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Posts tagged Seniors in College

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Surprise Benefits of Going Back to School

When I added my name to the wait list of two college courses, after a 32 year absence from school, I knew I would learn many things. 

I expected to learn about color. I hoped that would help in my future watercolor paintings and might inspire me to pick up oil painting again. 

I expected to learn to draw and I realized that might not be so much about gathering new information but more like assignments that forced me to practice a skill that needed sharpening. 

I assumed there was both information and practice that would be attained in both classes: Color and Beginning Drawing. 

What surprised me is how much character development would take place. That I would be learning Patience and Perseverance. Not so much in the form of gathering information about the two but by practicing self discipline, choosing to rein myself in from the many distractions of life. This has led to better time-management based on a new set of priorities. 

I’m partly motivated by wanting to get a good grade and/or to hear my teacher (and possibly a few fellow students and friends) say ‘well done’. But I’m also motivated by my own desire to improve and enjoy looking at what I’ve created. I want my projects to be pleasing to me, to be beautiful. 

In the past I have lost interest in paintings or drawings I have begun, stopping before finishing many of them. But now that I’m school with deadlines, grades and tuition, I’m motivated to complete each assignment. 

I’m amazed at how much improvement I’ve seen in my work in this environment. The quality teaching in both Jr. College classes has motivated me to do my best and push to keep improving. The deadlines keep my perfectionism from reworking a piece for all eternity. 

In a world of multi-tasking I’m experiencing the joy of being present and focusing on one thing at a time, while my Acoustic Alchemy Pandora station plays softly in the background. Who knew going back to school at 51 would be so good for me?!

Filed under Seniors in College back to school patience