We tend to think that friends and family members are our biggest source of connection, laughter and warmth. While that may well be true, researchers have also recently found that interacting with strangers actually brings a boost in mood and feelings of belonging that we didn’t expect.
In one series of studies, researchers instructed that Chicago-area commuters using public transportation to strike up a conversation with one near them. On average, participants who followed this instruction felt better than those who had been told to stand or sit in silence. The researches also argued that when we shy away from casual interactions with strangers, it is often due to a misplaced anxiety that they might not want to talk to us. Much of the time, however, this belief is false. As it turns out, many people are actually perfectly willing to talk —and may even be flattered to receive your attention.
It’s almost impossible to go through life without experiencing some kind of failure. But, the wonderful thing about failure is that it’s entirely up to us to decide how to look at it.
We can choose to see failure as “the end of the world”. Or, we can look at failure as the incredible learning experience that it often is. Every time we fail at something, we can choose to look for the lesson we’re meant to learn. These lessons are very important; they’re how we grow, and how we keep from making that same mistake again. Failures stop us only if we let them.
Failure can also teach us things about ourselves that we would never have learned otherwise. For instance, failure can help you discover how strong a person you are. Failing at something can help you discover your truest friends, or help you find unexpected motivation to succeed.
It is easy to underestimate English writer James Heriot. He had such a pleasant, readable style that one might think that anyone could imitate it. How many times have I heard people say “I could write a book. I just haven’t the time.” Easily said. Not so easily done. James Herriot, contrary to pupular opinion, did not find it easy in his early days of, as he put it, “having a go at the writing game”。 While he obviously had an abundance of natural talent, the final, polished work that he gave to the world was the result of years of practising, re-writing and reading. Like the majority of authors, he had to suffer many disappointments and rejections along the way, but these made him all the more determined to succeed. Everything he achieved in life was earned the hard way and his success in the literary field was no exception.
A fifth grader gets a homework assignment to select his future career path from a list of occupations. He ticks “astronaut” but quickly adds “scientist” to the list and selects it as well. The boy is convinced that if he reads enough. He can explore as many career paths as he likes. And so he reads—everything from encyclopedias to science fiction novels. He reads so passionately that his parents have to institute a “no reading policy” at the dinner table.
That boy was Bill Gates, and he hasn’t stopped reading yet—not even after becoming one of the most successful people on the planet. Nowadays, his reading material has changed from science fiction and reference books recently, he revealed that he reads at least 50 nonfiction books a year. Gates chooses nonfiction title because they explain how the world works.“Each book opens up new avenues of knowledge,” Gates says.
My dream has always been to work somewhere in an area between fashion and publishing. Two years before graduating from secondary school, I took a sewing and design course thinking that I would move on to a fashion design course. However, during that course I realised that I was not good enough in this area to compete with other creative personalities in the future, so I decided that it was not the right path for me. Before applying for university I told everyone that I would study journalism, because writing was, and still is, one of my favourite activities. But, to be absolutely honest, I said it, because I thought that fashion and me together was just a dream – I knew that no one, apart from myself, could imagine me in the fashion industry at all! So I decided to look for some fashion-related courses that included writing. This is when I noticed the course “Fashion Media & Promotion”.
The supermarket is designed to lure customers into spending as much time as possible within its doors. The reason for this is simple:The longer you stay in the store, the more stuff you’ll see, and the more stuff you see, the more you’ll buy. And supermarkets contain a lot of stuff. The average supermarket, according to the Food Marketing Institute, carries some 44,00 different items, and many carry tens of thousands more. The sheer volume of available choice is enough to send shoppers into a state of information overload. According to brain-scan experiments, the demands of so much decision-making quickly become too much for us. After about 40 minutes of shopping, most people stop struggling to be rationally selective, and instead begin shopping emotionally – which is the point at which we accumulate the 50 percent of stuff in our cart that we never intended buying.
Think about driving a route that’s very familiar. It could be your commute to work, a trip into town or the way home. Whichever it is, you know every twist and turn like the back of your hand. On these sorts of trips it’s easy to lose concentration on the driving and pay little attention to the passing scenery. The consequence is that you perceive that the trip has taken less time than it actually has.
This is the well-travelled road effect: people tend to underestimate the time it takes to travel a familiar route.
