Thursday, 13 July 2017

GUEST POST by Michelle Roberts on How to Stay Motivated when Studying via Distance Learning



Distance learning – my thoughts on how I stayed motivated and on track. (sometimes you can even surprise yourself)
My name is Michelle Roberts, 37 years old, and a few months back I completed the level 3 diploma in patchwork and quilting in just under 2 years, with school of stitched textiles.  I chose to do distance learning, so I could study in my own time as I am a mum to four boys, wow I hear you say, as I often do, when I say it out loud, but I think when you become a mum you can end up becoming just a mum (which is awesome, but my kids are getting older now, and like to do their own hobbies) and I was forgetting all the things I use to enjoy.
I wanted something creative to get stuck into, and I knew if I just made things out of books I wouldn’t stay motivated, and would drift into doing the mundane things in life - cooking, cleaning etc. Too be honest I loved being able to use the excuse, I have college work to do today, it also showed my children that mummy could do stuff too, and learn new things.
My kids were great, whenever I showed them something I was working on, they would have so much advice which would encourage me, I enjoyed showing them that you can do anything if you put the time and effort into it.
I have always been a creative person, with math’s and languages never being my strong point, and although I use to get mocked for being ‘blonde’ and a bit ‘stupid’ because of this, I’m so glad I have found my sewing machine and have been able to show people and myself that I can be someone, who’s good at something.
When I started the course, my husband was having to help me thread up my machine, as I knew nothing about sewing/quilting, two years down the line, I have learnt so much, my tutor Gail Cowley has been brilliant throughout the two years, always so quick to reply to my emails. I think I asked a lot of stupid questions (sorry) and sent emails when I was at my wits end, and ready to throw my machine out the window ­čśë Gail always replied with such helpful advice, which motivated me to continue.
I owe a lot to my husband and kids for helping me stay on track, they were always so encouraging. Each module that I completed was celebrated with a bottle of prosecco… I think if this had been a course that I had to attend in person, I wouldn’t have done it. I’m not a particularly confident person, and so being able to learn in my own space at my own pace was great.  I would absolutely recommend this course to anyone with a love for creativity, and no I have a certificate to be proud of.
Since completing the course, I have started my own WordPress site at www.creativeblonde.co.uk where I write step by step tutorials. I am currently competing in the #100days100blocks2017 challenge on Instagram, where I have met so many lovely people, who leave such lovely comments on my Instagram page at https://www.instagram.com/creativeblonde66/ I have gained almost 250 followers in just a few months.
I’ve been extremely lucky to be given a job with Alicia at www.sewwhatalicia.com which I applied for soon after completing the course, I write step by step foundation paper piecing tutorials for her blog.
I also write tutorials for poppies and polkadots , Minerva crafts and craftcotton blog, where I have received some very positive feedback and praise from customers.
One of my quilts went on show at the NEC Birmingham quilt show and at the quilt show in Cologne, earlier this year, which I’m very proud of.
I love where I am right now… long may it continue ­čśŐ



 Many thanks to Michelle for this great post - Love Gail x

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