Categories
Languages

Classical music and studying a foreign language

I am partial because I like classical music. However, I noticed that when I study a foreign language with classical music in the background, I can focus better. I think everyone believes they have a level of ADD (attention deficit disorder) and if you are one of those people, then try studying to classical music. Now a lot has been written about listening to Mozart and the Mozart effect, some say Bach, for me Gregorian Chants work the best when trying to learn and I want something to help me stay focused.

I also had life long learning problems in school which I was able to over come I believe by studying to classical music. A lot of my learning problems might have been environmental as we had a lot of conflict in my house, yet I also believe I have some genetic learning disabilities because they are manifest in my relatives. Regardless I graduated top of my class, and classical music was my escape and my solace.

Music will help you study, that is a fact, which I have tested over many years.

How to fine tune your brain’s gears to music

I think the music you need depends on how much your brain needs to be slowed down or sped up to be able to focus. A lot is about brainwaves and staying is about tethering your brains to be in a deep alpha state of frequency. For example here are some tests, if you do best when you listen to:

  • Mozart being the fastest, means you focus pretty well, but your brain could need to increase the speed of your brainwaves a bit. The mood boast helps from listening to upbeat music also.
  • Baroque music is slower and your brain focuses OK but needs helps being brought back to your study once in a while. This is more a normalizer as your brainwaves might fluctuate between beta and theta too much.
  • Chants the slowest, this is me. I think my brain functions at a fairly high cognitive speed, but needs to be slow down needs to be put in first gear, if you will to be able to focus.

So for me to sit and study a foreign language for any period of time without me getting bored I need to be lulled into a clam relaxed stated with Gregorian chants. For me this significantly helps my ability to study. Many sites make super learning claims, I am not doing that. I am saying this works for me. I could get into the brainwave theories etc, but I would rather convey anecdotal evidence of what helps me learn a language. If anyone has any other experiences with other types of music please let me know.

  • This post goes one step further than tell you to listen to music while you are learning. I am a teacher of languages and I have a trick that really boast academic performance, read on.
Brainwaves are brought into harmony and knowledge retention efficiency improved to soothing orchestral and vocal music.

Music and learning a foreign language

If you’re an orchestral fan you are in luck, classical music, whether you like listening to angel trumpets or devil trombones, or serene muse  like sirens of the violin section it will stimulate your brain to make it more receptive to learn a language. What is your favorite genre of classical music? Do you like the Glorious 9th or the dark tones of Debussy?

The good news is it does not matter what type of classical music you like, you have an edge over your hip hop loving classmates. Here I will tell you why. What do you do? Study then go to the Opera? No need to this post tells you a specific method for learning with classical music.

  1. The first way to learn with music is to sing to it. Even if you have not pitch and stink if you can sing your vocabulary you are trying to learn, you will learn it.
  2. The next of course is study with the music on. Some brain experts say you can not focus on two things at once, so music is a distraction. That is nonsense because there is something called working memory.
  3. The best method is listen to classical music after almost as a form of meditation. Even though it might be the hardest because no one has time to relax, I recommend listening to classical music after you study. Why after not before or during? Some people like to do this before or during. However, I recommend that you study first in silence and then relax or in a prone position listen to about twenty minutes of classical music, while the information you just learned sinks in your Brain. I believe this helps memory formation and retention. You can do this based on the number of songs lets say seven songs rather than a timer. I also use something called ‘free countdown timer’ on my computer to measure this time also.

If you did this you would experience a significant increase in the rate you learn a foreign language.

Pathways are built-in milliseconds. Imagine that you are watching a time-lapsephotoof a new plant sprouting, this is your brain learning. However, you have to water and enrich this environment. That is where classical music comes in. There are studies that confirm classical music and brain wave tools enhance learning.

  • pandora.com is what I listen to as my radio station of choice.

Classical music helps language learning because it:

