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It is time to become organized. Here is how to get started


Do you find yourself moving through stacks of papers on your desk in search of a document you
were holding only a moment ago? Are you at a loss to find a place to put all the correspondence
that comes your way? And do you ever wonder where you filed that important letter?

Divide Work Areas
Start with a plan to put your office in shape. Divide your work area into sections: your primary
desk, your bookcase, wardrobe, second desk or computer work station, and your files. Organize
one area at a time. Decide about what information, materials and supplies you use most
frequently. Those should be closest to you, while less-used items can be stored elsewhere. Break
the cleaning and organizing project into steps that easily fit in with your work schedule.

Throw out as much as possible. Materials to toss include outdated versions of manuals and
catalogs, extra copies of documents, information you never use and papers you did not even know
were there.

If you use reference manuals infrequently, send them to a central resource area for your work unit.
Move information you do not need now but that retains historical value to a central storage area.
Be ruthless about making save and toss decisions. Throw it out if: it is a duplicate; it is no longer
relevant; the information is readily available elsewhere; or you do not have time to read it.

Group Into Categories
Organize the remaining items. Group together items that fall into broad categories, such as
reference manuals, company information, vendor catalogs and reports. This will enable you to
go to one shelf and quickly find related items.

Sort your files by use. If you touch them every three to four weeks, they can remain. If you use
them less, banish them to your unit's central filing system. Keep in mind that a study by Stanford
University found that 87 percent of filed paper is never looked at again.

Label each file with a broad heading that covers all the papers inside. When you find more than
one file with related information and it will not be too heavy, place all the materials in one folder.
Use nouns for file headings; for example, mailing list, budget, newsletters, printing. These are
broad categories that allow for flexibility. Avoid starting a label with an adjective - the, or, an - or
with a number. When trying to retrieve a document you will think first of what it concerns
usually, not the date it took place.

Anything that stays on your desk must be used regularly. Place knickknacks, family photos,
clocks and souvenirs on a shelf or side table instead of your desk, where they take up valuable
space and create a visual distraction. Limit personal items such as toiletries, a spare pair of shoes
or an umbrella to one special drawer. Such items as a calendar, paper clips, stapler, pens and
pencils can also go into a drawer. By keeping the desk surface as free of clutter as possible, you
lessen the probability of losing or misplacing papers and make it easier to focus on high-priority

Declare War on Paper

Launch your attack on paper by going through the stacks from the top, down and sort into five
categories: immediate action, low priority, reading material, to file, or to discard.

With each piece of paper, ask, "What's the worst thing that could happen if I threw this away?"
Unless the outcome is critical, toss it! Keep the "immediate action" stack on your desk in front of
you. Put all else in appropriately labeled files making a note on your to/do list so you will not forget
about it.

Develop Good Habits
1) Decide on what to do with each piece of paper the first time you touch it and put it away
2) Spend 15 minutes at the end of each day clearing your desk.
3) When taking notes, write information on the correct document the first time, not on little pieces
of paper, which are easily lost.
4) Clear your" In-Box" at least once a day.


stacks of papers: piles, plenty of work papers
(pilas de papeles de trabajo)
were holding: were having in your hands
(tenas en tus manos)
are you at at a loss?: are you perplexed,
amazed? (ests desconcertado/a, sin saber
qu hacer?)
comes your way: appears in front of you (que
te cae)
do you ever wonder: ask yourself sometimes
(te preguntas alguna vez)
filed: put away, kept in a file cabinet
in shape: in order, in good condition (en
wardrobe: armario
supplies: paper clips, staplers, pens you use
everyday (elementos, tiles de escritorio)
closest: nearest (muy cercanas)
break: spit in, divide into (divide, separa)
into steps: in several procedures (en etapas)
throw out: remove (elimina, descarta)
to toss: to throw away (a descartar)
outdated versions: versins no longer in use,
obsolete (versiones desactualizadas)
be ruthless about: don't have any mercy with
(no sientas pena por)
broad: wide (amplias)
vendor catalogs: seller catalogues (catlogos
de los vendedores)
this will enable you: this will allow you (esto te
sort: classify (clasifica)
label: put a label on (etiqueta, rotula)
when trying to retrieve: when you try to get or
find back (cuando intentes recuperar)
knickknacks: small mass-produced articles
(chucheras, adornitos)
take up valuable space: absorb valuable space
(ocupan lugar necesario)
stapler: grapadora
clutter: trastos
lessen: reduce (reduces, disminuyes)
put it away: put it aside (hazlo a un lado)
clearing: making a way by removing objects
which obstruct the place (despejando, haciendo
lugar en)

So today we will talk about expressions that use vegetables and fruits.

