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9 Portuguese Words That Can’t Be Directly Translated Into English

9 Portuguese Words That Can’t Be Directly Translated Into English

Some languages have words to describe things that another language cannot translate. The Inuit people have 50 words for snow, we have one or two. The language developed in an environment that was full of snow, sometimes year round. They had a lot of conversations about snow and developed a dialogue of words that describe one thing they know so well most can’t be translated. Likewise, there’re some Portuguese words that cannot be directly translated into English.

Apaixonar

Is a romantic word that describes an aspect of love. It’s not the feeling of love, it’s a verb, that when applied is basically the act of falling in love. This process is so romantic an Englishman has yet to think of a better way of describing it. I have no idea how to pronounce it but I know I enjoy it. The word could have an equivalent in the English word of “impassion” But Apraixonar holds a tenuous position. It is not the act of loving, it seems to be the moments before someone says “I love you”. This is a romantic language and love has many synonyms.

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Cafuné

This is described as “The act of running your fingers through someone else’s hair’. No one had ever thought of something like that in English speaking countries. How common does running your fingers through your hair have to be for a whole word to be designated for it?

Lindeza

Meaning “prettiness” but something that is also used as a term of endearment. It now becomes a noun in certain instances, maybe even a verb.

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Futevôlei

This is a crazy sport that combines volleyball and soccer. The sport is like beach volleyball but is not played with hands. “Footvolley” could be a rough translation but nothing can come close to Futevôlei.

Xodó

This means significant other or love. There can’t be any translation for it because this has many meanings as well. Your, love, pet, object of adoration and sometimes exodus. The fact that it has a contradictory definitions means there can be no full translation, like many English words.

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Farofa

This is a tradition dish that is hard to describe and even harder to translate. This food is served at barbecues in Brazil and is a traditional casserole and has an ingredient list that includes bananas.

Tapioca

You’ve seen Tapioca pudding before but I bet you didn’t know that this was a staple for some households and another untranslatable Portuguese word. You might think you know Tapioca but this is not actually a synthetic bubble in your pudding. Tapioca refers to a flat-bread that can be eaten alone or stuffed with delicious meats.

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Desenrascanço

This one is magical. So magical that we as Americans have no equivalent. The equivalent would be a fake word that we have coined from a fictional television show. The word describes getting out of a situation only with the available means one has. We could call it a McGyver but there is nothing that compares to a Desenrascanço.

Saudade

This word may mean that you seek out something bad that you enjoy. It hurts you, like an addiction but you like it anyways. Some say that it is nostalgia or remembrance of a long forgotten past that was not so good for you. You can be nostalgic about bad things, like the terrible cooking of a relative you’ve not seen in a while. A bad relationship pulls you in because love makes everyone crazy, but they’re just bad for you, maybe that’s saudade.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

If I was a super hero I’d want my super power to be the ability to motivate everyone around me. Think of how many problems you could solve just by being able to motivate people towards their goals. You wouldn’t be frustrated by lazy co-workers. You wouldn’t be mad at your partner for wasting the weekend in front of the TV. Also, the more people around you are motivated toward their dreams, the more you can capitalize off their successes.

Being able to motivate people is key to your success at work, at home, and in the future because no one can achieve anything alone. We all need the help of others.

So, how to motivate people? Here are 7 ways to motivate others even you can do.

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1. Listen

Most people start out trying to motivate someone by giving them a lengthy speech, but this rarely works because motivation has to start inside others. The best way to motivate others is to start by listening to what they want to do. Find out what the person’s goals and dreams are. If it’s something you want to encourage, then continue through these steps.

2. Ask Open-Ended Questions

Open-ended questions are the best way to figure out what someone’s dreams are. If you can’t think of anything to ask, start with, “What have you always wanted to do?”

“Why do you want to do that?”

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“What makes you so excited about it?”

“How long has that been your dream?”

You need this information the help you with the following steps.

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3. Encourage

This is the most important step, because starting a dream is scary. People are so scared they will fail or look stupid, many never try to reach their goals, so this is where you come in. You must encourage them. Say things like, “I think you will be great at that.” Better yet, say, “I think your skills in X will help you succeed.” For example if you have a friend who wants to own a pet store, say, “You are so great with animals, I think you will be excellent at running a pet store.”

4. Ask About What the First Step Will Be

After you’ve encouraged them, find how they will start. If they don’t know, you can make suggestions, but it’s better to let the person figure out the first step themselves so they can be committed to the process.

5. Dream

This is the most fun step, because you can dream about success. Say things like, “Wouldn’t it be cool if your business took off, and you didn’t have to work at that job you hate?” By allowing others to dream, you solidify the motivation in place and connect their dreams to a future reality.

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6. Ask How You Can Help

Most of the time, others won’t need anything from you, but it’s always good to offer. Just letting the person know you’re there will help motivate them to start. And, who knows, maybe your skills can help.

7. Follow Up

Periodically, over the course of the next year, ask them how their goal is going. This way you can find out what progress has been made. You may need to do the seven steps again, or they may need motivation in another area of their life.

Final Thoughts

By following these seven steps, you’ll be able to encourage the people around you to achieve their dreams and goals. In return, you’ll be more passionate about getting to your goals, you’ll be surrounded by successful people, and others will want to help you reach your dreams …

Oh, and you’ll become a motivational super hero. Time to get a cape!

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Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

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