Day 81: Third driving lesson and getting others motivated! 11 days to go!

Kat doodles about life:

I am not very good at getting up, in case you have not noticed. I like to have time to wake up slowly, have a good breakfast, check the e-mail, and then start. When working in catering, there are not many days like this. I used to even wake up 4 am to start at 5 :30 am. Thank God those days are over. I am rather used to work until late at night or early hours of the morning, or even to carry on the next day without any sleep. I had many of these ‘the adrenalin is high, let’s just carry on’ situations during my theatre design degree. Being ill for the last four weeks did not help either, because my body clock is used to sleeping whenever, so last night I set up my alarm on about ten different times as my third driving lesson was booked for 8 am. It was either that or driving on 24th December, which is my Christmas Day. What do you think happened? Of course I overslept! Good job I had everything ready, so in five minutes I was sitting in the car trying to quickly wake up before we swap the sides. I guess it is a good exercise to experience, because it will happen in real life simply knowing how much I like ‘the mornings’.

My last lesson was five weeks ago, plus with this late start, I thought I am going to be terrible, but it was not as bad as I expected. Obviously there were few panic moments, but it was just due to getting into more complicated traffic situations. However there was an improvement from first to second gear straight away, putting gear into first one, when starting, I even went up to 30 mph, drove up some fairly steep hills, went through junctions with more traffic and lot more stopping and starting up and down the hill.  The car suddenly does not feel as terrifying and certain moves are becoming a habit. I am quite happy I waited this long, because I have the knowledge of the highway code from cycling, less things to learn, nevermind doing it in second language and on the opposite side, and I am confident enough to say something in case I would not be happy with my driving instructor. Mine is so friendly, patient and easygoing, it makes such a difference, when I make a mistakes. If I would be 17 and had a stressed driving instructor as you hear some of the horror stories, I am not sure if I would be strong enough to say I am not happy with the way you teach me and I would go blank and panic even lot more . Thankfully that is not the case and so far I am making progress, so that is great to know.

I spent the afternoon getting few things done including correction of my new student’s cv. We spoke on the phone later and he was very excited telling me about that Italian cookbook I left there, as I mentioned two posts ago. He was very happy flicking through, translated four recipes, wrote down the vocabulary he needed to look for in a dictionary and even made one of the recipes! How impressive! I was so pleased my personalised first lesson got him so motivated, so when he goes out tomorrow searching for the job again, I hope he is more successful. I am sure he will be speaking in no time with this attitude.

It is really wonderful, when people believe in you and you believe in others. Getting excited, more understanding and patient were the qualities I missed a lot in my school days from some of my teachers. It does not mean you are stupid, just the way you learn more effectively is different and you should not be punished for it. I have discovered that once I left abroad, had the experience of life and started to study the Foundation Diploma in Art&Design, here in the UK. When coming home for holidays I started doing these talks in Art and English lessons back at the same school, where I started. And I can tell you my English teacher was not happy, when I told the students that I was really bad and definitely not her favourite. And as the years went on and I got accepted to university here or passed CPE last year, she would still have that judgemental look on her face every time I saw her and would not really believe me. And you know what and I may never be absolutely perfect, but it is more than enough to make me live the way I want to. Bohumil Hrabal, writer, who went to our school, who failed in Czech language, or Albert Einstein, when failing Maths, were always my great heroes. And look how far they got! Failure does not mean stupidity!

It is not about how much you know and being academic type, it is about how you find it, use it and make it work. It is about being motivated, believing in your dreams and working hard for them. Attitude Czech education is definitely missing and when recently reading this article, it seems it still does, although it may be getting better since the new generation of teachers is going in and the speedy development of the technology. So anyway to end this critical point I have about Czech primary and secondary education, I am very happy about this rather productive Friday and how great it is to bring happiness to other people when using the right teaching methods. Back tomorrow. Kat xx

day 12

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Day 1: Keep motivated! 91 days to go!

Kat doodles about life:

Staying focused can be very difficult. I am bright example of that. Unless it is exciting enough and does not involve food or paint brush, my mind wonders off miles away from thinking is it cup of tea or lunch time yet or what is going on in the world of Facebook. Getting myself recently into position, where my room/studio is getting into the right shape, purchasing new A3 printer and just generally sorting stuff out, things are moving in the right direction, but how can I stay focused and motivated.

Well, I turned back to my “friend” David Allen and his theory about “Getting Things Done”, which I have been practising for more or less year and half and it worked wonders for me. I recommend to read his book to fully understand the theory and how it works. In a simple way he is telling how to make the things happen from little idea in your head into the final outcome by following simple rules. So for example when I have been hassled for years by my family members to get that English certificate done. To me although I did not feel I need to, as well as looking like a very daunting task. I went from little tasks such as researching online to doing little practice test on the Cambridge University website. Then moved on to researching the exam days, paying application fee, ordering test book, going for the first part of the exam and then passing the second part. Now more than year late holding my certificate, it feels like it was not difficult at all. Why was I even scared of it for all these years? I am applying the same technique now with learning how to drive. Some of you surely know from reading my previous posts.

So here I have my challenge. Today as it is 1st of October 2013 I start and by the end of this year, which is another 91 days away I would like to be fully free lancing or employed as an interior designer or anything to do within the theatre/ visual merchandising/ decorating industry. Turn my four jobs into one and show there is hope and it is achievable since I am sharing this blog with readers in similar situation.

Recently ordering my new set of business cards I ended up with many empty boxes, so I turned them into reminders and I keep them now next to my computer. Each task with a date on it is written on a separate piece of paper and they are constant reminder of what to do even I wonder of somewhere else for a mili second. You start with ‘In basket’, where you put any pieces of papers, receipts, objects, notes of things to do you need to deal with. The next step is ‘Process’ them, after ‘Organize’ them, ‘Review’ them and finally ‘Do’ them.  During practising this theory I have realized there are two types of tasks I tend to do. Practical ones like file this bank statement into right folder and computer based ones like research this particular company.  I have decided to divide second group into four different boxes and name them : “At mac”, “When Online”, “E-mail Account” and “E-mail to:”.  As I am not feeling very well at the moment, I have taken that time off today to go through “E-mail to:” and managed to sent 19 e-mails,  11 Facebook messages and 2 LinkedIn InMail messages.  Obviously you don’t want to spend every day just answering e-mails. However  it is that little by little, which gets you, where you want.

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To finish this post I am adding the basic diagram David Allen is using for working out tasks to give you an idea. Are you currently thinking of starting personal challenge yourself?  Is it loosing weight, learn certain skill or saving money for trip to Australia. Please do get in touch here or send me an e-mail katerina.t.designer@gmail.com and share your challenge. We can support each other  in this process and make it happen. Take care for now and looking forward to hearing from everybody.

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