautiful. We spend much time, effort and money improving ourselves. Despite all the “resources” at hand, we can never seem to be beautiful enough. Even famous, well-known people struggle with their image.

      Michael Jackson said his brothers call him Big Nose, Jackson 5 interview, Soul Magazine, August 19th 1970

     Michael confides in his friend, Glenda Stein, over private telephone calls about how he doesn’t like how he looks and alludes to having anorexia, 1990-1992

     Michael’s artist friend David Nordahl says Michael felt he was extremely ugly, 2010 interview

Do you think you are beautiful? By what standards do you measure your beauty? Are you defined by what you wear or how you look? Do you follow societal trends of beauty? How long does it take you to get “ready” and who are you really getting ready for? Does your inner beauty matter as much as your outer beauty?

Inner beauty includes things such as minding our manners, being kind to others, educating ourselves, strengthening our spirituality, etc. When we work on our inner beauty it enhances our outer beauty.

     “No matter how plain a woman may be, if truth and honesty are written      across her face, she will be beautiful.”  -Eleanor Roosevelt    

     “Outer beauty attracts, but inner beauty captivates.”  -Kate Angell

     “Beauty has a lot to do with character.  -Kevyn Aucoin

Here are some great tips to assist on our journey of being the most beautiful we can be:

●  Know that you’re timeless. Your beauty regimen will change over time as your body changes, but you’re still you. You don’t have to look the way you did when you were 25 to be beautiful. You just need to take good care of yourself and put your best foot forward every day.

  Seek wisdom. People who cultivate inner wisdom and live their lives abiding by wise principles will radiate beauty and blessing to everyone around them. Wisdom can never fully be attained–it’s a growing process, and there’s always something more to learn.

  Let go of bad feelings. Your feelings are important because they tell you what you like and what you don’t. However, if you hold on to bad feelings for a long time, they will poison your soul.

  Be authentic. Say what you mean. Live life according to your values. State your opinion in a courteous way. Don’t pretend to be someone else for someone else’s imagined benefit. The world needs you, just as you are.

  Express gratitude. Whether you’re grateful to a Higher Power, to your family and friends or to someone who’s courteous to you at the market, take the time to say “thanks.” Many people find that keeping a gratitude journal helps them to focus on what they have rather than on what they don’t.

No matter who you are or where you’ve been, it’s never too late to develop your inner-beauty and to bring beauty to the world around you. Being the best you can be outwardly is part of feeling beautiful. However, no one can beat the value of someone who is inwardly beautiful too.

Maybe our world would be a little bit better if we weren’t as caught up in appearances and instead focused more on our character. It is important to take time to think about what really matters in this life…We hope you have found this simple yet profound message helpful. Thanks for reading!


                                                                                        Team Prevention

  kindness-quotes-Its-nice-to-be-important-but-its-more-important-to-be-nice_-Author-Unknown        286189751290836288_t0cb23WK_c


Garbage In, Garbage Out?

Drama Sells…

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From reality television shows such as Love & Hip Hop, Jersey Shore, Bad Girls Club to The Real Housewives from wherever, drama is everywhere! And…we confess! It is easy for us to get caught up in the television drama, if we watch enough of it. Drama entices us to watch more and gets us “hooked”, so therefore drama sells.

With all the drama we watch on television (for those of us who have ever watched or admit to watching it, hehehe), have we lost sight of what healthy relationships look like? Whether it is with a family member or significant other, healthy relationships are still important, right? Maybe we do not agree. Maybe we feel comfortable with drama in our relationships? Maybe we think drama in relationships is the new norm? Maybe we do not realize how much watching these television shows impacts our relationships and how we interact with others? Regardless of how we feel, drama HAS infiltrated our society in a greater way and that is why we think it is important to reevaluate what healthy relationships really look like…

Man and a Woman with Their Heads Together Smiling Healthy-relationships 2449088_Healthy_Relationship_answer_2_xlarge

We think it is important for us to start from the beginning…what exactly does the word relationship mean? The definition of a relationship is, “The way in which two or more people are connected, or the state of being connected”. We all have a desire to be connected to others, right? We all have a desire to be loved and accepted, right? Did you know that there are wonderful benefits to having relationships? According to the December 2010 issue of Harvard Women’s Health Watch, “People who have satisfying relationships have been shown to be happier, have fewer health problems, and live longer. In contrast, having few social ties is associated with depression, cognitive decline, and premature death”.

