Don’t Ask Where I’m From, Ask Where I’m Local

This video resonates with my internal struggle, of the concept of my nationality, expressing patriotism, and how I identify the roots of my history.

The speaker, Ms Taiye Selasi, like many of us in this generation, was born in a different country to where her ancestors were born, and has moved or migrated overseas at some point, identifying as a part of whichever society they assimilated into.

The neat word ‘Multinational’, as ms Selasi points out, is better suited to conglomerates than human beings, She critiques the idea of being a national of any country in fact, as countries are concepts of institution. We are conditioned to think of countries as eternal and constant.

She points out that in her own lifetime, she has seen countries disappear – Czechoslovakia, countries have been reborn – Estonia , and Countries have failed – Somalia; so they are not as permanent as we think, and certainly not a good measure for where a person’s real history comes from.

She exemplifies that an answer like “I’m from Paris”, conjures the idea of the stereotypical Parisian and their cliches, it encourages others to categorize us and assume the myth & legend of Paris.

She suggests that an answer like “I am local to Melbourne & London” creates a more true to character description for those whom have lived abroad.

The key here is that we do not borrow any stereotype as our own representation of personal background, but we paint a more accurate impression by stitching the varied metropolitan cultures that we have been lucky enough to experience.

3R’s= Rituals, Relationship, Restrictions

Her proposition is to replace our assumptions by seeking to understand the 3 defining elements of a person’s culture in the context of their address/ homes.

Rituals are the celebrations, customs, the traditional recipes and so on.

Relationships are the people that shape your weekly emotional experience, best friends, family, face to face contact.

Restrictions, moves away from where are you now, to why are you not where you were? gives a clearer understanding of how the person reacts emotionally to the undesirable elements of their surroundings.

Its not about the specificity of the answer you wish to get, but moving the intention away from simplifying the introduction of a new person, to seeking a deeper understanding of a complex human experience.

What are we really seeking when we ask the question , and what do we hear when they answer with a country.

The usage of countries implies political power and hiding behind a national identity rather than reveal our real, personal multi-faceted identities.

It is when we understand each other’s vulnerabilities and challenges, that we come to recognize each other as human equals.

So where are you local?

FOLLOW-UP VIDEO: THE DANGER OF A SINGLE STORY

THE WORLD WE LIVE IN

Royce Reviews

CLICK TO VIEW SAMPLE PAGES

When I was a child, my mother made the best investment for my general knowledge by buying me this set of pictorial books.

It was a framework of general knowledge presented as a series of imaginative questions, answered with animated visuals & charts, suitable for younger kids that are beginning to speak.

I believe the initial concepts shown in these books helped me absorb information quickly, then  organize any newly learnt information into broader themes discussed in the book.

FIND ONLINE :https://www.librarything.com/work/13592826

I believe that these books had the added benefit of training the readers’ Critical Thinking Skills, as  topics were always presented as a question rather than a definitive answer. It always led to even more questions.

Finally the symbolism of the kid with the question mark T-shirt, asking Prof Grandpa about the many curiosities in his mind. This rhetoric kept me invested in completing the set of books, as it seemed that it was a quest designed just for me.

Some of the great questions to ponder, that are included in this book:

What Are The World’s Hottest Places? 

(Talks about climate and historically hottest dates)

What Is The Coldest Place Where People Live? 

(Introduces the world’s coldest cities)

What Is Life Like for Eskimos of the Far North? 

(Eskimo diet, prey and igloos)

Why Do the People of the Netherlands Build So Many Dikes?

(Intro to windmills and sea levels)

Why Does The World Have Time Zones? 

(Talks about 24 time zones visually)

When Did People Start Shaking Hands?

(Origins of greetings and kissing)

Why Do People Around The World Dress Differently? 

(Examples of Traditional wear)

Does Everyone Celebrate New Year’s? 

(Examples of new year celebrations around the world)

How Are Letters & Packages Sent To Other Countries? 

(Different mailboxes and mail travel)

Why Are Costumes Worn On Halloween? 

