Friday, June 20, 2008

Rewriting life: From her heart

The wrong tone of voice and negative body language can cause problems when dealing with other people. However, using the wrong words can also be source of trouble. There are certain trigger words that cause people to become more difficult, especially in emotionally charged situations and they should be avoided. For my observations interruptions are a norm in daily communication. What do u people think? Hrmmm.... but maybe I can be wrong. I wish I could turn back the clock, I definitely would not have done it. It's an imperfect world, and people make mistakes, even when they're trying to do their best.

You need to know that people make mistakes sometimes foolishly and with their eyes half-closed, sometimes deliberately. And these mistakes take a toll on the people around. But that doesn't mean that the person who has made the mistake is inherently bad or evil. And he/she did not mean to do it.

Since interruptions are so commonplace, people like me wondered, could it be that interruptions are justified in some situations? In other words, are there times when we need to interrupt?

In order to answer this question, we need to ask ourselves another question.
Let us share our wealth of knowledge, lessons and ideas.

In most situations, the answer is no. People speak because they have something they want u to listen to. They also have expectations that u will listen. In polite conversation, it's best to honour those expectations if u would like to be so honoured in turn.

I have watched TV talk shows when the host interrupts a panelist. Usually I find that I am less interested in what the host brings up than in what the panelist was saying. I am also left wondering what the panelist was going to say. It may have been important. The interruption prevents me from ever knowing.

Interruptions may be the norm in daily communication, but that doesn't necessarily make them good things. I've noticed that traffic accidents are the norm on Malaysian roadways. That doesn't justify fender benders; it just means that there are a lot of careless drivers on the roads. Likewise, many people are careless in their daily communications.

Exercising more care in listening can prevent interruptions. There may be times, however, when an interruption is excusable or even necessary. Or perhaps a listener might require immediate clarification to fully understand the point a speaker is trying to make. In any case, the interruption must be done carefully and courteously.

Interruptions are not necessarily bad things. It is the way in which we interrupt that makes them rude or insensitive. Butting in with your own two cents worth of information while someone is still speaking is clearly unacceptable. Politely requesting an interruption and raising a question or a remark relevant to what the speaker is saying is admissible, sometimes even welcome.

Requesting an interruption can be done many different ways. In a face-to-face conversation, interruptions need to be smooth, almost as if they are a part of the conversation. Achieving this politely can be done by first indicating through body language that an interruption is coming.

Well, remember what we used to do in school? If the teacher was talking and u had a question or comment, what were u supposed to do? That's right. Raise your hand.

The meaning of this gesture has carried through to our lives. Naturally, u won't do it as frantically as u did back in Standard Five as if you're swatting nyamuk. Providing a gesture before u interrupt allows someone to a convenient pause. At this point, your verbal interruption should begin with something polite. Excuse me works every time. I'm sorry' might be used for more formality or if u are introducing disagreement, clarification or correction.

Although this is an interruption, there is no disrespect or disservice involved. The focus in the conversation has smoothly shifted to u for the moment, interruptions over the telephone are trickier since we don't have the luxury of body language to interrupt the flow. Just as in face-to-face communications, however, u don't want to interrupt someone mid-sentence.

Well yeah, if u feel a need to interrupt, wait for a break between sentences or ideas and slip your verbal interruption in at that point. Other than correcting or clarifying, the only other situation I can think of in which an interruption is necessary is if someone deserves to be silenced. An interruption in this case could serve as either a favour or a reprimand.

Maybe the interruption will provoke even more offensiveness. Maybe u'll get punched in the nose. In cases like these, I've often found that the best way to interrupt is to ignore. Vulgarians often silence themselves when they realise they have no audience. Interruptions are commonplace, but most of them are unwelcome. In the few situations where interruptions are warranted, however, remember that there are courteous ways to interrupt.

Receptivity to feedback and learning agility. People make mistakes. They never stop making mistakes. The question is, do they learn from them? The best way to learn is to welcome, even seek out, feedback from those in the know and those u respect. This is a rare commodity, particularly among the egocentric.

What we learned as children is true. The rules haven't changed just because we've grown up. The sad truth, it is bad to hurt other people’s feeling. In all sincerity, of the people's feeling on the issue. I think the incident shouldn't have happened. It's just a reaction on my side. It's a small matter and it's already been settled. Anyone who knows me, I would like to say... Seriously, I have a little confession to make here.. Anyone who might have felt offended to accept a thousand apologies from me.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Acting out the many roles in life

I would like to share my point of view. When I write something, anything, I want it to sound really loud and provocative. Perhaps instinctively, I want attention. I love attention. Who doesn't? In a good ways. What I meant is, everyone wants to be remembered.

