Subtle_Fortitude

…strength of mind can be stronger than you think

How to Conquer WORRY

Posted by nuruliman45 on January 30, 2011

The Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (New 8th Edition, 2010) defines worry as to keep thinking about unpleasant things that might happen or about problems that you have.

Many authors had written on the subject of worry in their books, some of them are given as per below:

  • Napoleon Hill (1883 – 1970), recognized as the all-time American best selling motivational author, once said: “If you are worried or afraid of anything, there is something in your mental attitude that needs correction. Unless you control worry, one day you will discover that it controls you”
  • Jeffrey J. Mayer in this book entitled “Success is a Journey” (1999) wrote that worry is one of the six symptoms of fear. In this case, you feel anxious, you’re uneasy, and you are not sure whether you had made the right decision.
  • Georgette “Zeta” Galas in her book entitled “How to Break Through Invisible Barriers” (1999), wrote: “When we have a desire and hold on too tight out of fear we may lose it, the end result will surely be anguish. When we know our true selves, worry, doubt and fear will dissolve”.
  • Linda R. Dominguez in her book entitled “How to Shine at Work” (2003), wrote that part of turning problems into opportunities is to recognize that we always have a choice. We can choose to be angry, we can choose to worry, or we can choose to be thoughtful and respond in a way that moves us forward. It is up to us.

To learn how to conquer worry, the following worry-related rules adapted from “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living”, first published by Dale Carnegie in 1944, can be used as evergreen examples.

In the early days, Carnegie made his living by teaching adult classes in night schools in New York. He realised that one of the biggest problems of these adults was worry. He wrote his book by reading what the philosophers of all ages have said about worry. He also read hundreds of biographies, all the way from Confucius to Churchill. According to him, we won’t find anything new in his book, but we will find much that is not generally being applied in our daily life.

Rule #1: Instead of worrying about ingratitude, let’s expect it.

A businessman in Texas felt bitter for his thirty-four employees did not say “Thank You” to him after receiving a bonus of about $300 each for Christmas.

According to Carnegie, instead of wallowing in resentment and self-pity, that man might have asked himself why he didn’t get any appreciation.  Maybe he underpaid and overworked his employees. Maybe they considered a Christmas bonus not a gift, but something they had earned. Maybe he was so critical and unapproachable that no one dared or cared to thank him. Maybe they felt that he gave the bonus because most of the profits were going for taxes, anyway.

On the other hand, maybe the employees were selfish, mean, and ill-mannered. Maybe this. Maybe that. According to Carnegie, this man made the human and distressing mistake of expecting gratitude. He just didn’t know human nature.

Rule #2: When fate hands us a lemon, let’s try to make a lemonade.

This was a story of a lady following her army husband who was stationed at an Army training camp near Mojave Desert, in California. The husband was ordered out to maneuvers in the desert, and she was left in a tiny shack alone.

The heat was unbearable — 125 degrees in the shade of a cactus. There was nobody whom she can talk to. The wind blew incessantly, and all the food she ate, and the very air she breathed, were filled with sand, sand, and sand! She wrote to her father, telling him that she was going home as she couldn’t stand the situation one minute longer.

Her father answered her letter with just two lines — the two lines that completely altered her life:

Two men looked out from prison bars,

One saw the mud, the other saw the stars.

Her attitude changed after receiving her father’s reply.  She would look for the stars. She even wrote a book under the title Bright Ramparts …she had looked out of her self-created prison and found the stars.

Rule #3: Basic Techniques in Analysing Worry

This was an insurance man’s interesting story. When he first started selling insurance, he was filled with a boundless enthusiasm and love for his work. Then something happened. He became so discouraged that he despised his work and thought of giving it up. Then on one Saturday morning, he sat down and tried to get at the root of his worries. He began asking himself following questions:

a)    What was the problem?

He was not getting high enough returns for the staggering amount of telephone calls that he made.

b)    What was the cause of the problem?

