Is it possible to be disciplined without a deadline?

Tiny journal page from my latest online class 'Draw Your Awesome Life'

I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed by being a bit behind on my online classes. On the one hand, there is really no such thing as being behind. The classes typically have long access, 6 months, a year or 'forever' access. So actually you can complete them in your own time. On the other hand, there is a lot to be said for the sense of satisfaction that comes from completing something promptly. A bit of structure is important I think. Does one actually need a deadline of some sort in order to be disciplined enough to complete the task?

I remember in high school I had a maths teacher who said she would happily correct our homework if and when we chose to hand it in, but that was up to us. I could so have got a better mark for maths. I blame her. I don't want my art classes to end up like high school maths, left to last because other things had more urgent deadlines. So with the weight of those uncompleted art assignments added to my maths homework (which I have obviously still not done), I sighed and started web browsing.

Before I knew it I had... signed up to another class! I know, but it seemed logical at the time. And this class is different. (Not really). Well, a little. It is completed in a tiny watercolour journal. Hurrah, I had one of those knocking about already. It is even a Moleskine and I have had no idea what to do with it since I bought it several months ago.

Another tiny journal page created in 'Draw Your Awesome Life'

This class is called Draw your Awesome Life, by Joanne Sharpe. Each lesson video is brief, maybe even 5 minutes or so, and since you are working in a tiny journal, the page can possibly be completed in 10 minutes. Even if you sit down with a cup of tea you will probably be only half an hour from the start of the lesson video to the completed page. That's not to say that I don't love the long detailed lesson videos I do in other courses. Of course, they are fantastic too. But these little bite-sized lessons offer very achievable, happy journal pages, for de-stressing. There is a time and place for all of these things, don't you think?