Purpose of Life: The Spotlight

I have a goal, you have a goal everyone SHOULD have at least one goal in this life. You might fall, stumble and get out of track like I did for a long time but then you have that goal that you are trying to focus the spotlight on. It is hard! It is not easy to avoid distraction when it is surrounding you. “I felt extremely uncomfortable as the focal point, in the spotlight,” confessed Brian Eno, “. I really like the behind the scenes role, because all my freedom is there.” This is why it is hard to focus on staying in that one small spotlight when there is all that dark, gloomy free space around it. The small things are almost always the most valuable. 

The spotlight should be your goal that you are planning on reaching. For instance, if you say that you are helpful but there is no spotlight on the stage people are not going to believe you because they didn’t see anything yet so your goal might be to help with charity, treat people in a good manner and help them solve real problems then people are going to go to that spotlight you have to see if you can help them too. The spotlight is an area where it is time to shine so why not stand in it if you can. We usually like to hide our talents, goals, wishes, etc. from others but it is always a good idea to share whatever is going on in your mind so that they can support you since without the support you wouldn’t be able to reach the spotlight. Share what you know and watch your success grow.

We like the dark area because we have freedom in it while in the spotlight your space is limited to a certain area. It is always hard to reach a goal that is why it is hard to find the small spotlight in the wide stage. However, when you successfully  achieve your goal the spotlight is full of energy and excitement that it blocks out all the background noises on the dark stage. According to Syvester Stallone, “I am not the richest, smartest or most talented person in the world, but I succeed because I keep going and going and going.” But what does that mean? Not because you achieved one goal you just stop NO! because if you stop then you didn’t gain or learn anything from the spotlight. The spotlight teaches you how to be courageous and advance in life so that you can fill the whole stage with light not only that one spot. The audience will still like you in the spot but when you add more effects and talent each time you are going to advance in your career and the people will never get bored of you. 

If you search for the spotlight, you will find it waiting for you. Even though you might stumble and fall you pick yourself up and keep marching because if you stop time will not stop. Have a great day!!

Maybe life is easy

This is a suggestion that maybe life is easy but we are complicating it so much because we are stressed and we are unorganized these two factors cause life to be harder than it is supposed to be. For example when you are a student in High School and you are extremely stressed out and taking life as a very heavy boulder over your shoulder then you are going to go to college and the stress is going to increase. It is just going to keep elevating to a point where you can’t handle it any more and you just give up. That shouldn’t happen. You shouldn’t waste years of your life just giving up on everything. Fail, then try, then fail and then try again until you have a certain lifestyle where you are less stressed since stress can never totally go away.

I really appreciate the guy in the TED talk because he found something that maybe the wealthiest or the smartest person wouldn’t find he found calamity and peace. He isolated himself from all the stress he was overwhelmed with, he successfully did it. Although he might not have a diploma hanging in his living room or any money at all, he discovered the one easy thing available for all of us to discover, simplicity of life.

We are complicating it so much. Sometimes we know that we are stressed and we know why but we don’t seek ways to reduce it. As a high school student you should enjoy life, do all kinds of crazy stuff, and have fun (P.S without injuring people). Even when you finish high school and you have a lot to study for, you shouldn’t just sit studying the whole day, you need to have fun every now and then because sometimes the daily routine becomes too boring to bear. You can take hard classes if you know you will be able to handle them that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. It is good to challenge yourself to  a certain level but the important thing is to have optimism and keep pushing yourself beyond your limits.

There is nothing such as pushing yourself harder, but we need to like what we learn because most of the time we are doing stuff that we don’t feel like doing but we still need to do anyways. I’ll take High School as an example, as High School students, we take a lot of hard classes and classes that we don’t like just to have a high GPA and even if you don’t like your classes you are still going to try your very best for the future not for the present. I’m reading a great book right now, What’s Math Got To Do With It? by Jo Boaler, it is mainly about better ways to understand mathematics but what I like the most about it is that is teaches teachers how to teach the subject in a way that would be useful to the students in their daily life. According to Boaler, this is what we should see in every classroom, “As the students shared ideas, others listened carefully and built upon them” This should not be applied only in math classes but other classes as well.

