Blogs

Welcome to my Blog Page!

 

Thank you for visiting my blog page! I hope you enjoy reading some of my advice, tips, experiences and knowledge as a language service provider.

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Take Breaks!

The last thing a busy person wants to hear is: “Quit something, you are doing too much!” I enjoy being busy. It’s a lifestyle choice. And I love all my jobs (translator, music teacher and alternative high school / LBS program coordinator). Why quit one? I wouldn’t know which one to choose: my three jobs bring me joy, a sense of accomplishment, a challenge, lots of learning opportunities and I get to meet and work with wonderful people. So, when I recently read the following post on social media: “Learn to take breaks, not quit,” I learned to do just that. I integrated more planned and worthy breaks into my schedule.

Here is a list of questions you should ask yourself to make your breaks count.

  1. Why do you feel like you need a break?
  2. Are you physically or emotionally tired?
  3. Do you feel as if you need to take a break at the same time every day or just after certain activities?
  4. What do you do during your breaks?
  5. Are you transferring your work to another activity or are you actually taking a break?
  6. How long do your breaks last? How long should your breaks last?

Repeat after me: “You are not a robot.” Even if your friends don’t understand how you can fit everything you do in a day, you still have limits. Most of us have very busy lives where we try to have a healthy balance between family and work responsibilities and expectations. Therefore, make your breaks count. 

However, sometimes a break is not enough. Sometimes quitting is the best option. If you are unhappy with your job, you might benefit from quitting. But, first, take a break to assess your situation.

JUST STICK IT!                                                                                                       

Did you know? The idea of sticky notes with adhesive was conceived in 1974? They have been around for quite some time. And, thank goodness for Post-it notes! My life would be in chaos if I didn’t have these little life-reminder notes! Let me show how I use sticky notes.

Stick to Colours!

I consider myself an effective and organized person. I like to organize my tasks with coloured Post-its where each task is written on a note that refers to a coloured system of organization, for example, blue refers to my translation business, pink is school related, green is music lessons, etc. This system helps me to visually get a glimpse of my week and the tasks I have to accomplish.

Make a List and Stick It!

Every morning, I write my priorities on a large sticky note. I stick it on my desk in front of my computer, so it acts as a reminder all day.

I Like to Move It, Move It!

Often, my Post-it notes will move from one day to the next because life is busy and I never get to do everything in one day. To me, it is easier to stick it on the next day than to have to erase the task and write it again.

Peggy Post-It Hands!

When my staff give me suggestions or reminders, I write them down on sticky notes, especially if we entertain a conversation in the hallway. I often get back to my desk with two or three notes stuck to my fingers. I feel like Edward Scissorhands, but with Post-it notes!

Whatever your uses for sticky notes, I think they are a great way to get organized. Personally, I plan on using them for years to come.

 

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Morin Services is happy to accept bookings online!

Visit us on Facebook and click on the BOOK NOW button.

 

We are happy to be celebrating 10 years of business!

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Grateful

Brain-Boosting Foods

Translating documents from a language to another requires a sharp mind. Because we all know that physical health and mental health often go together, I try to keep a healthy and active brain by practising healthy eating habits. Here are examples of my brain-boosting foods. I often munch on these before or while I work.    

Blueberries

Blueberries contain anthocyanins which help improve memory and delay short term memory loss.

Blackberries

Blackberries contain polyphenols that help neurons communicate with each other allowing the brain to absorb new information.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes contain lycopene which is a powerful antioxidant that protects against dementia.

Broccoli

Broccoli is known to enhance cognitive function which in return improves brainpower.

Nuts

Nuts prevent cognitive decline and they are a great source of vitamin E.

Avocados

Avocados help improve blood flow which contributes to a healthy and active brain.

 Other brain-boosting foods that I like to eat are eggs, asparagus, beans, and salmon. What foods do you eat to improve your brain functions?

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Revision, Editing and Proofreading Services

It is important to hire a professional to revise, edit and proofread all your documents that are intended to be read by an audience.

Why hire a professional to revise, edit and proofread your documents?

1.       Look professional

Your documents are an extension of your business. If they contain errors and mistakes, your potential clients might think less of you. It’s important to portray a professional business image at all times.

2.       Save you money

If your documents contain errors, it can be embarrassing for you and costly for your business.

Consider this scenario:

You have just printed 10,000 copies of a pamphlet. One of your clients gracefully points out that it contains grammatical errors and spelling mistakes! What do you do now? Do you keep the pamphlets as they are and risk loosing potential customers and clients? Do you hire a professional and print new error-free copies?

3.       Save you time

It may take you hours or even days to revise, edit and proofread a document. A professional who specializes in these language-related services will be able to quickly and professionally provide you with a polished document that is well-crafted and audience appropriate in very little time.

 Is your document ready?

 

Here are the three stages of writing a well-crafted document.

Answer YES or NO to see if your document is ready to be shared with others.

Revision

a.       Are your ideas well developed?

YES

NO

b.      Are your ideas clear, concise and complete?

YES

NO

c.       Are all your ideas, sentences and paragraphs in order?

YES

NO

d.      Does your document make sense?

YES

NO

e.       Is your document reaching your target audience?

YES

NO

Editing

f.        Is there a sense of rhythm and flow in your document?

YES

NO

g.       If you are using references, numbers, dates, etc., are they accurately stated?

YES

NO

h.      Is your style clear and confident?

YES

NO

i.        Is the tone appropriate to your target audience?

YES

NO

Proofreading

j.        Is your document free of errors in sentence structure, grammar, verb tense and punctuation?

YES

NO

k.       Is your document free of spelling mistakes?

YES

NO

l.        Are you using consistent spelling and regional English (i.e. Canadian, American or British English)?

YES

NO

m.    Is your document free of typos?

YES

NO

If you have answered YES to all of these questions, congratulations! Your document is probably ready to be printed and shared with your public.

 

If you are unsure, you can hire a language-related services professional such as Morin Services. Just send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with a copy of your document that needs to be revised, edited and proofread, and you will receive a free quote. It’s that simple!

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Attention to Detail

Being a good translator also means being good at revising documents. Attention to detail is pivotal when revising and proofreading a document. Here are tips that may help improve your revision and proofreading skills:

  • Find a time when your concentration level is at its peak. I work best in the morning.
  • Limit visual distractions in your document. If your document is crammed with pictures, copy and paste the text in a separate document. Focus on details such as spelling, typography, grammar and punctuation, and not on the visual appearance of the document.
  • Change the font and increase the font size. Use an easy-to-read font such as Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman. Double-check dates, numbers, names, etc.
  • Use spell check. I use the writing assistance software Antidote from Druide informatique Inc.
  • Read the text slowly and aloud.
  • Print your document and use a pencil or a ruler to guide your eyes through the text, one word at a time.
  • Let it rest. Leave your document aside and come back to it later (an hour, a day, ...). This will help you disconnect from the text and read what is actually written, not what you remember to have been written.

You cannot correct errors if you don’t see them. Find a process that works for you. And remember, focus on the details.

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