10 ways in which singing will benefit you

Singing is something beautiful. Especially when someone with a wonderful voice does it. But even if you are an individual with next to none singing talent (like me) you might still conciser singing more!

1. DANGER! Singing might cause chronic happiness

Singing releases endorphins, hormones that are set free within the brain and tell it to “feel good”.  Trough doing that, singing increases the feeling of wellbeing, enhances mood and produces positive thoughts.

It also helps with stress reduction and can cure snoring which will make your partner really happy.

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The tune of happiness by TsubasaFairy

2. It will improve you health

Singing has many physical and mental benefits. It stretches and helps control the muscles of the lungs which results in healthier breathing. It is said that it also improves sleep. Furthermore it tones the face muscles that are usually not in use.

Singing functions as an antidepressant and helps reduce anger and anxiety. People that have a severe illness find their inner balance trough singing and get an energy boost to continue fighting.

3. You can get your feelings out there

Singing can help you say the feelings, that you keep hidden inside your heart, out aloud. If you are lonely, angry, sad, in love, heartbroken or hopeless, somebody has most likely written a song about it. When singing that song you can then utter these feelings or actually realize them. Sometimes it is hard to say what you truly feel. Singing might take some weight of your shoulders.

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4. You become part of a community

Singing opens the way into a new community. If you join a choir or a band you will realize how rewarding it is to sing in a group. Doing the same thing, producing a wonderful sound as one voice that is able to fill an entire hall and just having the same passion, will give you a hobby that will have a positive effect on the way you look at life.

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5. It will make your memory better

Memorizing lyrics and melodies trains your brain. Memorizing things trough singing them is also really effective since a melody has better grip in your mind.

6. It gives you a better control over your voice

Do you get scared of delivering a speech in front of a crowd because your voice then does funny things like disappear or slip off to a really high pitch? Well, then you might want to consider training your voice trough singing since that strengthens the vocal chords.

7. It makes you more confident (posture)

Standing in front of a crowd, in a group or alone, does wonders to your confidence.

To sing properly you also need to learn the singing posture which will ultimately result in you walking around in it all day, making you seem more confident and self-assured.

8. You are tricked into exercising

I get this a lot when I am not motivated to exercise at all and just lay around in bed. I turn on the music and eventually start singing along. Not after too long im dancing around in my room and play the air guitar while headbanging like crazy. In the end I’m super energetic and have so much motivation that I even go exercise afterwards. Crazy, tricky singing!

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9. It increases the empathy and understanding between cultures

Music and singing bring people together and are some kind of universal language. That’s why you should definitely bring along some music when traveling!

10. Party would be boring without it

If you go out to party and don’t sing along with the music, it’s going to be boring! Trust me!

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Please tell me what you think about this list and whether you have any experience with singing and its positive effects.

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5 reasons why ideology doesn’t flourish in isolation

A North Korean missile unit takes part in a military parade to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Korean People's Army in Pyongyang in this picture taken April 25, 2007. North Korea fired several short-range missiles towards the Sea of Japan on Friday morning, Kyodo news agency said, quoting Japanese and U.S. Officials. REUTERS/Korea News Service (NORTH KOREA) JAPAN OUT

There are so many historical examples where a human’s ideology wilted while its country was in isolation. Nowadays there are just as many countries doing horribly because of isolation as well. So exactly why doesn’t isolation work and why does ideology wither?

1. There is nothing to compare to

When countries isolate themselves from others, they can’t compare themselves to each other anymore. If you take the market for example. If the fair competition between two enterprises with the same products isn’t given, then the only competitor can decide on the prices. This might rather disadvantage the country than benefit it.

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But comparison isn’t only important in economy. If you have never seen another culture, religion and way of life and you have never known another country you can never put yourself in the other persons position and come to humane conclusions. And humane actions are extremely important when it comes to politics.

2. Humanity was designed to live in communion – import, export

No country can survive alone. No matter how grand a country is, there will most likely be supplies that are needed for daily life, that that country can’t produce by itself. To relinquish something that important, might not be the best choice. Especially if the isolation was chosen to protect the country and its people.

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3. You’ll get brainwashed

If you take Germany as an example for a brainwashed country, during the period from the first to the second world war, you will realize that the reason Germany was so run down and easy to manipulate, was because of the economical and political isolation it was in. When you are isolated, it is the most likely that you will collapse because of a problem that you can’t deal with by yourself.

4. No growth – no flourishing ideology

A country needs to see development to flourish. Why work if nothing moves forward. Growth is really limited in an isolated country. (An example for limited development would be Japan, which was isolated before the american invasion and then introduced to modern spirit.)

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5. Dreams die

Isolation takes away you freedom, even if it is chosen voluntarily. If you want to build a worldwide business or simply travel to foreign lands, have an internet connection or immigrate into another country, it might all be limited and controlled by the government.

Remember, what’s supposed to keep the danger out, might also lock you in as well.

List of temporary isolated countries here.

Please tell me if you agree or disagree with my list and leave a comment.

 

 

The best way to learn a language

There are two different types of people learning languages. “The Will-Study-Till-Death” and”The Won’t-Study-Ever-and-Figure-Stuff-Out-By-Doing”.

All by themselves, both of these aren’t as efficient as they could be in combination.

The Will-Study-Till-Death

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You learn languages for fun and most likely by studying through grammar books and reading? Then you are this type of person. People that study this way are mostly better with reading and writing than listening and speaking.

