Impressed with Josette LeBlanc’s smile goal challenge, I have been giving my goals a lot of thought.
My vague plan was along these lines:
- Spend a day finishing up some of my unfinished blog posts, then put aside blogging for 2 weeks.
- Spend a day clearing my study area of anything not directly related to Korean Digital Academy.
- Go cold turkey, full immersion into Korean for 2 weeks, to prepare for taking Level 3 of Korean Digital Academy in September.
Almost the moment I decided to sign up for KDA Level 3, the wave of stress threw me off my feet. My inner child whined about putting aside drawing and Chinese to make room for the hard work of studying. My real life reminded me of all the projects I have in the works. I sat down and made a schedule, only to discover as things are now, I have only half an hour a day for studying. Something has got to give. Priorities need to shift.
Goal: get back to learning Korean
After my “vacation” of learning Chinese calligraphy and characters, watercolors, drawing, Japanese gardens, and Zen Buddhism, it is no small task to return to the study habits and catch up on what I have forgotten about Korean. With only 2 weeks, I must not dawdle.
Let’s take the first step of my goal: prepare my work area for study.
SIMPLIFY: What is the smallest action I can take right now to achieve my goal?
Perform the archaeological dig to the bottom of my desk. Remove all materials from the room that are not directly related to Korean Digital Academy. Clean.
MEASURE: What will you be able to do, see, hear, and feel to know you’ve achieved your goal?
Empty desk. Organized bookshelf. KDA materials at hand. No distractions (like art supplies, bills to pay, books not related to my immersion). I will feel lighter, unburdened, and ready to study.
INTEGRATE: Make sure this small goal fits into your regular schedule.
I feel like having a clean area to study in is a prerequisite to beginning study. Ongoing, I have a schedule that included study periods, eating times, and cleaning my desk after dinner, so that it is ready for the next day. Realistically, I already see trouble because I am not allotting enough time in my schedule.
LEAN IN & LET GO: Something may get in your way.
I can see many obstacles to my plan. My own stubbornness about letting go of the Heart Sutra and Chinese characters, coupled with pressing needs in the real world that consume my time, and the desire for detoxing from the stress of life has me already feeling stretched to the limit before even starting the KDA course. At this point, all I can say is I know I can’t do it all, I know that means letting go of some things, if only temporarily, and I am still resistant.
ENJOY – Once you have reached the small goal, enjoy the moment.
I am in cycles with my real world projects of pushing myself near breaking point to make progress, then running away to the comfort of drawing, watercolors, outdoors, and calligraphy as my reward. Now I am looking to add back in Korean study, and threatening myself with taking away my rewards. The inner child is looking back at me quite stubbornly. This means war with myself.
Well, I will give SMILE a try, see if I can at least get a clean desk, which will make me feel better.
Then the next step will be to fill out the KDA questionnaire. The questionnaire asks things like where I live, what kind of computer I have, my phone number, how many siblings I have, etc. I have to write the answers in Korean and send it back in an email. Then the teacher will correct it and mail back an MP3 with the answers. Pretty cool to use for studying!
[If you are interested in learning Korean, do check out Korean Digital Academy. Rob has developed some exciting new options, so even if you are too busy to commit to a class, there are still ways to learn on your schedule in a way tailored to you. You can become a ROKStar!]
I’m shaking in my boots at how much effort it will take me to fill out the questionnaire, but I also know that I should know this stuff from what was covered in class Level 1 & 2.
The hardest part is the tear me away from what I’ve been doing lately to focus solely on Korean language again.