Creative Thinking: Building your dream

Updated 21 May 2012
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Creative Thinking: Building your dream

The great builder of dreams, the man who has been proclaimed “benefactor of humanity” for all the joy he has been offering the world for decades with his creations - Walt Disney — said, “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” Highly inspiring words, aren’t they? Do you believe them to be true? No? Why? Have you had experiences proving the contrary? It is certainly possible. Most human beings endure failure and disappointment in their expectations — more often than not. The fact is that most people do not do “things” in the correct way. They believe it is enough to want, to desire something in order to get it. When they hear or read about the “law of attraction,” they get the idea that they only need to picture themselves in a beautiful new home or at the wheel of the most expensive sports car to have them materialize in front of their eyes. It sounds like having a magic wand, doesn’t it? In this picture there are elements that are true, others that are not so true. Let’s see this a little more in detail.
Begin by asking yourself: “What do I do when I want to achieve a goal?” Your answer will probably be: “I start working toward it.” Good.
Unfortunately, working, doing is not enough. Why? Because it would be like starting on a journey without having decided which means of transportation you are going to take, or embark on the construction of a house without having first built strong foundations. Action without a suitable preparation will not achieve the best result possible. What are these foundations?
First of all, you must have a perfectly clear goal in your mind. Many times people want to achieve a certain outcome without knowing exactly what it is. “I want to be successful,” “I want to earn more money,” “I want to improve my appearance.” These wishes are vague, you must be more specific. If you want to buy a new home, you need to be aware of your requirements regarding the size, the location, the price, and the style. You don’t just start going around, hoping to find what you are looking for. When you say you want to be more successful, do you mean you want to progress in your career? Okay.
So, start by checking your skills, your present expertise. Do you need to learn some more, to become more updated? Are there new tools (technological or other) for you to use that you haven’t examined or tried yet? If you wish to improve your appearance, jot down all the details. More muscles? Joining a specific program at a gym might be one option. Lose weight? Choose a suitable diet and follow it. Don’t linger. Once you know what you want and have decided how to get it… roll up your sleeves and start! But this is not all. Another important element is motivation: your goal must be important to you because only in this way will you be able to find the energy and the resources to carry it out all the way through. If you believe that the effort of going to the gym regularly or sticking to your diet is greater than your desire to build muscles or lose 10 kilos, then… forget it.
Your motivation is not strong enough. An additional, important element in the building of your dream is commitment. Application and dedication are indispensable ingredients to the success of your endeavor. Without them you won’t go too far. If you don’t continue steadily, your energy will decrease at a faster rate. Finally, you need to trust, to have faith in the positive outcome of your work. Why? Because you believe that it is good, useful (to you and possibly to others) and that you deserve it. Do you believe all this? If you do, or if at least you accept the possibility, you can go and... reach for the stars!

— Elsa Franco Al Ghaslan, a Saudi English instructor and published author (in Italy), is a long-time scholar of positive thinking.
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How does a one-ton dino hatch its eggs? Carefully

a reconstruction of oviraptorosour dinosaurs incubating eggs. (AFP/ Nagoya University)
Updated 16 May 2018
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How does a one-ton dino hatch its eggs? Carefully

  • Large species may have not sat directly on their eggs
  • The incubation behavior of birds — such as adults sitting in the nest and possibly brooding — likely evolved from theropod dinosaurs




PARIS: Most dinosaurs buried their eggs and hoped for the best, but some species — including a few hefty ones — built nests and pampered unhatched offspring much as birds do today, researchers reported Wednesday.
Which raises an intriguing question: How did creatures nearly as heavy as a hippo brood eggs without squashing them?
“Large species may have not sat directly on their eggs,” explained Kohei Tanaka, a researcher at Nagoya University Museum and lead author of a study in Biology Letters that details the incubation strategy of feathered carnivores called oviraptorosaurs.
“Eggs are arranged in a circular pattern with a large central opening,” he told AFP, describing clutches of potato-shaped eggs found in China up to half-a-meter (20 inches) long and weighing up to seven kilos (15 pounds) each.
“The dinosaurs likely sat in the middle of the nest so that they didn’t crush the eggs.”
That didn’t keep the unborn dinos warm, but it may have protected them from predators and the elements, Tanaka speculated.
Modern birds descend from a large group of mostly carnivorous dinosaurs called theropods, all of which — including the fearsome T-rex — are thought to have laid eggs.
But very few theropods built nests, which is why the brooding displayed by oviraptorosaurs — a clade of several dozen species ranging from the turkey-sized Caudipteryx to the 1.4-ton Gigantoraptor — is so important.
“The incubation behavior of birds — such as adults sitting in the nest and possibly brooding — likely evolved from theropod dinosaurs,” said Tanaka. “Our research provides additional evidence.”
Oviraptorosaurs lived during the Cretaceous period, the 80 million years leading up to the asteroid or comet strike blamed for wiping out non-avian, terrestrial dinosaurs.
They had short snouts and beak-like jaws with few or no teeth, and some sported bony crests on their heads. Evidence of generous plumage — especially on the tail — has been found on several species.
Besides the spoke-like arrangement of the fossilized eggs, the eggshell itself provided further evidence that large oviraptorosaurs sat near their unborn progeny, not on top of them.
The eggs of big dinos, the researchers discovered, were more fragile than the eggs of smaller ones, which were clearly designed to carry more weight.
How big is too big to park a dino butt on top of unhatched eggs?
“That’s hard to say,” said Tanaka. “There is a gap in the data, but the threshold should be between 200 and 500 kilos (440 and 1,110 pounds).”
Oviraptorosaurs were falsely accused by early paleontologists of stealing the eggs so often found along side their fossil remains, giving rise to their name: “egg-thief lizards.”