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Valentina D.

@valentinawdd39

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Five Questions That Impress Hiring Managers
  1. Do you see any major changes in the position or workplace in the coming year?
  2. What can I do to really "win" at this job?
  3. If you were to leave this company, what would be the reason?
  4. What growth opportunities does the organization offer?
  5. Is there anything else I can share to put me at the top of your list?

Hiring managers appreciate it when you ask questions that makes them think and be able to deliver insightful answers. It shows your drive, ambitions, and willingness to invest in the company.

@valentinawdd39

5 questions that impress hiring managers

fastcompany.com

When you give out good interview questions you:

  • Allow yourself to delve into the position's more demanding aspects and whether you're qualified to meet their demands; and
  • It displays your vision within the role, basicaly thinking about how you'll perform in the position being offered, which is a really encouraging aspect to see from a candidate.
Benefits of learning a new language

Research shows that it's important to "exercise" your brain. Learning a language is one of the most effective ways to do this.
Benefits of speaking or learning a second language:

  • It improves overall cognitive abilities.
  • It decreases cognitive decline in older age. People learning a second language has lowered risks of Alzheimer's.
  • Multilingual people are skilful at switching between different systems of speech, writing, and structure, making them better multi-taskers.
  • Exercising your brain with learning a language improves your overall memory.
  • While learning a second language, you focus more on grammar, conjugations, and sentence structure, making you a more effective communicator.
  • Speaking another language means you have access to new words and cultures.

Brain Fitness - Learn a New Language

huffpost.com

Language And The Way We Think

Language is a literal and linguistic tool that many believe is a fundamental basis of the way we think. Some have hypothesized (like the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis) that many languages do not have room for certain thought patterns, and are able to alter our thoughts.

The underlying logic is just because there is no word in a certain language to express something, people who speak the language will not be able to think it, and if they learn a different language, new words and phrases are learned, leading to new ways of thinking.

Does Speaking Another Language Change How You Think? | Scott H Young

scotthyoung.com

  • Culture is a way of perspective and identity, and people speaking the same language immediately bond and form a connection.
  • If an English speaking person learns Spanish, the underlying culture that emphasises ‘passion’ or ‘enjoying the experience’ is a more important cultural value in the countries who are natively Spanish.
  • The culture of a certain place may include cuisine, history, music and notable personalities, but language becomes the salt without which the culture is tasteless.

The local language is the preferred route to understand the culture due to 2 reasons:

  1. Most people don’t speak English very well, due to their learning it as a second or third language. These people do not represent the real sampling of the country's population, just being the better-educated cosmopolitans who speak a global language.
  2. Most translations are poor substitutes for the real cultural essence, and a person needs to learn the original language to fully understand the context and culture.

Learning a new language provides access to people who have different thoughts than our own, helping us understand ourselves and the world with a new insightful mindset that didn’t exist before.

Learning a new language, therefore is not just culture, but a way into the minds of people who are not like us.

The Most Awkward Conversational Pratfalls
  1. Approaching for the first time someone you don’t know: focus on them, ask about them and approach humbly.
  2. Deciding when to end a conversation: you can end the conversation by excusing yourself and saying you have something that needs to be attended to.
  3. Awkward silences: knowing when to shift to another topic, introducing a new person to the conversation or even having a few conversation-continuers at the ready can help.
  4. Accidentally saying something inappropriate: apologize quickly, admit the embarrassment, and, if you mean it, apologize without excuses. Trying to smooth it over will dig the hole deeper.
  5. When someone else says something inappropriate: by diffusing the situation, and redirecting the conversation. Practicing active listening reveals when to intervene.

How To Deal With 5 Common Awkward Conversational Moments

fastcompany.com

Stories are the primary way through which we make sense of our world. We explain ideas by telling stories.

Even science uses storytelling when they use data of the physical world to explain phenomena that cannot be reduced to physical facts, or when they extend incomplete data to draw general conclusions.

For example, knowing the atomic weight of carbon and oxygen cannot explain to us what life is. 

Our Brains Tell Stories So We Can Live - Issue 75: Story - Nautilus

nautil.us

Where science and story meet

Despite the verities of science, we feel compelled to tell stories that venture beyond the facts.

When we first see separate ideas, we feel obliged to find a relationship between the ideas to form a coherent picture. Once a possible relationship has been established, we feel the need to come up with an explanation.

The brain’s reward system

When the brain pieces separate bits of an image together to form a coherent picture, it is known as pattern recognition. Once we recognize a pattern, it can spark a degree of pleasure, often described as that "a-ha" moment.

Science is about making up stories called hypotheses and testing them, then coming up with better stories. Once a story is complete, science goes to a lab to test it. While a story is useful, it can also be a problem if we run with an incomplete story. Our brains' reward for possible pattern-matching can overlook conflicting information as it searches for patterns, not identical inputs.

We earn a dopamine reward every time we understand something - even if the explanation is defective. This may result in misinterpreting data.

Good science = precise data - possible interpretations.

Good science is a humble recognition of the limits of what scientific data can say.

  • Ensure that any science you trust has passed through the peer-review process. And even then it might not be accurate. 
  • Search for information on the limits of the data in science reports. Were assumptions made? Be concerned if the discussion of them is missing.
  • Assess the preciseness of language, tightness of structure and restraint with which they present moral issues.
  • Assess the historical, cultural, and personal context of the study.
  • Are they willing to entertain alternative opinions and interpretations?
Guidelines for Disagreeing Productively

While discussing, debating or arguing, follow these guidelines:

  1. Use respectful language, even when talking of someone not present at that time.
  2. Opinions are not facts.
  3. Use words and also use silence.
  4. Be willing to learn something new, humbled by being proved wrong.
  5. Thank others for making you learn new things.

