Posts by irina

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Recipe for Compassion in 3 ingredients

June 15th, 2018 Posted by Language, Life No Comment yet

Compassion allows us to take things lightly. It leaves room for play and allowing our natural abilities to bubble up to the surface effortlessly. We are wired for language, after all! Once you recognize the importance of compassion (hey, awareness is half the battle) then it’s a matter of actually putting it to use when you need it. But how? What can we do when we recognize we need more self-compassion in the moment? I’ve boiled it down to 3 ingredients:

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Self-Compassion: the key ingredient to…everything?

June 10th, 2018 Posted by Self Discovery No Comment yet

[video] I believe self-compassion is often the missing ingredient in getting… just about anything we want. When we go after something, we tend to ignore our side of things: our feelings, thoughts, beliefs, experiences, expectations, considerations, the bigger picture, etc. – it’s insanely ironic. We’ve been so well trained to consider everyone and everything else, but who’s standing up for you? Who’s in your corner, empathizing with the entire picture of being you? No one. Not-a-single-person can really witness what it is to be you, in all your entire-ness.

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Do you know you have it in you?

May 27th, 2018 Posted by Language, Local Discovery, Self Discovery No Comment yet

I often ask ‘What’s your biggest struggle in language learning?’ but today I’m calling for something different. I want you to reflect about a much more subtle quality of learning…

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What you’re truly capable of…

May 20th, 2018 Posted by Inspiration, Language, Self Discovery No Comment yet

I spent a lovely evening with friends last night and we got to talking about this amazing Finnish beatboxer named Felix Zenger. Juha and I saw him perform a few years back and to our amazement, it sounded like he had a 10 synthesizers in his mouth, when all he held was a microphone – nothing else. “How does someone do that?” we kept asking. I’m often asked this question in the context of speaking fluent Finnish. Here’s something we’re not considering…

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3 things spring teaches us about life & Finnish language

May 13th, 2018 Posted by Inspiration, Local Discovery No Comment yet

Ah… spring! Do you feel it in the air? This time of year is among my favourites. There is so much we can learn from the seasons and their cyclical nature. Think about it: what is the purpose of spring in the context of the year?

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Had enough of feeling discouraged? The answer is in your story

April 22nd, 2018 Posted by Language, Local Discovery No Comment yet

As language learners, we also tell ourselves and each other stories that that build up our perceptions, and thus our reality. So what happens when our stories are actually keeping us from learning? Can we change the narrative and shift our results right along with it?

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Discussion for foreigners on Braving the Wilderness book

April 3rd, 2018 Posted by Books, Life No Comment yet

This post is the first of its kind! It’s a book-club type discussion on Braving the Wilderness by Brené Brown. I believe when we live abroad, we look out into the expanse of the wilderness – the complete unknown – on a daily basis. We find ways to cope and minimize our risks, but we also hold ourselves back from living fully out of fear. I felt so much of what Brené Brown discusses in her book Braving the Wilderness is incredibly pertinent to those of us living abroad. Themes include…

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On gratitude when you don’t feel grateful

March 24th, 2018 Posted by Self Discovery 1 comment

Yesterday I found myself feeling deeply grateful for hardship and pain, especially that which I’ve felt in the past 6 months or so. This was, quite frankly, a new feeling…

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What women language learners can teach us

February 27th, 2018 Posted by Language, News | Announcements | Updates 4 comments

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been speaking more openly about my view that we’re living in a world that’s lacking the feminine — a world that’s unbalanced. I recently came across an explanation of the masculine and feminine as being traits most often associated with…

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Spoken Finnish pronouns

February 23rd, 2018 Posted by Language No Comment yet

Some words are more important than others: Finnish pronouns are very important. Since pronouns are used in virtually every sentence, the way you use them is going to immediately signal how well you speak to your listener. But don’t worry, it’s pretty simple once you get the hang of it!