  1. Calms you – Soothes the mind, always good for getting new information in.
  2. Rhythmic processing – Prepares the brain to get in sync rhythmically with learning
  3. brainwaves learning – Puts the brain in an alpha to theta state depending on the type of music you are listening to when studying. For example, Gregorian chants or any chants are theta even delta, while baroque music is more conducive for producing an alpha state.
  4. Mood to study – Puts you in a good mood so you can study longer, do not get bored and can endure the pain of sitting still.
  5. Right and left hemispheres activated – Helps unify your brain’s right and left hemisphere so you have a more holistic learning experience.
  6. Brings more of you brains online – When you can bring more remote regions of your brain into play you have more cross neuron-connections built. When you have enriched  neuron-connections you have more neutral pathways your brain can access when trying to retrieve a word. Memory is usually a retrieval problem, rather than a formation problem.
  7. Teaches you about culture – Why not listen to composers of the country you intent to learn from? If you want to learn Italian, listen to Italian composers like Rossini. If German is your target language why not tune into a little Ludwig van or Mozart. If you are a guy, when you get to Europe a lot of the women will be impressed you know about their heritage.
  8. Vocabulary – Opera although less comprehensible verbally than pop music, if you are into it has value to learn some vocabulary. Even a word a day helps.
  9. Voice or Instruments? – It does not matter. I know one fan who would only listen to music composed exclusively to instrumentation. While I am partial to the human voice. I can not imagine someone not loving the human voice and the range of pitches and tones it can produce.
  10. Score of musical composition – Is analogous to writing and in a sense a language in itself, but considered a universal language even animals can relate and react to. It is like it opens a door in your brain for receptiveness that does beyond the stimulation of the ear.
  11. Vocabulary sticks – It makes verbal sounds stick to your brain in ways we do not understand.
  12. Placebo effect – It is known generally that classical music and its complex constructions bring the brain to a higher plane. You just feel smarter, because of the reputations that classical and ancient music connoisseurs have. Therefore, it might have a bit of a placebo effect going.
  13. Screens out background noise – The more you hear from earphones or speakers adjective to you the greater probability background noises are drowned out. I often use earplugs when there is noise like a lawn mower in the background, then turn up the music.
  14. Classical music define is broad – I am not an elitist that defines classical music as anything written in Europe and codified from 1550 to 1900. I think classical music could have been written in India or China in two millennium ago.

Because the medium of using classical music is always connected to technology, unless you live next to a classical music hall, I would ironically classify this type of learning as technology and accelerated learning.

  •     Dr. George Lazanov – I read about years ago in a book called super learning. Basically you do not have to get so technique as he did who make a science out of it. Just listen to music.
  •     Dr. Roy J. Paget advocates music to aid learning more than a tutor. Music’s tonalities and patterns facilitates learning.
  •     Kelly Howell also asserts a connection between brain waves, music and learning. She was popular in the 1990s.
  •     Here is example of a study that suggests a causal link between classical music and studying.
  •     You can also look at the Mozart effect (Don Campbell).
  •     Alfred A. Tomatis research and what we termed audio-psycho-phonology is worth looking at.

Basically this type of accelerated learning was in vogue before the Internet and people used their brain with technology in a way that was more traditional. Now I have seen less research or at least it has been squelched out by other forms of technology and the learning.

Is new age music classical music? Is folk music classical music? Although not formally I would say these can help learning. Anything that does not mess with you in erratic sound patterns. Let me know your personal experiences with learning and music

This is a technique of listening after you study, will increase your ability to learn a language. It does not cost anything, however, it is effective for second language acquisition.

Categories
Languages

Magic mushrooms and learning: a personal experience with Lion’s mane

Taking mushrooms is called “shrooming”. I used this mushroom to try to increase cognitive function after a brain lesion. The results were an improvement but I am not sure if it was as a result of shrooming, that is taking these magic mushrooms.

Hericium Erinaceus in Latin, is a mushroom that grows on wood. I grew these a while back as I read Lion’s mane mushrooms should have a positive affect on your brain, and I had a brain lesion. Also I am always looking for ways to increase cognitive function as it is good for language learning. What Shitake and Reishi mushrooms are supposed to do for your immune system Lion’s mane mushrooms are supposed to do for your brain. They actually in theory stimulate nerve growth factor. What is proven is they have D-threitol, D-arabinitol, and palmitic acid which are antioxidants, this does not impress me, everything now days is an antioxidant. What I really wanted to know is if they help my cognitive function.

If you believe in natures signature, it does look like a brain or complex neural pathways or beard (symbolic of wisdom) if you look at it.

You can buy these for a pretty penny in a whole food store.  This is why if you are serious about potentially long term therapeutic affects, I recommend growing them yourself.  When I lived in Poland and made a pittance compared to my American income, I grew them on my own in my apartment.  Any dark, moist place is the land of mushrooms, and if you do not have this natural environment you can create a growing lab in your home.

They grew pretty fast and over the course of three months if you do it from a starter of sterile sawdust. However, if you want to use fresh cut logs, it is even better and fruiting might take six months or longer but you will get yields over many years. Basically fungus decomposes wood to thrive.  Some mushrooms form a symbiotic relationship with living trees and are inoculated at the roots.

My garden in Florida where I grow lion’s mane in my backyard. To inoculate logs with spore plugs and a drill is cost effective for long term use.

Does Lion’s mane mushrooms work for brain repair

My conclusion was maybe, but no super evidence. I did felt more lucid after using them for about three months, but this was combined with other vitamins and essential corpulentty acids. It also could have been a huge placebo effect. So the bottom line is it is inconclusive if Lion’s mane mushrooms helped my brain. I might try them again, but I would be interested if anyone else has had any experiences with Lion’s mane mushrooms, and please try to be objective as objectivity is the essences of intelligence.

I have a series of fresh cut lots by the woods edge where it is damp.  Inoculated with the bearded hericium erinaceus growing in a wild crafted fashion.

