Spreeder CX can import and accurately convert files with the following extensions.
Now you can speed read content from 46 file types!

  • abw
  • doc
  • docx
  • html
  • lwp
  • md
  • odt
  • pages
  • pages.zip
  • pdf
  • rst
  • rtf
  • sdw
  • tex
  • wpd
  • wps
  • zabw
  • cbc
  • cbr
  • cbz
  • chm
  • epub
  • fb2
  • htm
  • htmlz
  • lit
  • lrf
  • mobi
  • pdb
  • pml
  • prc
  • rb
  • snb
  • tcr
  • txtz
  • key
  • key.zip
  • odp
  • pps
  • ppsx
  • ppt
  • pptm
  • pptx
  • ps
  • sda
  • txt
The free app provides a fast and convenient way to read online material as 2-3x your normal speed. Spreeder CX takes this a step further by providing amazing apps for windows/mac/iPad/iPhone, a cloud library to save all your material, bookmarks, more advanced reading options, and training. This all means faster reading, easier learning, and more convenience. You can go here for more info on Spreeder CX or go here to use the free app.
Spreeder CX provides the world’s most powerful “speed e-reading” experience on all your devices. It’s ideal if you want to load in e-books, websites, and other material and read it all quickly using our revolutionary RSVP technology. Spreeder CX also includes some guided training. 7 Speed Reading is focused on providing the world’s most powerful speed reading training system. It includes training courses from 6 world-leading speed-reading experts - the same people who charge thousands to teach fortune 100 companies to speed read. It also includes comprehension tracking and improvement and 15 brain games to make you a superlearner. NOTE: there is currently a special offer where Spreeder CX is being included for free when you get 7 Speed Reading. Click here for more information.
Spreeder CX and 7 Speed Reading work with all languages that read left to right, top to bottom.
All products are appropriate for ages ten and above.
You can directly import pdf, word, html, and text. You can also easily copy and paste almost any other format directly into Spreeder CX or 7 Speed Reading.
Both Spreeder CX and 7 Speed Reading aim to double or triple your reading speed within 2 weeks. To do this we recommend using the software for 5-10 minutes per day.
Spreeder CX and 7 Speed Reading increase your reading speed using a number of proven methods. These involve removing bad habits such as subvocalization (saying the words in your head), regression (unnecessarily stopping and re-reading), and limited fixation (reading only a single word at a time). 7 Speed Reading also shows you many methods to learn faster, read on traditional paper, and more.

Category: Uncategorized

Can Improving and Increasing your Vocabulary Knowledge Save Guest Blogging In 2014?

Guest blogging —back when a handful of people were doing it — was a practice that aimed at creating awareness about like-minded professionals, their products, and their ideas. Today, guest blogging is widespread, and while it still serves a useful purpose, it’s often turned into a widely acceptable form of spamming used simply for the sake of boosting search engine rankings.

Although it seems that guest blogging has gotten out of control, it is a fruitful and needed practice, both in SEO terms and in terms of idea cultivation. So no, guest blogging isn’t going anywhere soon, and there’s still time to bring back its truly useful aspects.

Exposure

Targeted exposure is hard to achieve and guest blogging lets companies and home-based businesses get to audiences beyond their current reach. While other marketing strategies attempt to reach out to targeted audiences, few manage to do so with the level of accuracy guest blogging does. Undoubtedly, it’s too valuable a tool to let it wither.

Brand Awareness

Guest blogging is an effective way of building brand awareness in demographics that might otherwise be unreachable. A rich, high vocabulary knowledge and sound spelling skills will ensure guest posts are of high quality and as such won’t be rejected. Provided that the articles someone submits for guest blogging are carefully crafted and well-researched, guest blogging is the go-to source for many businesses with limited budgets and “solopreneurs” who cannot afford the marketing campaigns of multinational brands.

Quality Predominates

As with every trend, while many people have jumped on this bandwagon, only a few do it correctly. Guest blogging has its own set of principles and those who overlook them generally will not be getting much out of it. Guest blogging rests on the idea of authoritative individuals offering quality knowledge.

Practices where guest blogging is done under “black hat” circumstances will soon be exposed and penalized. So if guest blogging can be said to run the risk of ending in 2014, that only applies to those sites not doing it the way it’s meant to be.
It is even expected that Google will soon roll out a guest post penalty update for poor or “spammy” guest blogging, so again this shows how guest blogging will go back to what it ought to be.

