Sunday, May 27, 2012


Hyponym - noun

a term that denotes a subcategory of a more general class: “Chair” and “table” are hyponyms of “furniture,” "Armchair" and "Bar stool" are hyponyms of "chair"

So, I'm reading for my final exam, and going through linguistic definitions like there's no tomorrow. Come the zombie apocalypse; I'll at least be armed with a kick ass vocabulary.

Yesterday I refreshed my resume to apply for a job, and I struggled to see any kind of connecting thread between working backstage in metal concerts, being an office manager for a year, snorkeling on Iceland, writing poems and teach English for health workers. I think this bothered me more than I realized at the time, because several times tonight i woke up thinking random lines like "grouped in like-column it makes sense" and "how about if we consider this a category of its own?" I believe my brain had a subconscious discussion with itself trying to figure out how everything is put together, using the lovely system of hyponymy.

I'm not sure I'm quite there yet, but I have realized a couple of very interesting things. For instance: I have a column, in my mind's inner workings, of values that affect how I make decisions, dream and function. They are about 8 that I've figured out, but I'll only share two of them with you right now.

Be Helpful: This value seems to affect everything else I do, more than any other value, and (perhaps more disturbingly) more than any other concept in any other column. More than interests, more than things I like or love, more than dreams or hopes, helpfulness is the key. Realizing this gave me a whole new outlook on my resume. I have, more than once, said yes to work engagements I really didn't want, to be helpful. I have also spent quite a lot of time "being there" for people, I then never heard from again.

And, this is also responsible for one of my most annoying habits, correcting people. I sometimes confuse helpfulness with poking my nose where it doesn't belong. Insight.

To me, this is useful information because being aware of this may open up for a new way of dealing with things: value-shuffling. I'm excited to see if this works out.

The second value that seem to override everything but helpfulness is:

Be Grateful: This concept is extremely important to me, and I use it frequently to give my self a positive outlook on troubling  events. I really want to be grateful. But dividing this up into a chart of hyponyms and relations showed me that I frequently settle for less than I should, because I'm focusing more on being grateful for what I get, than getting what I deserve. A healthy balance should probably be in place.

This might seem like garden variety obvious facts to you, but to me they are ground breaking insights into "what's holding me back." Changes to come, but first an exam....