The last 7 years of my life have been spent dabbling in social media. Working in it, figuring it out, building relationships through it... I've been so deeply involved in it that I sometimes fail to see how prefabricated it all can be. From all the food styling photos I see at restaurant events, the amount of times it takes yogis to get that perfect shot -- things are not always what they seem on the other side of that photo or share.
How much of it's true? How much of it's real? And as more and more studies emerge on the topic that social media increases unhappiness, we know that as humans we tend to compare, for better or for worse, and that this is creating and setting unreal expectations for society. With that in mind, I stumbled on this fun video that highlights the now-natural pre-fabrication of social media.
I love short films! Since I’m on the internet at all hours of the day, I've obviously come across so many gems. Below is a great little sci-fi short on an interaction between Nick and Mia, two people who have more in common than what you perceive at first glance.
Have you ever seen that music video for Nickleback's song Savin' Me? This movie has a similar concept. Totally worth your 10 minutes to watch, the attention to detail is second to none.
A challenge of mine lately, has been goal setting. The creation, the execution, and the follow through on these things have been getting more and more challenging as I get older. Maybe it's because I'm stretched too thin lately, or that I'm just not able to commit in the way that I'd like to, but I've become a bit disenfranchised with New Years and the concept of goal setting.
This past year, I've spent a lot of time thinking it through. I'm certain that we place ourselves in a position for failure when we expect ourselves to follow through on an arbitrarily made goal. We do this just because the idea of renewal and being better at the top of the year has been sold to us, time and time again. I'll happily make goals for myself, but I have to get out of the mindset that it must be done at certain intervals, at specific times in the year, when I feel that there is a clean-slate, so-to-speak. This year, I'm trying something new. Each day I will be doing something bold. Taking a moment every day to do something that gets my heartbeat racing, and helps get me to where I need to get to. #OneBoldMoveaDay will get me closer to my goals for 2017. I'm feeling optimistic about this belief that this year, every day will be my New Years Day.
Beyond that, I have my eyes set on some milestones to complete, or habits to further entrench into my life. On my list are: working more on my Spanish (which I started to learn in September), furthering and deepening my yoga practice, and growing my relationships as I have been for the last 2 years.
I always look for ways to increase my productivity. From apps to just pen and paper to-do lists, I have been working on creating systems and methods for me to keep track of all the things I like, and want to do. Since I have so many projects on the go, I am in a constant process of renewal and hope that I can find that perfect balance. Self-help and growth seem to be the cause du jour.
As we all know, the internet is rife with them - those articles purporting to be able to change your life, and to make you a better person. When I was younger, I worked at Chapters - in the self-help section. Each book echoed much of the same things (a lot more religiously based), but it is truly interesting to see what type of world this self-help, productivity and "cult of me" has turned into since then. Now that the internet gives everyone the chance to share their stories, and gives opportunity to anyone who wants to learn, we see so many different forms of calls for self-betterment: articles, TED talks, "lifehacks" - never would I have thought it would morph into this. It's a full time job trying to understand and read through it all. Who even says that it will work for you just because it has worked for another? I get fatigue from just trying to keep up with it all.
Ultimately, the best way that I can consider doing things is to have your goals determined, and then work back from there. What is your objective? How do you get there? These are all things I contend with. I also attempt to do this for determining the course of my day - not just for work and side-projects.
When I began yoga, I started setting an 'intention' to follow through my practice. Soon, little things like 'be kinder' and 'be grateful' became something I tried to implement past just that one hour of yoga. I would proclaim my intention for the start of the day - and kept repeating it through out. When I knew it was going to be a particularly trying day, or if I have many things to do on my lists, I would make an intention that would help me through it - "just try," I'd tell myself... "just try today. It doesn't matter if you believe you can or can't - just try." This has helped me combat natural feelings of inability or self-confidence issues in the face of projects and has equipped me for more than my day-to-day - beyond just the boardroom.
So, what does an intention do for me? I believe that setting an intention displays commitment. You can write it, say it out loud or just chant it like a mantra throughout your day, but what you're ultimately doing is putting it out there into the universe. It holds me to it by virtue of it being based on my word.
Here's how to go about setting an intention for your day (if you so choose!):
1. Be honest and clear about something you want to achieve, or want to be and write it down or say it out loud.
2. Share your intention with someone in a way that will supportively hold you accountable to taking action and following through.
3. Do something today to demonstrate your commitment to your intention.
4. Acknowledge that you did what you said you would and then, take the next step. (Keeping a journal acknowledging your 'wins' can help with that!)
By setting an intention, you make it clear to yourself and others, just what you plan to do. Set an intention to redefine what it means to be serious about your dreams.
