I am feeling increasingly empowered by the Gaia Uni process as I submit the finishing touches to Output 3 which is centred around the permaculture design of my family’s smallholding, Brook End. The deadlines, constructive feedback and peer support are pushing my learning edges. Seeing the standard set by designers around the world, the depth at which they apply permaculture and their creativity in presenting information I feel compelled to push myself beyond my comfort zone and create design work that is above all useful but also beautiful, readable and inspiring.
With conscious attention to my learning patterns I find I am being increasingly productive. The body of work I have produced this past 6 weeks has surprised even myself.
Key learning points for developing more productive learning systems have included:
- Putting my to-do list in my Ical program – this has really helped me focus & identify needed tasks, actually assigning a day to do something is a powerful too.
- Putting gardening work in ical – makes it an honoured task with time allocated, this is helping me massively.
- Getting an extra hours sleep – I have always been an early bird, pushing myself to get up early & crack on. This month however on a few occasions I’ve asked my body to wake me when ready, surprisingly not waking much later at all but feeling so much better & energetic for the day.
- Setting aside a bookmarks folder (or several) on your web browser for when you’re working online and want to track resources you have referred to.
I have also now experienced the difference between a detailed designed output – with a clear plan of action and aims, and an output that has formed as a response to turn a problem (burnout from social organising) to a solution. The advantages and disadvantages of both are detailed below:
Output Creation Style
|*Can be massively productive if goals are realistic.
*Greater sense of ‘control’ over time
*Pushes learning edges
*Good for budgeting
*Good for very busy people! *Mental comfort in knowing where you are/where you’re going
|*Pressure to achieve what you originally set as goals
*May not be open to flexibility/ feedback or re-design
*May feel like a slave to your plan!
*Not as much of an ‘open cup’ being receptive to new learning
|*Enables you to focus on your most pressing & immediate focuses
*Potentially enahcing the quality and depth of observation & reflection
*Is a way to stack functions and reduce work
*Great realisations come from what we are already doing
*Opens up to creativity
|*May not achieve as greater depth as possible
*May not push your learning edges fully/may keep you in comfort zone
*May distract from other areas of your life needing attention (that you may have design around for this very reason)
*May have less time to research & utilise resource
For a recent picture of what is going well and challenging in my life you can read the notes from my most recent action learning guild here.