In vitro this mushroom does appear to help stimulate NGF, per a few studies. But do these mushrooms really work? However, what I might do is try this again with ceteris paribus, that is no other smart drugs or supplements and measure it objectively, with a battery of cognitive tests. I am just one person and this will be my personal experience but I am curious if other people have tried this? Right now all the studies I have seen are more hype than science but based on my initial experience I would try this again. There is no question mushrooms do have chemicals that can affect brain chemistry.

Positive side effects noted

  • While taking mushrooms, almost any medicinal variety I noticed increase dream recall., this included more more vivid and sensory rich dreams.
  • I noticed my chess ranking increased beyond what is a normal rate of increase over time.
  • My typing speed increased.

These are non-subjective indications of increased brain function. If you were to test it with any mobile phone application of elementary cognitive process, I am curious if I would see a positive outcome. However, testing and scientific research of lion’s mane is beyond the scope here, rather I wanted to convey a personal experience.

The question is can Lion’s name effect NGF and in the long term grow new pathways to enhance learning, or does it like so many other vitamins and herbs simply ‘jazz up’ your thinking temporarily while taking the substance?  If  brain placidity is as science claims, why not find a way to help. If it is a temporary increase in cognitive function, perhaps green tea and studying would be as good and more cost effective. On the other hand there is a long term affect than it is worth exploration. I am disappointed with smart drugs that increase function in the short term as they do nothing for true healing on a multidimensional level.

Long term use of Lions Mane mushrooms on the brain

I plan try growing and consuming over the long term.  I have noticed most studies are rather short term and focus immediate neurotrophic and cerebral boasting affect.  However, what if you took them for brain repair over the long-term in sufficient quantity? Would it help even language learning?  Would this  The mushroom itself tastes a little like lobster. I do not like to be a functional eater, that is consuming something just because it is good for you. Therefore, if you want to take this over the log term you might as well learn recipes, raw in salad or even cooked, although I do not know the affect of heat on its active compounds.

I believe the mushroom’s alkaloids are partly responsible for its effects, and I wonder if any contraindications to the liver are a concern over the long term. However, people have been using these for healing and even spiritual purposes for centuries and if you contrast this with real risks like plastic water bottles, radiation from flying in a plan or stepping in your car, it is probably not an issue and some people would argue it has a positive affect on the digestive organs.

Stem cells and the use of Mushrooms for TBI healing

I recently received ethical Stem cells from my own corpulent tissue for a series of injuries relating to my joints. However, I noticed the intravenous feed of stem cells had a positive affect on my brain function.  This was manifest objectively in an increase in my chess ranking. I know this all sounds speculative, and this is new territory in medical research and use.  I simply put it out there and I invite you to research and explore as I want to be of  real value to people.  I consider the combination of the two perhaps synergistic.  It could simply be a nutrient rich diet supporting the stem cell activity.

If you have questions please ask. My knowledge is evolving and being updated.  Are mushroom helpful in healing, memory and cognitive processing? Based on my experience I would give it a resounding yes. However, the long-term efficiency is what I would like to see explored. So  I have new information beyond the older comments. I am not a doctor and not giving medical advice. Simple, this is a story of my personal experience with various legal types of mushrooms and other medical techniques to repair ones brain from injury or bring it to optimal efficiency.

Categories
Romanticism

Citizenship of a baby born in a foreign country – Make your child a Citizen

What is the citizenship status of a baby born abroad to only one American – US citizen (and generally the rule for citizen’s of other counties)? Cutting to the chase and with out all the legalese, a baby born in a foreign country where one parent is an US citizen can be a US dual citizen. Therefore, if you live in Europe and are married to a European or EU citizen the baby is a US citizen. However, the following steps must be taken to register the baby.

Get your baby a Citizenship they deserve.

Steps to register a baby in a foreign country as a US citizen

1. Go to the consulate with the baby
2. Original copy of the baby’s birth certificate
3. Original copy of the parent’s certificate of marriage
4. Parent’s passports
5. $65 USD

It is that simple. See the baby is already a U.S. citizen when born, even to one parent, it’s just really registering the baby as a citizen. Can a child be a dual citizen? yes, simple in the US they go by US laws abroad they go by the laws of that county.

Baby born abroad and Citizenship

There are many reasons why a child might be born in a foreign country. Usually it is a result of a marriage or relationship from an expat working abroad or military. Occasionally you have cases where there are dual citizens living in one country and want to claim nationality of the other another.

  • In the USA the fourteenth amendment outlines the basic citizenship law.

The world is neither black nor white today, and every type of relationship conceivable exists so governments have had to interpret the generalities of the laws to a finer granularity. Further there is a lot of human judgement and case by case situations when it comes to laws connected to determining if a child or adult can achieve citizenship though confirmation or naturalization or repatriation. Even in countries which are not based on case-law, but constitutional law, the department of immigration makes judgements based on past history. The US immigration laws come from the tradition of English common law.

