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reminder: you can start over at anytime. your day is not ruined. your world is not over. take a deep breath. start over.
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It’s not your job to be likable. It’s your job to be yourself. The right people will like you anyway.
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The Creative Act of Listening to a Talking Frog

Kermit the Frog gives a talk on creativity and creative risk-taking
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look…………….. write as much shitty fic as you want. nobody can stop you. you’re learning constantly and it’s better to write hackneyed implausible ridiculousness than it is to not write at all out of fear of fucking up. you’re good

There was an experiment a professor did. I think it was pottery students. He did an experiment of “quality” vs “quantity”. One half of the class he told; you have to make as many pots as possible. Good pots, bad pots, shitty pots, whatever. The more pots you make, the higher your grade.

The other half of the class were told, “you can make only one pot”. But that pot had to be perfect. The quality had to be high; the highest quality pot would get the best mark.

But when it came to the grading, they noticed something weird.

All the best quality pots were in the ‘quantity’ group.

The guys who were literally churning out pots, trying to make as many as possible, not concentrating on the quality. But every pot they made, made them better at making pots. By the end of the month (I think it was a month) - they had some pretty awesome pots coming out, because they enjoying finding all the ways and all the things they could do to make all their pots. Where as the ‘quality’ guys had spent their time reading up on pots, and technique, and researching and planning; which was all great but they’d had no further practice at actually making pots.

The best way to get really good at something, the only way to be really good at something, is to make lots of shitty attempts at that thing several of which will fail. If all you create are perfect things then you won’t improve, because how can you improve on perfect?

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Just as a general note
You should eliminate any thought that there is an expectation that you do anything by any age
You don’t have to be married with kids by 25
It’s ok to be 16 and never been kissed
There’s nothing wrong with you if you haven’t graduated from college by 22
You’re not a failure because you don’t have your dream job at 30
There are no rules to life. You don’t get special points for achieving certain things by a deadline. Just go at your own speed. It’s not a race.
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The secret is that there is no secret. Just putting in the time, and getting lots of exposure to your target language. That said, getting exposure might seem intimidating if you don’t know how. But don’t worry, it’s actually super easy! Here we go…

How to Learn a Language, from someone who has been submerged in language-learning theory for years, has heard straight from the mouths of the world’s most accomplished polyglots how they did it, and has absolutely zilch interest in any personal financial gain from sharing this knowledge:


2. Use Assimil, if you really want to spend some money. Bonus: it costs about a quarter as much as Rosetta Stone. But you don’t actually need to spend any money to successfully learn a language! Just keep reading…

3. Find musicians who sing in your target language. Download their songs and put them on your mp3 player of choice. Get obsessed with them. Sing along even (especially!) when you don’t know the words and are just making sounds that vaguely resemble what the singer is saying. This part is not a joke: I am 100% serious about this.

4. If you like TV, watch a show in your target language with no subtitles. No cheating allowed. Turn off those subtitles. Make it a game: watch an episode and then summarize what you think the story line was. Then go look up an episode recap online and see how much you got right.

5. Think of it as learning what a speaker of your target language would say in a certain situation, instead of learning how to translate what YOU would say in that situation. For instance, to ask how things are, an English-speaking person sometimes says “How are you?” whereas a French-speaking person says “How is it going?” or even “How are YOU going?” Don’t try to ignore this weirdness – embrace it! Laugh at it, savor it. Get used to saying new and different things in the same old situations, and memorization will suddenly become a LOT easier.

6. When you talk, imagine that you’re mocking somebody – not necessarily in a mean way, but just doing an impression of them, poking gentle fun at the way they talk. If the person you’re imitating is a native speaker of your target language, your accent will instantly become miles better.

7. Read texts from day one. Don’t worry about “difficulty levels”. Pick up the hardest novel ever written in your target language! Open it right up with no fear and play a game called “How many words on each page do I already understand, or can I guess the meaning of?” Give yourself a reward (chocolate, a drink, a mini dance party in your room) for every full page you can get through in this way, regardless of whether any of your guesses were actually right!

8. I was gonna try to make this a ten-item list, but honestly there’s not much else you need to know. It doesn’t really matter what core resource you use (Assimil, FSI, Teach Yourself, Colloquial, Living Language, Linguaphone…) as long as it’s not Rosetta Stone. What matters, much more than the core resource you use, is the amount of exposure you can get to your target language – the padding to fill in all the cracks in your day when you’re not doing worksheets or translation exercises or whatever. That’s what this post is sneakily all about.

The secret-that’s-not-a-secret is regularity: do a couple of the items on this list every day without fail, even if it’s only for ten minutes, and after six months you will be kicking butt. I promise you that.

Reblogging this to point out that I have now made item 1 into a link. If you were wondering about that particular piece of advice, check it out!

And remember: any method that works for YOU can be worth doing. We all learn in different ways. However, don’t fall into the trap of thinking that more money = more quality. That may be true for many things in life, but not for language-learning!
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nobody else sees it as a failure, it’s just you

(#19) (>NOT/BUT archive)

What great philosophy.
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Watch: This awesome restaurant in Staten Island had the idea to employ grandmothers from all over the world to make its food

There’s nothing better than your grandma’s cooking…except maybe a bunch of grandmas’ cooking all in one restaurant. That’s exactly what Enoteca Maria in Staten Island, New York is offering.

Gifs: Gothamist


Holy Shit! Different dishes cooked by Nana’s from around the World? I would eat here every, damn, DAY.
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You are drowning yourself by overthinking everything. The next time you find yourself overthinking or beating yourself over something, picture something simple and put no thought into it. Look at the trees moving in the wind or take a moment to look at how beautiful this world is. This world is too beautiful for you to waste your time in unecessary thoughts that are just drowning you.
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[drawing of a yellow cat saying “You are not a waste of space, of time, of anything. You are wonderful and your existence makes the world better.” in a blue speech bubble.]
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What they don’t tell you:
Self care sometimes isn’t fun. It’s going to class even when you want to stay in bed and rest. It’s paying bills on time and running errands even when every strand of your being cant stand it. It’s going to therapy and taking your medicine even when you don’t want to. It’s using coping skills even when going back to self destructive ones seems more appealing.

Recovering sucks. It’s hard. But you have to believe in the light at the end of the tunnel. And even on those days you don’t, you fake it till you make it.

Recovery is still worth it.

Sometimes self-care is taking care of future-me. Because she deserves to have someone looking out for her. 
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Remember to be yourself. 

You are you, and I know it’s said a lot, but you should take pride in who you are. 

Express yourself how you deem fit.

Even if you can’t do some things now, you’ll be able to do them in the future. 

You’ll be out of the house eventually.

Don’t let your peers tell you how to dress, act, or live. 

You’re not alone.
You’re not unloveable.
You’re not hated.
You are beautiful.
You are kind.
You are intelligent. 

You can do it, you can survive, and you can succeed. 

You can be you.


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September 2017

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