Guest Blogging nurtures progress and innovation

Guest blogging is a non-intimidating way of getting to know the practices other companies or professionals follow, because it connects writers with new contacts they can benefit from and even introduces individuals to hard-to-reach communities and influencers that can offer new opportunities for career and innovation ideas.

Sales and User Engagement

Guest blogging was created out of a need to increase awareness on a company or service and ultimately to improve lead generation and sales by boosting overall page ranking for the blog post contributor.

This is still the case; guest blogging improves SEO and traffic in proven and irrefutable ways, so to proclaim it dead is to overlook its centrality in SEO practices and brand awareness campaigns.

Used correctly, guest blogging can stay a part of the online business future in 2014 and beyond.


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Ultimate Vocabulary guarantees to help you increase your vocabulary knowledge! Learn more words and apply them in your writings.

Paper vs Monitor: How Technology Is Rapidly Changing The Way We Read

The Internet revolutionized reading in the 21st century, something everybody realizes now. The numbers alone speak volumes: 11 years ago about 22% of Americans chose the Internet to get their news, but in 2013, that number had risen to 39%. The statistics are revealing, and attest to the fact that e-books, news, entertainment, and communication are all taking place online.

Online, tech-based reading is on the rise

According to Kathryn Zickuhr, Internet researcher at the Pew Research Center, 55% of Americans own a smartphone and 24% an e-reader.

E-reading is a trend that continues to grow. In 2011, only 16% of the American participants in the Pew study read an ebook, but in 2012 that number rose to 23%. Print book reading dropped from 72% to 67% from 2011 to 2012. Again, there’s a strong but gradual tendency to read more ebooks than paper ones.

Rituals that are intimacy-based favor print book reading

While traditional reading rituals like reading with a child or with another person are still mostly likely to be done with print books, participants in the study who commuted regularly confirmed that ebooks are their preferred medium for reading when travelling. Not only does an e-reader have the advantage of letting you keep a wider selection of books available, it allows you to access new books easily and quickly.

The future of libraries

Libraries are not dying, and many people still visit them. In fact, 73% of the people surveyed visit a library with the express purpose of borrowing books.

What’s been noticeably absent from libraries is the time spent in them. People generally no longer browse shelves as frequently. They find the books in the library’s website, reserve them on line, and go pick them up, a time-saving approach that librarians say is on the rise.

As the purpose of libraries shifts, their cultural role is becoming even stronger. People regard libraries as community spaces for ongoing cultural expression and communication. Lectures, cultural events, and meetings are all part of the many activities taking place at libraries today, giving them a role in peoples’ lives beyond studying and reading books.

Reader expectations changing

Online content is changing the expectations of readers. The print book is not going to be replaced any time soon, but libraries are already feeling the need to adjust to a more tech-based environment.

In fact, the survey illustrated that people are keen to use tech services like pre-loaded ebooks, or classes on how to use e-readers. Most modern libraries have online catalogs that let people borrow library-owned e-books, and even the smallest library is striving to offer more automated and online services to the public.

As we move into a digital era of content dissemination, the need for libraries and other cultural institutions to keep up with technology will not decrease. Libraries that stubbornly refuse to offer online facilities like ebook borrowing, free access to databases, and digitized books will run the risk of being neglected and forgotten. Technology is changing the reading expectations of modern readers, and society – and its libraries – has to respond accordingly and promptly.


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Spreeder Pro Sneak Preview (1 of 3)

Over the next few days we’ll be giving you a taste of what’s to come in Spreeder Pro. The video below is taught by Kathleen Hawkins.

Author of Speed Reading Made Easy and 6 other top sellers, Kathleen Hawkins has taught over 60,000 people to speed read in person. Kathleen is also vice president of the National Management Institute.

This is taken from Kathleen’s powerful 16-part course in Spreeder Pro, which itself is just 1 of 6 exclusive expert courses included in the new program (more previews coming soon).

We hope you enjoy the video!

Christmas Gift Ideas For Your Family And Friends

It’s that time of the year again! Are you ready to do your holiday shopping for your friends, relatives, and loved ones?

“Gift cards for everyone would be an excellent idea,” you might think. Everyone gets to buy what they want from a brand they love, right? But a gift card implies that you haven’t put much thought into the gift – or the person you’re giving that gift to. Buying a gift card might say, “I was too lazy to even bother look for a gift, so here’s some free money. Oh, and Merry Christmas!” This is not the true meaning of a gift. Gift giving is about taking the time and effort to make a meaningful, thoughtful gift to a loved one.

