Critical Reflection on Learning in the Course

It felt like a long time since I started this blog, initially I thought we will be taught basics on how one to one communication works, like how one should speak and listen to another, and understanding the different theory in communications but as the lessons continued I learnt that communication skill taught in this class is more than just what I expected. It has taught me how to communicate across different background and cultures, one to many communication, non-verbal communications, working in a group and conflict management. Looking back at my objective, the scope is underwhelming as I have no idea how communication is so much more than my expectation.

My goal is to reduce the communication barriers I have and to pick up better communication skill to strengthen my message and help the receiving party understand them better. I am also hoping to learn new communication skills that I didn’t know of.

However, I did learn how to strengthen my messages and learn new skills in communication between people, particularly the 6 seconds EQ model.

Learning how to apply what I have learnt has been a challenge throughout the module as I have been used to my communication style and to change them is difficult. I am not an empathetic person, and it is hard for me to perceive how others would look at things, that could also mean how I look at thing can differ greatly from others. I can’t tell if the message has been conveyed properly as I have difficulty evaluating how people have taken my message. I did pick up new habits to check with them, making sure first and foremost that they have indeed got my message, then proceeding on with testing their understanding of what I tried to imply to them or listening to how they reply with their understanding. I have also learnt a great deal from my fellow classmates on how different everyone is in communicating, listening to them talk about their own communication style and why they think other communication style doesn’t work well for them, I have understood that how certain communication style is preferred over the others and the reason behind it, working with them certainly help me apply my learning from the lessons to them and suit our communication style.

As mentioned before, I am not an empathetic person and this often cause conflicts between me and my communicators, as I would often let my emotions get the better of me and unknowingly affect the other party greatly. After learning the six seconds EQ model, I have to constantly remind myself not to let my emotions get ahead of me and decide things, always reminding myself to stay compose first after feeling a rush of emotions, think it through before rushing to a conclusion and allowing me to regret later. Applying the six seconds EQ model, I take the time to think logically what are the emotions I felt, how I should react to this emotions and why I should do what I planned to do. However, I still feel that sometimes my emotion will cloud my composure and fail to calm down and make a properly evaluated decision. I will continue to try and remember to make this into a habit to that I will be consistently thinking on how I manage each of my emotions when communicating with others.

Over the course of the last few weeks, our class has focused on the presentation skills. Initially, I thought I have learnt everything I know about presentation, I would have nothing much to learn from, I did indeed know most of what was taught, but it is easier said than done when it comes to applying what I know. Whenever I tried to remember the points to talk about, I would lose focus on my audience and all the flaws start to show on me as a presenter. I am thankful to Brad for giving us so many opportunities to practice our presentation skills as I have gradually improved, as one would say practice makes perfect.

This module has given me a lot of opportunities to practice my communication as other modules are usually just me sitting down and listening to the lecturer, but here we get to talk a lot, not just small talks but talking to improve how we talk, giving each other honest feedback for improvement. I would like to thank Brad and all my classmates for the wonderful time we spent together in this 14 weeks.

 

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Project Summary (Final)

Introduction

For our project, our group will be doing the topic on “Managing Emotions”. We decided to explore this topic as managing emotions is crucial in making choices. We would often lose control to our emotion and let our emotion pick the choice rather than stepping back into deciding on the right course of action before coming to a conclusion. Every now and then, people lose control but do not know how to manage them, we hope that everyone can learn from this project on how to manage their emotions.

The project showcase a National Serviceman Full-Time (NSF) in his training to become an officer. However, his aunt, who has been taking care of him since childhood like an immediate family member, has just passed away. He wanted to attend his aunt’s funeral but is unable to do so as his aunt is not a part of his immediate family and would not be granted a compassionate leave. As such, he began to think about leaving the camp and go Absence WithOut Leave (AWOL). AWOL is a very serious offence as it is considered that the person abandons his country’s defence and is a disgraceful behaviour in war time. Committing such an offence would no doubt be sent into the Detention Barracks (DB) and losing his opportunity to become an officer.

Problem Identification

Due to being very closed with his aunt, he wanted to leave the camp to attend the funeral, his emotions have lead this decision. His decision to AWOL to attend his aunt funeral could lead to an undesirable or disastrous outcome on his future or even an eternal regret.

Objective of Study

As humans, we know that emotions can go out of control easily. This emotion can stem from stress, personal issue, mood, and we would want to tackle how an individual should manage themselves from their emotion to gain more self-awareness of what they are doing as they feel emotions.

