In this post, I’d like to talk about how you are getting along with achieving your lifelong learning goals. In fact, I’d like to know if you have even made a start and if not, why not? Don’t worry, this isn’t a post criticising you about you lack of forward movement. If you have been thinking about e-learning but nothing more, I sympathise. I was someone who kept putting things off as well. So let’s see if we can identify the problems you may be having with achieving your lifelong learning goals.
What Made Me Think of Writing This Post
As regular readers know, I have a few different things going on in life, and one of them is teaching IELTS Speaking to students who wish to work, live, or study in a foreign country. In Part 2 of the speaking test, students have to speak for 1 – 2 minutes on a topic that the examiner gives them. One of the questions ends with the statement, “and what you are doing to achieve your dreams”.
This got me thinking. How often do we ask ourselves, “What am I doing to achieve my dreams?” Obviously, I have no idea how often anyone else asks themselves that question, or if anyone asks themselves that question at all, but I can tell you how often I ask myself what I’m doing anything to achieve my dreams… almost never. So let’s take a moment together to ask ourselves this question.
1. Too Busy Just Surviving
It is a sad fact of life that most of us are ‘just getting by’, or as Internet Marketers like to say, “We have a J.O.B”, which stands for ‘Just Over Broke’. Most of us barely have the time to think about how our present situation is, let alone think about what we want it to be in the future.
It’s not surprising achieving lifelong learning goals is so difficult when you’re thinking about next meals more than improving your lot in life.
2. I’m Doing Alright Syndrome
‘I’m Doing Alright Syndrome’, or IDAS, is the state we get to in life where we are er… doing alright. The J.O.B is paying the bills, the mortgage, healthcare, and maybe even a holiday once a year.
However, because of IDAS, we don’t think about our dreams and how we can achieve them. After all, we may not be doing what we want but at least we are not like so many other people, so we shouldn’t complain, right?
3. Worrying About Tomorrow
Many people are ‘at will’ workers (in the US) or have ‘Zero-Hour Contracts’ (in the UK). In the US, ‘at will‘ means that people can be sacked for absolutely no reason, as long as it is not for an illegal reason – race, sex, or religion, for example. In the UK, ‘Zero-Hour Contracts‘ are used so that companies do not have to offer fixed hours, or any hours at all.
No wonder you aren’t thinking about what you’re doing to achieve you dreams. You’re too busy worrying about how to put food on the table. Of course, it’s not you. Plenty of people are struggling to make ends meet so don’t feel too guilty.
4. I’ve Got Too Much to Lose
Let’s be honest here, if you lived in a nice house, had a good job, and had money in the bank, how many of you would take the gamble to go for your dreams? I know I probably wouldn’t.
And don’t get me wrong, plenty of people are happy living a life like that, and if you are one of them, good for you. Maybe the dream you were aiming for is exactly what you have now.
5. I’ve Got Too Many Responsibilities
You may be doing well financially but you need to be… you have a lot of bills to pay. House, car(s), holiday(s), kids’ school fees, and so on. You’ve worked hard and got to a stage where you can afford to live life large, and you don’t want to risk it all.
The idea of having to get a smaller house, give up one of the cars, or worst-case scenario, move the kids out of private education fills you with dread. No wonder taking online courses takes a backseat to everything else you’re trying to do.
Time to Take Action Before It’s Too Late
So, what was the point of all of the above? Simple – to persuade you to stop putting off until tomorrow what you can do today. I do online courses every day. I’m achieving lifelong learning goals every day as well. But I really wish I had started sooner.
Of course, e-learning sites didn’t exist until a few years ago. Then again, before online learning there was distance learning, and I was always too busy for that too.
As you can see from the images in this post, I have a love of all things Coursera, which is an extremely good e-learning website. Head over there now and get started today. Don’t leave it a moment longer.