When we read, our eyes move across a page or a screen to digest the words. All of that eye movement slows us down, but a new technology called Spritz claims to have figured out a way to turn us into speed-readers. By flashing words onto a single point on a screen, much like watching TV, Spritz says it will double your reading speed.
Regarding your last answered ask, what would you have done differently (re: college)?
By the time I actually finished my coursework I was 27. I graduated high school early because it was either graduate early or fail. I was buried in depression and I didn’t realize it, recognize it, or understand it- the people around me were the best intentioned but told me that hard work would pay off and boost my self-esteem. When I was unable to do this work, and unable to admit that I was in need of serious help, I fell deeper into depression. I first enrolled in a community college after high school and I failed. I didn’t think it was okay to tell my teachers that I was too sad to get out of bed and come to class. I was too sad to focus on my readings. I was too sad to write essays. So, I hid. I hid and I failed because I was too ashamed, scared, and sad to talk. I was too young to know how to fight for myself when I couldn’t even get off the couch to feed myself. Failing a semester of community college didn’t feel good and no one in my family talks about it- I think collective familial memory has chosen to forget that this is a piece of my history. Once I got my life together a bit- I was feeding myself, showering, and seeing friends regularly I thought I had it back. I got this. I applied for Columbia College in Chicago- they’re very understanding in their admission process so my high school transcripts weren’t an issue. I got in and went for three years. I was still too young and too scared to stand up for myself and my mental illnesses- to ask for help, to ask for softness and understanding. I pulled it together for two years- my depression is cyclical and came back with a vengeance… almost as if to remind me that pulling it mostly together for two years had consequences. Failing my third year of college made me feel like a piece of shit. I was worthless and lazy (in my mind, of course and I know that isn’t true but that is what I felt.) and I felt like college was never going to be a thing. I had just wasted $70,000 on coursework I would never graduate with. I continued working and living and dodging questions on what I was going to do with my life. Eventually my depression subsided and I thought that I could go to Northeastern. They, again, are kind and understanding in their admission process so my track record was considered but ultimately I was admitted. I met someone at the time named Maryam and she became a close friend- she gave me the support I needed to finally see a psychologist and I took advantage of the services offered by NEIU. I never cried so hard in my life. I never felt so ashamed or like such a failure sitting in that office by myself waiting to tell someone that I was weak and sad. (Again, how I felt at the time regardless of how untrue it was.) My psychologist told me it was okay to ask for help. It was okay to tell teachers- I can do this, I just can’t do it right now. I am smart enough and good enough but I cannot abide by these time frames. I was starting to understand that I could ask for what I needed. That my teachers were there to help me- not to punish me, not to make me feel worthless for not making deadlines. My brain was still sad and still telling me how worthless I was and what a failure I was- but now I had one small tool to fight back. Then, I got into the car accident. I almost died and I had to fight- I had to fight to not let depression overcome me. I took medications and saw doctors and I fought. I am still fighting. I fought to get back into school because my body wasn’t physically strong enough for over a year. I got back in and I remembered the tool I had- to feel like I am worth the question, I am worth asking my teachers for help with what I need. I began seeing myself as their equal- and asking became easier. Telling them listen, I am smart and dedicated to knowledge but sometimes I am too sad to take care of myself and I need leniency, and you know what they gave it to me. I made it through school with the help and understanding of my peers and teachers- they honestly didn’t work against me they worked with me once I had the tools to ask.
So, what would I have done differently? I would have demanded to be educated in the only way I can from the beginning. I would not have gone to Columbia, I would have gone straight to NEIU and demanded what I needed. It took me until I was in my mid-20’s to know I had the right to do that, that I had the right to dictate my education. It’s okay to not know where you’re going or how you’re going to get there. It’s okay to try things and ask for help- and it’s okay to fail. Your education is about you- as mine is about me. It’s not about the professors or the higher education institution you’re at- and you shouldn’t be ashamed to tell them what you need. It isn’t easy and if you fail you can get back up and if it takes you years to get back up that’s okay, too- and making it through in your time and on your terms is something to be so fucking proud of.
my grandfather and my great aunt both spoke 6 languages fluently and I remember hearing them have a conversation and they would switch languages mid sentence because what they were describing could be more succinctly said in a different language and that’s so cool if I want to express that something is really great I will say the word hella before an adjective
“All any feeling wants is to be welcomed with tenderness. It wants room to unfold. It wants to relax and tell its story. It wants to dissolve like a thousand writhing snakes that with a flick of kindness become harmless strands of rope.”—Geneen Roth (via the-healing-nest)