Walking on Sunshine

Posts tagged ‘planning’

On Studying …

I’ve got the cold.  And there’s something about having the cold on a sunny day that makes me feel like studying.  No, really!  I think it’s because my first term at University was sunny and, as I caught every bug available from my fellow students, there’s some weird association-thing going on.

My books for Y157 arrived last week and the course website will open on the 25th.  I don’t have my tutor details yet but there’s no need to worry – there’s plenty of time yet before course start on the 1st of next month.

Having got the studying bug along with my cold virus (how much love do I feel for the inventor of Sudafed?) I wasted quite a bit of time today surfing University websites and thinking ‘I could do that …’ which was pleasant and motivating but not very constructive.  So, after lunch, I decided to to make a start on Y157 since, if I can’t do an Access course then there’s not a whole lot of point dreaming about the a life in academia.

My first task was to read a leaflet, make a to-do list and then watch a section of the DVD.  All of this was easily accomplished from the comfort of my recliner (hey, I’m sick, OK?)  I’ve decided to go with a high-tech approach to studying this time.  I love paper and pen (especially just the right paper and just the right pen) but OneNote will make my notes searchable and the OU provides the materials in PDF format these days (from the course website which isn’t available yet) so getting inky is less appealing although I’m not sure whether typing will put things as firmly in memory as writing.  However, there’s no exam with Y157 so this is a safe course with which to experiment.

Now, where were we?

Read leaflet.  Made list.  Watched DVD.

So now I know that Y157 requires 6 – 8 hours work per week.  I want to work Monday to Friday and I want roughly the same schedule each day so I’ve made out a schedule with two hours of work each day giving a total of ten hours per week.  This gives me space to be flexible if I need to be or to finish the course early if I’m a good girl and stick to the plan.  And, really, sticking to the plan is what it’s all about on this one.  I’m really good at working 12 hours a day for two days and then doing nothing for a fortnight.  I know this doesn’t work but rationally knowing is not the same as applying what I know.  So my goal for the next week is just to stick to the plan.  And I want so badly to add caveats to that goal.  Unless I’m sick.  Unless my mum’s sick.  Unless the cat’s sick.  Unless I feel the need to read magazines for a week while watching my brain atrophy …

Slow and steady wins the race.  Maybe I should make that a poster and stick it to the wall?

Butcher? Baker? Candlestick Maker?

In a recent entry, Lara (The Lazy Organiser) asks:

And what do you want to be when you grow up?  What are your strengths and how could you use them to help others?  Do you know?

As this ties in with what I’m working on at the moment, I thought I’d reply.

It’s take me a long time to work out what I want to ‘be’.  I’ve wanted to be a nurse, a nun, a teacher, a stable-girl, a jockey, a secretary, a sales-woman, a show-jumper, a writer, an executive, a manager … I’ve wanted to be lots of things.  I’ve tried out some of these hats for size.  None of them fit and some of them made me very ill.  So I retired from work and did other things for a while.  I spent a lot of time being ill.  I spent time indulging my hobbies (especially my passion for reading).  I learned to knit.  I watched too much TV.  I read a bit more.  I got bored.

And so I started working as a Volunteer for Cats Protection.  I started off as an extra body at fundraising events.  Then I started fostering cats.  Then came home-checking.  And, most recently, I’ve become involved with helping people overcome their feline’s behavioural problems.  And I’m in heaven.  I’ve found something I’m good at.  At last!

So now I have A Plan.  I call it my ’10 Year Plan’ but, really, it might take a little longer.  I’ve mentioned it on here before but, basically, I want to be a Pet Behaviour Counsellor.  Or, more specifically, a Feline Behaviour Counsellor.  This is the person you call on when Smurf has shredded your new sofa and is starting work on the arm chair.  The Counsellor visits and tries to look at things from the cat’s point of view.  Then she makes suggestions to the owner to modify the unwanted behaviour and, hopefully, restores the relationships and harmony within the household.  She may also give general advice on cat care.  It’s all aimed at making the cat happy so that the owner is also happy.

My plan is:

2009 – 2017:  Study with Open University for BSc
2017 – 2020:  Study at Southampton University for MSc in Pet Behavioural Counselling

It’s going to take a long time, studying part-time, but I need that time to become well enough to run my Feline Behaviour Counselling practice and, hey, 36 isn’t that old, is it!