Cultural Awareness and Understanding Essay

Culture refers to the bonds that identify people as being similar to a given setting. Culture becomes an integral aspect when communicating. It is prudent for an individual to have cultural awareness for better communication skills. Cultural awareness requires one to be sensitive and understanding of the presence of different cultures. Exposure to various cultural backgrounds has played a pivotal role in shaping my cultural awareness and sensitivity.

My cultural background is Korean-American, and my upbringing involved an integration of both cultures in my life. Being a Korean raised in America was faced with various challenges. Often, I would suffer from rejection from the Americans. Learning to live with this challenge was not simple but over the years. This challenge helped me to identify the need to have cultural knowledge and sensitivity. Consequently, I would seek to spend time learning other cultures. Moreover, the challenge helped me to develop a change of attitude towards life. I learned to live among different cultures, which prompted me to join Vietnamese Student Association (VSA), where I learned Vietnamese language and Korean American Student Association (KASA).

I have been a member of various subcultures during my work and life experiences. For instance, I have worked as a transcriber, pharmacy technician, server and as student administrative assistant. Each of these work settings had particular and different subcultures. As I worked in the various areas, I learned to be observant, analytical and empathetic. Moreover, I learned to listen and conform to prevailing cultural circumstances.

Despite the cultural awareness and sensitivity I have, I still face limitation in this area due to various drawbacks. I have realized that I do violate the terms of a mutual friendship at times. I have also realized that I at times pretend to conform to particular cultural and sub-cultural settings. I need to, therefore, change in these areas. I achieving this change, I need to be honest while dealing with a different culture. I also need to improve my desire for understanding others to avoid violation of my friendship with others.

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