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When the water has run dry, sit and watch for the rising clouds.

A Reflection... #6

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
It's Tuesday and basically I don't have any class from morning till evening. But then, when I checked my iCal, there's an entry stated: 'Leadership class, 8 p.m.'... But, there was a small note written under the entry: 'Final session'... I smile a bit.

Though I'm feeling so lazy to get up and ready for class, I quickly took my shower and off to campus around 7 p.m. Got some time to online so I updated my blogs and Facebook-ing for about 5 minutes.

Though it's unbelievable, ALT 2 was occupied by other class. As a result, we need to find other place and ended up in the classroom nearby ALT3. After settling down, and when the first group was ready, the presentations started right away.

The first topic for today was Thinking Skills. The presentation circled around Edward de Bono's 6 Thinking Hats. They made a short movie which introduce the group member - with their hats. There was a part when the whole group was having a discussion regarding their presentation for Leadership class - which was what they were doing that time, and there was a part when they play another movie which is Tan Sri P. Ramlee's Ali Baba and 40 Thieves. In the movie, they point out some of the type of thinking such as visual, wishful, reflective, positive, and hypothetical thinking. After the movie, they discussed about the type of thinking skills and proceeded on how they are going to present the topic.

There were some points that I took from their presentations. The first point, we need to arrange our thoughts before implementing something, consider the consequences before doing something - rush decisions should be avoided, and how we should be able to cope with different way of thinking among ourselves as we need to consider other people thoughts especially when we need to decide upon something that involve other people as well.

Regrading the presentation, I think that the method in conveying the message is quite okay. Though the same method was used by Azli's group before but when it comes to Edward de Bono, it's a new thing for me. My group members think that there are better way of presenting the topic, but as they want the presentation not to be time-consuming, that's how it was presented. An international friend of mine was having difficulty to understand the whole movie - especially it was cut here and there, so I think the group supposedly have to come up with something global.

Throughout the presentation, I was thinking about some people whose actions not reflecting their thinkings or what they said. As for me, you better not saying anything if you can't do it. In essence, do not make promises if you can't make it.

The second point, Western thinking versus Islamic thinking. Well, as for me, I've been living all my life Western and Eastern-ly. I have to admit, when it comes to religion, I'm lack in terms of that. Therefore, of course I need to brush up my knowledge in religion field to be able to think in Islamic way.

Moved on to the second presentation which was on Stress Management. The group was portraying a male student who is a good student in his class, has good interpersonal skills, but because of being overwhelmed with studies, tasks given as the president of student bodies, he ended being stressed. It was an acting in their class, where his friends told him that he is in stressed condition by pointing out the symptoms of being stressed and how to overcome them. The 'lecturer' also advised him through the Islamic perspective on how to relax and nourish your heart, mind, and soul with the Words of Allah - al-Quran, and do a lot of zikir.

From Br. Said, I also found out that because of stress, someone could end up having hallucinations, delusions, illusions, and thus he or she need to be prescribed certain medications to ease the stress.

All in all, it was a good presentation. I think we also need some reminder on this topic as the finals are just around the corner.

The third presentation, which is the final presentation, was on Strategic Planning. The group came up with some facts on how to make strategic planning like we need to plan carefully and make statement out of it. In order to plan wisely, we need to understand the missions and visions of a project, what's the goal and what's need to be achieved.

They brought a scenario where a company who was making a good business suddenly collapsed and facing bankruptcy therefore the group who was acting as Mr. Plan It has come to the rescue. According to Mr, Plan It, in a company, organizational strategies are needed and there are different strategies for different level of managers. SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity, and threat) analysis also should be done to analyze the situation face by the company. There were also the Porter's 5 Forces and PEST (political, economical, social, technological) analysis being discussed in order to save the company. That was the first part of the presentation.

The second part of the presentation was about a twins who's attending university but having different attitude towards the life as a university student. One with positive attitude that keeping good habit studying regularly and having some time to relax when exams are approaching while the other one with negative attitude who was cramming before the exam. Well, of course the first one get good results in exam while the other one doesn't. Thus, the moral of the story, plan your studies and prepare early is better than pulling an all-nighter.

All in all, I think for this final presentation, my classmates were having difficulty to focus as they find it more fun and entertaining than informative. Why? Because of the Mr. Plan It, and the part when Tengku played a role as a father who disappointed in his daughter who had failed in exam. Still, I think the overall is quite okay.