School might not be the only cause that leads to stress as a lot of people think because maybe you are stressed about an interview, a game or a competition. However, I would say that school would be the cause of at least 80% of stress everyday because school’s stress is permanent unlike the other minor stresses that glance at us and then leave. For instance, as a student, you wake up stressed about the two tests you have this morning that you didn’t study enough for because you had tons of homework and even though you didn’t rest at all except for having lunch and dinner, you still slept at 2 am . That is too much stress, more than we could bear as students. Students shouldn’t be expected to stay up studying for that long since they need enough sleep to perform well the next day in school.

What should we do in this case? Stress can be reduced by time management because if you keep procrastinating you are going to be stressed more, Procrastination is the main factor leading to stress. Laughing and trying to avoid thinking of the huge load of work you need to do also reduces stress. Doing what you love for half an hour a day might also reduce stress because apparently studying is not what you love so do something that helps have fun and quit thinking for a while. Not because you are in a competitive school you need to struggle because I know a lot of friends that went to competitive school, did their best, got good grades but still didn’t go to the college/university of their choice. Is that fair?

Schools should help students do what they love and not love what they do because we don’t always love what we do. The major lesson student learn in schools in my opinion is how to hate learning. We learn a huge amount of content every year and then we forget it in no time so what is the idea of learning like that. Each person has an ability to do something special and it is the teacher’s role to search for and find this ability because if we keep jamming the enormous information in our heads we will lose our special abilities instead of trying to improve them by learning. I think that teaching might be simple but it is the way you teach that matters the most. I think that everyone has the right to learn equally it is not because someone doesn’t understand a concept we leave him stressed out and struggling and go ask one of the smart students. That is not the way education works but unfortunately that is what a lot of teachers do because they only do their job without helping us for our future jobs.

Technology For Children: Is it good or bad?

Throwback to childhood whenever I was bored I used to play Lego and pick up my nose, no just kidding. When I was young I actually used to love watching Tom and Jerry that I can almost recall every single episode if I watch like the first five minutes. I also used to play with Lego, make puzzles, or mostly play with my sister random board games or do any activity outside the house. It wasn’t that bad. We had fun together and enjoyed our time in a simple easy way. They were good days, however, now all that is gone.

What does the life of a child consist of now? All the parents nowadays should know specially those who work because their children are not provided with enough supervision. The child’s life consists of Video games, eating, TV and maybe some studying. I got a phone, used by both of parents before me, when I was in seventh grade and I was as happy as a clam until I realized I was so behind in technology that as soon as I got a Sony Ericsson phone the Samsung Galaxy S3 came out and it spread so quickly. I remember seeing my friends playing the game Subway Surfers, which was popular at the time and I couldn’t play it because my phone was not smart enough. Although I was sad at the time, I’m happy now.

Enough talking about myself and lets take that to another perspective, a worldwide perspective. Is technology beneficial for children? I don’t think that technology is god or bad but it depends on how each individual uses it, for how long and for what task. These days children are just given ipads with like 70+ games and subscription to a Cable TV including cartoon channels and that is all what they need to survive. This is extremely dangerous and when it is time for the child to enter school they will be inactive, unsociable and won’t be able to use their brains properly because all what they are going to be thinking about in class is “I can’t wait to show my friends the new high score I got yesterday after playing for four hours straight!” Well hopefully that is not what they are thinking about. I know some kids that are so obsessed with their ipad that they need to take it with them even to the car. That is getting too common and extensively unhealthy.

There are several alternatives to using the ipads as a tool of entertainment. I understand that it might be hard for a lonely child to have fun by themselves in the house while their parents are busy with work, however, I believe it would be easier for a lonely child to have more fun by himself rather than a child who has siblings because if we suppose that they didn’t have their ipads, I know it is hard for them but let’s just suppose they had a tool consisting of a set of colors paper and other materials this is going to open their imagination and opening imagination leads to creation and there is nothing better than having your own creation that makes you proud of yourself and your abilities. What are you going to benefit from getting a high score in a game. Nothing. This is not something that you created as a child that you should be proud of because someone is going to beat this score and you are going to forget about it before your friends do. 

