It’s 2019 and online courses are a dime a dozen in the world of the internet.
Want to learn how to cut your own hair?
There’s a course for that.
Want to learn how to take your dog for a walk without getting your arm pulled out of its socket?
There’s a course for that.
Or the more common ones…
Building a business.
Alright, alright you get the gist. If you want to learn something, there’s probably an online course that will teach you how to do it.
So you sign up for a course, you’re all pumped up like it’s the first day of school and maybe this feeling of euphoria lasts for a week at the most and then you wake up and it’s January 2020 and you realize those 10 online courses you bought are still staring you in the face waiting to be finished.
Been there done that?
Yeah me too and honestly, it’s kinda not so fun.
I mean you put the money down, you spent the time and then you kinda just forgot about it.
As an online course junkie myself, I’m here to give you my top 5 tips to help you get the most bang for your buck with online courses and help you from having that whole buyer’s remorse thing.
disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links which means, as an Amazon Affiliate I make a small commission on qualifying purchases at no cost to you if you choose to use my links. and if you do I appreciate you.
5 Tips to Get the Most out of Online Courses
1. Make it a Priority
Hey, I saw that eye roll!
At the end of the day, you have to make that course you bought a priority.
End of story.
Because if you don’t, even if you follow all of the other tips I’ve laid out for you, you still won’t complete it.
Write it down in your calendar, set a notification on your phone, stop scrolling Instagram for 15 minutes and go through the course.
Five-second rule yourself.
Seriously, do whatever you have to do to make this course a priority.
You won’t get anything out of your investment if you don’t even start. So start there.
2. Get yourself Accountability
When I was a kid I had a teacher who would come around with a bright yellow highlighter and highlight your assignment notebook if you didn’t have your homework done on time.
And one day, I completely forgot about it and I got a highlight.
I was so devastated by that simple, little, stupid yellow highlight in my assignment notebook that I never missed another piece of homework again.
Alright so I was a sensitive kid, but the point is this, that highlight gave me accountability.
It’s much easier for us to let ourselves down but when we let others down…it hurts.
When you take on the challenge of an online course you NEED accountability and no, the course instructor can’t come to your house and make sure you did your homework, but a friend can, a parent can, an aunt can, an uncle can.
It doesn’t matter who your accountability buddy is but get yourself one.
If the course comes with a Facebook group or members area, USE IT.
Find yourself a buddy, get yourself some accountability and watch how much more fun and how much easier it is to complete the course.
3. Make a Bigger Investment
Raise your hand if you’ve signed up for a free course…or ten.
Now raise your hand if you’ve completed the free course. (drops hand.)
Free is enticing for about five minutes and then you forget about it.
Because there’s no skin in the game.
You didn’t put anything down, you didn’t put any amount of money down, it only took you maybe two minutes to sign up.
The same goes for smaller courses or courses that cost less.
If the amount of time or money you put into something doesn’t make you feel invested in what you got, you will not finish it and won’t get anything out of it.
Does this mean you have to drop thousands to get anything out of online courses?
Of course not!
It means you need to find that threshold of what scares you enough to feel invested and will actually make you finish the course and what your pocketbook can handle.
4. Reduce Distractions and Take Notes
I know, I know we’re really going old school today but trust me here.
It’s all fun and games to sit and watch an online course but you’re probably distracted by that hilarious meme your best friend Jimmy put on Facebook, and the Twitter notifications going off and Greys Anatomy blasting in the background on Netflix.
With all that going on you’re not even absorbing what you signed up to learn.
My solution is simple, grab yourself a notebook, put all other distractions away and TAKE NOTES.
Even if the course instructor includes cliff notes or slides, your brain will take in more if you physically write down all the points you want to remember.
And the more invested you are in taking notes, the more closely you will listen to what they are saying and the more you will get out of your investment.
5. Set a Timeline
When was the last time you completed something that you didn’t set a timeline for?
The same goes for online courses and online learning.
Because most courses are self-paced and self-study it is up to you to decide when you will finish the course and how long it will actually take you.
The simple solution is to literally put a date on your calendar for when you want to complete the course.
A week from now?
It’s all dependent on your personal schedule, how long the actual course is and realistically how quickly you can finish while getting the most out of it.
You can also do this for a start date because without that you may not even begin at all.
Nothing will work if you don’t put in the Work
Online courses are more convenient, you can learn literally anything you want online, they are fun, very useful and seriously help you change your life.
But they only work if you’re willing to put in the time, energy and effort into them.
And I think it goes without saying, but you have to implement everything you have learned once the course is complete.