I was a masters' student in 1994/95. Then I continued my PhD in 2003/04. All along I got 1,000,000 comments about many things including:
(a) my habits of attending appointments - unpreparedness
(b) writing methods and
(c) many more
Sometimes .. if my shoes were .. dirty .. that too caught the eyes of my supervisor.
* so how did I take the comments?
Did I feel so bad?
The answer was YES and sometimes I did not buy the comments. it was not my fault.
In another occasion ... my supervisor told me .. my writing lacked focus. It was so wide and it contained many islands. I did not enough 'connectors' between those those islands.
* the question now is ..how did I take that?
The answer was ..
I was quite disappointed with my writings and of course .. my reading. The breadth and the depth of my reading ..I mean. When I walked out from my supervisor's room .. sometimes .. I felt so sad ..
How dare you . ?
He..he.. but after sometimes .. playing out on the park with my children .. playing football and the many things called 'swings' and special equipment in the childrens' park .. it soon sinked to me .. I have to do something with my masters/ PhD.
So I made an appointment .. with my supervisor ..and of course I made more impressive , inroads twards more productive work etc etc.
The good thing studying abroad was .. the SV was always prepared with so many things .. to help you see the light at the end of the tunnel. They said that.. he..he..
That was their strongest point.
One day .. . I did not come for a meeting. You know what ...? he called me ..and ..ask whether I was alright .. with my family ..or not? I was completely touched .. by that .. sort of caring.
But .. he commented a lot about my writings (after he had read it for the last 1 week) .. too much .. that I learnt many things from him. TQ so much.
3) In Malaysia, .. , I recalled my SV never ask .. my personal life even though I lost my father in the early part of my PhD journey. I think that was good ..very good indeed but .. there was nothing wrong to ask ..right? MOre over I won't ask anybody any money ..u see? (laugh).
One small comment .. one of my SVs ..lost my thesis .. and after some time , s/he eventually found it .. and s/he admitted that s/he had read only 1 page of my thesis. that was not Very professional. Wasn't it? Another SV read my thesis randomly (laugh). s/He had picked any chapter s/he liked to read ..and that was what i got commented. The last straw was .. I was not alone in my SV room. S/he brought along her/his spouse to be in the discussion room. When the discussion/ critic was on .. with their spouses inside .. i failed to show any sort of intelligence .. i failed to argue about my point(s) etc etc because of the presence of the third party. In Malaysia, that is the culture. the room must have more than 2 persons even though the room has glasses from its 4 sides (religious and cultural issues). Now , after thinking what i went through .. I forgave all of them and everything .. starting from A1, A2., .Z99 and Z100. in that order i suppose. Everything!
In conclusion .. you must take the SV comments professionally You must trust your SV at all times. and if you don't understand their comments .. return to them and ask .. that was the beauty of PhD.
if you got 10 comments .. start working on the comment that you can solve easily first. this built up your confidence. while solving the easier ones, you begin to see how to solve the harder and much challenging ones. It is good to solve them with a nice feeling inside yourself and the best place is the library at 1000 pm. Never try to solve the comments when you are angry/ just finished arguing with your SV. My closest friends failed their masters/ PhD because of the heated arguments. You won't win any thing by shouting at your SV. They are trying to help you, you know?
But today ..to be honest I remembered one thing.. my main project SV told me ..this .. once you had registered your PhD program.. you began to look so 'stupidddddddddd'. Why? I began to ask SV many things again and again. That explained why many of my friends never try PhD ..once ..and for ever n never and during my study they successfully secured the highest post in the polytechnics / schools/ hospital - DG54, DH54, U54 .. brilliant .. wasn't it?
I better stop there ..
I got an appointment with my PhD Nigerian student now. I am just a co-supervisor. He..he... but coach ing him is whatt I was paid for , right? .. till then ..