Potential Solution / Implementation for Problem Solution

We will be implementing the 6-seconds EQ model to our project’s problem. “To put emotional intelligence into action, you work to become more aware (noticing what you do), more intentional (doing what you mean), and more purposeful (doing it for a reason).” (Six Seconds, 2007). This model uses 3 steps to guides people into having better emotional management by: Know Yourself – increase self-awareness, Choose Yourself – more intentional and less volatile, Give Yourself – more sense of purpose.

We will apply this model for the NSF as he follows the process of this EQ model to make more self-aware, intentional and purposeful decision.

Data Collection/ Research Method

Our group has a data collection on all male who has been an NSF or is an NSF, and a research on people who have successfully managed their emotion without losing control.

The data collection covers how everyone responds to our problem when they are put into the NSF’s shoes and what, how and why they would have done.

Benefits

We would like to show people that they can manage their emotion better and apply the 6 seconds’s EQ model to their everyday emotional conflict, they would also be more self-aware, more intentional and more purposeful when they make a decision.

Concluding Thoughts

It is easy to let the emotion do the job for making decisions, it might be what everyone would want in the heat of the moment, but what about in the future? As people look back at what they have done, would they have regretted it, or would they have rather not done it, or they would want to go back and redo their decision? By letting the emotions take control, will it solve the conflict between people? Emotion is a strong tool, however, it has to be used wisely, it can allow people to influence others into feeling strong, good or even super, but it can also lead to greater frustrations, lack of understanding, and miss the fundamental of thinking logically.

It is important to communicate well to make an improvement with the decision made with the EQ model, putting it into action in everyday life. It is a start to know yourself, understanding and identifies one’s own behaviour; Choose yourself, evaluating one’s choices; Give yourself, one’s sense of purpose in making that choice.

References

Six Seconds (2007). EQ-in-Action – The Six Seconds Model. Retrieve from: http://www.6seconds.org/2007/08/18/eq-in-action-the-six-seconds-model/

Project Summary (Draft #1)

Introduction

For our project, we will be doing the topic on “Managing Emotions”. We decided to explore this topic as managing emotions is crucial in making choices. We often lose control to our emotion and let our emotion pick the choice rather than stepping back into deciding on the right course of action before coming to a conclusion. Every now and then, people lose control but do not know how to manage them, we hope that everyone can learn from this project on how to manage their emotions.

Problem Identification

Our project deals with how people should manage their emotion as they communicate with people, not to let the emotion run loose but control them through a process. In our project, we showcase a National Serviceman Full-Time (NSF) in his training to become an officer. However, his aunt, who has been taking care of him since childhood like an immediate family member, has just passed away. He wanted to attend his aunt’s funeral but is unable to do so as his aunt is not a part of his immediate family and would not be granted a compassionate leave. As such, he began to think about leaving the camp and go Absence WithOut Leave (AWOL). AWOL is a very serious offence as it is considered that the person abandons his country’s defence and is a disgraceful behaviour in war time. Committing such an offence would no doubt be sent into the Detention Barracks (DB) and losing his opportunity to become an officer. Due to being very closed with his aunt, he wanted to leave so badly to attend the funeral that his emotion took control of his decision. His decision to AWOL to attend his aunt funeral could lead to an undesirable or disastrous outcome on his future or even an eternal regret.

Objective of Study

As humans, we know that emotions can go out of control easily. This emotion can stem from stress, personal issue, mood, and we would want to tackle how an individual should manage themselves from their emotion to gain more self-awareness of what they are doing as they feel emotions.

Potential Solution / Implementation for Problem Solution

We will be implementing the 6-seconds EQ model to our project’s problem. “To put emotional intelligence into action, you work to become more aware (noticing what you do), more intentional (doing what you mean), and more purposeful (doing it for a reason).” (Six Seconds, 2007). This model uses 3 steps to guides people into having better emotional management by: Know Yourself – increase self-awareness, Choose Yourself – more intentional and less volatile, Give Yourself – more sense of purpose.

We will apply this model for the NSF as he follows the process of this EQ model to make more self-aware, intentional and purposeful decision.

Data Collection/ Research Method

Our group has a data collection on all male who has been an NSF or is an NSF, and a research on people who have successfully managed their emotion without losing control.

The data collection covers how everyone responds to our problem when they are put into the NSF’s shoes and what, how and why they would have done.

Benefits

People would know how to apply this EQ model to their everyday emotional conflict, they would also be more self-aware, more intentional and more purposeful when they make a decision.

