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O's 101 Best Pieces of Advice

All the wisdom you need to do almost everything better...and while you're at it, feel happier, healthier, more chic, less stressed, and ready to take on the world.

The One Thing to Do If You're Hosting a Dinner


Have music playing before guests even arrive; music sets the evening's tone. If people hear tunes the minute they walk through the door, they'll feel like the party is already fun and they're joining in. I often pull up Pandora radio on my iPod or computer and play folk music.

—Aarti Sequeira, host of the Food Network's Aarti Party

The One Thing to Do If You're Starting a Business


Scout a business space the same way you would a home—by studying the neighborhood. Get to know local business owners and pay attention to what kinds of people walk by and when. If you're opening a coffee shop where no one will see it, you won't succeed.

—Tabatha Coffey, salon owner and host of Bravo's Tabatha's Salon Takeover

The One Thing to Do If You're Painting a Room


Remember that color is personal. To find your best shade, pay attention to the colors that are already speaking to you: in your closet, in your favorite vacation photos, on your inspiration boards on Pinterest. Those are the ones most likely to make you happy in your home.

—Nate Berkus, designer and author of The Things That Matter

The One Thing to Do If You're Contemplating Divorce


Meet with a certified divorce financial analyst (divorceandfinance.org). She can tell you which documents you'll need to have, the attorney or mediator best suited to your situation, and the tax and lending traps to avoid. A single consultation early on can help you avoid lots of costly mistakes.

—Lisa C. Decker, founder of Divorce Money Matters

How to Let Go of Anger


Anger is like a storm rising up from the bottom of your consciousness. When you feel it coming, turn your focus to your breath. Breathe in deeply to bring your mind home to your body. Then look at, or think of, the person triggering this emotion: With mindfulness, you can see that she is unhappy, that she is suffering. You can see her wrong perceptions. You can see that she is not beautiful when she says things that are unkind. You can also see that you don't want to be like her. You'll feel motivated by a desire to say or do something nice—to help the other person suffer less. This means compassionate energy has been born in your heart. And when compassion appears, anger is deleted.

Next: 10 life lessons from Thich Nhat Hanh

—Thich Nhat Hanh, Buddhist monk and author of Anger: Wisdom for Cooling the Flames

How to Eat Lunch


Start with the things you need, like radishes, peppers, and other colorful vegetables, to stay healthy. Then add a little something you want—say, a gooey brownie—to feel happy, too.

—Martha Payne, 9-year-old blogger who rated the quality and nutrition of her school lunches on neverseconds.blogspot.com, leading to unlimited salad and fruit for all students

How to Make Your Feet More Likable


To keep your feet smooth and callous-free, moisturize every night, and once a week, use a pumice bar in the shower or a foot file on dry feet. As for toenails, soft pinks and shimmery shades look nice on most people. My top picks are Better Together and Mademoiselle by Essie, and Up Front & Personal by OPI.

—Erica Marton, manicurist at Manhattan spa Face Place

How to Find Your Own Food


Delicious weeds are probably growing in your yard right now. Look for cardamine, a wild cress with a peppery kick; chickweed, a good spinach substitute; and Japanese barberry, a sweet fruit that tastes like raspberries. For help identifying them, upload pictures to the plant ID forum at meadowsandmore.com.

—Tama Matsuoka Wong, coauthor of Foraged Flavor

How to Tell a Secret


Find someone who revealed something similar and survived, and talk to them about how they did it. No matter what your secret is, someone out there shares it.

Make sure the first person you tell will accept you and your secret—you don't want to take a risk right away.

Be short and sweet. All I had to say to get my point across was "Dad, I'm gay."

—Randy Phillips, airman and formerly anonymous video blogger who came out to his dad after the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell

How to Keep a Secret


The final scene of every season of Lost was so hush-hush, we talked about it in code even on set. (We called it "the bagel" the first year, a variety of bread products after that.) I wanted to spill the news so badly, but I realized that spilling a secret is selfish. Our viewers wanted us to keep secrets from them, because it built their anticipation. Just like if I buy a pair of earrings for my wife for Christmas when it's not even Thanksgiving yet and I'm dying to give them to her, it helps to remember that she'll be grateful if I wait. Most secrets have to be kept only for a finite period of time, and when the beans are finally spilled, you'll be glad it wasn't you who spilled them.

—Damon Lindelof, cocreator and executive producer of Lost
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