Being a Life-Long Learner

It’s a windy Friday morning, but it’s an especially great one because Ben is just working until lunch today. He has some paid time off to use by the end of the fiscal year, which means we get some bonus togetherness. I’m also in a good mood because I’m proud that I turned yesterday into a good day despite the sleepless night; I was productive at work, had a good text conversation with a friend, mowed the front and backyard, and did some reading for a couple free online classes I’ve registered for. I got a lot done and maintained a good mood despite my fatigue and the tougher emotions I’ve been working through.

I love learning and wish I could be an official student for life, though I happily settle for taking advantage of the multitude of education opportunities outside of paid college courses. I’m constantly reading, researching topics that interest me online, watching documentaries, and asking questions. I’ve taken a variety of free online courses through avenues like Coursera, Open Course Works, iTunes University, and the Great Courses. It can be less motivating to take a free course by yourself because the investment is non-existent and other obligations and interests can take over. I’ve certainly fervently registered for all sorts of Coursera courses and then found within a week or two my gung-ho attitude has fizzled out so much that I’ve forgotten all about the class. Since there’s no stake in the game, I’m okay with abandoning my intention to complete a course if I’ve truly lost interest and something else has supplanted that desire. If it’s merely a matter of unintentionally forgetting, I try to preemptively prevent lapses my scheduling alerts in my calendar to log in and spend some time on the material.

The courses I’ve signed up for this week are through the library. I’m anticipating a greater likelihood that I’ll complete the courses because the subject matter (writing) is a long-time passion rather than a new obsession, which is likely to evaporate as quickly as it came on. Moreover, they are more structured and have a definite start and end date, forum with other students, and expectations for weekly involvement. I think I’ll enjoy it. With the exception of my university’s freshmen writing course requirement and one expository writing class in high school, I’ve actually never enrolled in a writing course, even though it’s my favorite mode of communication, but also a cherished hobby. I think it’s awesome that the library offers free courses and so I’m excited to take advantage of this offering and at least give it a shot.

This weekend is forecasted to be rainy and cold. Ben won’t be home Sunday, so I anticipate I’ll have plenty of time to work on my class assignments, home chores, and job. If the weather ends up being nicer than anticipated, I’ll be sanding the deck. Either way, it will be a good couple of days.

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