Concluding Thoughts

It is easy to let the emotion do the job for you, it might be what you want in the heat of the moment, but what about in the future? As you look back at what you have done, would you have regretted it, or would you have rather not done it, or you would want to go back and redo your decision? By letting the emotions take control, will it solve the conflict between people? Emotion is a strong tool, however, it has to be used wisely, it can allow people to influence others into feeling strong, good or even super, but it can also lead to greater frustrations, lack of understanding, and miss the fundamental of thinking logically.

It is important to communicate well, make an improvement with your decision by knowing these EQ model well and put it into action in your everyday life. It is a start to know yourself, understanding and identifies your own behaviour; Choose yourself, evaluating your choices; Give yourself, a sense of purpose in making that choice.

References

Six Seconds (2007). EQ-in-Action – The Six Seconds Model. Retrieve from: http://www.6seconds.org/2007/08/18/eq-in-action-the-six-seconds-model/

Interpersonal Conflict Resolution (Final with solution)

Have you ever been in a situation where you would have to build lies upon lies, to the point where you had difficulty upholding this identity you have built up? Everyone wants to appear good in front of others, sometimes lies are used to make that happen. But this false identity you created is no longer you, but you would have to continue to act like that is your true persona by making up more lies. It may have started out small, but that built you towards a bigger issue in the future.

There was once a conflict I had in communicating the truth to my teammate to cover up the bad side lying within me. I had lied about my situation where my mother was in the hospital, as an excuse to the question of “Why did you nothing and didn’t respond to the group when we are hitting our first dateline?”. The truth was that I was being lazy and indulged myself too much during the time I am supposed to be completing the task under my responsibility. Their reply was that they understood my situation and shown their condolences by showing their concern for me and my mother. All I wanted is to make myself look less like an irresponsible person but I had to make up more lies whenever they brought up my situation and to end off the lie, I told them that I don’t want to bring such a heavy atmosphere into the team discussion and wanted to move on from it.

Over time, I had repeatedly used this excuse to avoid being looked upon as an irresponsible person. My teammates are used to the inconvenience and would carried my “burden” for me in the project. Suddenly, it just hits me that I couldn’t act like how I wanted. To avoid being found out that I have been enjoying myself all the time, I had to be wary of my surrounding and whenever I went online on my social media or games, I couldn’t let my teammates know that I have been playing around all the time with my friends, instead of supposedly taking care of my mother who is sick.

I felt like a jerk after having the thought but I did not dare to communicate the truth to my team as I am afraid of having conflict raised, such as my dismissal from the group or having disapproval by my teammate after how I have been shrugging off all the responsibility conveniently.

What should I be doing from now on? Should I start completing some work and hope that no one will notice my lies. What would you have done in this situation?

This is my resolution to the conflict.

My teammates have been accommodating to my “needs”, if they have found out the truth, more conflicts will be raised and I would always be at the losing end of the conflict as I have been irresponsible by not completing my responsibilities and lying to get away from blames. I would have to avoid creating more conflicts by applying the avoiding conflict handling mode from an article, overview of the Thomas-Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument (TKI) (from Career Assessment Site).

“According to Thomas, the Avoiding conflict handling mode is also appropriate if it leads you to avoid “emotional” conflicts.” (from Career Assessment Site). This is highly beneficial to my case as it avoid displeasing my teammates and getting emotional about the lying truth. “With that being said, there are cases where the cost of interacting with certain individuals is too high and avoiding becomes necessary for your own welfare (Thomas 33)” (from Career Assessment Site). I could save the time of getting blamed or getting more trouble, such as getting myself dismissed from the team, which I could avoid by staying silent about the truth. “Instead of focusing on who showed poor judgment or didn’t do what they were supposed to, you can focus on how the process can be improved in order for future outcomes to be more successful.” (from Career Assessment Site). I could use the time to start doing task that I can complete before the project ends to show my contributions to the team.

I have chosen to avoid admitting my mistakes, not to avoid responsibilities or to continue lying. I have taken up this handling mode as it is more effective in this situation to avoid more conflicts and time. However, I would also have to stop making up lies and avoid any topic regarding the lies that I have already made up to prevent any conflicts down the road to the end of the project.

 

Reference

Career Assessment Site. The Thomas Kilmann Conflict Mode Instrument Test (TKI Test). Retrieved from http://careerassessmentsite.com/tests/thomas-kilmann-tki-tests/about-the-thomas-kilmann-conflict-mode-instrument-tki/.