Technology can harm young children by damaging their eyesight from a young age, causing them to be socially awkward when they grow up because of their isolation at home and making it harder to focus on studying when you are so addicted to a game, I mean not only young kids do that but also high school students and sometimes even adults are addicted to games. It is how much control parents posses over their children that determines a child future because I see some parents that just give their phones to young children so that they can play whenever they are bored or whenever they start crying. It is just so sad how children are regretting nature more and more often. It is the earth that grows a man:

If you had never tried digging in the sand how are you going to plant,

If you had never fixed a toy how will you be a skillful boy,

If you had never tried playing basketball how are you going to get tall,

If you skip your chance, you will never have it again.

These lines may sound stupid but they actually make a point if you never participate in any sports, events or activities and just stayed at home setting your mind on laziness mode you will never achieve anything and will just stay like that your whole life so that is why i’m addressing children because they still have a chance to change. Don’t feel like you are going to be super bored without phone, you might be bored a little bit but there is always something for you to do.

Living without a phone until the end of sixth grade actually taught me a lot of lessons like patience because I wanted the phone impatiently that i kept bugging my parents with it at least twice a week. They just wanted me to focus on studying more than playing and wasting my time and they did the right choice. I learned that nothing is necessary except when it is needed some people think that if they didn’t buy this shirt or this jacket today that the store is going to run out, close forever or disappear, maybe even if they don’t need it now they just but it for their friend’s birthday coming up in nine months. New things will come out fashion comes out and spreads too quickly and I learned tons of lessons that I might know or might not know about because sometimes we learn thing but we don’t really know where we learned them from. 

The Shadow of Life

We need to relate everything in life to something that we can learn of because that is how the process of learning takes place. A shadow appears only once in the same spot a day and this is interesting because a shadow is where we seek for shady, cool weather as we are sweating immensely and drinking a cold, fresh cup of lemonade. The shadow is something that is very necessary because it is of a use and nothing in this whole world was created by the God without a use. But how does this apply to real life? i know audience are always interested in real life associations and never in fake fantasies that don’t make any sense. As the shadow is the place where we seek for rest, daily life is a routine in which we seek for rest as well. It is very bad to keep studying the whole time or working or even playing. I know it is confusing so let me clarify.

The Shadow is the period of rest that we need to take everyday. We are all humans. You can’t say i’m just going to work all day long and then I will rest tomorrow because that is not going to happen. By the end of the day you will say i’ll rest tomorrow and the day after you say the same and so on to a point that when you reach the weekend you are so exhausted that you need to sleep and can’t have fun anymore. This should change. You should change this by taking short rests that are consisted of short naps, some play time, practicing a hobby or a talent, etc. These are things that we usually forget because of the daily rush Rush RUSH that we are in, we think that we don’t have time to do all these useless stuff but they are actually stuff that will help you in several ways where you will: gain new experiences, have fun and help you study because you will be happy you got to release some energy in a positive way.

In the introduction paragraph I stated that the shadow only comes in the same spot once a day and our breaks should also be once a day because if they were more than that it will be excessive. If you argue and decide to study straight without any breaks it will be nearly impossible to not distract yourself with all the social media, noises, boredom that is surrounding you. Therefore, breaks are like shadows in a sense, maybe that is not the best connection but for me it is pretty memorable!

The Photoshop Bummer

A new renting system is replacing buying the products of Adobe and that is totally pissing me off right now. Photoshop is a popular and well known among people photo-editing program by Adobe. It is a very good program that you can use for retouching skin, changing background, cleaning up images, adding text effects and a lot more. Despite all these advantages people don’t purchase the program either because they believe it is difficult to use or is too expensive, and both reasons are true. The difficulty issue can be easily resolved by taking Photoshop courses which can be found all over the internet and on YouTube where there several awesome Photoshop tutorials for beginners and if you don’t have enough time there are quick Photoshop tutorials. Photoshop Lightroom is another good program used for photo-editing.