It focuses on the legislative and public policy aspect of the oil boom in Canada. It compares Canadian methods of handling it’s new found oil to that of Norway’s policies, both publicly and privately. It draws attention to our focus on the free market, which rarely allows for long-term, sustained growth (since there is barely any control over the resource and no government intervention).
In 1969, Norway discovered oil (in what was called the Norwegian continental shelf) and understood that oil was a finite resource—one that could be harnessed for the betterment and long-term prosperity of the collective Norwegian population. They aimed to use the oil as a way to make them more competitive beyond just the resource itself. The author contends that this was a very smart choice and that Canada is not making the right moves in comparison. The government of Norway's investment (monetary and labour-wise) has benefitted the country in profound ways, adding to technological advancement, job growth and no decline in exports due to a strong currency ("Dutch Disease"). This is key to note, seeing as the rest of the continent has been struggling at this time.
The Norwegian government is continually changing and updating the laws to manage not only the economic and energy gains of this resource, but also to carefully monitor it's impacts on environment and communities—meaning they always are involved in some way. The government has founded a nationalized organization: Statoil ASA and created a presiding directorate, the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, with the goal of “creating the greatest possible values for society from the oil and gas activities by means of prudent resource management.” The have successfully rendered a plethora of gains from this one find—something that the author fears Canada is failing to do. The government of Norway's investment (monetary and labour-wise) has benefitted the country in profound ways, adding to technological advancement, job growth and no decline in exports due to a strong currency ("Dutch Disease").
The article, while focusing on oil, draws other parallels between the country, through resources (mainly forestry, fishing and and the government's involvement in handling those resources.
In comparing, the difference is just that the main way of viewing our resources is fundamentally different from that of the Scandinavian country; they depend on an idea of co-operation and collaboration between countries for resources, whereas we don't have, and don't know how, to do that. This is an evolved form of what Niall Ferguson referred to as the "competition" aspect in his book: nations in smaller areas have to always consider the longevity of their resources and how to share them amongst themselves. The article is posits that Canadians have had no need to worry about resource-sharing, and that our own government Acts work against us in not recognizing the finite nature of many of our resources.
It's noted that socially-inclined governments must work closely with the specific industries if they want to grow and help a specific industry flourish—something to think about when thinking against free markets.
Over all, this article is written deeply in praise of a socialist-style of government, but I do doubt that the same rules can be applied to Canada in it's current fragmented state. Canadian resources are also managed province-by-province; we're not as homogenous as the Norwegians and we don't have the high taxes that they do. It's also obvious that our entire structure and electorate balks at this unified version of governance.
Have you heard of this, more about Eurlerian Video Magnification? I just stumbled upon an article today from the NYT and apparently, unhealthy when a video is run through this specific algorithm, it amplifies both movement and colour, effectively making visible the invisible.
This technology from MIT was first “developed the program to monitor neonatal babies without making physical contact. But they quickly learned that the algorithm can be applied to other videos to reveal changes imperceptible to the naked eye.”
Check out this video on Eurlerian Video Magnification. It’s really cool!
Originally posted on my previous blog on 12/26/12
As a woman, viagra sale I fear that being from a certain gender speaks louder than my actual skills and abilities. I think I would be a bit more amenable to it if it was just a fear, but it is more of a reality. This is the thing that infuriates and saddens me the most about being a woman in our world. Despite experience, ability and wit, I am still unable to freely navigate to where I desire without having to think about something as ridiculous as my gender holding me back or speaking for me.
While this is a reality that has remained consistent for women despite periods of leaps and bounds in society, an added issue is how women are portrayed and expected to act when dealing in business. Recently, I read this article entitled “Niceness is overrated. Here’s to the lady jerks of 2012.” This article was basically an ode those women who are jerks and are unabashed about it. Bringing to light the ever double-edged sword that is gender relations, it seems that even if women act in a hostile, or in an assertive manner, that will not necessarily mean that they will get far. According to the Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, “Success and likeability are positively correlated for men and negatively correlated for women.” This means that even if women get far in business, if they imitate the same tactics used by men, which are often lauded by society, they will be branded as unlikable or known as “bitches”. (N.B.: I am not a fan of this word, but in an effort to succinctly describe what I mean, I will use it – begrudgingly.)
Why is it that the archetypal businesswoman is often portrayed as a bitch? A man is seen as a go-getter, ambitious and business-savvy, a perfect opposite to the woman who is a bitch, a ball-buster or even, frigid (which, god-forbid, diminishes her sexuality). It is very similar to the double standard of “he’s a stud and she’s a slut” when comparing women and men in terms of sexual exploits and experience.
While women can act in a “disagreeable” manner to achieve and win a certain amount of power, which will ultimately diminish their likability, it’s not even guaranteed that they will get that power to begin with. Ultimately, we are damned if we do, and damned if we don’t in this case. I, personally, am just going to continue to be assertive when I need to be, and attempt to forge a balance between being assertive/aggressive and killing them with kindness.