The effect is caused by the way we allocate our attention. When we travel down a well-known route, because we don’t have to concentrate much, time seems to flow more quickly. And afterwards, when we come to think back on it, we can’t remember the journey well because we didn’t pay much attention to it. So we assume it was shorter.
Most people would define optimism as endlessly happy, with a glass that’s perpetually half full. But that’s exactly the kind of false cheerfulness that positive psychologists wouldn’t recommend. “Healthy optimism means being in touch with reality,” says Tal Ben-Shahar, a Harvard professor. According to Ben-Shahar, realistic optimists are those who make the best of things that happen, but not those who believe everything happens for the best.
Ben-Shahar uses three optimistic exercisers. When he feels down —say, after giving a bad lecture —he grants himself permission to be human. He reminds himself that not every lecture can be a Nobel winner; some will be less effective than others. Next is reconstruction. He analyzes the weak lecture, leaning lessons for the future about what works and what doesn’t. Finally, there is perspective, which involves acknowledging that in the grand scheme of life, one lecture really doesn’t matter.
I can pick a date from the past 53 years and know instantly where I was , what happened in the news and even the day of the week. I’ve been able to do this since I was four.
I never feel overwhelmed with the amount of information my brain absorbs my mind seems to be able to cope and the information is stored away reatly. When I think of a sad memory, I do what everyone does- try to put it to one side. I don’t think it’s harder for me just because my memory is clearer. Powerful memory doesn’t make my emotions any more acture or vivid. I can recall the day my grandfather died and the sadness I felt when we went to the hosptibal the day before. I also remember that the musical paly Hamopened on the Broadway on the same day- they both just pop into my mind in the same way.
When people in developing countries worry about migration, they are usually concerned at the prospect of their best and brightest departure to Silicon Valley or to hospitals and universities in developed world. These are the kind of workers that countries like Britain, Canada and Australia try to attract by using immigration rules that privilege college graduates.
Lots of studies have found that well-educated people from developing countries are particularly likely to emigrate. A big survey of Indian households in 2004 found that nearly 40% of emigrants had more than a high-school education, compared with around 3.3% of all Indians over the age 25. This “brain drain” has long bothered policymakers in poor countries. They fear that it hurts their economies, depriving them of much-needed skilled workers who could have taught at their universities, worked in their hospitals and come up with clever new products for their factories to make.
多项研究表明，来自于发展中国家受过良好教育的人尤其可能选择移民国外。2004 年对印度家庭的一次大型调查显示，接近 40%的移民国外者都接受过高中以上的教育，相比之下，在整个印度超过 25 岁的印度人口中，只有大约 3.3%的人接受过高中以上的教育。这样的“人才流失”现象长期困扰着贫困国家的政策制定者。这些政策制定者们担心，移民造成的人才流失会使本国经济蒙受损失，夺走本国急需的人才，而这些人本可以在自己国家的大学教书，自己国家的医院工作，并且为本国的工厂开发新的产品。
Who would have thought that, globally, the IT industry produces about the same volume of greenhouse gases as the world’s airlines do—roughly 2 percent of all CO2 emissions?
Many everyday tasks take a surprising toll on the environment. A Google search can leak between 0.2 and 7.0 grams of CO2, depending on how many attempts are needed to get the “right” answer. To deliver results to its users quickly, then, Google has to maintain vast data centres around the world, packed with powerful computers. While producing large quantities of CO2, these computers emit a great deal of heat, so the centres need to be well air-conditioned, which uses even more energy.
However, Google and other big tech providers monitor their efficiency closely and make improvements. Monitoring is the first step on the road to reduction, but there is much more to be done, and not just by big companies.
“Suatainability” has become apopular word these days, but to Ted Ning, the concept will always have personal meaning. Having endured apainful period of unsustainability in his own life made itclear to him that sustainability-oriented values must be expressed though everyday action and choice.
Ning recalls spending aconfusing year in the late 1990s selling insurance. He’d been though the dot-com boom and burst and,desperate for ajob,signed on with a Boulder agency.
It didin’t go well. “It was a really had move because that’s not my passion,” says Ning, whose dilemma about the job translated, predictably, into a lack of sales. “I was miserable, I had so much anxiety that I would wake up in the middle of the night and stare at the ceiling. I had no money and needed the job. Everyone said, ‘Just wait, you’ll trun the corner, give it some time.’”