Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Something had to drop

I miss writing about science, and academia, and life. For fun. For you all. For me.

Before I started as an assistant professor several people told me to prepare, because I would be juggling lots of balls, and I would drop a ball. First, I think that is terrible advice. There are many better ways to convey the same concept than the "impending doom", "prepare for failure" attitude. 

But second, perhaps it is a little true. Between setting up the lab, finding and writing grant applications, mentoring students, writing lectures and teaching, emails (so many emails), and hoping to spend any time with the people around me, I have severely limited the time I spend writing for fun.

The posts are usually written from notes taken for some other reason.

I guess this is just check in that things are crazy busy, exciting, exhausting, and something had to drop. That something was sharing in depth here. For now.*

#newPI out

*I had a few "extra" minutes this morning because the dog got me up earlier than usual. I could have taken a short run (I do remember a time when I exercised regularly), but prioritized this. Today. Now on to answering emails.


Ian Street said...

I understand needing to prioritize.

However, exercise/physical activity is one of those things I don't know that I could give up for my own mental health.

I'm sure things are working for you (sounds like they are, anyway!), I just thought I'd put in my small voice to make sure you get some time to take care of body and mind.

I worry about academia (and almost every other job these days) that seem to insist that taking care of oneself is something that is optional or can be tossed aside easily (I know, that may be me just being selfish).

mathbionerd said...

Thanks, Ian. That's a great point.

I do make some time - kind of - to exercise, though not going to the gym like I used to. I take extra time to walk in the mornings (was running, but I hurt my knee, again).

But, I choose exercise over blogging. I used to have time to do both.

Absolutely, physical and mental health are important. And as much as I love blogging, it is the part of science communication that I have given a low priority. Perhaps partially because I know some colleagues view it as a waste of time, whereas other activities (giving public lectures, doing science outreach) are more highly valued on the science outreach front.

Brandon Curtis said...

Hopefully that will change, and someday academics will value good Wikipedia editors and StackExchange contributors as much as they should!

Good luck with your work. When you do have time again, I'm sure you'll have an audience!

emeraldg said...

Hello Melissa,

My name is Emerald and you and I were both at the Education and Outreach meeting for the EMPH conference. I just found your blog and really enjoy reading your perspectives on gender, science, and motherhood.

Thrive on,

mathbionerd said...

Dear Emerald, Thank you so much for sharing! It means a lot! Best, Melissa