He did pretty well at selling a prospect, until the moment came for closing a sale. Then the customer would say, “Well, I’ll think it over, Mister. Come and see me again”. The time wasted on these follow-up calls that was causing his depression.

c)    What were all possible solutions?

He checked his record book for the last twelve (12) months and studied the figures carefully. He made an astounding discovery! He discovered that 70% of his sales had been closed at the very first interview! Another 23% of his sales had been closed on the second interview. And another 7% had been closed on those third, fourth, fifth, etc., interviews. He came to the conclusion that he was wasting fully one half of his working day on a part of his business which was responsible for only seven per cent of his sales!

d)    What was the best solution?

He made a quick decision that he would immediately cut all visits beyond the second interview, and spent the extra time building up new prospects.

Conclusion

As stated by Bob Adams in his book entitled “The Everything Time Management Book” (2001): “Don’t worry about things that are beyond your control. Let go. Unnecessary worry only creates unnecessary anxiety. He also added: “Constant worry leads to complications in life. Talk it out and make yourself believe that worry will not help anything; it will only harm. The fewer worries you have, the simpler life will seem”.

We have to believe that part of turning problems into opportunities is to recognize that in anything that we do, we always have a choice. We can choose to be ungrateful, we can choose to worry, or we can choose to be thoughtful and respond positively in a way that moves us forward. It is up to us.

We do not have to go to Harvard to learn that we should worry less about what others think, say and do.

Adapted from iluvislam.com (Original article written by Kamaruddin Hassan)

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“GOMBEK!!”

Posted by nuruliman45 on December 28, 2010

Little kids are so creative and confident in their own way.

I learned a new word about 3 weeks ago.

“Gombek!!” Yelled Hanis, my 4-year old little sister.

I asked my other younger sister, Dayah (22 yrs old) what ‘Gombek’ means.  She’s always at home, so she could probably clear me on the newest progress of those two little squirts, Atiqah (6 yrs old) and Hanis.  I also thought that perhaps I might have missed a Kelantanese word people used that I didn’t.

Well…To my surprise, according to Dayah, GOMBEK is a word Hanis created that she didn’t realize she created.  And to the looks of it, it is not a very nice word either.  hehehehe.

Short clip of the girls’ conversation I heard one day:

Atiqah:  Hanis GOMBEK!

Hanis (with confidence): Eh! Tak baiklah kecek (cakap) GOMBEK!  Apo ni, kecek GOMBEK nih!

Atiqah: Gapo dio gak GOMBEK tuh, Hanis kae hok kecek GOMBEK dulu…

Hanis(with an innocent face): Tok tahulaaaa….

*BIG SIGH*

…I was just hoping to get an answer to the big secret word.

GOMBEK still has no meaning….aduh..Hanis, Hanis…

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Christmas: Not as merry as EidulFitr!

Posted by nuruliman45 on December 27, 2010

“Jingle bells, jingle bells…”, my little 6-year old sister hummed the song.

I thought, mana pulak budak ni belajar lagu Krismas ni.  Memang tak boleh dibiarkan adik saya tu terus nyanyi lagu2 Krismas.  I immediately said to Atiqah, “Hey! ape nyanyi lagu-lagu Krismas nih!  Tak baik tau, Tiqah.”  She answered, “Why?  Krismas best laaa.”  Kesiannya adikku ini…

Then it hit me!

I realized that my two youngest little sisters, Atiqah and Hanis are little Disney freaks – they are totally immuned to Disney shows.  It’s every day Disney at home.  Sure, their English vocabulary is quite impressive.  But it seems, rupa-rupanya, ada elemen negatif jugak mereka ni dapat from watching Disney.  Aiya…

 

Christmas in the US

I grew up in US till I was 13, so I was practically used to the whole Christmas air of Decembers in the US.  Winter would always be synonym to Christmas.  More than a month before Christmas, stores would be filled with Christmas sales.  Everywhere I went, whether it was school, the grocery store, the library, malls, supermarkets, it was RED, GREEN, WHITE!!!  Candy canes…Santa Claus…fake snow(because my place didn’t snow)…stockings..reindeers…Christmas trees…you name it!

