But although my schedule is as demanding as ever, the publishing courses this time around – marketing strategies and production management – are more closely in line with my interests. The professors’ styles are also very interactive and project-based, which creates more work overall, but also helps each three-hour class pass by much more quickly and interestingly.
Even better, I’m doing my best to improve at setting boundaries in other areas of my life, no longer trying to frantically respond to emails and edit material during our class breaks. Instead, I now typically use the time to take a quick walk outside or down to Starbucks, chatting with my classmates and knowing that the rest of the world will still be there three hours later for me to respond to.
As you can imagine, this is sometimes a challenge for me – someone used to being constantly connected and who has trouble relaxing even when she does have the chance – mostly because I think about all the things I “should” be doing.
Though it may sound crazy, my hectic schedule has led me to crave being able to constantly check things off my to-do list, and I often feel anxious when I can’t respond to every email the minute it comes in, or when I have unfinished tasks leftover that I’d hoped to complete before the end of the day. But, since I know it’s not healthy to go through life feeling continuously on edge, I’m doing all that I can to change my ways, taking time to focus on and appreciate the small, quiet moments in life, no matter how few or far between they may be.
Will I be able to change overnight? Definitely not. But who knows? In the end, if I keep this up, I just may make it through this whole grad school while working thing without going insane after all!
Do you ever find you have a hard time relaxing or being “disconnected”? Which techniques do you use to help you unwind?
(Photo Credit: domarcenter.com)