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Novi Sad: a pleasant shock of inspiration

October 14th, 2014 Posted by Blog
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Wow… can I just say, wow!

This past weekend I attended the second ever Polyglot Conference in Novi Sad, Serbia and it left me speechless. The first time I met this wonderful community in Berlin this summer, I had lots of very positive things to say. I wrote about it in this post and although I knew it would be great to see everyone again, I also knew it would be different…

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News: Now on Instagram

September 30th, 2014 Posted by News | Announcements | Updates
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Just wanted to pop in and let you guys know that I’ve officially joined Instagram! I’m looking forward to sharing my world through pictures of interesting stuff I come across mostly in Finland, but also abroad.

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Looking back on another year in Finland

September 21st, 2014 Posted by Blog
Autumn walk collage

It’s a sentimental Sunday. Meaning that I spent the day doing whatever I desired on the moment, including heading out for an autumn walk just to watch the seasons change with child-like wonder, reflect on the big shift that awaits us on the other side of October and thinking back on how another year has gone by. Has this passing year shaped me? Am I different?

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Why new things are hard & when they get easier

September 11th, 2014 Posted by Blog
why it's hard and when it gets easier

I read somewhere that as much as 40% of what we do everyday is made up of habits. This means that almost half the time, we conveniently switch on the auto-pilot and conserve brain power: reach for the light switch, put on your shoes, grab your umbrella, feel your pockets for your keys, wallet and phone, pull the door behind you, ‘accidentally’ reach for your phone and check Facebook… What I didn’t realize is how delicate these habits can be. For example…

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It’s not what you think – On speaking Finnish fluently

September 2nd, 2014 Posted by Blog
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During our discussion event last week, someone asked an excellent question: “How long did it take you to feel comfortable speaking Finnish?” I’ve heard this question before and I almost always find it impossibly hard to answer. Instead of trying to answer it, today I’ll explain why it’s such a hard question, in the hopes that it’ll give you an insider’s perspective…

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Confessions of a Perfectionist

August 26th, 2014 Posted by Blog
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Nope, perfectionism is NOT a good thing. It’s actually a crappy habit to say the least. This is my rant about it, unscripted, in a stance against perfectionism and in the spirit of ‘winging it.’ (in video format)

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7 quick & easy ways to improve your Finnish in the next 7 days

August 12th, 2014 Posted by Blog
7 ways to improve your finnish

If only I could speak Finnish (or any other language!), then I could… [fill in the blank] Well guess what? Speaking can start today, and continue for the next 7 days. And at the end of those 7 days, you’ll be better off than you were 7 days ago. Random tangent: Is your favourite number 7? Mine isn’t but I vividly remember it being everyone else’s in elementary school. Odd. Here are 7 quick & easy ways to improve your Finnish in the next 7 days…

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How to get the best advice – Part II

August 5th, 2014 Posted by Blog

It was January 3, 2010 and I was feeling nervous. I was sitting on a flight from Copenhagen to Helsinki and I would step off this plane and into my new life in Finland. I didn’t really know what to expect…

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How to get the best advice – Part I

July 29th, 2014 Posted by Blog
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I was 14 years old. Our guidance counselor assigned us a research project/interview on a profession we’d like to pursue. I had no idea what I wanted to do, but I liked animals, so I interviewed a family friend who was a vet. As our interview came to an end, I asked him my last question with innocent enthusiasm:
“So…what advice do you have for someone who’d like to be a vet?”
His answer: “Don’t.”
I get a lot of advice. Some of it solicited; some of it unsolicited. This was probably the nail in the coffin of my veterinarian career, but in hindsight, I think that choice turned out to be okay. Nothing lost there.

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Why everything you think you know about Finland might be wrong

July 22nd, 2014 Posted by Blog
When was the last time you stepped outside Kehä III and really met some people? Original photo.

I have to confess I haven’t spoken much Finnish since my summer holidays from gymnastics coaching started, so I challenged myself to speak Finnish for the weekend. Over the two days, I met and interacted with lots of strangers, as well as people I know quite well, or had met briefly before. What I noticed was a little unexpected, namely: there’s a big difference between city and country-side culture. This shouldn’t come as a big shock, but I think as a foreigner I am as guilty as the next person of blobbing groups of people together.

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