At last, the Leadership and Management sessions are over! Honestly, I'm quite relief but at the same time, I feel sad as there won't be any sessions with students from other departments - of course there will be Parenting, but for the moment, yes, I'm sad. I won't be hearing traveling experiences from Br. Said anymore.

Thinking back what we had been through for the last 6 sessions we had, I think it's a good experience. We got to express more about ourselves and what we're thinking. Sharing thoughts with my classmates and also telling others your opinions regarding matters discussed in the class had made me learned some facts that I never knew before. Laughing, surprising, reflecting, thinking, and all those memories I had with my classmates, I will remember them.

In a nutshell, I had a good time spending with my classmates and Br. Said as our guide in these Leadership and Management sessions. Indeed, after all these self-discovery sessions, all of us had become better than before.

The End.

p.s.: To Br. Said, thanks for making me writing a journal. It is a good experience indeed.

A Reflection... #5

Wednesday, March 10, 2010
It's Wednesday and it's a routine for me to have my Blackforest Cheesecake from Secret Recipe every Wednesday. It's actually a new menu so before this I always have White Chocolate Macadamia... Still, once a while I do order it for take away...

As I'm having another Leadership and Management session today, I went to KOS half an hour before 5. I opened my Facebook while waiting for others to come.

As usual, before having the presentations, Br. Said mentioned few things that needed to be cleared about. Again the Medical Certificate issue. I don't know why MC is a big issue here as it being mentioned again and again. Still, there's nothing I can do about it. Probably it IS a big issue, I guess.

Suddenly, Br. Said poked an interesting question.

"Conventional versus Innovative. Which one would you choose?"

Confidently, of course I would go for Innovative. When he poked that question, pictures and logos like Mahjong paper, PowerPoint, Executive Diary, iCal, snail mails, emails, lectures in classes, video conferences, and lots of other things popped into my head.

Some of my classmates would go for Conventional. Br. Said said basically these people during Eid, they would go for traditional cookies instead the new, colourful, modern cookies.

Well, I wouldn't put it that way if I were him. Still, it's kind of true in a away.

But for me, again I would go for Innovative. Even back in CFSIIUM, where I did my foundation, I typed all my tutorials though all my classmates submitted them in handwritings, PDA-phone became handy compares to a small notebook as I can put most of MS Word notes in it, and since I changed to Mac products, my student life is getting more and more exciting. Some of my friends go for the expensive electronic dictionary while I just downloaded free (or hacked) applications into my iPod. Not to condemn those who's going for Conventional, but I think it's up to you what you are more comfortable with, right?

Lectures in classes versus video conferences?

Well, as for me I'm fine with both. Some people would think lectures in classes offers you more interactions between you and your lecturer but I think, as long you are willing to cope with the video conferences - as it is sometimes not very comfortable looking at video - though it's live, the whole time. As long as there is communication between the lecturer and his students, I can say it's more than enough. Well, you can't blame your lecturer if he is having important seminar overseas with your finals exams are just around the corner and you need to clarify few things with your lecturer before going into the hall, right? If you're saying this isn't true then, I wonder how telecommunications companies like Maxis, Celcom and DiGi are making good business in their products like 3G and Video Message.

Lectures versus presentations by the student.

If you ask me, I would prefer presentations. Because I got to learn more than having mere lectures on certain subjects and topics - like what we're having in Leadership class. But of course, in these sessions the lecturers need to guide us through and point out our mistakes. I wonder how interesting Anatomy class would be if it were to be conducted in this way. Problems rise would probably because of the number of students in our batch. We're over 150! But I still think it can be implemented. Having an advisor assigned to groups of students also will be extremely helpful - especially to student like me who's easily distracted and need to be monitored from superiors like my lecturers in order for me to keep on focus in my studies.

Moved on to the presentations, the first one is from group 6. We're having a forum entitled "Do We Appreciate Our Time?". There were some facts given out and questions from 'audiences' and 'emails' were discussed in the forum. Basically, it was all about how you should manage your time effectively and how the management would effect your life as a whole. Someone who likes to waste his time would probably going to end up being a failure.

In order to have a good result for an example in a project, you need to plan the whole thing and work on the project step by step, phase by phase until you manage to complete it. It's a basic knowledge for you to know but when it comes to life decisions like your future, it is definitely need a serious plan on how you're going to deal with things like your future.

From the very beginning of my adolescence, I planned to go to university. I still remember the big handmade poster of universities' logos on my dorm's locker. In order to get a spot in university, I worked hard in school, involved in many activities to improve my leadership, management, public relation, and lots of other skills as preparations to face the hard and challenging life as a university student. As for now, I lived through the four out of six years - including my foundation days. It wasn't easy, I have to admit. I still got two more years before hitting the harder and more challenging life - working life. Therefore, I need to be stronger, gain knowledge as much as I can and prepare myself well for it.

