I believe that Sayeda made the crucial difference to me between finishing my MA and not having anything to show for the last four years. Initially I worked with Sayeda to get me started on working on the MA. I had started the MA nearly four years previously. Many aspects of my life conspired to lead me to defer, which I ended up doing a total of three times until I was into the fourth year of an MA that was meant to take me a year. I ended up in a vicious circle. I wanted to finish but this didn’t transpire in me getting anything done. I felt I had so many things to do and issues on my mind that my focus was never truly on the MA. It felt like I was doing ‘old’ work – catching up on the past and all this made me do was think about the years I had wasted and what I ‘should’ be doing now. I then just felt bad about myself and didn’t get anything done. Sayeda firstly established with me why I was doing the MA and I thought through with her if this was something I still wanted to do. It was right for me then, but was it still right for me now? Sayeda helped me to break things down, untangle things and focus on issues in isolation. I concluded that I still wanted to finish the MA and it fitted in with my life now – what I wanted, my values.
One of the issues I had was that it seemed that nobody still believed that I could finish. With Sayeda’s help I was able to build up my confidence again and pull myself out of depression. I was also spurned on knowing that Sayeda genuinely believed in me and that I could get this done. All of this helped me to get started but after going on holiday I had eleven days remaining to finish. This meant getting a minimum of 24,000 words done. As I had deferred before I could not bide myself anymore time than that eleven days. I was working steadily, but I was still not working to the speed needed to complete on time. Sayeda helped me to break things down into targets and the task became more bitesize. She also gave me lots of practical advice about taking care of myself. However one of the best things she did was to help me to calm down, not to panic and to focus on the task day by day, hour by hour. Sayeda’s sessions were excellent, but she took a genuine interest in me and helping me to achieve my target. She was always at the other end of the phone.
On the day of my deadline I handed in all my assignments completed with a total of 31,000 words – 7,000 over what I had aimed to get done at bare minimum. This was something I never thought possible. I genuinely believe that without Sayeda’s guidance, the work we did tighter and the techniques/strategies I used as a result, I would not have finished. The relief of finally getting it done is amazing and I feel like such I weight has been lifted. Now I can move on to where I want to be.