Sadly, as much as I would love to offer a change or a way out of this predicament for women, I can’t. I think that until society learns to value women in the way they should be valued, we won’t be able to get past this archaic way of thinking and acting. Take, for example, the issues of women’s rights in India with the rapes and so-called ‘honor killings’, what is occurring in the United States with women’s reproductive rights, and just general inequalities spattered throughout developing nations. These cases are undoubtedly borne and executed within the confines of a country’s culture and history. With that being said, I believe that we have an understanding in our society, in the West, that what is occurring in India is wrong; as extreme as the comparison may be, there are basic rights afforded to people, why not the right and ability to work based off merit? All men are created equal it seems, but not all men and women are equal to one another.
Anita This post was inspired by a Slate.com article, found here.
Aphrodisia - Richard Hoffman
Love’s language is hyperbole, but whispered, treatment
sibilant similes and promises sotto voce.
It’s easy to imagine you’ve misheard,
the form and content clash, create this weird
distortion like an echo or a tape delay.
Love’s language is hyperbole, but whispered.
On which do you place emphasis: The words?
Or the breath? The farfetched or the foreplay?
It’s easy to imagine you’ve misheard
when objectivity has disappeared
and your lover is getting further carried away.
Love’s language is hyperbole, but whispered
vows? It’s hard to take him at his word,
or hers: Speak up! Proclaim! you want to say.
It’s easy to imagine you’ve misheard,
hard to admit one sharp as you is stirred.
You need to back off, cool down, act blasé.
Love’s language is hyperbole, but whispered.
It’s easy to imagine you’ve misheard
Transferred over from my previous blog - originally published on 01/02/2013
I don’t know about you, clinic but I have been reading a lot about how we can make our sleep better and more fulfilling. As more and more information seems to be coming out on the web, viagra buy it’s obvious that people are noting the definitive lack of sleep since the onset of the technological age. In a hope to get back on a schedule after a very hectic last couple weeks, ambulance I have attempted to find and implement ways to make my sleep better.
The list is long, but things such as: washing my face with cold water; not eating past a certain time; doing yoga or any other fitness activity and finally meditating to quell the mind, have definitely helped me with my sleep. Once I get into it, day-after-day, doing the same routine, I find my sleep is better and I get up with no problems – something that I struggle with if I don’t implement these methods. I just really value my sleep to go about my life half-rested. Anyway, along with doing those things, I found this AMAZING (really, AMAZING, caps and all!) app through a forum.
f.luxis an app that changes the colour of your backlit screen from that eerie blue glow that has supposedly been made to mimic the sun, to one that gradually changes as the time changes. As the site says, “f.lux makes your computer screen look like the room you’re in, all the time. When the sun sets, it makes your computer look like your indoor lights. In the morning, it makes things look like sunlight again.”
Using it for the last few days, I have already seen a difference. My eyes aren’t straining and I am able to stare at the screen later, for longer.
If you’re a person who insists on using your computer before you go to bed, then I would 100% suggest you try this easy-to-install app. It’s available for basically all platforms and is totally invaluable.
your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, ailment sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it, cost
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
In a neverending quest to better understand myself and my beliefs, I've worked hard to view myself in relation to my gender. Through my life, I've experienced feelings of inadequacy, feelings that I have to work hard to prove myself whenever dealing with men. I've become a strong advocate of feminism, equality, and gender relations even going so far as working on gender equality projects in STEM and promotion of women in the restaurant industry.
Often, I sit back and think of where these feelings of inadequacy come from, where they began and how they are promulgated within our society - and I can usually come up with a few ideas of where they stem from. One, of many, being that they are coming from a place of culture and socialization. It's built into our society that women have to take a certain type of treatment and that we should long for it; sometimes, we don't realise that this is stemming from a system that has been built around patriarchy and privilege.
Recently, when I stumbled upon this funny video, I realised more than ever that culture -- pop culture specifically, helps reinforce gender norms that can be very damaging to women and our gender understanding as a whole. Here is a fun look at what would happen if famous movie romances had a bit of a feminist twist to them; where they wouldn't glorify and promote unhealthy expectations of relationships and identity.
If anyone asks, I usually tell them that Turkey has my heart. It's a great place and the culture just spoke to me when I had visited. Honestly, I would even consider living there (in Istanbul specifically) for a while or trying to own property there since it's so beautiful and rich with history. Despite the turmoil, I've longed to go back and visit; to explore and to grow through the city and the culture as an adult.
Part of my undergraduate degree was spent focusing on the Ottoman empire. I spent 3 years pouring over texts on the country, reading things about the diaspora and the culture of these people. I was ensnared - and still continue to be.
I'm sure that you've already seen this, but there is this amazing video of Turkey going around and winning all these awards. I wanted to share it with you so you can see the beauty of this place.