And this takes us to the next issue the money, for the last couple of years Photoshop cost about $600 to install the program on your computer which is very expensive so lately Adobe released a new system for selling their products called Creative Cloud. Instead of purchasing Photoshop, Lightroom and all the other Adobe programs separately they made a leasing system where you pay $50 a month for all products or $20 a month for only one product. The total number of products is thirteen products. People reacted differently to these news.

Some people saw advantages to this decision while others found disadvantages to upgrading Photoshop. The great advantage was absolutely for adobe because before applying this system their products were being pirated all over the internet which of course led to some loss in money because if you see something available for free, you would never think about buying it for $600 or above. However, some people paid money and didn’t know it was piracy, that is how much adobe Photoshop is widely spread all over the internet. There are many ways to avoid Photoshop piracy, but people don’t want to spend a huge amount of money on only one product.

What are other alternatives to using Photoshop? There are a lot of many other companies that are developing easy to use softwares for photo-editing like picmonkey, retrica, and several photo-editing apps that are available on the Google Play Store or App Store. These programs are helpful if you are in a rush but personally I believe that Photoshop is better if you are trying to do perfect work because you can do more with it. Every photographer knows how important Adobe program are for daily use and I bet that no photographer works and publish his picture without using Photoshop or Lightroom. I’m currently using Photoshop CS4 and it is working good for me and i’m not planning on upgrading it anytime soon.

That is a list of photography apps that are available for iphone and android, these can be used as quick alternatives to Photoshop to download on your mobile devices on the go.

The Danger Zone

He was running and he knew they were after him. He didn’t know why since he was sitting in the coffee shop they kept talking to each other and threw some hungry looks at him. Eric was only eighteen when he started getting involved in this kind of business. It was good that he had a strong body and core which was to his advantage. He went to Flanders High School and this is when he seriously started thinking about his career at the end of junior year when he heard his father’s friend talking about how great this job is. He didn’t want to tell his parents. He knew they would refuse and their excuses would be like it is too dangerous, time consuming and he didn’t study all these years to just work in a job like that. He was a secret agent.

Eric knew his abilities and he knew that this job would perfectly fit him. He had the body for it, the intelligence for it and the skills for it. His best friend and his trainer was Agent Johnson who trained him for three years which were required to actually start working in the field. He started as a helper in minor missions and then he kept advancing in his career until he reached the mission of trying to stop one of the most dangerous money laundering people worldwide. This was his biggest mission so far. They wanted the case that Eric took during the shooting that happened before yesterday at the museum which wasn’t with him right now. He knew every single street in that town, where he was born and raised. He started accelerating slowly, glancing behind his back and then suddenly took a sharp right and started sprinting. They ran after him as fast as the wind so he dodged some walls jumped over cars and did everything he can possibly do to escape them. He had no weapons and no bullet proof vest and was exposed. He hid in a dark gloomy street under the stairs. He heard their footsteps, his heart was racing not because he was frightened but he was tired.Untitled-1 

He tried to control his breath as they approached him so that they wouldn’t discover him. As they got closer he started studying them. Their appearance was very familiar to him. He remembered their faces specially the one with the chocolate brown hair. Then examined the place for almost two minutes and then they left. He walked slowly outside when they disappeared from the scene. He walked by the river, to refresh his memory and attempt to remember where he saw the bodyguards faces before. He was on his way back home, the stars still shone and the day had drawn only a pale wash of the light in the lower sky to the east.

The Language World

C’est incroyable. It is amazing how we can learn several languages and use them easily although they are not our mother languages. Learning languages is very important. I can imagine myself now standing in front of someone whom I don’t understand because he is speaking a foreign language. My first impression would be laughing at him and at myself. At him, because what he is saying sounds funny in my ear and at myself because of the shame realizing that I don’t understand him. I just don’t want to be like that guy in the picture and have people tricking me because I don’t understand them.

