This was a week where pretty much everything went the way I hoped… no major curve balls thrown my way, which felt really nice. After feeling like I couldn’t “catch up” from our January trip, it was nice to finally get to a place where the pace of work feels more manageable. So… the 5 day/4 night conference trip that we all took in January had about a month long impact on work/home life. Is that worth it? I’m not so sure. Granted, it would have looked a lot different had I not been teaching or teaching fewer classes or if both classes were 100% ready to go before the term started. Certainly helpful to think about for future conference travel and the ripple effect it has on stress levels returning home. I have another conference coming up in April, that I’ll just be going to. I imagine solo conference travel will have a different impact (perhaps a restorative impact on me because I get a parenting break, but more stress potentially for Mike… I’ll keep you posted).
In planning related news, the current version of Google tasks is going away (or at least they are taking away the main platform that I use), so I need to find something else. I turned to reddit to see what other people are doing with the change and have decided to give Dynalist a whirl. From the tiny bit I’ve played around with it so far, it seems like it will do everything I want (and more). Crossing my fingers that it works well (otherwise I may be going back to my plain old google document method of keeping track of tasks.
This week I’ve been playing around with my work breaks during the day. I’m trying to quit my habit of spending breaks on the internet or my phone (getting an actual electronic break). I find myself looking at instagram or redfin a lot (I could spend all day looking at houses) and then before I know it my break is up and it’s back to work and my break didn’t feel like an actual break. This week I tried to infuse piano breaks (hence the picture) and walking breaks. At home, I did at least one piano break each work day. It was a little tricky with Ellie because she of course wanted to play with me… which is fine, but also not the break I’d intended to take. We worked it out so that I was playing and she was dancing while I played (which was adorable). And the other days I was at home I turned the volume down low enough (it’s a digital piano) so she couldn’t hear me. When I’m at work, I’m trying to have at least one break be a walk outside. With spring (sort of) approaching, I want to get outside more.
Conference submission: This submission was a last minute decision with a collaborator that I cobbled together with some notes from a paper we’ve been working on. This makes up for the conference submission I had planned to do over winter break but messed up the due date. Get to cross off my yearly goal of a 1st authored conference submission! My goal for the week was to submit a conference abstract. Goal met? Yes!
Paper 3: Deciding to slightly adjust how I report the papers I’m working on. I’m assigning each paper a number (on my actual list I refer to them by topic) and using those numbers when I talk about them here. Previously, I’d just number papers based on where they appeared in this list, which changed depending on the week and number of papers. Assigning each paper a number will help with continuity over time when I look back at these. My goal for the week was to send an updated outline to the 2nd co-author that I didn’t get around to last week. Goal met? Yup.
Systematic review/interview project: My goals for the week were to type up presentation notes for the feedback session, brainstorm how to incorporate feedback from the session, and do an initial search with our slightly shifted focus. Since having Ellie, I really struggle to keep any information in my brain (particularly when I’m speaking in front of groups of people), so notes with key points I don’t want to forget are essential when I’m doing any kind of presentation. This week, my collaborator (who I also submitted the conference presentation with) and I got to talk through the current status of our project with a group of colleagues, which led us to shift our focus a bit. Goal met? Yup.
Course prep (condensed research course): My goals for the week were to review/provide feedback for a study design assignment, come up with a timeline for reviewing their next assignment, and a bunch of administrative stuff (mainly emails). Goal met? Yes.
Course prep (online research course): My goals for the week were to create/finalize/upload week 10 videos (our final week!), finalize and then do a final review of week 9 content before it went live, post an update in the class announcements section, review/provide feedback for their weekly activities, and come up with a timeline for reviewing their next assignment. Goal met? Yes.
Course prep (condensed stats course and online human dev course): My goal for the week was to do one piece of prep for each course. Goal met? 50%. Worked on the syllabus for my stats course next term as well as some logistical stuff, did not have a chance to work on the human dev course.
Advising: A few emails to wrap up some administrative stuff I’ve been working on.
Lead instructor: Emailing back and forth, as well as tracking down a book to lend to a new instructor.
service + admin
Planning: My goal for the week was to have my weekly list ready to go on Friday with Monday’s tasks identified. Goal met? Yes, it was the last thing I did on Friday,
meetings, appointments, + events
Meetings: ✓office hours (x2) ✓mentor check-in ✓preschool open house ✓research feedback session ✓online office hours ✓online course chat ✓collaborator check in
Workouts: Did 2 this week - all body weight because my back does not seem to like when I add weights.
Toddler on the Tenure Track: Goal: Get 2 posts up on the blog. Goal met? Yup.
Meditation: Goal: 5 minutes every other day Goal met? YES! Everyday except Saturday (because I forgot and didn’t set any reminders for myself).
Budget: ✓Update budget, ✓create March budget, ✓figure out how much of our tax return to put towards student loan payments