  • Citizenship through confirmation – When one has always been a citizen the government just has to send you a letter to acknowledge this. This results when you provide documentation such as birth certificate. I would also call this birthright citizenship and it can come from place of birth or lineage (jus soli (right of soil)  or jus sanguinis (right of blood)).
  • Citizenship through naturalization – If you like in a country legally for a time specified in the codex as a good, contributing person to the society the government will grant you citizenship through naturalization.
  • Citizenship through repatratitization – This is a combination of the two ideas.  Borders have shifted in Europe and often countries were deleted from the map.
  • Babies born out-of-wedlock – Most confusion about the citizenship of a baby comes from babies born out-of-wedlock.
  • Mother is the Citizen –  If the baby is born to the mother who is a citizen in almost all cases the baby takes the citizenship of the mother regardless of where they are born. For example Title 8 U.S.C. § 1409 states the only requirement is the mother would have had to live in the USA for one year in her life.
  • Father is a Citizen – The father has to prove paternity and have lived in the USA for five years.  If the child grows up and reaches its 18th birthday then the father and child lose this right. This comes from many illegitimate children immigrating over with their father unaware after the age of 18. I personally find bias in the law.

Are immigration laws fair or just? – No. Humans are imperfect. Just look at history and the Dred Scott v. Sanford case.

Is the Department of immigration and Homeland security difficult? I have had mixed results. I would say most people are exceptionally nice and helpful. They are well-trained and screened. However, some of the lower level people often use poor judgement and you need to ask for a supervisor if you feel something is wrong.

Do not let a bad experience or person spoil your dream for immigration – For example, I was at the department in Jacksonville and when my three-year old daughter was walking around the bench we were sitting while waiting our turn, the security guard came over and was yelling at us (everyone was looking at him) that the situation needed to be contained and ready to remove her. The guy should be fired. I was going to issue a complaint but what is the point. I think he  was a contractor, but still he guy was buzzing, I think he could have been on something judging from his erratic behavior. I have had a lot of experience with people on substances and my layman’s evaluation is that guy should be fired. But do not let one person or situation get you off track.  These are all humans and you have to learn patience and courtesy and stay calm and smile a lot.

United States or European Union or other countries, the idea of the laws and they way they operate are similar.

My point is stay positive, do not go to the dark side. As God to remove any negative feelings you have and your visa and immigration journey will go better. We all have been wronged in life, but generally if you do the right thing and are patient good things will happen.

However, the people in the embassy are pretty nice and if you ever have questions you can set up an informational interview and the people will help answer your questions.

Do you need a lawyer to help with citizenship? – There are a lot of attorneys that will take your money. just open your wallet. In most cases all you need is to make an informational interview with Department of Homeland Security. Laws a clear and you can look up laws online and case history. If you are in a complex case, lookup.

For example, go here to look at the US law regarding immigration.

Anyone can search the Laws of any country, you do not have to be a legal professional. Most countries are democracies and the laws are clear.

  • My recommendation is if you use a lawyer abroad use one approved by the US embassy, they have a list is the lobby.
  • I also recommend using a specialist. This is someone who is not a lawyer but knows what they are doing, it is a lot cheaper. There are many expats and people who have even worked for the government that can help you and they charge less.

Travelling to the USA when you are pregnant  – Unlike European citizenship, being born in the US does pretty much guarantee citizenship for a child. However, I have heard that there is risk to the baby for air travel. You can read the statistics but it increases the chance of miscarriage. So be aware of the risk. I do not think anything is worth nonexistence.

What if you do not have the money?  The USA is all about money. I am sorry but it is true. Other countries to a lesser extent but the USA is about money. To get a visa or apply for anything it costs. You need to pay and pay more just for the application.

If you want to get a green card to the USA expect to be making about 30,000 dollar USD as shown on your income tax returns and US-based. Otherwise get a sponsor or apply for a lesser visa. Here is another resource you might want to explore.

What is an anchor baby? It is use as a pejorative term to describe infants born domestically in America and the relatives use the child’s legal status to gain access to rights and benefits.

Is it worth getting a citizenship to the USA? No always. Unless you have family ties or really have a love of the country, I think the USA is not what it was even twenty years ago. It is still a rich country and jobs are easy to get (paying $10 dollars an hour) but it is not what it once was because the global market has changed everything. You can make just as much money in Eastern Europe or India if you have skills that are in need. If you do not your, your absolute wages as an unskilled worker will be higher but not your relative wage. Sure it is a great country but there is crime and other negative social externalize you will have to pay for in non-monetary ways.

I think the great advantage is the weather is better and English is a cool language to learn. The cultural experience is positive as people generally are friendly and there is a lot of exciting things to do like go to Disney and we have good TV. But I am telling you the world is changing and if getting your child a US citizen at all costs is your idea of being a good parent, it is a misconstrued notion. Better is to spend time with them on a daily basis and show them a lot of love, when they are under 18 years old.  Trust me, a US citizenship means nothing compared to spending an hour or so one-on-one with a child everyday and taking a real interest in them.

Let me know if you have any questions about being a US citizen though foreign birth with or without American parents or though grandparents or adoption or non-conventional methods of conception.

