Studying for all of the PPL exams

28 Feb

It’s not since my university days have I had to study quite so hard for exams like this. I have got 7 exams to pass before the summer to enable me to go to America with all my written exams under my belt. I have got to do:

1. General aviation
2. Air law and operational procedures
3. Aircraft general
4. Navigation and Meteorology
5. Flight performance and planning
6. Human factors
7. Radio telephony

I want to pass all of my exams before I complete the practical side of the PPL as I not only want to have all of the background and knowledge of flying but I also want the practical side of it to be the last part so that as soon as I get back to the UK and am issued with my flying licence then I am ready to get flying straight away.

I have always fared well in written exams if I get my head down and study hard so that is what I am doing at the moment. I am currently on the first book by Jeremy Pratt- Flying Training.

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Momentum Comes

10 Feb

One of the greatest lessons I have ever learnt is recently. I have been working from home for the last seven months as a change in customers meant I could work from home. Now working from home was absolutely brilliant last year as the football World Cup was on and we had some spectacular summer days so I could work and play in the garden and get out and about much more than during the winter. As the winter months progressed I found that I started to stay in a lot of the time and not see anyone. Money got tight and I started to be consumed with the task at hand which was how to pay all the bills. My wife had recently stopped working and I had so many things that I had wanted to do I didn’t know where to start:

This is where the learning part came in, I learnt that anything you want to achieve in life must begin with one step. No matter how small it is the little things add up to big things. It feels like I have not been doing very much in the last 7 months as I have been taking baby steps on different projects but I have found that I have actually completed a load of things not limited to:

Running a business

Decorating house

Replacing windows

Gardening

Picking up/dropping kids at school

Shopping

Life planning

Paying the bills

Running a house

Investing

Reading

Running

Weight training

Seeing friends

Helping out local PTA

Raising money for charity

All of these came from doing little steps to create momentum towards bigger projects. Momentum came when I realise that I didn’t have to do a massive job all at once-that I could start with something very small but keep at it continually.

You dont want to do it like that

23 Jan

There is a very funny comic called Harry Enfield who has a character who is an old man who always says- you don’t want to do it like that.

For far too long I have taken the advice of people like that who think they are well placed to offer me advice when they have never done the same as what I am about to embark on.

I read somewhere that you should put your mentors  on your wall somewhere in your office or home and look at them every day to remind you of the values they stand by and that when you have a difficult decision to make you ask yourself what they would do to help you guide your own life along the path of your heroes.

I started doing this and it worked my heroes include:

Richard Branson

Howard Hughes

Winston Churchill

Nelson Mandela

Henry Ford

Thomas Edison

Gandhi

Michael Jordan

And many more….

It has made a difference because you stop listening to the negative thoughts in your mind and replace them with those of your mentors alive or dead. When I asked the question should I do it I looked at all the people on my wall and realised that they all took a chance of doing what they really believed in and this is the same for me no matter how hard it will be.

Being Afraid

10 Jan

Wanting to fly all my life I have always loved the idea of being in the air flying through the clouds and seeing the world from a different perspective. It is always so calm and relaxing when I am up there and I am always completely buzzing when I get back on terra firma. I know it is the one thing I have always wanted to do and dreamt of. I have recently been thinking about the reason I have been holding myself back and have left it this long to start flying. I have made enough money in the last ten years to have paid for the lessons many times over. I could have made sacrifices to ensure I became a pilot so I don’t think it is that that held me back. I could also blame the fact that I met my wife and had kids so I couldn’t do it then but they are all lame excuses as my family have never held me back- sure my wife was concerned that If I gave it all up then what would we do for income but on the whole she has supported me all the way.

All of these are excuses that I have used as a reason not to do it. The reason something clicked in my mind was that my niece ruby contracted cancer in November 2010 and it had quite a profound effect on me. I became really quite depressed and scared that her little life would be taken away from her before she even reached 1 year of age. It dawned on me like a lot of heavy emotionally charged things can be that I had spent my life being afraid of going for my dream and what people would think of me. My worst flaw as a human is listening too much to what others say and being sensitive to their opinions true or not. I was afraid- simple as that. I still am to a certain degree but that will go with time as I realise that I am living my life for me and no one else. You only get one chance at life and it is short so we have to do what needs to be done. As my brother Martin said recently” what is the worst that could happen? Even if you failed and it all went tits up you chased your only real dream in life so go for it.

Ruby getting ill changed my life from being afraid of doing something to being afraid of not doing something because it brought into focus how important it is to live life the way you want to.