A Book

For those friends and family members who love curling up in their book nest with a cup of tea, books make an easy but entirely appropriate gift. Whether you choose a New York Times best-seller or a classic title is entirely up to the recipient’s taste, so think about what you’ve seen them reading before you buy.

The Gift of Better Orthography

Do you have a colleague who is getting a bad reputation for their misspelled memos? Give them a helping hand with a gift of spelling software like Ultimate Spelling™. No more embarrassing misspellings in emails, reports, and PowerPoint presentations  – you coworker will be a friend for life.

A Rich(er) Vocabulary

Communication is a vital part of daily life. So for children and young adults whose vocabulary could use a little push, why not offer them Ultimate Vocabulary™ by eReflect? This software will allow them to expand and make their vocabulary richer and more relevant and will eventually help them become better communicators, negotiators, and writers. This is a good gift for someone about to graduate from school because it will help them get the vocabulary they need to succeed in the job market.

Pro Keyboarding Skills

Do you know someone who is struggling with modern technology? Maybe they can’t figure out how to video chat with you on Hangouts, or they take forever to reply to your Facebook messages because their typing skills are poor to non-existent. Ultimate Typing™ would be the perfect gift for that person, because it will help them “level up” their keyboarding skills in no time. Of course, that might mean you’ll be getting texts and messages from them more often, but you can handle that, right?

A Visit

Sometimes a gift doesn’t have to be something tangible. Pay a visit to your grandmother, have lunch with a friend from college, or invite someone you haven’t seen in years to your Christmas party. The gift of kindness and love are truly priceless!

An Extravagant Pampering Gift

A pampering, extravagant gift is always appropriate for those special people in your life. Your hard-working mother, your significant other, your best friend – no matter who that person, do your homework and offer them a gift they will be raving about for weeks to come. It could be a spa session, a two-day mini trip, or anything the person you have in mind will fancy.

Gourmet Pleasures For the Foodies

From artisanal jams made with vodka to one-of-a-kind tea blends and limited-edition vintage wines, offer your foodie friends a mouthwatering experience they can Instagram to their heart’s content.

Whether you choose to get gifts that expand your friends’ career options or their waistlines is up to you! There are plenty of compelling gift ideas to choose from. Don’t go for run-of-the-mill, uninspiring gift cards. Instead, offer a thoughtful gift and get the joy of seeing faces lit up with excitement when they unwrap them come Christmas.


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Seven Strategic Practices To Stop Procrastination And Be Productive

Most of us struggle with procrastination. Our unwillingness to deal with an unpleasant, fear-inducing, or challenging task means our productivity is severely compromised. However, if we stopped putting off things for later, not only would we feel more accomplished, but we’d actually accomplish more, becoming more successful and productive.

There are many methods of “de-procrastinating” your life that will allow you to boost your productivity in a way that doesn’t feel forced and stressful. We share the 7 most important in this article. Read them now, not later!

Acknowledge your accountability

To make ourselves feel justified in our procrastination we often blame it in external factors: the weather is too nice to stay inside, my other projects are more pressing right now, I will deal with this when I feel more creative or confident. These excuses remove personal accountability out of the picture.

By becoming aware of your responsibility to stop procrastinating, you instantly take the matter into your hands. If you say, “I’m in control, I should deal with that call now,” this is you taking personal responsibility. When you zero in on your accountability, you are making it harder to procrastinate because you know there’s no one else to blame for it.

Accountability might make you feel a bit anxious in the beginning, but in the end it works in your favor, because you will be taking credit for your productivity and the end result!

Work now, play later

It’s easy to put off something because play is always much more fun than work.

The next time you find yourself procrastinating, say this out loud: “If I work now I get to play later on – YAY!”

This seemingly childish negotiation tactic with yourself gives you motivation to complete the task at hand and the liberty to have fun later on. A win-win approach!

Just dive into it already

The truth is, the longer you hesitate before starting a task, the more your mind will fret and twist an easy task into a monstrously big one. In order to prove this point, think about the last time you started a project and found that once you got your hands on it wasn’t as frightening as you thought it would be.

Instead of putting off hard projects, deal with them first, before any others. This will take a lot of pressure off your shoulders and you will feel much better about yourself once you cross the hardest projects off of your list! Stop paying heed to whatever your inner critic tells you.