Enjoy the film, and promise yourself that you'll visit Turkey one day!
"As for me, cure I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas, troche and land on barbarous coasts.” - Herman Melville
Is it true that innately within each of us is a yearning to explore, to discover and to travel? Is there a need to visit far off places and remote worlds? Personally, this assumption holds fast and true for me, and I know that if the world had not been explored yet, I would readily jump on a vessel and go forth!
I recently stumbled upon this short film that features satellite imagery from NASA with a cool voice over from Carl Sagan explaining the desire within us all to see what is beyond our atmosphere. The video creates a world where humans have figured out space travel, and now are exploring those far off planets and their moons. The film is entirely speculative, but offers an interesting view of what could come. Imagine, trekking across Europa or staring up at the rings of Saturn... intense.
The director has used a mix of real images and has created his own sets to mimic what a planet may actually look like (when we finally get there, of course!). Check out the video below and as a bonus, here is some beautiful artwork from the short.
Is the grass always greener on the other side? This short film contends with ideas of perspective, secrecy and control. Wonderfully written, it kept my attention until the last second and drew me in with a hope that the main characters would find the peace they were striving for. This feeling was very similar to what I felt while I was reading 1984 by Orwell, which if you haven't read yet, is a must read, especially in these times where surveillance and political manipulation of citizens is at a head.
Take a few minutes to check this short out, it'll make you question the world you live in and what you've been taught.
It’s always a struggle for me when I go away on an adventure. Anytime I travel, I know that it's inevitable that I will return changed in someway; but truthfully, every person changes each minute of the day, every second, through every conversation and interaction, through every breath and blink. I can't imagine not coming back different in some way. My perception and understanding of things shift, and my traumas and issues that I'm dealing with seem to not dull, but to lessen.
Either way, Bali and the Unsettled experience proved to help shape me, and change certain parts of myself. Unfortunately it did open up a whole new set of questions and issues that I still have to delve deep into: where am I going? who do I want to be? where should I put my efforts, and where shouldn't I?
I'm still shifting back into regular life, but finding it exceedingly difficult to remember that at one point, I was away, in a beautiful place, learning and growing myself. It's made me realise the importance or having an environment (working and living) that really is positive and not-toxic. A place with bad morale and unhappiness breeds it; will poison even the most even and balanced mind.
As I push through, I'm trying things like meditation and mindfulness (something I started to cultivate while abroad) and work on keeping balanced. While I keep a constant dialogue going within myself and the struggles I'm experiencing, I find it hard to articulate and share the things I'm feeling with others and how this change and transition has affected me. I hope that in short order, things will go back to normal, or I find a normalcy that fits me. Ultimately, when I came back from France last year (I actually flew off yesterday, a year ago) I felt a sense of loneliness and malaise that came with reintegration into my normal life, but that tapered off once I started to identify a new, self-directed normalcy.
Has anyone else felt this way? And what tactics do you use to ensure that this is as painless as possible?
I am content. I spent the weekend up at my partner’s cottage with his family from Friday to Sunday – and promised myself that while up there, I would do no work, and not look at any screens.
I abided and soon found myself more relaxed than I've been in a very long time. Staring a new job and continuing my life as I had been for the last few months (socially and creatively) had become too much to bear. I was finding myself getting exhausted during the week, to the point where I was unable to do anything but sleep after work; couple this with a succession of migraines that would not abate and I was a mess.
I had been hearing that not doing anything and having the courage to just be lazy (that's what it is to me, courageous to be lazy - I fear stagnation and immobility.) will allow you to breathe. I didn't hold this to be true, so I attempted it this weekend and I found something. A sliver of something that inspired me more than I've allowed myself to be in months. I fear being consumed by something that I can't control. Being taken in by a force beyond my own - that force being something they call "the dream" - but the perverse version of that dream. The one where everyone lives in identical houses with lawns and drives cars and has pensions. The one where no one leaves because of some wacked out xenophobia. I think that because I'm being told that I should want this, I want it less and less. I consider it the death of a dream, rather than the dream.
I've felt this feeling before - long before this. It happened 3 years ago when I was studying for my LSATs. I was long lost in the world that I had promised myself at the tender age of 7: you'll be a lawyer and you'll drive a Ferrari and travel the world before eventually settling into politics. What a lofty idea - but it was what kept burning inside of me, up until I realised that I would rather suffocate in my own vomit before wanting that after all (sorry, graphic).
I guess that as time wears on, I'm digging deep to be able to relax; to not always feel like I have to be on or that I have to put on a face. I'm learning to be okay with the waxing and waning of my ambition (although it fiercely gnaws away at me) and I'm attempting to reach all the goals I set for myself without stifling my creativity - a balance that is only for the purest of masters, it seems.