Welcome to our unaccompanied tours (UT) blog, Foggy Bottom Rambles! We can share information, programs, and resources quickly with you and since blogs are a two way street, we (and the other readers) can hear from you. What's in a name you say? This blog reflects how we (back here in DC, Foggy Bottom area) provide information (rambles) to you. Find websites and information, upcoming webinars, programs and events. FLO does not endorse organizations or companies linked-to in this blog, the views they express, or the products/services they offer. Let us know what you think: contribute to the blog or email us at FLOAskUT@state.gov.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

If you have a spare 12 minutes...

Watch this inspired, high-paced video discussion on happiness.  You will have a few laughs as positive psychologist Shawn Achor discusses our ability to positively shape our reality and create our own happiness. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day to all!

A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie. - Tenneva Jordan

Saturday, May 12, 2012

What are some techniques that help you stay positive?

My friend told me about a great "game" to play whenever you are in a situation that isn't working out the way you want it to.  Ask yourself, "what do I like about this situation"?  Take a moment and really think about it.  Try and find the good in a situation.  For example, I was on a cramped airplane yesterday.  I was tired, and of course, lucky enough to get the middle seat in the last row.  To add to it, I wanted to watch the tv program, but had misplaced my earphones.  Feeling frustrated, I remembered what my friend told me and I asked myself, "what do I like about this situation," and after some thought I realized, "hey, it is pretty cool that I am sitting in a chair, flying, at 40,000 feet in the sky".  It was also pretty cool that since my earphones were missing, I would take the remaining time on the flight and read, something I rarely feel I have the time to do.  I felt better right away.  It didn't take away the fact that I was sitting in the middle seat, but by switching my focus to more positive thoughts, it made it just that little bit better.  So next time, when you are getting hyped up, focusing on the negative, ask yourself that question and you will find it helps you train your mind to think differently, positively.  

Here are some other techniques I pulled from this website:  
  1. Never respond when you are not calm. If you are not sure that you are calm, don’t respond. Take time to calm yourself down first.
  2. Realize that you can find opportunities in negative situations. Albert Einstein said: “In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.”
  3. Look at the content of what people say to you for something positive that you can act upon to improve yourself. Don’t just reject the whole messages.
  4. For the rest of the messages which is negative, simply ignore it.
  5. Realize that having negative feelings will just hurt you, not them. So there is no reason for you to have any negative feeling.
  6. If you make mistakes, remember this quote by George Bernard Shaw: “A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”
  7. Talk to a positive friend who can encourage you.
  8. Remember your favorite quotes to give you inspiration and motivation. This is one reason why you should have quote of the day.
  9. Look at the negative situations as your training sessions for real life. The higher you climb in life, the worse the negative situations would be, so you’d better be prepared for them.
  10. Realize that you can’t please everyone. In fact, nobody can. Sometimes you need to just let some people go. Realizing this will relieve you from a lot of unnecessary burden so that you can focus on the people that you can positively interact with.

Friday, May 4, 2012


We make choices every day from “do I wear the teal or peacock shirt to dinner” to “low fat or fat free yogurt?” to “should I hit ‘send’?” Remember, the choices you make about how to cope with stress and occupy your time may have a lasting impact on the lives of you and your loved ones. (How to make smart decisions in less than 60 seconds and yes, sometimes it does-and should-take longer)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Tonight's Happy Hour

Don't forget about tonight's happy hour at Oakwood to discuss unaccompanied tours.  For any questions about the event, call 202-647-3179 or email FLOaskUT@state.gov.

See you there!