Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Breaking the silence coming from juggling too much

Juggling too much is getting to me, and where my initial action is to cloak myself with silence, I feel it is better to do just the opposite. Ever since I started my PhD it felt as though my identity was undergoing changes as well. All of a sudden I am no longer a researcher that is out there in the field, or an active player, but a simple student digging into unknown territory, trying to gather some interest... I no longer have a budget that I can manage and direct towards goals that need to be achieved (including getting myself out there in the open, at conferences, physically among peers I learn from). So, it really feels as though my identity is changing and to be honest I do not know what to do with it ... yet.

On another note it is hard to juggle all the administration and organization that comes along with starting/doing a PhD in a foreign country, certainly as I feel responsible for my whole family (which my partner tells me not to do, for we are indeed a team, but still... it is me who is the asking party in this endeavor). Practically I am juggling to meet schedules and to keep everyone happy... and looking at the silence on my blog, it tells me that time wise I am not doing a great job. To me, my blog is a representation of good time management. If it keeps having a balanced flow, I am good... if it falls flat, I need to take a look at what I am doing and how.

I am of course fully aware of the luxury position I am in: being able to investigate something I am curious about is simply fantastic, even though less money is coming in. But I simply was not aware of the multitude of organizational elements that need to be sorted, and that takes a bit of a toll.

The only option to take in times of pressure is ... to read. Luckily there are always books ... so digging into the Flow creativity by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and Aaron Silvers directed me towards Pema Chodron on living beautifully with uncertainty and change. If any of you have books that might help to refind focus ... feel free to share.