The good thing about this way to study is that the language concepts are understood. It is also the only way to learn writing systems that are different from the romance alphabet.

Steps to help you improve:

1. Even though it might be hard for you, try to get a buddy to study with.

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The best choice, would of course be a person that is better than you in the language that you are studying – the best would be a native speaker. If you don’t know anybody that you can talk to, try the platforms lang-8 and italki. There are also others out there, that work in a similar way. If you don’t want to pay the fee to get a professional teacher you can still connect to people that learn your native language and help them with that in compensation for their help.


2. This tip only works for you, if you live in a big city. These kind of cities – especially capitals have a gigantic multicultural and multilingual community. If you don’t know where to find people that speak your target language, try restaurants that sell traditional food of the country that language comes from.

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This tactic doesn’t work 100% of the time, but you still have a good chance that the people making the food actually come from that country. Some times they belong to immigrant families or have just moved to your country out of interest. In any way just try speaking their language to them. What I realized while traveling is that natives usually aren’t that fixated on you speaking perfectly pronounced with the correct grammar. As long as the things you are trying to say are understood, your attempt will most likely be welcome.


3. A great way to meet natives is to be a host on couchsurfing. This gives you the chance to be in your familiar environment while getting to know something new. Also travelers are most likely the best kind of people to meet, since they are usually open for everything, have great stories to tell and will bring the big, wide world in your home. On Couchsurfing people also host meet ups where you also meet people from all over the world.


4. Go travel yourself!!!

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Travel throws you right into the unknown, so you’ll learn so much faster than in your comfort zone. You will meet tons of people, learn about different cultures and a whole new lifestyle. In case you are still considering – GO, it will be the best choice you have ever made!


5. Don’t stop studying. Get that grammar down, there is no way around that.

 

The Won’t-Study-Ever-and-Figure-Stuff-Out-By-Doing

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You are very social and love talking to and meeting new people? This is also the way you learn languages? You hate studying to death? Well, then you are this type. You will most likely be good at listening and speaking while you still have to improve reading and writing.

Steps to help you improve:

1.Keep up the communication and interaction. Since you are basically learning your language the same way as you did learn you mother tongue, you are doing it in a very natural way. Sadly your brain sort of adjusts to thinking in the language(s) we learned first. Because of that, grammar is usually hard to grasp. Since you learn a language mostly trough listening you will have a much faster understanding and feeling for the new language than the previous type though.


2. Spelling!!! Reading and writing is a very important part of a language. Just as you learned it for your first language(s) you will have to learn it for your next as well. In modern society you need it everywhere: to read the menu at a restaurant, for orientation, to read the news, because you want to apply for a job – whatever it is, you’ll need to know it.

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If you really hate studying, try watching YouTube videos. You’ll might also consider reading a book or comic you like in that language.Like that learning how words are written might be less of a chore.


3. GRAMMAR! Please, even though natives might still understand you even though your grammar isn’t perfect, they are still happier (and more impressed) by good grammar. This shows that you have dealt with the language thoughtfully. A website I really love is lingolia (for the languages German, English, French, Spanish and Esperanto.

As you can see what one type lacks, he can compensate with what the other is good at. In case your interested in the topic check out my other posts on the 4 main parts of language learning,  what’s so good about multilingualism anyway and if language learning is for just anybody.

Please leave a comment and tell me whether you agree or disagree with my points.

5 advantages of “chaotic” travel

Everyone that loves to travel does it in a different way. Some fly from hotel to hotel, while others camp in the wild and hitchhike or bike from one place to another. Both of these ways to travel are at times advantageous and disadvantageous.

I really love the “wild” and “close to the people” type of travel and I hope the following points will make you think the same way.

1. It gives you the chance to get to know the actual country

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Do you know that feeling? You visit a country but when you leave again, you don’t feel like you have actually been there. That is most likely because you have stayed at a hotel. Maybe you have visited a few sights, but have never talked to the people living there. You have not seen how the people in that country live, but have rather continued to live the lifestyle you know from home?

Well that kind of travel might be really comfortable and relaxing, but you could have saved the money for the flight and just stayed at a hotel in your home country.

But if you travel in a more chaotic way, a way close to the people, you will find out that when visiting a new country it isn’t wellness and comfort you want, but rather adventure. You want memories of the people and not of the money you’ve spent.

2. It is cheap

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A plus point, in a lot of peoples eyes, is that it is a really cheap way to travel. Depending on where and how you travel you might just need 10€/$ per day. Hitchhiking or biking might be pretty slow but you don’t have to pay for it. While plane tickets will make you go bankrupt.

3. You will remember it for the rest of your life

Did you know that memories are replaceable – at least some of them. You will never be able to forget an adventure though. Adventures are these kinds of memories that you will tell you grand- and great-grandchildren without forgetting about a single detail. When you are old you will only regret the things you didn’t do.

4. You are active (No getting fat!)

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Okay, the exercising part of traveling is beneficial to all those of us that tend to gain weight during a wellness vacation since all you do is eat and sleep. When you are walking or biking all day long, you can eat as much as you want to, since it is very unlikely for you to put on weight. So get on that bike!

5. You meet yourself

When you are on the road in the middle of nowhere and you might face some hardships. Those are the times at which you find out who you truly are or could be. You will grow more confident and stronger than you could have ever imagined.