While it is important to understand that no person or relationship is perfect, there are ways to ensure that our relationships are as healthy as possible. Important qualities of healthy relationships include respect, communication, understanding, supportive, patience, compromise, trust, honesty, forgiveness, committed, etc. Here are some examples of how some of these qualities play out in relationships:

• Speak Up. In a healthy relationship, if something is bothering you, it’s best to talk about it instead of holding it in.
• Respect Your Partner. Your partner’s wishes and feelings have value. Let your significant other know you are making an effort to keep their ideas in mind. Mutual respect is essential in maintaining healthy relationships.
• Compromise. Disagreements are a natural part of healthy relationships, but it’s important that you find a way to compromise if you disagree on something. Try to solve conflicts in a fair and rational way.
• Be Supportive. Offer reassurance and encouragement to your partner. Also, let your partner know when you need their support. Healthy relationships are about building each other up, not putting each other down.
• Respect Each Other’s Privacy. Just because you’re in a relationship, doesn’t mean you have to share everything and constantly be together. Healthy relationships require space.

Creating boundaries is a good way to keep your relationship healthy and secure. By setting boundaries together, you can both have a deeper understanding of the type of relationship that you and your partner want. Boundaries are not meant to make you feel trapped or like you’re “walking on eggshells.” Creating boundaries is not a sign of secrecy or distrust — it’s an expression of what makes you feel comfortable and what you would like or not like to happen within the relationship. Remember, healthy boundaries shouldn’t restrict your ability to:

Go out with your friends without your partner.
Participate in activities and hobbies you like.
Not have to share passwords to your email, social media accounts or phone.
Respect each other’s individual likes and needs.

Even healthy relationships can use a boost now and then. You may need a boost if you feel disconnected from your partner or like the relationship has gotten stale. If so, find a fun, simple activity you both enjoy, like going on a walk, and talk about the reasons why you want to be in the relationship.

It is important to surround yourself with relationships that accept you for who you are and with those who love you unconditionally. Relationships are beautiful and so are you! Know that you deserve wonderful relationships and you deserve to be treated with respect. Relationships take time to build upon, but given the proper qualities, relationships can be one of the most beautiful things we experience in this life…

The Secret to Long Marriage

Relationship Resources

                                                                                               Thanks for reading!
                                                                                          Team Prevention

When does “whining” on Twitter/Facebook become an alarm?

We all have them. Those friends who think it’s everyone’s business to know when they are happy, angry, upset, feeling lazy, and hungry. The million-posts-a-day friends. But when those posts become scary, and by scary we mean: confessions of being sexually assaulted and molested, forced into prosititution and insinuations of commiting suicide, do you know what to do?

On November 7th, 2011, in a suburban town near Houston, Texas, 18-year-old Ashley Billasano stayed home from school and went on a tweeting frenzy. [Warning: Tweets are intense and explicit.] She wrote 144 detailed tweets about her experiences with sexual assault, molestation by a family member, and being forced into prostitution at the young age of 14. She also tweeted about telling the authorities and CPS (Child Protective Services). She later was told there “wasn’t enough evidence for prosecution” and that’s when she made a devastating decision. After already having failed at suicide once, and after the tweeting rampage, Billasano (or “Billy” as her friends knew her) took her own life just moments after sending a final tweet which read “Take two. Hope I get this right.”

We have to view this tragic loss as a wake-up call. In today’s age, it is undeniable that social networking online is the main source of communication between us all.  Especially among the youth! Youth spend more time on twitter and facebook than they do working on homework. (The majority anyway, if it doesn’t include you, KUDOS!!) So in a world where posting statuses and tweets about what we’re doing and where we’re going is considered NORMAL, how do we know when we need to step in for someone else?

Go with your gut.

If one of your facebook “friends” or someone you are “following” on Twitter is posting some really over the top posts where they seem EXTREMELY upset, more than usual, and it makes the alarm in your head go off a little, TRUST it!

Remember, when someone goes through a traumatic experience such as sexual assault, they tend to go through a rollarcoaster of emotions and may act in a way we might not understand.

