Inspiring

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    There is bad news everywhere. Sad news. Horrifying news. You cannot escape it. The state of the world seems so terrible right now that it's enough to make you believe all the good is gone. But it's not. There is good out there and here is proof.

    Yesterday, in St. Petersburg, Florida, one woman was at a Starbucks drive-through getting her morning cup when she decided to pay for the customer's drink in the car behind her. That alone makes me smile. It's a random act of kindness. A gesture, though small, that says a lot. When the customer found out his or her drink was paid for, that person decided to pay for the order of the next person in line as well. This went on and on and on and on for 11 hours. Did you just get the chills? I got the happiness chills!

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    Everyone strives to achieve some semblance of work-life balance, but thanks to the blessing/curse that are our electronic devices (er, leashes), it can be harder and harder to disconnect and focus on the world beyond your career.

    "The irony of prioritizing a work-life balance is that it's incredibly hard to do when you're in the headspace of having no balance," says life and career coach Caitlin Graham of Unapologetic Coaching. "It's almost impossible to get a clear picture of what's really important when you're feeling overwhelmed and stressed out." 

    Graham suggests making a list of activities that "are crucial to making you feel like a person and living what you consider a full, fulfilled life, on a daily basis." She says the best time to do this is when you're on vacation so you're not susceptible to feeling like everything on your to-do list is pressing. 

    Here are 5 tricks to getting that work-life balance you so desperately crave.

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    Girls actress Zosia Mamet was told she was fat for the first time when she was just 8 years old.

    In her Glamour column, the 26-year-old recounts that ever since that day, there's been a "monster" inside her brain that fuels her belief that she needs to be thinner.

    Mamet knows she's not alone. Thirty million Americans struggle with eating disorders, and the actress believes that when it comes to this disease, which she's battled in secret, keeping quiet isn't the answer. Regarding herself as "an addict in recovery," Mamet takes society to task for forcing us to believe that "skinny is beautiful." 

    "'Skinny' sells us everything, from vacations to underwear, effectively," the star writes, imploring us to redefine beauty and remind each other that it is a trait we already possess.

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    The world lost a treasure on Monday, as Robin Williams was found dead in his home that morning. The celebrated actor touched countless lives throughout his decades-long career that spanned the genres. No matter what role he played, he brought a thoughtful awareness to each character, and even though we knew it was fiction, we more often than not felt like we could be friends with the people he brought to life.

    Although he started as a comedian, Williams went on to touch our hearts in dramas like Awakenings and Good Will Hunting, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He never stopped wanting to make us laugh though, and his last role was his reprisal of Theodore Roosevelt in the third installment of Night at the Museum, out this December.

    In honor of Robin Williams' memory, here are 10 of his best on-screen characters.

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    This is an incredible story and one that goes to show you should never give up hope. When the Indian Ocean was rocked by a tsunami on Boxing Day 2004, Indonesia's province of Aceh was one of the hardest hit areas. The tsunami killed 230,000 people in 14 countries. In Aceh, two children were swept away from their parents after the family desperately clung to a floating plank of wood. Ten years later, one of those children, a girl named Raudhatul Jannah, seems to have been found alive -- and is reunited with her parents!

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    Now showing that anyone can suffer from body dysmorphia, the youngest biological daughter of Demi Moore and Bruce Willis has opened up on camera to talk about her struggles with her body and what it was like to starve herself all the way down to 95 pounds.

    Twenty-year-old Tallulah Willis participated in an interview with the fashion site StyleLikeU to promote body acceptance. She was asked a series of questions about how she felt about her body, what it was like growing up famous, and why she felt like it led to an eating disorder. Here's the catch -- with each question, she removed an article of clothing.

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    A hug is such a simple thing. It's a wonderful gesture of friendship and love, and one we can sometimes take for granted. But for 6-year-old Alex Pring and his family, a hug is a sign of so much more. When Alex was born, he was missing part of his right arm, but a student at the University of Central Florida designed a 3-D printed arm for Alex, who was then able to fully hug his mom for the first time ever.

    Grab your tissues, because when you see their first full hug (meaning that Alex was able to wrap his arms around mom), you'll be feeling all the feels. Take a look:

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    Let's be honest: Moms have it hard. Deprived of sleep, a moment's peace, adult conversation, and other everyday amenities that most non-moms take for granted, these women are often desperate for even small displays of human kindness and courtesy -- trust us, it won't take much to put a smile on her face! Here are eight easy ways you can be her hero that take less than three seconds to do. Try one, try them all, and good karma will be bound to come your way.

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    Years ago I was standing at our library's parking payment kiosk and rooting frantically through my purse to find some change for the parking meter when a passing woman stopped and handed me a few quarters. "Here you go," she said cheerfully. Such a small gesture, but I've never forgotten it.

    A tiny act of unexpected kindness has the ability to change the trajectory of your entire day, don't you think? In the spirit of spreading more of those good feelings around, here are 8 under-$10 ways you can easily bring some happiness to a stranger's life (and your own, of course, because making other people happy feels awesome).

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    When I was a little girl, I loved going for walks with my father. I remember feeling so secure as he took my teeny, tiny hand in his big calloused palm, looking both ways as we zipped across the streets. I remember his interesting perspectives and made-up stories about the people and animals we passed along the way. I remember feeling so happy, special, and loved.

    And I’ll always remember the lesson I learned when I picked up a penny.

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