Monday, 15 May 2017

Strengths and Weakness in Communicating

It has been almost a year since I took this module back in summer 2016. Once I step into my first class (CS170), I saw lively students chitchatting and discussing about projects. At the same time, I felt a sense of déjà vu lingering with hectic life of SEEMS and DigiPen students. I quietly took a seat and started to reflect about myself. I was not trying to affirm or deny any of my action and decisions but the class atmosphere certainly assure me that it feels great to be back in school.

One year is a considerable long period of time to learn, experience and reflect myself. I have been frequently reflecting myself ever since the moment I left school. I frequently asked myself whether I would still have enough confidence to continue after one year.  Accomplishing assignments and projects require helps and guidance from classmates to some extent and I have yet to establish good rapport with the rest of the class. Unlike the rest of the class who have known each other for quite some time, communicating with my classmate is a critical upfront task for me.

After assessing myself and reflecting my actions, I considered myself as a very good listener who try to understand other people situations and empathize with people. Last three weeks ago, very old and close friend of mine is hospitalized with multiple bone fractures by workplace accident. He was recently promoted and passed chief officer exam for ship and he is also getting married this year. After the accident, he was in despair and all of his bright future was nowhere to be seen.

I visited him every day for the past three weeks in hospital as his family member are unable to come to Singapore. Every time I met him, I assess his emotional state and I try to communicate accordingly. I gave attention and monitored verbal and nonverbal responses as I talk to my friend. Sometimes words of encouragement can only heal superficially in desperate situations. When chances are given, I let my friend realize his potentials and solutions by himself and at the same time, I respect his personal space and decisions.

The ability to understand other people is just half-way to establish successful communication. Sometimes we may miss verbal and nonverbal clues which may result in misunderstandings so it is also crucial to understand yourself and express yourself while communicating. I am very poor in expressing myself verbally and nonverbally. I restrained myself because I do not want to bother other people or sometimes I do not want to hurt their feelings. Usually this lead to breakdown in communication, leaving with bad impressions and suspicions for other people. The other challenges I have is language barrier. I cautiously choose words before I speak so that I do not convey wrong messages but this usually intermit my communication.

The very first step in conquering problems is to realize and understand problems. I do not have enough confidence with my writings especially with my blog post. I like the topic knowing self in COM150. So I am going to revisit the topic with my classmates and I am also looking forward to share and enjoy great experience in the classroom.


  1. Being a good listener is one of the best qualities that many people will love to possess. Furthermore, being a good listener endears you to many friends for sure. Listening to problems are good communications skills to have. Listening itself consist of yourself taking information from a party instead of talking all the time. This makes a nice change as you can allow yourself to pay attention the speaker. Realizing and understanding problems will allow one to predict and to limit the impact that the problems may have in the future. Finally, thank you for the post. I enjoyed reading it tremendously.


  2. Life is a passage way which brings us joys, memories and fears. It is not always chuckles and smiles but also dark times which can be overcome. Communication is such a powerful tool to use. It can make or break friendships or even destroy families. Being able to see through over people's words and body actions is something not everyone can do but not something to boast about but it is something to see about yourself as a precious gift as you have the ability to empathise with others and use your precious time that we all value for ourselves for someone else because you care and want to make them feel better. Your long pause from studies is not something to be sad about. We all have our different learning styles and abilities which to each his own. Even if some people cannot understand somethings you say your actions say it all. Communication can be done in many ways. Reading this post gives me strength as everyone has their hurdles to pass through but with your own self-worth and confidence and patience, we will all make it to somewhere we will find our own versions of bliss. Thank you so much for sharing something personal and it is good to and meet other people who are just as good as one another.

    - Wee Zhen Yang

  3. Hi Lin Zaw!
    After interacting with you for a few lessons, I agree that you're a good listener. That is a skill that many people are lacking, so make full use of this important skill! To me, I feel that by being a person that listens, shows that you are caring, helpful, patient, and do not jump to conclusion.
    Also, welcome back to school! Even though you have been away from school for a year and you are in a different pace as your batch, I hereby welcome you to the SEEMS 2016 cohort! School may be tough with all the homework, project and other commitments that may come by. However, it is not a reason for you to be afraid of coming back! You'll make new friends along the way, and I will be one of them that will have your back.
    Thank you for being willing to share your personal experiences! I hope that your friend recovers will from his injury! I hope that you will be able to gain more confidence in coming back, as I do not wish that it hinders your work.

    -Lim Sing Yiing

  4. Dear Lin Zaw,

    Thank you for posting this detailed, well organized reflection. I enjoyed reading about the feelings you have as you rejoin the SIT learning community. It was also heartening to see how you have developed your relationship with your friend who was recently hospitalized. Your empathy there is clear, but as you mention, understanding others is a sort of "half-way" point. The other part is acting upon the understanding that has been developed. What is clear though is that you express a willingness to take your communication skills and relationships to another level.

    It is also good that you view your developing confidence as being an area to build on. I can appreciate that as it's an area that many of us struggle with when we are in the university. I really appreciate how you have confided in us readers on a topic that plays such an important role for you and your classmates.

    I look forward to working with you further this term.