Tag: Columns 2015

  • Pasos

    Si tiene algo que lograr, cree un plan para lograrlo. El plan no necesita ser elaborado. De hecho, haga las cosas de forma simple. El plan simple que genere debe incluir un número de pasos que sean claros y definibles, que conduzcan a su meta. Muchas veces, buscamos alcanzar una meta, sin embargo, no tenemos un plan de cómo lograrlo o nos sentimos agobiados porque no hemos desglosado el proceso de llegar a nuestra meta en pequeños pasos. Si quiero escalar una montaña, pero no puedo ni siquiera caminar un kilómetro en tierra plana, quizá tenga sentido enfocarse en ponerme en buena condición física básica. Viéndolo de forma realista, no puedo tratar de subir una montaña a menos que tenga alguna fortaleza y condición cardiovascular.

  • Quick Tips for Language Learners

    Here are a few quick tips for those people learning a language. Wait. Stop! Actually, all of us are learning a language all the time. And that is the first tip. Even if we are not learning a second, third or fourth language, we are still constantly learning our first language. We read and hear new words and new word patterns, almost every day. Taking note of this can help us improve our language skills. The more aware we are that we are learning, the more we can focus on new words we are hearing, etc., so that we might put them into use. Whether it is your primary language or a language you are in the process of learning, creating some kind of structured approach to learning is better than working to improve your language skills in a haphazard way. What might be the best course of action? School is always a possibility. Take a course in the language that you are learning or want to learn. If you dedicate yourself to your studies, you will find your linguistic prowess improves. This will probably lead to more school and better language acquisition.

  • R.I.P. Anne Marie Gill

    I only had the opportunity of meeting Anne Marie Gill on two occasions. Those encounters, brief though they were, gave me an opportunity to experience the natural charisma she exuded. I know Ms. Gill’s family and, in particular, have known her brother Rob for about 20 years. Rob has joined us here, on CYInterview, for some compelling conversations. I could fill up a bunch of space trying to make sense out of the death of a charismatic, 52 year old woman, but that task is beyond me. I could attempt to characterize her life and challenges, but that is better left to those who truly knew her. Instead, I will say that I am happy to have met her and I am sad that she is now gone. My cousin passed a few years back, at 32 years of age. His death expressed, in sharp, painful terms, the fragile and uncertain nature of life. In attempting to come to grips with his passing, I wrote a poem. It was part of my grieving process. I published this poem after he died. I now publish it again, below, in memory of Anne Marie Gill.

  • The Dog Days of Women

    The morning of August 26th, I start off my day with a good cup of Veracruz coffee and a peek at one of my social media accounts. What I see may seem simple, but it reflects our collective thought. To start, a congratulatory message comes up on my feed. It’s for the social media itself. It reminds me it’s National Women’s Equality Day. Immediately, my mind wanders to what it must have been like for my grandmothers not having permission to vote; such a fundamental way of shaping the life of a country, a state, a community, families and your very own life. My female ancestors did not have it. I take a moment to silently thank the brave women who have fought so I can go to the polls and participate in decisions that affect my life. I thank those women who stood up so today, I can go to school, wear pants and many other things we take for granted. So many rights women before me did not enjoy. I also wonder how much more we need to change before women get equal pay in my home state.

  • The Whole Thing

    One of the ways to understand something is to break it down into its smallest divisible parts. By breaking something down, whether it is a business, a concept or a model for a new way of doing something, we are able to more readily digest the information before us. Often, I have used the phrase “deconstruct to reconstruct” in terms of attempting to master a new concept. When ideas or pieces of information are small and manageable, they are more easily understood. But there is more to understanding than that. I have no doubt that taking things apart and separating them into component parts is a valuable exercise in learning and understanding. And, when we break things down we may learn to construct new things from the pieces we have separated out. However, to truly gain an understanding of something it is not enough to deconstruct it to reconstruct it. Understanding components is important, but remembering that the whole is often greater than the sum of its parts is an equally compelling part of the comprehension puzzle.

  • Hail Fellow Well Met; a Poem

    Hail Fellow Well Met A Writer Sits upon his deck He sits and writes and dreams and thinks While God Almighty Nods and Winks This writer comes from other lands Now, the sands of time are upon his hands His brow furls as he ponders and queries Yet of being a scribe he never wearies Meantime, Naysayers do what they do best They tell him to quit and join the rest To give up his dreams and cast them aside But what drives this writer is more than pride

  • You Can; a Poem

    Time tested. Life bested. Time for another go. Don’t stop. Don’t slow down. Don’t give up the show. Now is the time you have waited for, even if you haven’t been waiting. I know, temporary nonsuccess can most certainly become grating. Never throw in the towel. Never greet life with a scowl. Get on your feet. Do a meet and greet. Be positive and go for your goal. Activity needs to be your fondest proclivity. Talent alone will leave you cold. Be bold. Go forward. Do not look back. Action is the way. That is a fact. Reflection not deflection. Fire in the belly. A desire to do good. Release yourself from the grasp of “should.” Should is not good enough. It does not mean we act. Instead we must do and do again, that is the most powerful fact. Because all success is in the doing, not in simply thinking. Remember, inventors invent by way of their tinkering.

  • Walk and Be Creative

    Try it. Walk and be creative -- really. Oh, and become more productive in general. How many times have you been confronted by a challenge at work and could not seem to come up with an acceptable solution, or any solution for that matter? How about at home? In fact, often, when we are confronted by a considerable challenge our anxiety levels go up. We might be trying to figure out how to make ends meet at home or how to economize at the office. Or we might be facing some other challenge. When a challenge is daunting, and we must confront it in order to overcome it, we are likely to feel anxious. Being anxious can deteriorate our powers of concentration and make us want to focus on anything other than the source of our anxiety, the challenge before us.

  • Reality is Tough, But…

    Movies. Television shows. Video games. There is plenty for us to watch. And in watching, we are able to escape from the reality of our lives. Let’s face it. Reality, at times, is rough. There are health concerns, economic challenges and relationship issues to deal with. Sometimes we feel we have had all we can take. Accordingly, we seek, wittingly or unwittingly, to immerse ourselves in experiences outside of our reality. We call this delving into a fantasy world, “escapism.” When we go to the movies, play a video game, enter into a virtual world or watch television we have the opportunity to take a vacation from our reality.

  • To Be and Be Gone; a Poem

    All that’s asked of me is to be and be gone. That’s my song. Come in, go out. Why scream. Why shout. Rhetorical not quizzical. I’m not fooled. I understand the rule. We are out before we’re in. That’s universal time for you. Take it with a grin. Time wasted and we are the author of that. We sit. We watch. We grow fat. And then we lament. Oh how we lament! Then, we plead. We insist that we should be heaven bent. But not too soon. No, please do not make room. At least not yet. Give us our 120 years or more. Yeah, sure. Safe bet. Well, not so much if you live life as such. Change much? Question, not a comment. Change, ah the source of pain and salvation. The source of hope borne of imagination. The way forward having learnt from the way back. And we insist, do it for us Jack. We want better, better than good. We want things the way we think we should. But, do the work? Surely you jest. We’d prefer credit cards; we’ll make the payments. You do the rest. There it is, personal success at our behest.