 

Interpersonal Conflict Resolution Draft #1

Have you ever been in a situation where you had built lies upon lies to the point where you had difficulty upholding this status you had built up? Everyone wants to appear good in front of others, sometimes lies are used to make that happen. But this false appearance you created is not you anymore but you have to act like that is your true persona by making up more lies.

It may have started out small, but that built you towards a bigger issue in the future. For once, I lied about my situation where my mother was in the hospital, as an excuse to why I did nothing and didn’t respond to my group when we are hitting our first dateline, when in actual fact I was being lazy and enjoyed myself the entire time when I am supposed to be completing the task given to me. They told me they understood my situation and shown their condolences by showing their concern for me and my mother. All I wanted is to make myself look less like an irresponsible person, but I have to make up more lies as they ask more about my situation and to end this excuse I told them that I don’t want to bring such a heavy burden to the team and wanted to move on.

Over time, I used this excuse continuously to avoid being looked upon as an irresponsible person. It has created a sense of amnesty to my groupmate as they carry my “burden” for me in the project. Suddenly, it just hits me that I couldn’t act like how I wanted to avoid being found out that I have been playing around all the time. I have to be wary of my surrounding and whenever I went online on my social media or games, I can’t let my groupmates know that I have been playing around all days with my friends instead of supposedly taking care of my mother who is sick. I kind of feel like a jerk after thinking about it but I am afraid of being kick out of the group. I am thinking if I should start doing some work now and hopefully, no one will notice my lies. What would you have done in this situation?

Strengths and Challenges in Communicating (Final)

Communication is an essential act between two or more parties. It is used to convey or exchange information with each other but to communicate effectively is challenging, as both the sender and receiver have to mutually understand the message. Today, I will be sharing my communicating strengths, challenges and setting objectives to improve my communicating skills.

In order to communicate effectively with my peers, superiors and others, I always give my full attention to the other party. By showing them my full attention, they can be direct and relay their message, instead of getting around to try and get my attention to listen to them. While paying them my full attention, I would also pay attention to their body language as people would convey their message with not just words but their actions and emotions. The body language conveys a lot of other information that couldn’t be conveyed with just words. As a sender, I would often be direct in my messages and when I have to be indirect, I would always ensure the message is properly communicated and not misunderstood by asking them on what they have understood.

Communication can also be challenging as I would often encounter a lack of understanding on topics and unable to return an appropriate reply or find it hard to continue exchanging communication with the other party. For example, if someone was to talk to me about politics, I would be clueless and lost without being able to return any kind of respond. Lack of understanding is not the only weakness I have; How I convey my messages are often misunderstood or weakly paraphrased. I may be confident to convey my thoughts to others, but if no one could understand them, the message would be meaningless. These are weaknesses that I have to overcome. Otherwise, I will always be a handicap in communication because the others could not understand how I put my words together.

Overcoming my weakness is not an easy act that it could be done in a short period of time, I would have to keep trying to strengthen myself on this subject. My goal is to reduce the communication barriers I have and to pick up better communication skill to strengthen my message and help the receiving party understand them better. I am also hoping to learn new communication skills that I didn’t know of.

Strengths and Challenges in Communicating

Communication is an essential act between two or more parties, it is used to convey or exchange information with each other but to communicate effectively is challenging, as both the sender and receiver have to mutually understand the message. In order to communicate effectively with my peers, superiors and others, I always give my full attention to the other party. By showing them my full attention, they can be direct and relay their message, instead of trying to get my attention to listen to them. While paying them my full attention, I would also pay attention to their body language as people would convey their message with not just words but their actions and emotions. The body language conveys a lot of other information that couldn’t be conveyed with just words. As a sender, I would often be direct in my message and when I have to be indirect, I would always ensure the message is properly communicated and not misunderstood.

As I had mentioned earlier, communication can also be challenging, in order for it to work effectively, everyone has to play their part. I am often faced with challenges due to the lack of understanding on many topics, I would not be able to return a proper feedback or reply and find it hard to exchange communication with the other party. Lack of understanding is not the only weakness I have, the way I convey my message are often misunderstood or weakly paraphrased. I may be confident to convey my thoughts to others, but if no one could understand them, the message would be meaningless. These are weaknesses that I have to overcome, otherwise, I will always be a handicap in communication.

Overcoming my weakness is not an easy act that it could be done in a short period of time, I would have to keep trying to strengthen myself on this subject. My goal is to reduce a couple of communication barriers I have and to pick up better communication skill to help the receiving party understand my message better and reduce the amount of noise in the message. Also, to learn more than what I set out to learn from this course.