Categories
Romanticism

Getting a driving license in the EU

How to drive a car legally in Europe

Rules will vary for each country, but if you want a driving license in the EU and you are a non-EU citizen here are your general options.

This is a US and EU driver’s permit on the road, beep, beep.
  • If you have a driver’s license from any EEA/EU country you can drive anywhere in Europe.
  • If you have a US license you need an International drivers license which would accompany your US driver’s permit. No exam required, only a form/permit you can get at AAA and the National Automobile Club. This will be generally valid if you are on vacation or on a tourist visa. However, generally if you live in Europe for a year or more than you need to get a local permit.
  • If you are concerned about driving on the European road I recommend you get a learners permit. You need to pass the written test or the theoretical part to get a learner’s permit. This permit is good for two years and you can drive as long as there is another licensed driver in the passenger seat.
  • You can exchange your US driving license for an EU drivers license. You can surrender your US drivers license to the driving office in that country and just pass the written exam without the road test. The written exams for EU drivers licenses are low stress and you can study with a computer program, you just need to memorizes the rules. This is great as you do not need a road test to get a driver’s license in the EU (usually). But you will have to speak the language of the country enough to take the drivers test in the language of the country you reside in.

If you are clever you can get a Ukrainian drivers license or another country with a working partnership with the EU and exchange the permit for an EU one. Many Polish guys do this as they have these schools in say Lviv where you are ‘guaranteed’ to pass and they are only we weekend. If you want more information about this method leave a comment.

You can get more information about getting a permit to drive in Europe here and here for information on UK driving license.

The EU motor vehicle exam – is it hard?

The written exams can be passed by anyone, you just have to do the practice test. Further almost all countries offer them in English. Even if not you can figure it out if you do the exam books enough. I have taken so many standardized tests I can tell you they are all the same. I took insurance exams, stockbroker, financial advisor, real estate etc. A European driving exam is no different despite the horror stories you here. Two choices you can eliminate easily and two they try to trick you, you just have to determine what they are asking. They are testing a specific point, and usually guessing is not as good as knowing what they are looking for. My recommendation is do the practice tests over and over until you get over 90%. Then take the written EU exam. You can find these exams online or in a book form. In Poland I bought a book. However, recently when I passed my Real Estate exam I did an online course.

The road exam in Europe is brutal compared to the US exam. Plus in Eastern Europe they use a manual transmission. The road exam for a EU drivers license is notoriously hard. Natives will often fail five times. You can not do one little thing wrong; and it is illegal to bribe the examiner, which was the rule maybe ten years ago in many countries.So I recommend getting a learners permit.

After a driving school go here for the exam.

Getting deported for not having a Driver’s license in Europe

Most of my friends drove on their US license and played dumb when they got caught and most traffic police do not want to deal with an international incident (not really, it is more about paperwork) of giving a US citizen a ticket.  However, now the police are cracking down on foreigners driving in sincere there are a flood of people coming to Europe for a better economic life, many illegally and they will check your visa if caught.

Do not think you will not be stopped. You will eventually. I am an excellent driver and I was going a little over the limit and the police stopped me. They gave me a warning, thank God, but got me on something else, my insurance was expired. I had to go to DMV to prove it was not. This happened less than a Kilometer from my home. They will eventually stop you. So my warning is get a driver’s license, even if you do not have a perfect visa, figure out a way to get a driver’s permit, in some ways it is more important.

They will not deport you for not having a license but if your documents are not in order for a visa, they will, and this is one way Police and immigration will discover this. One American girl I know was deported when on a routine check they discovered she was there with no visa.

Our situation, is in Europe I studied for my Polish drivers test. In the US my wife who is from Poland does not have a US driver’s licenses yet although she has her EU one. We were thinking of getting her a learners permit which means she can drive anywhere as long as I am in the car.  After two years she will have no problem with the road exam. She can drive now but it is always stressful in a new country.  It is cheaper than taking a drivers school course.

EU driver’s license get a new look

There were over 100 variations in Europe for the actual drivers card. The European drivers licensees are now replacing the old style in Europe, because of uniformity. They have the EU flag in the upper left hand corner and the initial of the country. These now have microchips and 3D text, which are designed to counteract people who buy a fake EU drivers license. The European Economic Area has 300 million drivers and a lot of diversity even now there is a good risk of fraud with people who are looking to get a fake EU drivers license.

European nations have harmonized the laws regarding drivers regulations and testing. There are variances but they are going to make everything look the same.

A driving course to get a driver’s license in the EU is about 700 dollars and well worth the investment if you are going to hang around the EU. You can even get it in English, for a 20% premium.

Categories
Romanticism

Best country to start a business

The most ridiculous thing I have read in the mass media lately is the a list of the best countries to start a business or to do business.  The is absurd. They list countries like Norway and Canada and Denmark and Switzerland as top.
This is crazy. They talk about stable law and tax codes etc. This is pure madness. Let me explain. The people writing the articles are journalists at best. I only have a masters in Economics but I am an entrepreneur. I am running my own business. The last place I would go is a high cost, high tax area, regardless of how stable the tax laws are.