Focus on the result, find inspiration by looking at your role models, defy all your fears and delve into your projects without over-analyzing them. Remember that the more you listen to your inner critic the worse at procrastinating you’ll get.

Self-talk needs to be positive, uplifting and optimistic. Inspire yourself with some pep talk and see how easy it is to confidently tackle your tasks one after the other.

Adjust your work environment

It’s very likely that your environment nurtures procrastination. You can create a productivity-boosting desk in a few easy steps:

  • Place a green plant or flower on top of it.

  • Put your phone away or in silent mode so that it doesn’t disturb your workflow

  • Block access to the websites you know you visit  when you’re procrastinating

  • Have a personal, uplifting item in view to keep you motivated (a photo, a keepsake, the tickets to the concert you’ve promised yourself as a reward for finishing)

  • Have an inspirational quote to keep you focused.

Tell others about your procrastination issues — be in the fight together

A struggle shared is a struggled halved. Sharing your concerns with fellow procrastinators will help you keep each other motivated and inspired to get your task lists under control.

Have regular talks where you give pep talks to each other and brainstorm new ideas on how to eliminate procrastination and boost productivity.

Stop making up excuses

Finally, stop yourself from making up excuses. As we’ve said before, we tend to over-complicate things by over-thinking them, when in reality they’re very easy to tackle.

All you need is to have a clear, intuitive hierarchy of your priorities and check upon them often. It’s possible that new circumstances call for goal revision so be open to redefining your goals and keep your productivity levels soaring.

Low Cost Private Schools For The Poor Advocated By Dr. Pauline Dixon

Armed conflict in developing countries, combined with poverty and starvation, leave no room for proper funding of education. Yet education, especially low-cost private education, might be the answer in providing affordable yet quality education in the developing world and end up by helping to eliminate the conflict and poverty often present in many regions.

Dr. Pauline Dixon, Senior Lecturer in International Development and Education at Newcastle University, UK, asserts in her book “International Aid And Private Schools For The Poor” that the solution to providing education to impoverished, conflict-ridden countries is to make the switch from state-run education to privately run, low-cost schools.

UNESCO, the UN’s organization for Education, Science and Culture, suggests that education is the key to providing tangible skills to impoverished youth. Education is what allows people to cope with an often harsh reality, understand the absurdity of conflict, and seek ways to offer themselves and their families better life choices. Education can encompass a variety of skills, from sexual education to learning to be self-sustaining as farmers, and even to entrepreneurship attempts.

Dr. Dixon advocates that lack of education is why children are so readily engaging in armed conflict. As she explains in a recent article at WorldReview.info, armed conflict is a result of the lack of education; people fight one another in the street not in battlefields because they don’t possess the critical skills to understand what’s really to their benefit.

Her painstaking research in the educational system of India suggests that state-run schools are bleeding resources due to improper money management and insufficient, underperforming school systems. Exposing the insufficiency of state-run schools, Dr. Pauline Dixon wishes to warn educators, policymakers and organizations about the current problems, and inform them about the alternative solutions to state schooling that currently exist and are more results-oriented.

Her research is carefully backed by census data, surveys and assessments of low-cost, for-profit schools that prove to be the alternative, best solution for educating the poor. Privately held schools have solid, transparent and efficient management, the three necessary pillars for providing smoothly running and decent education for the poor.

The apparent lack of education and literacy doesn’t stem solely from insufficient education funding. What’s excruciatingly aggravating the situation is that millions of dollars are wasted in poor management and funneled away by corrupt officers who don’t make good use of the financial resources available. The result is that state-run schools use dated, insufficient approaches, letting millions of education funding dollars go to waste, and not giving impoverished communities what they need the most: education that equips them with tools to cope with and overcome their poverty.

Showing how it all starts from education, Dr. Dixon explains the reasons why uneducated parents cannot offer their children a better future. She emphasizes in particular that educating young girls means offering them a better life as mothers and as individuals. An educated woman is more likely to have fewer children, offer those children better nutrition and culture, and encourage them to receive education themselves. Once activated, the cycle of education will have a long-lasting effect in transforming the developing world.

Lack of education makes young impoverished people more prone to propaganda and more easily swayed to engage in conflict and acts of violence. Basic literacy skills such as reading and writing open up a window of opportunity for conflict-shaken communities. Such skills allow young people to make informed decisions, develop critical thinking, and build a worldview and mentality that’s not easily malleable.