It was like this really jolly kind of air in my ex-hometown, Tucson… well, as it seemed.  All my friends at school were telling me of their planned vacations over the 2 week school holiday.  And then there were the stories of the expected presents they were to receive.  Not to forget, the presents they planned to get for their family and stuff.  Some also shared about the couriered gifts they got from grandparents who would send them for they wouldn’t be able to spend Christmas together.

It sounded splendid to me them.

After 10 years having spent Eidulfitr in Malaysia…I can see the HUGE difference between Christmas and Hari Raya.  You could simply get the message from little kids around you.  Listen to what little kids look forward to Hari Raya.

Yeah, sure, ada jugak la sebut…nak duit raya.  But, there’s more that they look forward to.  “Nak jumpa nenek.” “Nanti Raya nak balik kampung, boleh jumpa dengan _____, _____, dan _____”.  And also, kids know already, “Pagi raya nak ikut Mak pegi solat Raya.”

In Tucson, there is no special day off for Hari Raya.  Most Muslims would take their own day off for the first day of Hari Raya.  The main event for us Muslim residents of Tucson would be the mass gathering at either Reid Park or this other park I forgot the name of.  The Masjid in Tucson couldn’t fit the huge Muslim community in Tucson.  The morning would start with the Takbir, reminding all of the Greatness of ALLAH.  This would then lead to the prayer most encouraged to perform for Hari Raya.

Then, it was the part I most looked forward to: eating together with long-not-seen brothers and sisters.  It would be such colourful mornings – the beautiful new outfits of the Pakistanis and Bangladeshis.  Then, there were the elegant Mexicans and Arabs.  There were also the colourful dresses of the Sudans and Algerians.

 

Conclusion

Eidulfitr teaches the beauty of always remembering ALLAH and the beauty of brotherhood.  Presents and ‘duit raya’ is just an extra element added to the celebration of Eidulfitr.

Can’t wait for next year’s Merry Eidultfitr! 🙂

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SPSS!!!

Posted by nuruliman45 on November 9, 2010

For the past almost 2 months, my big endeavor: SPSS!!

Being in my last semester of my degree years (YEaH!!!), we TESLians have to complete an Academic Exercise (we all shorten it to ‘AE’).  We all see it as a miniature thesis.

My title:

English Language Classroom Anxiety:  A Comparative Study Among Special Programme and Regular Programme School Students

 

Going back to what I was saying… SPSS… I’d like to share with you my struggle with it.  3  reasons why it has been a BIG challenge for me:

1)  I am SO not good with numbers.

I am a visual type person, to understand anything, I need to be able to picture it.  Find it difficult to understand why everyone wants a mean and standard deviation for everything! LOL…(*thank you to Puan Wan Hartini & En. Norazman for helping me get cleared on that)

2)  My data was not going easy on me.

Life could be easier if my data was straight forward and gave out results the way most past research I read through did.  Unfortunately for me, it didn’t.  A lot of stuff came out insignificant and contradict one another and stuff…  leaving me to work out other methods in the SPSS to give me results I can use for my discussion.  ANOVA, paired Sample t-test, Reliability analysis, independent t-test??? AARGH…

My supervisor is one of those perfectionist kind of types, and wanted me to make sure my procedures absolutely follow the right statistical methods.  So a lot of SPSS studying went on throughout these 2 months!!  (did I mention my Hari Raya holiday was given a fair portion to SPSS??? – yup, early mornings/late nights SPSS, those other times would go to actual berhari raya)

3)  Have to juggle with all other heavy subjects.