Guidelines for Productive Disagreement

medium.com

  • In a discussion, there can be ideas and stuff you didn’t know about.
  • Try to understand an alternative viewpoint.
  • Do not jump into conclusions.
  • Emotions are not attacks.
  • Ask for clarification in case things get out of control.
  • In an argument, ask open-ended, genuine questions.
  • Try to find the answer to what you feel needs to be asked.
  • Ask others as an individual and not as a group.
  • Listen well.
  • Speak what you have experienced first-hand.
  • Don’t answer questions not meant for you.
  • Do not speculate, and clarify instead.
  • During a disagreement, your aim should be to learn something and make yourself and others a better person than before.
  • Suggest improvements where things require intervention.
  • Admit your own mistakes.
  • Ask for direct feedback.
The "counterexample method"

While the premises may be true in an argument, the conclusion may or may not be correct, making the argument invalid. Example of an incorrect argument: Some New Yorkers are rude, some of them are artists, therefore some artists are rude.

A counterexample method is a powerful way to prove an argument’s conclusion to be invalid. You can use this method by: isolating the argument form and then constructing an argument with the same form that is obviously invalid.

Refutation by Counterexample-A Simple Way to Refute Bad Arguments

thoughtco.com

The counterexample method is effective at exposing the invalidity of deductive arguments.

  1. Isolate the argument form in a simple, easy to digest form, like by replacing names with letters.
  2. Create an analogy, a counterexample that substitutes the original argument, and it is a given that it would also be as invalid as the original argument’s conclusion
  3. Reduce the new argument in it’s most barebones form by affirming the antecedent, that exposes the fallacy of the original argument.
Humour in philosophy
  • Henri Bergson, a Fresh philosopher of the late 19th century, was also an author of a famous essay that focused on laughter. Before Bergson, few philosophers had given laughter much thought.
  • Other major thinkers who have offered humourless reflections about humour include Thomas Hobbes and René Descartes, who believed we laugh because we feel superior.
  • Immanuel Kant and Arthur Schopenhauer argued that comedy stems from a sense of incongruity.
  • Herbert Spencer and Sigmund Freud suggested comedians give relief from nervous energy and repressed emotions.

For Henri Bergson, laughter is what keeps us elastic and free

aeon.co

Everyone who ever had to explain their own joke knows that comedy cannot survive analysis. Once you take humour apart, it loses its effect and dies in the process.

Henri Bergson published his essay on laughter in 1900. He believed that laughter should be studied as 'a living thing' and treated with 'the respect due to life.'

Henri Bergson's general observations related to when laughter is most likely to appear and thrive:

  • The comic is strictly human. When laughter is directed at non-humans, we may laugh, but only because we have detected some human attitude or expression.
  • Laughter has no greater foe than emotion. Emotional states like pity, melancholy, rage, etc. make it difficult for us to find humour in the things we might otherwise have laughed at. But humour also appears to serve as a coping mechanism in the face of tragedy or misfortune.
  • Laughter seems to require an echo. It is used in the context of social bonding.

Social life requires a delicate adjustment of the will and a constant corresponding adaptation between members of a group.

In general, we laugh at people who are either too eccentric or too inflexible to allow for society to evolve and better itself. At the source of the comical are expressions that laughter seeks to correct.

  • Life never repeats itself. Therefore, when there is repetition or complete similarity, we always suspect some mechanism and are potentially witnessing the comical.
  • The comedic value of body-centered humour such as toilet humour and sexual innuendo lies in the fact that our attention is suddenly interrupted from the soul to the body.
  • Much of the word-based humour consists of taking words and phrases literally that we would generally use figuratively.
  • Laughter awakens us to the rigidity of certain personality traits or behaviours, and in doing so, discourages us from becoming too settled in our own ways.
Choose your topic wisely

Whenever writing on a given or chosen topic, make sure that you have chosen a subject people will actually feel like reading.

Do not just start telling the story of your life, but rather present facts or ideas that could appeal to anybody.

Simple tips that can make you a much better writer

bakadesuyo.com

We all like to talk smart. However, when expressing your ideas, the most important is that you make sure they reach the other person.

For that to happen, it is safer to use smaller words and less complicated phrases.

When transmitting your information, try doing this by presenting the fact as elements of a story rather than simple statistics.

Research has shown that individuals tend to remember more easily speeches than figures.

If you want to make sure that your message will be successfully received and understood, you must first know and understand your audience.

Being familiar with your audience’s preferences will lead to advantages on both sides.

Next time you write an article bear in mind that you must be as accurate as possible. Therefore, choose words that can be understood by everybody at anytime, in the same way.

And do not forget: people cannot know what you know, so why taking the risk of not being clear enough?

By 'clearing conversation' it is generally understood an exchange that has the purpose to solve any misunderstanding that can make a conversation difficult to have.

It is essential that we clarify anything that later on might lead to arguments, in order to ensure good communication.

The Power of Clearing Conversations

medium.com

Whenever we do not feel at ease with a situation, we tend to do everything we can in order to avoid dealing with this very situation. This can only lead to more headaches and misunderstandings. However, were we to handle the fact that there is an issue, we would be bound to find a solution and make things better. One sure way to improve any situation between individuals is by having a mature conversation or, what we call by 'clearing conversation'.

Having 'clearing conversations' is vital for the sake of our relationships, as they enable us to solve any conflict we might have with the others. 

In order for this to work, we should take into account and apply ideas such as having a private discussion with the person in question, making sure that the intention behind our desire to have the conversation is mutually beneficial or taking responsibility for the future of the relationship.

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