For example, a cucumber is a long, green vegetable that people often eat in salads. You might
say a person is as cool as a cucumber if he never seems to worry about anything and stays calm
in a stressful situation. If you put a cucumber in a solution of vinegar and spices for a long time,
it becomes a pickle. But if you are in a pickle, you are in trouble or a difficult situation.
as cool as a cucumber: tan fresco como una lechuga; in a pickle: en un lo, en apuros;

If two people are very similar, you might say they are like two peas in a pod.
like two peas in a pod: como dos gotas de agua, idnticos, gemelos;

There are several expressions about beans. If someone is very energetic, you might say she is
full of beans. If you say something does not amount to a hill of beans, you mean it is of little

importance. I might say you dont know beans about a subject if you do not know anything at all
about it. But if you spill the beans, you tell something that was supposed to be a secret.
full of beans: lleno de energa, lleno de vitalidad; does not amount a hill of beans: no
tiene nada de valor (no vale ms que una pila de porotos); you don't know beans: no
sabes nada de nada; spill the beans: soltar la lengua, contar todo, revelar un secreto;

Potatoes are a popular food in many areas. But something is considered small potatoes if it is
not important. You probably would not want to hold a hot potato in your bare hands. This also
means a problem or issue that no one wants to deal with. Someone might call you a couch potato
if you sit and watch television all day and get little or no physical exercise.
small potatoes: cosa poco importante; hot potato: asunto candente, tema delicado;
couch potato: teleadicto, persona muy sedentaria;

Like potatoes, turnips are root vegetables that grow in the ground. Here is an old saying: you
cannot squeeze blood out of a turnip. That means you cannot get something from a person that
he or she is not willing or able to give.
you cannot squeeze blood out of a turnip: no puedes sacarle sangre a un nabo (dinero
a quien no lo tiene);

Farmers have to separate the valuable parts of their crops from the waste. So separating the
wheat from the chaff means keeping what is valuable and rejecting what is worthless.
separate the wheat from the chaff: separar el grano de la paja;

Students often have to take a difficult test to gain entrance to a special school. So you could say
the ones who are chosen are the best ones, or the cream of the crop.
the cream of the crop: la creme de la creme, la flor y nata, el mejor de todos;

There is an old saying that forbidden fruit tastes the sweetest. That means some people get
pleasure from doing something that they are not supposed to do.
forbidden fruit tastes the sweetest: la fruta prohibida es siempre la ms dulce;

Bananas are a popular fruit to eat. But if you go bananas, you are wild with excitement or worry.
go bananas: estar chiflado, volverse loco, perder la chaveta;

Finally, let us talk about lemons. Lemons have a sour taste if you eat them plain. But lemons
make a nice drink when you mix their juice with sugar and water. So here is an expression about
lemons that we like: If life gives you lemons, make lemonade. This means you should always try
to make the best of a bad situation.
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade: Al mal tiempo, buena cara.(Si del cielo te
caen limones, aprende a hacer limonada).
A) although (aunque)

even though (aun cuando) + SUBJECT + VERB
though (aunque, pero)
- David enjoys his job, although he would like to have more responsibility.
David disfruta de su trabajo aunque le gustara tener ms responsabilidad.
- Even though Sarah works long hours, she finds time for reading.
Aun cuando Sara trabaja muchas horas, ella encuentra tiempo para leer.
- My brother has never been to Japan, though he's fluent in Japanese.
Mi hermano nunca ha estado en Japn pero habla Japons con fluidez.
despite (a pesar de)
in spite of (a pesar de)

