Posts Tagged ‘concerns’

Getting on the Right Track

Monday, October 4th, 2010

Over this semester, I have faced the challenge of fending off multiple projects and keeping up with all of my readings. To think that grad school, if I even manage to get in, will be all this times ten is a little disheartening, but I think an issue I am having here is more how I am managing my time. Further, I have the “Oh if only…” syndrome. I am reminded of Eats, Shoots and Leaves when the author discusses a school teacher who complains about not understanding punctuation but has no interest in fixing her problem. I go on and on about not sleeping well, having tons of readings and feeling lost in my projects. What am I doing about it? Have I devised a scheme to handle the workload? No, I have complained. With all of the work I have it is important to come up with some sort of schedule and slowly work away at my readings.

This is a big reversal from my shotgun approach at homework. Sure, I am a hard worker, but I tend to just do what I can, when I can. One night at the library a fellow student suggested I start micro-managing my time by setting up a set amount of hours I am willing to work on something. It’s odd because I don’t like to just work on a project here and there, I do it until I am done. Ha! You caught the problem with that idea. When you have four projects you can’t just do things with a scatter-shot method, and big projects require a lot of hours for completion. On top of the projects I already have, I also have a few books that need to be read per week. The bottom line is, I don’t have time to do a whole lot at once.

I started writing a research journal in a ratty old composition notebook that I never used. Dan Cohen had tweeted an article about a man who kept project journals in notebooks for years, which I am all about the hard copy, but I have wondered if having a research journal that everyone can see, with set deadlines, would hold me more accountable to the day-to-day research. The head instructor of CET in Harbin noted that language development (insert projects) are not about cramming right before you need it, but rather they require every day doing a concerted effort, busy but not nearly as frantic.

I want to write great (not necessarily perfect) material. Maybe a good place to start is scheduling dedicated time blocks for certain projects. Hmm…

If anyone has any project suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment!