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Taking online classes and workshops is a wonderful way to learn. There are so many helpful ones out there that touch on tons of topics — from homemaking and homeschooling to making money online.
I know that I have purchased quite a few over the past years and sometimes find it hard to actually take the time to work through the classes and apply them! So I thought I would share some tips that are helping me as I begin to be more intentional in working through some of these classes and workshops that I have bought. I hope this will help to overcome the overwhelm and get you moving so that you can apply what you have learned!
5 Steps to Actually Complete Online Classes and Put Them Into Action
1. Make a List
The first step you need to take is to make a list of all the online classes and workshops that you have purchased. This list needs to include the link to the site along with your login information, and maybe a short description of what the class is about.
You can write out a physical list or save a digital copy on your computer. I have a folder in my Evernote account where I create a separate note for each class, including all the login details. That makes an easy way for me to find my login details when I am ready to work through the class.
Another thing that gets in the way of our completing these online classes is the fact that we get so many going that we don’t know where to start. Here is an example of what happens sometimes…
We see a menu planning class online that looks really good and they are having a special sale on it, so you go ahead and buy it. You begin to work through the first lesson, but then the next week you see another really neat workshop on homeschool planning that looks great and decide to buy that one too. So you start to work through that one, forgetting about the menu planning class you started. Can anyone relate?
So the next step is to look at the online classes/workshops that you have purchased and figure out which one addresses the greatest need you have right now. Once you decide on one, then we will move on to the next step.
3. Break Class/Workshop into Lessons
Look at the online class/workshop that you chose to focus on right now and see how many lessons it contains. Look them over to see about how long you think it will take to complete a lesson.
This is important to do before you make a plan to complete the lessons. You want to have an idea how big of a time block you need to schedule before we move on to the next step!
4. Add to Your Calendar
After you have divided up the class into manageable lessons, you are going to actually schedule blocks of time on your calendar to work on them. It doesn’t matter if you have your calendar online, in a binder, or a nice printed calendar. Figure out how many lessons you want to complete in a week and schedule them in!
5. Create Action Steps in Response
Now we all know that just going through a class isn’t where it stops. This last step is the most important! After you have completed all the lessons, take some time to jot down all the action steps you want to take from what you have learned.
Now what you will do is schedule blocks of time on your calendar to work through these action steps.
For example, let’s say you took a menu planning class and some of the action steps you jotted down from what you learned were: make a list of our family’s favorite meals, create a menu plan for one week, create a master grocery list, decide on where I will keep my menu plans (on paper or digitally). Now you will take those tasks and write them on your calendar to work on. So maybe one day I will work on making a list of our family’s favorite meals, then the next week I work on writing out a menu plan for a whole week. The week after that I may do another weekly menu and also work on putting together a master grocery list.
Please don’t skip this last step! It is one thing to gain knowledge, but without action is does us no good. This applies to our spiritual life as well as our everyday life! It’s great to learn new things, but unless we put them into practice is doesn’t change anything.
We are so blessed to be able to share our knowledge, experience, and tips with each other through online classes and workshops. But I just want to encourage you to stay focused on one area that you are struggling in the most and then seek out help in that area. Don’t get sidetracked with all the other “goodies” out there. Narrow in and attack that one area, then move on to a different area after you have had a chance to learn, grow, and master the one you are on.