- Despite the recession, we achieved reasonable profits.
A pesar de la recesin hemos logrado aceptables ganancias.
- Our president still thinks he'II win the election, in spite of the polls.
Nuestro presidente cree que va ganar la eleccin a pesar de las encuestas.
- I haven't finished the report yet, despite working overtime last night.
An no he terminado el informe a pesar de trabajar horas extras anoche.
Para expresar la ltima de las ideas anteriores, tambin podemos utilizar despite the fact
that... (a pesar de que...) o in spite of the fact that... (a pesar de que). Observa estos
- Despite the fact that I worked overtime last night, I haven't finished the report.
A pesar de que he trabajado horas extras anoche, no he terminado el informe.
- In spite of the fact that I worked overtime last night, I haven't finished the report.
A pesar de que he trabajado horas extras anoche, no he terminado el informe.
Finalmente, compara estas dos oraciones que tienen el mismo significado pero utilizan VERBO
(a) y SUSTANTIVO (b) en su construccin:
a) Although sales fell during May, we are meeting our target.
Aunque las ventas cayeron en mayo, estamos cumpliendo el objetivo.
b) Despite the fall in sales during May, we are meeting our target.
A pesar de la caida de las ventas en mayo, estamos cumpliendo el objetivo.
1. Despite the increase in their salaries, 60 per cent of Japanese workers still spend Saturday at work.
2. Even though the fact that gift giving is a common practice in Japan, the gifts should never be opened in
front of the giver.
3. Despite foreign speakers are advised to show respect for their Japanese audience, many of them
begin their speeches with a joke.
4. Many Japanese business executives say that they believe strongly in free trade, though Japan's
continuing preference for buying at home.
5. Although some Japanese women are successful in business, the majority of Japanese companies are
run by men.


however / but
nevertheless / yet

HOWEVER (sin embargo), BUT (pero, sino), NEVERTHELESS (sin embargo, no obstante) y
YET (an as) introducen un contraste o contraposicin a la oracin precedente:
Katty couldn't cash her paycheck ... Katty no pudo cobrar el cheque de su sueldo ...
However, she managed to buy a new TV set. Sin embargo consigui comprarse un
televisor nuevo.
But she managed to buy a new TV set. Pero consigui comprarse un televisor nuevo.
Nevertheless, she managed to buy a new TV set. No obstante consigui comprarse un
televisor nuevo.
Yet she managed to buy a new TV set.Aun as consigui comprarse un televisor nuevo.

even though

a) THOUGH (aunque) y EVEN THOUGH (aun cuando) pueden utilizarse en lugar de
ALTHOUGH (aunque).
b) EVEN THOUGH (aun cuando) es una forma ms fuerte o reforzada de expresar
ALTHOUGH (aunque).

Although it rained a lot, Aunque llovi intensamente,
Even though it rained a lot, Aun cuando llovi intensamente,
Though it rained a lot, Aunque llovi intensamente,

... we enjoyed our vacation. ... disfrutamos de nuestras vacaciones.
c) En el ingls hablado, especialmente en la versin americana, se utiliza con
frecuencia THOUGH (a pesar de ello, no obstante) como cierre de una
oracin. Esta modalidad suele confundir al estudiante hispano-parlante.
It rained a lot. We enjoyed our vacation though. Llovi intensamente. Disfrutamos de
nuestras vacaciones a pesar de ello.


although VERSUS in spite of / despite

ALTHOUGH (aunque), IN SPITE OF (a pesar de) y DESPITE (a pesar de) pueden utilizarse
para expresar ideas similares, pero la construccin de la oracin es muy diferente:
Although the traffic was bad, I arrived on time.Aunque el trnsito estaba pesado, llegu a
In spite of the traffic, I arrived on time.A pesar del trnsito, llegu a tiempo.
I couldn't sleep, although I was very tired.No pude dormir aunque estaba muy cansado/a.
I couldn't sleep, despite being very tired.No pude dormir a pesar de estar muy cansado/a.

in spite of / despite

DESPITE (a pesar de) puede utilizarse del mismo que IN SPITE OF (a pesar de), pero
generalmente slo se lo encuentra en el ingls formal. En su reemplazo, puedes usar tambin las
expresiones DESPITE THE FACT THAT... (a pesar de que...) o IN SPITE OF THE FACT THAT...
(a pesar de que...):
In spite of the rain, / In spite of raining all day,A pesar de la lluvia, / A pesar de llover
todo el da,
Despite the rain, / Despite how much it rained,A pesar de la lluvia, / A pesar de
cunto llovi,
Despite the fact that it was raining, A pesar de que estuvo lloviendo,
In spite of the fact that it was raining, A pesar de que estuvo lloviendo,

... we enjoyed our vacation. ... disfrutamos de nuestras vacaciones.