I found out that in other universities, last semesters would go fully to last semester projects.  Even if there were any subjects, it would be ‘light’ ones.  Well, we juggled both.

So this past semester was all about heavy assignments + AE (SPSS!!)

Rajin betul UiTM ni….huhuhu

So, did I get anything from all this??

An absolute yes!

Sure, my other peers didn’t have to struggle with their SPSS as much as I did.  Perhaps their data was more cantik. Certain friends who started later than me were able to submit AE earlier than I could.

But, due to all I’ve learnt throughout the struggle – the unreliable reliability, contradicting data,  the hundreds of online SPSS tutorials, SPSS lecturer consultations, I feel I am much more prepared to face my future masters! (thank you Mdm Aida!)

This all taught me patience, perseverance, determination.  Yezza!

I like to remind myself:

“What doesn’t kill you just makes you stronger.

That’s the secret behind ALLAH’s trials.”

Thank you ALLAH! 🙂

 

One of the many tutorials I went through (very helpful):

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I Love my Mommy…

Posted by nuruliman45 on November 2, 2010

“Mommy…”I would call from the kitchen. “Oh, mommy…”

I go back to Kelantan only once every few months, so some amnesia thing goes on where I can’t remember where certain kitchen tools, or other certain things are placed in the kitchen.  That’s how I call Mak when I try to find something. 🙂

Mak patiently answers to my call and and shows me whatever is needed.  Well, that’s my way to be manja with Mak for a sec.  “Mommy…” hehe.  She would never negatively reply back and say something like “Ape panggil mommy-mommy nih, mak is enough.”  Sabar Mak ye…..

 

Being in Melaka, whenever a problem makes me tense or a bit ‘off’, Mak’s just a phone call away.  Just need to talk to her to soothe my emotions; tenangkan jiwa.

At times, when calling Mak, I would actually tell Mak what’s going on, what my problems are, express all my worries… to get advice from Mak.  So Mak would actually know that her eldest daughter over here in Melaka is going through a major earth-toppling dilemma.  But, at other times, when I feel stressed, I would call mak just to hear her calm voice and ask about any new things that are happening at home.  Perhaps ask about my cute little 4-year old sister and what are her new progresses.  From mimicking people to ordering people around, to becoming an extreme barbie-pc-game freak..haha… that little spoiled dwarf :-p I miss her so much….Hanis…

 

Mak is always willing to spend her precious time in updating me on whatever needs to be updated.  Yup, being the oldest sister, have to always keep progress of the younger ones.  Mak understands that.

Like I was saying, at times, I would just ask what goes on at home.  I wouldn’t actually tell Mak that I’m stressed out.  Because I know, if I do, Mak would start to worry.  I’m sure she’d be worrying more than I worry about myself.   So I don’t tell her that I’m stressed out….I just try to laugh and joke around with Mak to let my tense go away…I just ask of her du’as…

Mak’s du’as are priceless…..

Sometimes I think to myself, how can Mak be so understanding of me?  When I feel like the whole world is putting pressure on me, and the sky seems to be falling, but at the end of the day, I could still turn to my Mak for shelter.  There are times where not one person could understand problems I face or what I really want, even myself.  But Mak could understand.

I think to myself…. what kind of ‘magic’ has ALLAH given to all these mothers to make them such special and wonderful people.  The sincerity within their hearts for what they do for their children it above all the noblest of noble.  SubhanALLAH.

“We have enjoined on man kindness to his parents; in pain did his mother bear him, and in pain did she give him birth..”

(Al-Ahqaf:15).

I am now in my last month of my degree years.  Have I taken for granted everything my Mak has to offer…yes, I have… astaghfiruLLAH…  How I envy my little sister who gets to stay at home and help Mak.  What am I able to do for Mak from Melaka?

 

 

Forgive me Mak, for all my wrongdoings…

You are the QUEEN of my heart, Mak….Mommy 🙂

I LOVE YOU…..


 

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