So if you come across something like this, and your gut is telling you to ACT, here are some suggestions on what you can do:

  • Talk to them. Sometimes they just need someone to listen. Not judge them. Believe them. And if they’re reaching out on a social networking site, it’s probably because they have no where else to go & want someone to just step in and say “Hey, I care.” However, if the situation is dangerous, you should refer them to professional resources or report.
  • Report to a person with authority. If the situation is too intense, and you don’t feel you are the appropriate person to take care of this issue, do not hesitate to contact a teacher, parent, principal. SOMEONE. You never know, you might be the only one trying to do something and by telling someone who can help, you are doing your part.
  • Report to law enforcement. Sometimes you might think immediate action is needed. Use your better judgement! If it seems like an emergency, it probably is.

Never assume that someone is exaggerating their self-pity. A series of whiny posts may actually be a cry for help. Ashley posted 144 tweets and no one responded. We all need to feel like someone cares for us at times. Take action! Do something and you might just save a life.

If you or someone you know is struggling with the effects after a sexual assault and you live in the Santa Cruz/Pajaro Valley Area, call Women’s Crisis Support-Defensa de Mujeres toll-free crisis line at:


For someone outside of the area struggling with sexual assault, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at:

 1-800-656-HOPE (4673)

If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of suicide, and you live in the Santa Cruz/Monterey area, contact the Suicide Prevention Hotline for your area at:

Santa Cruz: 831-458-5300

Monterey: 831-649-8008

Or Toll Free at: 877-ONE-LIFE (877-663-5433)

For someone dealing with suicide outside of the area, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at:

1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Ready for Halloween?

Halloween is coming up and many of you will be dressing up and heading out for a night on the town! Whether you are going to celebrate it Trick-or-Treating, at a house party with some friends, or heading to downtown Santa Cruz, here are some quick and easy steps so you and your friends can stay safe during your fun and spooky night.

Downtown Santa Cruz

  • Bring emergency cash and a cell phone (with full battery). You never know what craziness lies ahead so it’s always better to be prepared! You might also want to look up the numbers of local cab companies and store those on your phone. It’s better to have a plan than to be stranded! Play it safe.
  • Do not go alone! Downtown Santa Cruz can be quite hectic and there will be a ton of people there that you don’t know. Don’t agree to “meet up” with your friends and don’t say you’ll meet back up at the car afterwards, arrange a way for all of you to get there together, stay together, and leave together.
  • Develop a buddy system. It’s easy to lose track of one person, especially if you’re going in a large group, but assigning “buddies” to each person will help you stay together. Don’t wander off!
  • Steer clear of any potentially violent situations. It can happen anywhere, especially in big crowds. If something around you looks like it’s heating up, move away! Innocent bystanders are not safe. You never know what kind of weapons might be involved.
  • Be careful on the road. Assign a designated driver. Make sure that person has not had a drink and is able to drive. Many others drink and drive so be especially aware on this night. Make it home safe.

House Parties

  • Again, go with, hang with, and leave with close trusted friends! We cannot reiterate this enough. Most assaults occur with someone you know so don’t think that because you know most of the people at the party you’re safe by yourself. Stay with trusted friends and leave with them.
  • Carry emergency cash and a cell phone in case you get separated from your group.
  • Watch your drink! Do not accept a drink from someone you hardly know. Be wary of mixed drinks like “jungle juice”; these drinks can have an excessive amount of alcohol that could creep up on you later on. We do not condone drinking, but if you’re going to, be smart!
  • Don’t assume people you just met have good intentions. It’s nice and fun to meet new people and make new friends at a party, but don’t assume they have good intentions. Don’t isolate yourself with someone who you’ve just met.


  • Always carry a flashlight, cell phone, and emergency cash.
  • Make sure the treats you receive have not been tampered with.
  • Do not enter an unknown home or vehicle.
  • Use sidewalks (not the road or lawns), stay with the group, and take care of each other.

And last but not least, TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS. If something does not feel right, it probably isn’t. Don’t dismiss the warning signs. We know Halloween is fun and exciting, but these are simple and easy steps you can take that will make you and your friends safer. So remember to stay with trusted friends, carry emergency items (money, cell phone, etc), watch your drink, and have fun.

Happy Halloween!