Be it a gossip, ingenious science project, a string of As or driving to school... everyone wants to be known for something.

It is always good to ponder. Nobody really knows everything about another. Why? Because each of those u know presents only one of his/her 'images' to u. Because we play so many roles in our lifetime. The more commitments we have, the more roles we take on.

There is the time we taught to be good-mannered and filliary correct from very young. Then as we grew be educationally correct and careerwise correct.

Soon we get married and we become parentally correct and neighbourily correct. We 'grow' with the children through their metamorphosis from toddler to adolescent to middleage. We ate as bodyguard, teacher, driver, nurse and mentor.

It is a multi-faceted life! Enriching isn't it? If u don't enjoy that process of allowing that child in u, then the teenager in u, to have a second-joyous swing at life.

When some one falls short of a standard he/she sets for himself/herself and does not achieve it, he/she loses self-esteem. He/She withdraws 'punishes' himself/herself ... he/she doesn't like himself/herself. And he/she expects that others will not like him/her too. He/She has assumed a new image.

Well yes, we can unconciously keep changing all the time 'according to how we see ourselves' and we keep thinking that's how others see us!

If the company we keep expect us to keep a quiet profile, we are not heard or seen. If our peers expect us to be vocal, we learn to be more expressive. But as long as we have great conviction in what we believe in and put a lot of ourselves into it, we will sparkle with enthusiasm the light that keeps us going.

When someone suddenly says 'U should try to be yourself ... Just act natural...' And u wonder quietly, which is the natural u because the natural u only appears when u all by yourself. U can then totally get back to what u really are, out of the public eye without censure without having to be politically correct, away from the demands of family and society.

And if u could live with that natural u, u will definitely think that life is worth living. It's very important that u like what u see with your priorities balanced not harming anyone. Doing what u can to help those in need ... If such are your goals for yourself.

Remember, if u do not like yourself, who else will like u? Dare to be yourself, that's the point. No plastic. Cool to be ordinary. And u'll know u've got true friend(s).

To be yourself and I mean your own self for once. Now that's the point. The opposite of bravery is not cowardice but comformity.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Managing jealousy

Greeting everyone. Here I am again. Sitting infront of my computer. Just to improve my writing skills. Hahaha! Well, yeah. Hrrmm... Can't really sleep yet. Probably later, not so soon. But I will try forcing myself off to bed once I'm done with this. Hopefully!

So people, mind if I ask, is green your colour? When the green-eyed monster (jealousy) strikes, there is no telling what u are capable of doing to the person u are envious of.

Why do we get jealous? Is it a good thing? Can we successfully use our our jealous streak to strive to be better and in the process, work harder to get whatever we want?

I've read an article from a magazine. Experts say that professional jealousy comes with the profession ... any profession. The basic problem we face with professional jealousy is the extent to which it affects our psyche and the influence it has on others.

Normal jealously is acceptable. It is OK for u to feel envious about your peer’s success or promotion and how well she has done if you can say, “I am happy she’s made it. I hope it's my turn the next time.” This is healthy and it may just spur you on to greater things.

I looked up the definition of “jealous” and I found the word “envious” along with it. The definition was “feeling bitter and unhappy because of another’s advantages, possessions or luck.”

Look at all the negative emotions that come into play. Being jealous makes u unhappy. It makes u bitter, miserable and irrational. Sad isn't it? Hrrmm...

Professional jealousy is common in the workplace. It may happen in the best of environments, where people have planned career paths and yet many get waylaid, without the opportunity to go up the ladder. When people get left behind, what reactions do we see? U could even be jealous of your best friend’s success. It does not matter where u work. U could be a smart, hardworking executive who is liked by the boss but are not popular with the rest of your peers.

Or u could be an excellent leader, with the vision and ideas on how to get things done but you find people sabotaging your efforts. Or u could be a dedicated doctor who cares for the patient’s well-being, yet your colleagues seldom refer cases to u for fear that your dedication would reflect on their attitude.

Oh, and I love this sentence... Can professional jealousy be managed? The answers.. In mature corporate organisations, leaders of teams will tell u that it is possible. Yup! ... The remedy basically is that we should have “self-discipline,” pursue a high ideal in life and be devoted to the profession for its own sake.

