Do you remember that intense feeling of panic right before an exam that you really didn’t study for? I got to experience it first hand tonight, and forgot how freaky it can be. As many of you know, I’m currently working towards a professional diploma in Career Development. I’m only a month in, and already the procrastination has started. I was glancing through my course booklet and noticed in a separate introductory package that my journal was due one month after my start date. Oh crud. Double crud. That’s four days away. And I’m only working my way through Chapter 3! What if the journal is supposed to be comprehensive?! I started reading quickly through my course booklet that came with my textbook, searching for what my “journal” was supposed to be. Then, I noticed that my course booklet, all 100-pages of it, seemed to have fill-in-the-blanks and empty spaces to fill in answers. Crap. The booklet must be my journal. And yes, this booklet is very comprehensive. I quickly cleared my kitchen table, plunked down my text and my booklet, grabbed a glass of water and started reading, my heart in my throat. How was I supposed to do this all in four days? Heck, even a month seemed like a tight deadline to read an entire text and provide feedback. About four pages in, after the introduction was a detailed layout of my assignment for this course. It includes a 20-page paper and a lot of research. I started second guessing myself. That didn’t sound much like a journal. Was that added on to the journal? And nowhere was I reading about the subsequent audio and video tape portions of the course. I got up and ran upstairs to double check the introductory sheet on which I’d read that my journal was due within the first month. I glanced at the sheet, and sure enough. I kept looking and my eyes landed on the course code. Relief washed over me, and even though my heart was still pumping like a race horse’s I knew everything was going to be alright. The course that required the journal to be submitted within a month was the one I start in September. The adrenalin that had shot through me began to subside and I scolded myself once again for procrastinating on reading the course material thoroughly, so that I knew what I was in for. I’m a brilliant procrastinator, and it’s gotten me into trouble before, pulling all nighters only to get a B- on a paper. The problem is that in this course, that would be a fail. 80% is a pass.
So, hopefully my lesson is learned. I will read course outlines in detail as soon as I get them. And then I’ll do at least one hour of homework/reading a night, with a few extra hours on Saturday. This working and studying thing is going to suck. (Appologies to people who don’t like that word, like my mother…and my aunt I’d wager). On top of that, I’m still doing my volunteer work. Ouch. Not much free time for me. Oh well. It’ll keep me from getting bored and rotting my brain with too much TV and too many movies…although I’m not sure there’s such a thing as that last one.