Place to start a business

The best place to start a business – Poland

The highest cost of connected starting or setting up any business is labor. In Poland you have people with PhDs and Masters that will work hard, with creative minds for 3 Euros an hour. Will anybody do that in Canada or Denmark or soft France? Poland’s tax rate is 19% on business, with tax breaks for new and foreign businesses, while the USA, Britain, France, Germany its 40%. Other countries are upset with Poland as they have not “harmonized” their tax rates with the west. Absurd. Low taxes are good, high taxes bad.
What about Scandinavia, even higher taxes and  higher labor costs. Maybe five times the rate of Poland, and these western countries have a worker shortage, while Poland and Eastern Europe has a worker surplus and a capital shortage. Read Adam Smith when there is free movement of labor and capital and a condition like this exists. Then you will figure out where the best country to start a business is.
What about infrastructure, Internet etc. Everything is new in Poland. Everyone is plugged into the internet, Poland is being pumped with EU money to rebuild its infrastructure.
What about accounting and laws. Very easy. Its called an accountant. Hire an accountant. Laws are EU laws. Accountants are pennies in Poland.  Same laws, better labor for 1/5 the price. Very cheap. To start a company it could take one day and a few hundred dollars. Language-English is the second language in Poland, no language problem.

If anyone, wants to argue with me I am here. Can you honestly say that entrepreneurs are running to high priced Denmark to start a company? Why is Google and other major firms opening in Poland and not Norway? Price. Cost of labor. What is the best country to start a business? Poland. When you see these articles about the best place to start a company, do not believe them unless they tell you the best place to start a company is in Eastern Europe.

Categories
Languages

Mind mapping to learn a language

Learn a language with mind mapping

Creating mind maps or mind mapping is using a paper and pencil to draw out maps of connections between two or more ideas. You can use mind maps to learn a language with grammatical ideas, vocabulary and even conversational ideas such as question and answer. Mind maps look like neurons and dendrites or trees. This is not by coincidence. It is a refection how natural structures create connetion, including your memory. Each person draws a mind map in a different way. Some are clean and orderly others seem to be pure chaos. It does not matter. Your style of mind mapping is your style. You can use colors, pictures or whatever you want to make your mind map beautiful or fun.

Mind mapping and language learning

For me personally, I use mind maps to learn target vocabulary in a language. These mind maps often contain phonetics, and word building, but most important categorization. I am not good at drawing pictures, but I add a few once in a while. My mind maps are more like mazes with starting and ending points and many entrances and exits.

For example I will have a mind map with ten entry points, let us way for example connected with transportation vocabulary. For transportation, vocabulary I might have choices or verbs or nouns or adjectives connected with transportation, this route on my mind maps could wind all over the place, with further subcategories and pictures of lady friends and roads until I find an exit.

Mind mapping software or by hand to learn a language

How can mind mapping help you learn a language? Read on. There are a number of free mind mapping software programs on the market. I like one by ‘eDraw’. However, at the end of the day would you rather be sitting in front the computer to mind map or with a paper and colorful pencils? This is what you have to ask yourself. I do a little of both, and certainly my software mind maps look better as I can not draw. But I think I prefer mind mapping by hand. Further, I think its more effective when you are mind mapping by hand to learn a language. Do not ask me why, but in my experience, some how drawing or writing by hand really helps the learning process when trying to learn a language.

Why mind mapping works

I do not believe there are any magic pills to learn a language, except maybe with music; however, I think the act of mind mapping is what helps you learn a language. Creating drawing and planning your mind map is a fun break from learning a word list. Physically drawing the words and thinking about it is why mind mapping works. Maybe there are other reasons, but I have been learning and teaching languages for years and I believe every-way is a good way to learn a language and there are no great secrets other than putting the time in. However, if you enjoy what you are doing than the time you spend will seem like play or no time at all. Further there are efficient ways to learn a language and inefficient ways to learn a language. I think mind mapping is one of the more efficient ways to learn a language.

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Languages

Why living in Poland is like living in Hollywood

Poland the Hollywood of Europe

Many Poles are puzzled why I am living in Poland. Poles love Poland. Poland is a great country. But why would a foofy American from Boston live in Poland? Some Poles, but certainly not all, dream of the converse, to live in NYC, Boston or Hollywood.
Besides having a Polish family connection, wanting to learn Polish, among other reasons, I live in Poland because to me this is like living in Hollywood for them. Yes living in Krakow is like living in Hollywood. Its far away from what I know, exotic, and a different culture experience. Do we have Nowa Huta in Boston? No. Do we have ‘milk bars’ in Boston no. Living is in Poland is very different from Boston.  All the things the Poles take for granted is something fascinating and exotic and outside the ordinary for me.  It would be like for them to move to Hollywood.