Dr. Dixon proposes a private, for-profit educational system in impoverished sub-Saharan countries, India, and other conflict-afflicted countries. Education is what will get children out of poverty. Giving them the skills and tools to provide from themselves seems a much better use of funding rather than just giving them food.

Based on her research, Dr. Dixon asserts that low-cost private schools are on the rise and that initial findings suggest how efficient this approach can be. She mentions, for instance, the growing popularity of this education model in India, where 6 out of 10 students attend low-cost, privately-run schools at the moment.

The key is keeping private school education low-cost. This way parents are more interested in and likely to send their child to a private school, as there’s the general impression that private schools offer more than state-run ones.

While laws and other bureaucratic hindrances still hold this education model back, initiatives from social venture companies seek to remedy this grim image by offering loans and experts to help run these private schools efficiently and sustainably.

While this will be a slow process, there’s hope and tangible proof that a privately-run education system model is what will allow millions of impoverished children access to education and the ability to use it to protect themselves from the dangers of poverty, starvation and disease.

Food  can ease their stomach, but education will show them how to find sustainable solutions for feeding themselves and their families long into the future. Education will make teenagers realize joining a gang won’t provide security for their family but put them all in greater danger. Education is what will let young girls understand how to protect themselves from HIV and avoid sexual activities that would put their and their children’s health at risk.

Rising Demand For Volunteer ESL Teachers & Grabbing This Opportunity

Teaching ESL (English as a Second Language) is an incredibly rewarding experience for many people, but it can be intimidating, especially for those who don’t yet have classroom experience. No matter how much knowledge and tools you’ve learned during your training, actual time spent at the head of a classroom offers an eye-opening experience.

The need for volunteer ESL teachers is on the rise, especially in developing countries and communities where non-English speaking immigrants are present. Choosing to devote a few hours each week to teach English to non-English speakers benefits both the learner and you the teacher.

The benefits of a volunteer ESL teaching experience are often things that aren’t obvious at first glance.

Educational/Professional

Teaching as an ESL educator gives you the opportunity to implement, test and revise your teaching methods and approaches. This allows you to optimize your teaching efficiency and boost the learning of your students.

Teaching English as a volunteer lets you adequately learn what works and what doesn’t, and tests your strengths and acknowledge your weaknesses, all in a non-threatening context. You have the time to figure out your techniques and strategies and improve on them.

Personal Growth

Volunteer ESL teaching is a magnificent opportunity for anyone, but especially for people who are or who want to be teachers. The great thing is that you don’t have to be in the beginning of your teaching career to do it. Educators of all ages give volunteer teaching a chance as they realize how purposeful and substantial this is in contributing to their own development.

ESL teaching abroad is a popular choice for non ESL teachers too. People from all walks of life and professions take ESL teaching courses and jump at the opportunity to explore new countries through a volunteer ESL teaching program.

The fact that you will be providing knowledge and skills to others without any financial rewards for yourself can be a difficult concept for many. Not a lot of people would consider giving energy and time to such a consuming task. As such, when you do choose to teach English voluntarily you get to reap all the benefits: a sense of fulfillment, feeling humble yet accomplished, becoming kinder and less self-centered.

Especially when teaching students of different cultures, ESL teaching lets you to learn more about peoples’ customs and culture, priorities and way of living, an invaluable experience for you as a teacher and a person. You’ll become culturally empathetic and more tolerant to differences, and you’ll discover new tastes and predilections.

Career Opportunities

If you choose to volunteer through international programs, then you will generally have many travel opportunities, and a chance to teach English on almost every continent.

This experience is something you can use as a selling point later. Having a year-long teaching experience in another country on your resume says a lot about your aspirations, determination, motivation and goals in life. It’s an excellent opportunity to cultivate your teaching skills, acquire unique experiences, and grow wiser and more mature out of such an experience.

Volunteer ESL teaching can open up a career window in ESL teaching either abroad or at home. Doors will open and connections will be made that would allow you to pursue an ESL teaching career or any other English-teaching based career, such as a journalist, a writer, or a public or private school teacher.

When you look at the experiences reported by thousands of volunteer ESL teachers, there’s one recurrent theme: the challenges were many and often overwhelming, but the benefits made it all worthwhile.