When everyone is working for corporate success and some of us are not so lucky, how do we get over the envy we feel and move on to bettering ourselves? Here are some steps to manage professional jealousy:

Do not be nasty about someone’s success. Do not say anything negative in public as what u say has a way of going back to the person involved.

If u really think that someone’s promotion was unfair and u were bypassed, write down your grievances in your diary and keep it under lock and key. If u want to scream your frustrations out loud, go to a beach and do so, but see that there is no one there. Hehehe! Hey! Serious.. It's true. U people should try this out. Shout as hard as u can.

Learn to deal with your frustrations quietly and move on. Focus on where u went wrong so that u can rectify it. *FOCUS ZALINA FOCUS*

Do recognise jealousy. If u feel “bad, angry, depressed, bitter, bitchy” u are jealous.

Once u understand your feelings, face facts. This is a “normal” feeling. You are only human. U are disappointed. Go talk to someone who is your best friend and who will not be judgmental or talk about u behind your back. If there is no one, talk to yourself. Talk to the mirror. Rant and rave. Then get over it and move on. U have better things to do. All this should not take more than one day.

Think about the person who got the promotion. What did she/he do right? Did she/he work hard, how did she/he manage the relationship with the boss? Did she/he deserve what she/he got? But if the means to the end was not ethical, decide how u want to play the game. If there was discrimination and favouritism, then there is nothing u can do about it; your only option is to switch jobs.

It is a pity not many people take heed of the negative elements of professional jealousy. What is tragic is that experienced professionals tend to be jealous of young people who are smart and dynamic.

They are quick to destroy the careers of these young people by not giving them the right opportunities. Professional jealousy has many drawbacks. It makes u miserable, your friends leave u, time is wasted and there is enough bile to poison your life for good.

*Be positive ... Think positive ... Act positively* - must remind myself of that.

Any words that is suitable for 'positive'? Mind sharing the idea with me?

Saturday, June 7, 2008


I've always wanted to write in to share my views. Well, suddenly I came across a word "CONFIDENCE". I memorised its exact meaning and how it was to be used. Now, isn't that something we all wish we had? Ok, not all of us but maybe a fraction of the teenage population. Well, maybe and maybe not. I think I do belong to this exclusive insecure group in some ways. Sometimes I do have problems of low self-esteem myself. But I have to face the reality of life and be stronger. A very closed and a special person, always said to me"I want u to be a strong person" .. And I will definitely won't forget about that. *MUAH* Thanks Love! :-)

U ask, "What is this 'confidence' nonsense this writer is trying to prove?" Well, here's a little test:

Do u try to fit in with others? Do u buy clothes for fashion instead of comfort? Can u speak to a person with equal position without trembling? Nervousness?

If u've answered a "Yes" to any of these questions u belong to this unfortunate bunch. Not to worry. Confidence builds up as time passes, assuming u are determined and not willing to give up. Beware though, it may take ages to build up confidence in something but it may also all crash down in a snap.

It's usually when people talk about u that u lose your confidence. For instance, a 10 month-old baby is taking his first few steps. He does so with confidence as he is being praised and encouraged by his parents.

Now imagine this baby 7 years later. He's out playing with some friends and they are laughing at him because he is too afraid to climb over a 1.5m high fence. He then starts to cry and feel lonely. Don't let others run your life for u.

Don't belong to a clique with a 'leader'. What makes such a person so significant anyway? Is it because he/she is the most popular person in school with the coolest things and latest trends? Or because he/she has that ability to control or influence others?

Well, u must realise u are important too. In fact, u are the most important person in your life! So take control of that life and enjoy it.

One of the most important things a person has to do in life is love himself or herself. So what if u have chubby cheeks or a crooked nose? It doesn't matter. That's u. Original. Genuine. U gotta love yourself and forget about what other think or say.

Besides, others worry enough about themselves, they'll hardly notice your flaws. And by simply loving yourself, wallah!!! U've taken your first step in confidence-building.

Another suggestion is to look confident even if u don't feel like it. Never show u're afraid or vervous. People will begin to respect u more as they see u as a stronger-person. Tada!!!! Another chunk of confidence.

And lastly, never give-up. Don't be afraid to fail it's part of life and learning. View your problems as challenges which u will overcome. Life itself is a big challenge for everyone. If u make a mistake, learn from it and try again. What have u got to lose? Just don't give-up!!!

Believe in yourself and have friends who believe and have faith in u. U will achieve your dreams. U build up confidence with each step u take. U become a wiser person. And a happier one too.