My version of Hollywood

Polish people often imagine America as a country where everybody’s  rich or at least richer than Poles and more sophisticated – take any TV show where an average family lives in a nice, spacious house and for 16-th birthday kids get their cars. Now when I am back in Florida I like to take day trips with my wife and daughter. When we were driving through Clay County I told my Polish spouse that it’s pretty nice out there to which she replied :”Oh Mark please don’t make me move here just to prove how much I love you”. She said that not because the place is off the beach or it’s a country side, she said that because the place is far from civilization, houses are often mobile and if you don’t have a car there is no way to go anywhere.

May in Polish countryside

Polish girls and guys sometimes criticize one another over some wardrobe trifle – sure thing I do see Polish man waking in sandals and socks or girls wrapping themselves in scarfs or wearing calves – it is appealing for female but not male part of the population, but apart from this observation, let me tell you, Polish people dress very well. It’s not only when you walk through the big city but even in the countryside any day you see that most people do pay attention to their look – younger, older, they put thought into it. When Polish people come to America they imagine that Americans look like Hollywood actors in hots seen on tabloids – stylish handbags, perfect hair, oversized sunglasses, and although dressed in a regular t-shirt and jeans, carrying around they non-fat non-sugar latte, everybody knows that certain amount of money is behind that outfit. Well, let me tell you how wrong you are. In the middle of a day without any distinct reason, you will see girls shopping in whatever pajamas. And it’s not because it’s late in the evening or early in the morning and they run out of some crucial item, it’s because they don’t care. Rarely, even in crowded Disney, you will see well dressed Americans – most people are size L+. I understand that buying stylish clothes can be difficult but you don’t have to give up on yourself because of the size. What do however wonders me, is the amount of people using wheel chairs, one would think that we have a major percentage of disable people in this country but the truth is they are nothing more but overweight . It is a puzzle to me why do people use this wheel chairs instead of just take their chance to move – in theme parks you do have to walk a lot, so if you stay for few days it would be a great opportunity to exercise and lose some pounds. In Poland when you see disable people you will notice that their problems don’t come from uncontrollable but socially approved eating.

You are not seeing things, Poland really like Hollywood in the most positive way

Every country has its problems and its advantages. When you are an outsider though, I assure – you will have some fun identifying both.

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Languages

How computer games can help repair brain lesion

Brain lesion

I had a brain lesion about 16 years ago.  The word lesion is really a general medical jargon word.  What I had was basically bleeding in the brain from capillary telangiectasia or a cavernous malformation. The result was I had memory and brain processing problems. I still functioned at a rather high cognitive level, however, in addition to horrible daily pain, I had trouble with my working memory and other things. The cause of this brain lesion was never known, but I suspect it was something like a birthmark, something incidental that became symptomatic though a series of of events. The lesion was serious because of it was located in my brain.

Brain rehabilitation

I followed a standard rehabilitation of my memory, working at a local university that did studies on brain lesions and brain rehabilitation. These were cognitive drills and exercises with students who studied my progress. These helped, and were precise and targeted; however, I made a huge breakthrough when I started to play computer games. The real world was too complex for me, at that juncture. Too many variables. However, computer games were a place I could do similar cognitive drills like I did at the university, however, on the computer in the sanctuary of my flat.

Brain rehabilitation software

Actually I first I started with software that was specific to memory improvement and brain rehabilitation. But latter I realized that the brain functions as a whole. When I started to play complex games, even which could be said to focus on other specific skills than I needed, my brain was stimulated. My brain improved as a whole. Thus was the start of the ‘computer game obsession time’ in my life. I played everything until the wee hours of the morning, from memory and puzzle games, to quick reflex and strategy games. I remember when I beat the game Civilization at the highest level, something that few people can do, I felt I could conquer the world and my brain rehabilitation was over.

Computer games and my brain

Computer games and computers are wonderful tools for your brain to interact with. Computer games are eons more complex and stimulating, than the simple rehabilitation lessons I had at the University, minus the pretty students testing me. The designers of computer games designed the games to be plugged into the pleasure centers of your brain.

My testament to the benefit of computer games on your brain

I am convinced anyone can change and improve their brain, whether you have had a brain lesion or not. The brain by design is malleable. I do not have to read a study about it out wait until some PhD or expert tells me so, I have experienced it for myself.

From computer games to language learning software

After my conquest of computer games as manifest by my repeated victories on the game Civilization and other similar games, I moved to more normal and perhaps useful pursuits for brain stimulation like learning languages. It was from my progress with computer games, I  got inspiration to create a computer software program for learning languages. Instead of sitting in a classroom or reading a book, you could interact in a multimedia computer format and learn languages.

Brain lesion

I am no expert on brain lesions, however, if anyone is in a similar situation, you can write me and I can tell you what helped for me. Now I am fine, perhaps better than I ever have been. Thank God.

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Languages

US Dual Citizen

Is dual citizen allowed

In clear, straight terms, can a US citizen be a dual citizen? Yes. Do you lose your US citizenship? No. So you can relax and be a dual citizen. You can keep your US citizenship and have another in your draw at home.