Creating A Successful Day With Good Mornings

There’s always one person who comes to the office each morning full of energy, a smile from ear to ear, as if they’ve won the lottery. Every. Single. Day.

But for them, it doesn’t stop there. Their day is full-speed-ahead productive, and they never seem to get tired, distracted, or bored. Are they some sort of androids? Aliens, perhaps?

No, they’re simply human beings who understand and take advantage of the value and potential each morning holds. If you want to turn every morning into a productive day, implement these 5 easy to learn habits and you’ll see an immediate improvement at the end of each week.

Plan Ahead

It’s a no-brainer, but how many of us really take the time to do it? Every morning, take five minutes to plan your tasks and chores. Take another five minutes to remove clutter and tidy up your bedroom, so that when you return home it will be a sanctuary you can decompress in before you sleep. Finally, take five minutes to visualize the day ahead. Think of your challenges and tasks, but don’t forget to visualize yourself tackling these challenges and getting out of them stronger and wiser. Create the attitude you will be implementing later on.

Move around

Do a ten-minute yoga sequence or meditate for five minutes every morning. Wake up 20 minutes earlier and walk your dog. No pet? No worries. Put on those running shoes and go for a brisk 15-minute jog by yourself, or with a friend. There’s nothing better to kick-start a productive day than physical exercise in the morning.

Skip the inbox, focus on the day ahead

Do you read your emails before even getting out of bed in the morning? Our tech-based lives can distract us and create obstacles before we’ve even started the race.

Successful people don’t do email in the morning.

Yes, it’s appealing to read the headlines before hitting the shower, and you need to get up to speed on what happened while you were sleeping. But what’s more important is to allow a few minutes to consciously reflect on what happened the day before, bring that to closure, and prepare for the new day ahead.

Be conscious of your morning bliss

Don’t rush to get out of the door. The majority of people reach their productivity and creativity peak in the first few hours after waking up. Take advantage of that time to brainstorm ideas, find solutions to a nagging problem, or simply enjoy your tea or coffee. Morning time is a ritual that has more benefits than you may realize. Be conscious of its potential and you’ll find yourself recharged and ready for success during the rest of your day.

Develop your own morning ritual

Start your day with a morning ritual you love. For some people, it’s reading another chapter of the latest book by their favorite author. For others, it’s making sure that the pantry is full of the things they need to have a large and nutritious breakfast. A positive start to the day will give you the confidence to approach the rest of the day in a positive light, enabling you to overcome any challenges the day might have in store for you.

How To Make Productivity Work For You

We seem so obsessed with productivity and efficiency these days, and so much emphasis is placed on these qualities, that in one sense the terms are overused, and the words themselves have lost a part of their meaning. However, even if the terms aren’t always used as they should be, the principles remain sound, and it’s important to know how to remain efficient and productive in your daily life, even when surrounded by distractions. Here’s how you can stay on top:

Sleep well

Regular sleep routines have been found to boost the academic performance of young students. A study by the University College of London revealed that irregular sleep patterns interfere with the cognitive efficiency of students and their study time, simply because their brains are not allowed enough time to rest and process new information and turn it into active knowledge.

The study revealed that regular bedtime schedules help students do better at math and reading, establishing the association between sleep and better productivity and cognitive performance.

Have an active brain

A mistake many of us make daily is to focus on work, while forgetting to sharpen the tools we are working with. Needless to say, how well you’re doing something depends on the tools used and your mastery of those tools.

Your mind is your most important tool. That’s why it’s important to keep your brain active and your skills up to date and sharp.

Improve your skills with educational software, play games that boost  your memory, or try role-playing games that help you hone your decision-making skills. All in all, never get complacent with your current level of skill in any area; keep working on them often, to keep your productivity levels soaring.

Have an active lifestyle

A healthy body will boost your cognitive clarity and efficiency. Study after study confirms that active individuals perform better in cognitive-based tasks when they regularly engage with physical activities, whether those activities are focused team sports or playing in the park.

A study published in JAMA Pediatrics recently revealed a link between physical activity and cognitive  performance, suggesting that physical exercise boosts cognitive sharpness and might contribute to a productivity boost due to the elevated cognitive capacity it grants the active individual.

Organize your workload smartly

The world is divided into two groups: the people who insist that sprints, or bouts of intense productivity, are the way to boost efficiency. Others feel that Parkinson’s Law applies to work, and that at any time your work will expand to fit the time you’ve allowed for it. Whichever is the case for you, there’s one tip you can apply: organize your workload in meaningful and manageable blocks.