A good friend of mine, always remind me of this...

"It's 10% luck, 20% skill, 15% concentrated power of will, 5% pleasure, 50% pain so you need 100% to get something that you really want in your life."

I totally agree with that.

In essence, you need to plan on how you want it to be, focus while doing it, put enough effort, give strong commitment, and try your hardest. Not to forget to submit yourself to God especially, pray hard and with His permission, you'll get what you want.

The second presentation was brought by the seventh group. It was a pop quiz competition. Their topic was on meeting. Few things like characteristics and types of meeting, ethics in meeting, were discussed. Br. Said also mentioned about the importance of minutes in meeting and the significant of it in making and implementing important decisions in higher level meetings for an example meetings among the Dean and his deputies deans in our Kulliyyah.

Overall, the presentations by both groups were okay. We all know the buzz was all about already but both group did good jobs in bringing the topics in different way of thinking and angles of perspectives.

Last word, remember who you are, where you from, and when you reached the blue sky, don't forget the green grass on earth... I'm just saying.

That's all. Signing out!

A Reflection... #4

Friday, March 5, 2010
After spending the entire morning reading Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer, I went to Secret Recipe for a lunch and end up staying in there - online, updating my FB, my blogs... and of course time flies very fast when you're having fun... I almost forgot that I supposedly have Leadership class today. So, after rushing to KOS, I quickly sneaked into the class few minutes before Br. Said came.

We started the class with him talking about his trip to Chieng Mai, Thailand. He said it was a nice experience and gave some tips while being there... After that, we proceeded with the presentations from Mia's group on Public Speaking.

The presentation mostly about the dos and don'ts - again the same thing brought by other groups including us, in public speaking. The scenario was the international public speaking competition and there were 3 members acted as representatives from Maldives, Aussie, and Malaysia respectively. The topic was legalization on prostitution. The Maldives guy gave out some point but there were times he was speaking in a language that probably none of us in the class would understand apart of himself. The second speaker - Mia, who was jumping in and out of the topic while the last speaker - Hazreen, well I think she was portraying a good speaker...

The second part was when Hannan stepped in and pointed out some things that need to be considered such as mic testing, choices of words, eye contact, speech pace, which are vital in public speaking. Mia also said some stuffs on how to overcome your nervousness which is by drinking a lot of water - also good to prevent from dehydration as your mouth can get dried easily while speaking, and as for handling stress, you just need to take deep breathe and have some confidence. Hazreen also said that you need to overcome the fear in you like in public speaking. Well, speaking of fear, deep sea was I fear most - worldly affair to be specific. I almost drown in waterfall and while playing at the beach when I was small so that definitely add up to reason why I'm so scared of deep sea. But of course I intend to overcome the fear by learning to swim when I got some time in future.

Few last things being mentioned are what do you need to have in mind in public speaking which are critical thinking, read a lot of materials, and how to relax before going up to the stage.

Speaking of reading materials, I remember my teacher once said that books are the most important element in seeking the knowledge. Which is why I love bookstores so much and I can sit in there for hours. I still remember the first time I stepped into Kinokuniya in KLCC, and went out after spending 8 hours straight in there... That was a record, I think. But recently, as I need to do few assignments on my core subjects, I added up a new source of informations - among the books, internet, multimedia, etc., which is journal. I never want to read a journal before until I'm instructed to do so by my lecturer. It was long and quite draggy but I think it's a good experience. I got to learn a lot of new vocabularies and medical terms. But I still think I need some time to get used with it.

All in all, their presentation was okay and quite informative. A bit outstanding than the others probably because most of the member have good conduct in English. Well, the President of IIUM Kuantan English Debate is in there... What more can I expect?

As we started the class late, we had only one presentation for today. It was past seven already and I quickly rushed home.

That's all, ciao!

Few Weeks Before Final Examinations

Monday, March 1, 2010

As usual, now it's the time when presentations need to be presented, assignments to be submitted, reports to written, etc. etc. etc. ...

Today, I'm having Quality Assurance presentation. Started at 9 in the morning, we still haven't finish all the presentations... There are 12 more groups to go... Haiz.... I don't whether this is a fortunate thing for me or unfortunate thing for my group member, but we're gonna be the last group to present.... NO!!!!

It's freaking boring.... and my MacBook is already out of battery...