(Origins of All Hallow’s Eve)

How Did the Modern Olympics Begin? 

(The modern revival of this Ancient Greek event)

Why Does February Have Only 28 Days? 

(Modern calendar by Emperor Augustus)

…… and many more meaningful questions found in this book.

Are you already an expert Global Citizen?  Try matching the countries’ to their correct details in the scanned image below.

It is one of the best children’s book you will ever buy, forget Harry Potter and Fairy Tales, this should be the first thing your child reads.

Taking Responsibility VS Taking Control

Dear Learners,

My father recently sent an article to me titled “Take Responsibility For Your Life”, it is a motivational speech given by Chris Ross, and you may listen to the audio clip here.

If you are the type to play the blame game,
To play victim,
“Bad things always happen to me”
“I’m not where I want to be because of this person or because of this event”
If you are this type of person, you will never get on in life.

Taking responsibility doesn’t mean relinquishing control of your life.
It means taking control.
If someone is stepping over you, 
If a circumstance keeps pulling you back, 
Be able to see it for what it is!
and take MASSIVE ACTION to eliminate that person, or thing from your life.

It means accepting that you ABSOLUTELY played a part in all the negatives in your life to this point, and rather than complain and moan about what went wrong, FIGURE OUT HOW TO FIX IT.

What can I do NOW to beat this problem
What can I do NOW to create a life of SUCCESS, a life of ABUNDANCE.
What are the SUCCESSFUL people doing right now and how can I emulate their actions to MIRROR their success.

Taking responsibility is not the same as taking control of your environment. It is about controlling your reactions / response; that’s why it’s response-ability.

I think the best response is to acknowledge that there is no control over things outside of the Self and how others act.

That response is a form of wise humility, knowing the limits of our own capabilities and then working to improve from there, regardless of how other people react to you, and despite your environmental changes.

Those who seek control will find chaos, but those who understand that chaos is the pattern of the universe will find solutions in your own response.

You cannot control and change a ball’s direction once it is already thrown in your direction, you can only respond by hitting back, or dodging it.

A fool cries that he cannot stop the ball and wishes it would not hit him, then gets hit anyway; A wise man sees the reality and knows to instantly seek the right response regardless of how much control he has over the situation.

This, my proteges, is the wisdom of response-ability.

 

The Face & The Eyes : Where to Look?

Good Morning Malaysia,

It is Eloquence Academy Body Language Awareness Week and today we will be looking at your eyes and face.

Does maintaining eye contact make you feel uncomfortable ?
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Image via Gravity Falls

Eye contact says a lot to both the speaker and the listener.
It shows respect, sincerity, interest , understanding and engaged communication

I found that looking into a person’s face can already feel invasive to some, so direct eye contact can feel much too close and intimate, if you are afraid of what the other might see in you. The fear of rejection and criticism causes us to divert and hide our gaze.

Remember to avoid looking aloof by tilting your chin too high up. Maintain level eye contact and a straight neck. Palms calmly folded in the front and a relaxed focus on the topic, with periodic acknowledgement of the listener.
A great trick to maintain consistent and comfortable eye contact is by looking at the bridge of the other person’s nose. Try it with a friend and ask if they can tell that you are not looking at their eyes.

Here are more tips on the types of eye contact direction, to establish your opinion of your listener.

These are invaluable techniques to get your first impression and starting conversation right. If done right, this allows you to earn trust within a matter of 7 seconds.

Be Observant.

It’s Eloquence Academy Body Language Awareness Week !


Your body is a fascinating and useful communication tool and this week we are encouraging our readers to take more notice.
Messages and ideas can be exchanged in a single glance without a word uttered but how do we know what to look out for and what to focus on ?

Previously, we asked our readers to become more aware of :

  • Voice Clarity & Intonation
  • Facial Expressions 
  • Posture & Proximity 
  • Gestures 
  • Eye Contact 
  • Touch

If you are unsure where to begin do not worry we have found the following site for a little  Observation Training help 🙂 All the best !