Timing each task will ensure you are not falling behind schedule, and at the same time it will help you stay motivated and alert, allowing you to achieve your productivity milestones within your set timeframe. Another benefit of organizing your workload in smaller chunks is that you never get to feel overwhelmed, because everything has been provided its own block of time.

Squeeze breaks into your daily schedule

There’s something even more useful than a fully filled-in calendar, and that’s a calendar that contains scheduled breaks. LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner actually swears by scheduling blocks of time labeled “nothing to do” – in other words, setting aside downtime for decompressing, relaxing, and assessing day to day work and progress.

By scheduling time for doing nothing (no meetings, no writing, no errands) you enable yourself to view your life from a distance and make changes in how you handle your workload, minimize distractions, and boost your efficiency.

More importantly, scheduling downtime means you work with a plan, and you work strategically. Most of us tend to approach work with a robot-like mindset, leaving little time to just sit back and reflect on our efficiency and our approach.

Implementing these tips will help you manage your workload effectively and feel good about your ability to do so.

Why Hasn’t English Borrowed A Lot Of Chinese Words?

The continuous growth of China economically has urged many individuals and corporations to equip themselves with a 21st century must-have skill, the ability to speak Chinese. Speaking Chinese opens up many windows for Western countries who wish to establish solid and enduring relations with China.

However, anyone who thinks about languages will soon notice a paradox. If the Chinese language is rising into such prominence, why isn’t there a substantial number of words that have been borrowed from Chinese into English? After all, English is known for adopting and adapting words from many other cultures and languages.

What kind of challenges and hindrances prevent words of Chinese origin from entering the English language?

It’s too soon

Cultural, commercial, and financial interactions are still new. For years, China has chosen to exclude the outside world due to political principles and circumstances. It’s been only 35 years since Deng Xiaoping inaugurated the market-based, capitalism-oriented economy which has catapulted China into its current position as the 2nd largest economy in the world.

This economic growth and all its implications are only now getting into high gear or maturing. Given that transactions and relations with China are just starting to systematize, it is expected that in the near future, Chinese will find a way into the English language, especially with regards to cultural concepts not present in western cultures.

Thus far, Chinese has introduced many cultural notions in English, from food (chow mein) to commerce (guanxi, lose/save face) to the spiritual (feng shui, Chi). But as these interactions deepen and intensify, one can only imagine how Chinese can enrich the English language with a fresh and intriguing cultural discourse.

A logographic system and the lack of an alphabet

Another reason that there aren’t more Chinese words in English is that Chinese characters do not correspond to letters but whole syllables. A Chinese character matches a concrete syllable that cannot be further analyzed. A Chinese character might be a stand-alone word, a concept or abstract idea, or even a symbol signifying the tone or pronunciation of that syllable. Contrast this with the alphabet-based English, where words are formed of individual letters, and it’s easy to see why the translation and adaptation has been slow.

Because of its complex and symbolic nature, anyone unfamiliar with how the Chinese language is constituted, spoken and written will find it hard to grasp the intricacy and splendor of Chinese, something that has slowed down the incorporation of Chinese words into the English language.

Pronunciation is hard and unpredictable

For non-Chinese speakers, decoding Chinese characters can be a real struggle. Adding to this the five pronunciation tones that need to be implemented when speaking Chinese, and the endeavor already seems like a lost cause. So even if Chinese words make it into English, there will be a long time before a common, accepted pronunciation and meaning of that word are firmly established.

Cultural connotations get lost in translation

With a uniquely variegated and rich culture that spans over 4000 years, it’s impossible for Chinese words to get picked up as easily as English words do, at least for non-native speakers.

The Chinese culture is too immense and complicated for people to properly grasp the full range of meanings and connotations of its culturally charged words. Simple words like “dragon” have come to represent power and fortune and luck, but there are so many other layers of discourse behind each word, unknown and ungrasped by other cultures, that simply using the literal translation of a word leaves out the full meaning that would be understood in China.

The idiosyncrasies of the Chinese language and the Western’ world’s unpreparedness and unfamiliarity with the language are some of the reasons why Chinese words haven’t easily found their way into English, but as more cross-cultural and linguistic exchanges occur over the upcoming decades, the richness of the Chinese language will further enrich English vocabulary as well.