21 March 2011

Ascending Stress Levels

It's that time of the semester again. Things are picking up the pace, and things are getting busy. And this past week, I have been finding myself so tired when I get back at home at night that all I want to do is plop down in bed.

This past week, several things have happened. I have just concluded an experiment in the lab. That means that I have collected data from 48 participants and I have already finished digitizing the data, and now they are ready to be analyzed. I also finished reading a draft of a paper written by a collaborator, and my comments were needed. I also started working on a mechanical project with another faculty member (this is how I am getting paid this semester, as the department handyman).

The other day, I was so busy, my day started at 9:00 AM. I trained undergraduate lab personnel with a new task that I needed them to do, and then I had a class for an hour and a half at 10:30, and then I attended a talk for two hours at 2:00, and then I had dinner with a couple of friends, and then we watched a movie at home. Oh, and before the day ended, we went to the supermarket.

I have several post-it notes on my wall in my office right now, reminding me of the things I need to do in the following days.

Speaking of following days, I just finished preparing another experiment: that will be loaded into the lab soon, as soon as there is an opening. And someone important is coming to campus the next week, and we arranged things so that I can have a meeting with him when he is around, because there is a project I am working with that I would definitely appreciate some input from him.

Oh, and I have to write an abstract too. That's due in about 2 weeks. That determines whether I would be able to go to a twentieth country or not this coming summer.

Oh well, there are so many things to do. Which is why I am glad that there are things I can do in the evening, such as attend concerts and recitals where I can get complimentary tickets to. In this way, I can just force myself to sit down in an auditorium, enjoy the music, without thinking about things and without my brain working hard and fast.

(A Building at the Corner, from my Cuzco's Colonial Structures Series)


  1. Different job but I feel the same! I force myself to do things outsie work to have a life but I'm exhausted.

  2. Zhu,

    It is true I think, regardless of profession. There's always a burnout point, regardless if you like your job or not. I like what I do, but I still need time off of it once in a while.