What really makes me sad is when people lose their home language because they could have worked hard to keep it and they didn’t. It is their fault and their parents fault that they didn’t try as much as they can to keep their home language. People think that if they migrate to another country then they don’t need their own language but it is your roots, it is your identity and where you came from you just leave it behind carelessly instead of being proud of where you came from. For me i’m very proud of where I came from and I would never deny it like other people that I met. I always like it when people ask me about where I came from because I get to tell them about my country, our traditions and our awesome language. It is great.

So remember that before learning a new language your home language should be safe and well known by you because why would you learn a how to write in a different language when you can’t write in your own? It just doesn’t make sense. Back to learning a new language a lot of people don’t want to learn languages because they think it is not important since they are not going to use these languages,and because they don’t have enough commitment to sit and learn for long time (maybe about 1 year of daily practice to master a language) so my advice to everyone who wants to learn a new language is to make a schedule which is easy and follow it which is harder and practice daily or at least weekly because if you forget a language that you have YOU FORGOT IT and it would be nearly impossible to learn it again.

There are a lot of reasons and benefits for why you might want to learn a language and I find this source very helpful because it has detailed reasons about why you might want to learn a language. For me as a high school student, I currently have three languages which are Arabic, English and French. I really enjoy that experience of having these languages and when I went to high school in the United States, I was able to skip two french levels out of four and go directly to the third level. This was a great advantage for me because I was required to learn french when I was young in my school and I’m glad I was. You are not going to lose anything when you learn new languages but you might not benefit at the moment as well. This or these extra languages you have are going to be useful later in your life not immediately but I’m pretty sure you will get to use them one day.

I don’t understand why they don’t teach children foreign languages in the United States and other countries from a young age because the language should stick with you the most and stay with you when you love it which is very important to love what you are learning and when you learn it from a younger age. I think public schools should start taking this step of teaching an extra language because as you grow older your tongue grows heavier and it becomes harder to pronounce some vowels or even whole words in different languages so start now when you are young. My last and final advice is please, please, please if you are a foreigner never lose your home language. Your language is your IDENTITY.

 

What I learned from watching every TED-Ed Lesson

TED Blog

TED-Ed lessonsBy Noah Tavlin

As a Production Intern at TED-Ed, a big part of my job has been to make sure none of our video files have any glitches. So for the past two months, I’ve watched every single TED-Ed Lesson — nearly 500 of them — at least twice. If TED-Ed were a menu, I’d have tried everything on it. If TED-Ed were a foreign country, I would be a fluent speaker of TED-Ed-ese. If TED-Ed were a network of highways, I could drive anywhere with my eyes closed. Not that I would ever do that, of course. 

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The One Way to Happiness

Happiness is thought of as the good life, flourishing, well-being, joy, prosperity, and pleasure. These are the thing you want to have to have that happiness but what if you were a child? If you were a child you want toys, love, care, friends, theme parks, etc. As we age, our demands start getting more serious, troubling, and hard to obtain so what is it that makes children different? It is the happiness that the children have. Ask Charlie brown about it. Many times I needed to make several choices but I was an indecisive person, for example, I was supposed to go with people I never met in my life and I wasn’t very sure if I wanted to go and then my parents convinced me that I will have fun as they are people from the same age as me. I went. Probably it was the best camp I ever went in my life and we had a lot of fun. So always take the chance is what I learned.

When you are a child, you are dependent on your parents. They take you wherever you want, they bathe you, they take care of you, they dress you, etc. However, that doesn’t last long enough because the roles switch in no time. Instead of being the one who cries and yells for your mom’s help, you become the one yelled at and instead of having your food ready for you to eat you need to start making your own food and that is how life goes we can’t change that cycle. The older you get without having what I call the “factor of happiness” inside you, the more your life will be harder and later maybe depressing. Happiness inside you never gets dies but it is you who sometimes accelerate its growth because you feel that you are old now and you can’t do any childish acts or you have a bunch of work that you think happiness is going to distract you from it. I wrote a previous blog post about the relationship between money and happiness and it proved to me that making money doesn’t need to be an issue to distract you from happiness so why not just have fun and enjoy life.