How can I lose my US citizenship

Now the warnings. 1) Check with the state department on all this just to make sure as I am not an expert. 2) You can lose your US citizenship if you basically formally renounce it, serve in a foreign government, serve in a foreign military. The general rule is, if you swear allegiance supremely to a foreign government and renounce your US citizenship. I am American and I love America, I would not do that and there is no reason for you to either.

Why have a dual citizenship

Most people get or keep dual citizenship for fun. It allows you to stay in a country longer than 3 months at a time and six months in total. Also, it allows you to work in the country. Also, its fun to have and you feel more part of the country and have greater motivation to learn the language of another country.

What are the rules of having a dual US – foreign citizenship

If you are in another country and you break the rules, the US might not be able to help you out if you entered that country on another passport, which is citizenship. It is all about what citizenship you enter with.  If you are an dual US and UK citizen for example, you must enter each home country with their own respective passports. When in the UK you are a UK citizen when in the USA you are a USA citizen.

Can I marry someone to get a dual citizen

Marriage is a serious thing.  If you are getting a citizenship of another country by marriage, I think that’s wrong.  Besides marriage will not help you, much. It will only get you a green card and then you have to live in the country for about 5 years. Also if you are a US citizen and try to trade citizenship, it is illegal of course.

Is there an easy way to get dual citizen if you are a US citizen

Yes, you can buy it. I think what the lawyers do is something like setting up a business for you in the country and argue you are a valuable asset to the country. Or you if you have the ancestry to the country its actually not that hard. Or you can write the president of the country and that takes about 5 years. You put together a case arguing how much you love and that country and feel a part of it and you have or are learning the language, and the office of the president can grant you citizenship.

What is required to get dual US citizenship

Paper. Its all about throwing paper at people. Mostly birth records which you can order form your state you where born translated into the language by an official translator of the country you are trying to get dual citizenship for. In fact, many states in the US have an explanation code that you are obtaining these birth records for the purpose of dual us citizens. Give the country you are trying to get citizens from, lots of paper.  Their embassy website is where you start for the requirements.

To be a dual US citizen and that of another country, do you need to learn the language

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Languages

Hypnotism for language learning

What is hypnotism

Hypnotism is a form of progressive relaxation, either directed or self induced that eases your conscious mind so you will more easily accept positive suggestions.  Hypnotism is not some trance in which someone has power over you.  It is more on par with an alpha state you my have when you are driving down some long stretch of open highway and your mind is just more relaxed and open.

What are they applications of hypnotism for language learning

Hypnosis and language learning has been around for years here are some of the techniques that have been tried.

Past life regression and hypnosis for language learning

Past life hypnosis does not work and never will. It is based on the idea that you can recall a past life and remember the language you spoken in during that past life.   It will never happen and if anyone can give me proof of this I would be curious, as I am 100% convinced this is all nonsense.  In fact the amazing Randi has a million dollar reward for anyone who can prove such thing. I believe in God but being spiritual is not the same as being a supernaturalist.

Age regression hypnosis and language learning

This hypnosis will not work, but more probable than past life regression hypnosis when connected with language learning.  It is based on the idea that you can go back with hypnotism to a time when you either herd a language when you were young, or open up the pathways of learning that were closed during adolescent.

Going back with hypnosis to a time when you were young and heard a language spoken perhaps by your parents or grandparents will not work fully.  I think even if you could access some latent memories they would not be at a critical level for you to put it all together.   However,   I do recall words that my Ukrainian grandfather spoke to be when I was 2 years old and use them today when speaking Polish or Ukrainian which I am learning.  So maybe you can access vocabulary you herd and forgot, using hypnosis. But I think using hypnotism it’s not enough, you need to access words and sentences and in many ways.  If anyone has any experience with this I would be curious.  I for sure use words I learned at age 2.

Age regression hypnosis for opening pathways

A few years ago I would say this would not work.  I am pretty skeptical.  But I think there is a reasonable body of mind body research to suggest that your conscious mind can influence automatic bodily process, especially connected with hormones.     But connected with language learning, I think you brain has pruned away, therefore eliminated the brain cells that could give you language learning abilities of a child.   So even if you could access and open these pathways with hypnosis, I think there would be nothing to open.  But again I am curious what other people think about using hypnotism or progressive relation to open up pathways in the brain.  I think there are ore efficient ways to learn a language.

What does not work with hypnotism and language learning

What really might help with hypnotism and language learning

So can hypnosis or self directed progressive relation help with language learning?

I think yes.  Most of the resistance I encounter during my learning and teaching of languages is psychological self doubt and fear.   If you can be fearless and have a take no prisoners’ attitude toward learning your target language, you will not need to any magic hypnotic bullet to implant a language in your brain.   So if you use hypnosis or relaxation more as a motivational boaster, maybe it would help.   Something that would remind you not to give up when learning a language,   the hypnotic suggestion might be, when you hit the point of frustration this is when you start to learn your target language.

Motivational learning and my language learning program

I have included positive motivational phrases in my mp3 language program. But this is not hypnotic or hypnotism or anything like that, just some motivational phrases that are integrated into the program.