Getting Through Something You're Stuck On

Posted by Kathryn Harris-Lowe on

Aside from the curriculum, one of the things I really like about the Interior Design course I'm taking is that it is learn as you go.  That means I can read and complete assignments at my own pace.  With running Kat's Print Boutique and working full-time, this was really appealing to me when I first signed up for the course.  While I still am happy with the element, recently, it was a bit of a downside.

For the last module I did, I had to redo a floor plan, which will then be used in future assignments.  They say you can do it by hand, but also recommend some computer programs you can use to complete it.  At first I decided to try out a computer program for a few reasons:

  • If I'm going to be using it later, why not learn it now
  • If it generates all the proper lines and symbols, I won't have to struggle to determine the correct ones


There were definitely factors that made using the program helpful, the main one be proportions.  When I was sketching it initially, I had trouble visualizing the correct proportions.  How large or small were the rooms?  Was the furniture an accurate size?  But, in the end I found learning the ins and outs of the program to be a hindrance for learning and completing this particular assignment.  There were a few reasons for this:

  • It took a while to learn the program properly.  While I did initially give myself a longer timeline for this assignment than other ones I have completed, I didn't anticipate just how long it was going to take me.
  • I spent too much time on the furnishings.  Style of furnishings was not required for this assignment.  We only had to put in basic shapes.  But I found myself spending too much time decorating, rather than figuring out logistics.

In the end, I ended up making up my floor plan on Adobe Illustrator.  While it doesn't have many of the interior design elements the other program I was using had, it allowed me to do what I needed for the assignment.  I also know this program well as it is what I use to edit my Kat's Print Boutique designs.


What I submitted for my assignment (btw guys, I received a score of 10/10!)


After spending way too long on this assignment, I finally finished it this past Sunday.  I will say though, I was almost hesitant to submit it as I had spent so much time on it and felt like I was missing something (despite reading the instructions a multitude of times).

So, you may be wondering what helped me get over this slump. 

  • Realizing the timeline I gave myself to learn the program wasn't enough: Due to the short amount of time I initially gave myself to learn the program, I just dove right into the assignment, rather than learning the basics about the program first.  Also, after finding a program that looked pretty good, had a trial period, and a decent cost if I decided to purchase it, I didn't bother to look into other options.
  • Evaluating my progress: When I first started this assignment, it was the end of summer.  I blamed a lot of my slow progression on the amount of family that was visiting, and didn't look for other reasons.  After I while I looked at how I was progressing, and how long I thought I would take to complete this using the initial program (and be happy with the end result).
  • Wanting to move on: The thing with the course I'm taking, you can't move on to the next module until you complete the one before.  That meant I couldn't read onto the next module at all.  I felt like I wasn't making any progress on the course, which was disheartening.
  • Realizing not learning the program now was fine: I am part of a Facebook group for people taking this course and I saw quite a few posts from other who were struggling to get this module completed as well.  There were comments from others who had made it past this module, one of which really struck a cord with me.  They said that we are already learning something new with creating a floor plan, and that since using one of the suggested programs wasn't required, that we would be learning a lot, and more than what is necessary, at once.  They followed it up by saying, focus on creating the floor plan first.  So, that's what I decided to do.


How do you get over slumps you go through?

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