Most of the elderly people here in the US have a pretty good life that is typically similar to children’s life and that kind of surprised me because I didn’t expect that. They often have the best cars on the street or those old refurbished cars that I really like and after thinking for a while I knew the reason for their happiness. These people are happy because they simply want to be happy! They worked hard their whole life, made good money, went to best schools not to be depressed after all but to accumulate a tremendous amount of money to enjoy the last phase of their life in which all their goals in life are achieved and it is time to have some peaceful time.

The important question is can you be happy even if you are in that age group usually between 18-50 when it is harder to discover the child happiness? The answer is yes, researchers have explored three basic sources of happiness: genetics, including temperament and personality; life circumstances, such as wealth and health; and our own choices. This is what I want to focus on owing to the fact that it is the only source that we can change, our own choices. The word “own” is the most important in that phrase because there is a huge difference between considering others choices as our own and between choosing ourselves. For instance, considering others choices as our own can be like if you want to go out to have dinner with your friends but we are none of them, including you, are quite decided yet on what you want to eat so the person driving keeps asking others where do you want to go but the each member says something like “I don’t know” or “you choose” the person choosing will go somewhere that he likes which the others might not like but they need to eat there anyways because of their response. That is an example where you are unhappy with the food but you are going to hide because you are still hungry and you need to stay with your friends. On the other hand an example of making your own choices would be choosing between two pictures and you don’t know which one is better. You would say that is easy I can just pick whatever but you feel that maybe if you got the other picture it would have looked better although it wouldn’t. This thought would turn the happiness into worry.

It is hard to stick with the one choice you chose and it is equally difficult to have room for happiness in your life as well as it is to go from a child happy to an elder happy therefore it is hard to go one way happiness which can never be achieved since you can’t be happy your whole life. Happiness is like a tree that has several roots at the bottom which are being children we can be happy in many ways and the stem is like our life in between where it is difficult to be happy except in that one way and finally the branches are the final product of our lives where the fruits of our whole life are produced and again there many routes for happiness.

My final word is advising all the children to demonstrate their happiness.

How to Avoid Procrastination

I know procrastination is something that everyone experience, specially me because I’ve been procrastinating on posting for a while and I’ve been working on creating two new pages that I’ll add soon to my blog so that distracted me from posting for a while but i’m back. Procrastination is something that is very hard to overcome because by time it becomes a habit which is really bad so if you are a procrastinator like me or just want to organize your life a little bit these tips are simple but they might save you time by practicing them:

  1. Prioritization: Think which task is more important to do at the moment. Make sure to focus on due dates and the amount of time required to perform each task. Priority Image
  2. Urgent vs. Important: You might think that these two terms are exactly the same but they are very different. Urgent is something that you need to do now because it can’t wait like something is due in the next hour and you need to turn it in quickly while important is something that is due today also but after 10 hours so you still have some time but you need to do it soon. There are four types of Urgent-Important intersections.Urgent vs important image
  3. Organization: It is hard to follow a schedule and I agree with that because you don’t know what is going to happen next, however, it is an excellent idea to always have a to do list so that you don’t procrastinate without realizing it. But remember to always aim for simplicity never be so complicated with your list.

There is a lot more than that to avoiding procrastination but at first try to keep it simple because if you trouble yourself too much with that you are going to feel that you have a lot to do and therefore procrastinate more. You always want to know which is more important since you think that if you do the easy task that is due next week and leave the task due tomorrow you are going to achieve a lot and that is what I used to think but now I realized how bad this way of thinking was. Same idea for urgent vs important and with the to-do-list which I consider very important. Do it a simple task that sounds easy but is actually hard. I have a lot of information about time management so if anyone is interested please comment below. Hope that helped.