Just over a week ago I had an exam, which concluded the Open University politics course I was studying and I decided some time before, that I would have a break before returning to study. Not that I hadn't enjoyed the course because I had. It was more that as I have found with previous OU courses, trying to combine the studying with work and everything else becomes very difficult and I am not the most disciplined or self-motivated of people. I found parts of it a real struggle, not because it was intellectually above my level but because I needed to find the hook to get me started.
Anyhows, despite saying all that I've already signed myself up for a new course starting next February. At least it offers me something of a break and gives me time to sort out things with work etc. The course I am starting next year is called 'A world of whose making?' and combined with the course Governing Europe I did in 2005, it will complete a Diploma in Government & Politics. The reason I've chosen to combine these courses towards a diploma is because I think that setting myself a medium-term and realistic goal like this provides some impetus to do my best on the course next year and also means that I achieve a qualification before gaining my full degree. The good thing is that I can combine A world of whose making with my other courses taken towards my degree. It leaves my options open as to whether I go for an Open degree i.e. one not in a named subject or a degree in a named subject such as Politics or International Studies or perhaps a broader Social Science degree. It will though be another 3-4 years before I have the full degree although hopefully by the end of next year I will have my diploma.
Other goals I am setting myself are with my weight loss. I need to spend some time writing down what my short, medium and long term goals are and I need to plan in an exercise regime too. I do know the reasons why I want to loose weight and what weight I want to be but I feel unless I write these goals down, they will not seem real and will be easy to avoid. Like with my studies, I am going to set myself short-term goals as well as long-term ones. That way I can see achievements along the way, not just heading towards one ultimate destination, which I am realistic enough to know is going take some time to get too.
I've also set myself the goal of getting a new job before the end of the year. That seems quite a generous deadline but I am determined that I will achieve it before then, hopefully getting myself settled into a new job by early autumn. I did have an interview for tomorrow morning although that has had to be re-arranged due to the interviewer being on holiday although quite why this wasn't apparent when the interview was booked I don't know! I am keeping my options open and will go for any appropriate opportunities that arise.