Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Las emociones y sentimientos están ítimamente relacionadas. Los sentimientos están dentro de nosotros y emanan, muchas veces, de las situaciones que nos circundan. Las emociones son los sentimientos expresados; es decir, son la forma visible de los sentimientos al actuar en base a éstos. Muchas veces, nuestros sentimientos producen emociones no muy gratas, para nosotros o para los que están a nuestro alrededor. Idealmente, encontramos una manera eficaz y constructiva de canalizar nuestras emociones para que representen nuestros sentimientos sin minimizar lo que somos y sin destruir o intentar herir a otros en el proceso. Controlar nuestras emociones requiere de mucho valor, determinación y aprendizaje, especialmente las emociones fuertes como el coraje y la frustración. Al final, ganamos más cuando nuestras emociones se mantienen en alto nivel y nos conducen a estar en paz con nosotros mismos. Es más fácil decirlo que hacerlo, sin embargo es cuestión de decisión y de práctica.

Redirecting the Eruption

Lashing Out

Intense emotions demand intense modes of expression. While there are many outlets for the feelings typically deemed positive, however, there are far fewer methods for constructively coping with anger, frustration, fear, sadness, or stress. Consequently, such feelings can cause us to believe that we are no longer in control of our emotional state. Backed into a mental corner, we may lash out at the first individual we encounter. Most of us will quickly discover that our misdirected outpouring of fury has not relieved the pressure of our pain. Powerful emotions are like the lava in a volcano poised to erupt—held in check with nothing but an eroding layer of calm. Within us lies the power to direct the flood of feeling that surges forth by channeling it into productive, artistic, or laborious pursuits.

Retaking control of our emotions at their height can be difficult because our already negative feelings can convince us that others are deserving of our wrath. But if we consciously look for healthier ways of expressing what we feel, we can both safely dispel our pain and use the energy of that pain to add value to our lives. Anger and sadness, for example, can become the inspiration that induces us to dedicate ourselves to bringing about the change we wish to see in the world. If we act rather than react, we can become effective agents of positive transformation. When we channel our frustration or feelings of stress into outside-the-box thinking and proactive exploits, we are more apt to discover solutions to the issues that initially left us stymied. And if we view fear as a signal that we need to reexamine our circumstances rather than a cue to flee, we may gain new and unexpected insight into our lives.

Channeling your emotions into constructive action can also prevent you from engaging in cyclical rumination in which you repeatedly relive the situation, event, or expectation that originally sparked your feelings in your mind’s eye. Since you are focused on a goal, even if your ambition is merely to better understand yourself, your pain is no longer being fed by your intellectual and emotional energy and quickly ebbs away. You not only avoid lashing out at others, but you also actively take part in your own healing process while honestly acknowledging and honoring your feelings.
The Daily OM

Friday, September 04, 2009


New Report Highlights Latina Students Face Greater Challenges Than Counterparts

MALDEF and National Women’s Law Center Uncover Series of Unique Challenges Latina Students Face, Offer Strategies to Maximize Success

Listening to Latinas: Barriers to High School Graduation

The National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) and MALDEF were joined by U.S. Representative Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), Chair of the Education Task Force for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, in releasing "Listening to Latinas: Barriers to High School Graduation", a new report that takes a close look at the drop-out crisis in the Latino community. The latest data show that 41% of Latina students do not graduate on time with a standard high school diploma. The study reports that while 98% of high school seniors want to graduate from high school, and 80% aspire to higher education, Latina students continue to face numerous challenges in reaching these goals.Report available at

The study reveals that as Latinos work to provide for their families, education too often takes a back seat to survival. Often times Latina students must take on parental duties to either younger siblings, or, in a community with the highest teen pregnancy rate, their own children. Cultural stigmas contribute to low self-esteem and insecurities, allowing society to ignore Latina students who then trade-in the possibility of a future career, for a future predestined by bias, discrimination, and a lack of support.

Beginning by acknowledging that a problem exists, and recognizing the importance of investing in our children, the study offers some solid recommendations. The recommendations include calling on schools, policymakers, and government agencies to: invest in the future of Latino children through high-quality early learning programs, connect Latinas with role models, ensure that all students are prepared for post-secondary educational opportunities, ensure safe school environments that are culturally inclusive and free from discrimination, help Latino parents get involved in their children’s education, improve efforts to prevent teen pregnancy and provide support for pregnant and parenting students, and require better data collection and promote school accountability.By empowering Latina students, we are empowering America. For more information on this critically important report, visit would also like to thank The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for underwriting the study.

(As posted in Las Comadres Para Las Américas)