Tuesday, January 22, 2013


To say that I am currently feeling overwhelmed is an understatement. Professionally speaking, I have quite a bit on my plate at the moment: conferences to apply for, conferences papers that have been accepted need to be revised, student essays must be marked, funding applications filled out, proposals finetuned.

Unforunately, all these tasks seem to be engendering perncious thoughts of self-doubt that attack at the most inopportune times: am I any good at teaching? isn't this conference abstract pure rubbish? who will ever fund this drivel of words masquerading as a proposal? am I doomed to fail at everything in life?!

Oh, the melodrama!

At times like these, I always feel a strong desire to run away, to distance myself from the unpleasantness of a difficult situation. Right now I want to be on the moors, channeling Emily, Charlotte and Anne; especially Emily, who often escaped there herself. Provided a magical internal heater would protect me from all the wuthering, I'd love to sprawl out as the squishiness of the botanical life beneath provides comfortable cushioning, watch the clouds pass overhead and forget these nagging worries. Just simply be.

Then I remember it wasn't too long ago that I didn't have the luxury of stressing myself out about lesson plans or conference presentations. I didn't get to teach and I didn't get to share research with an academic community. While I definitely need to prioritize and work on stress management, isn't it wonderful that I have pursuits in my life that I care about so passionately? Not everybody has that. Many don't have the luxury of working at a job they love or, in this troubled economy, a job at all.(I was in that boat not too long ago!)

So over the next few weeks as I wrestle with managing multiple projects and the consequent anxieties, I'll do my best to remind myself that I'm pretty damn lucky to get to worry about such trivialities.

If all else fails, running away to the moors can always be my Plan B.


JoAnn said...

Hang in there... I know you can do it!! The moors do sound very inviting though ;-)

Caro said...

Ah, the gnawing self-doubt when in the middle of a big project. I think all of us can relate to that. If it helps, I think you have a fabulous way with words and I'm sure that, once you add the work and research to your talent, your proposal will be wonderful.
The moors can be a vacation spot, though! :)

Diana said...

Thanks, Jo Ann! The moors *do* sound inviting. My mind always wander there when I'm feeling stressed.

Diana said...

Oh, Caro! You're so sweet. This comment meant so much to me. Thanks for the vote of confidence.

amanda @ simplerpastimes said...

I was in that no-job boat not too long ago myself, and I'm relieved that so far my new employer seems to be easing me in gently--otherwise, I'm sure I'd be finding the self-doubt myself. I hope you can get through all your projects with minimal anxiety and that everything works out well!

Diana said...

Thanks, Amanda!

I'm glad to hear you're being eased in gently with your new job. In the past I've had bosses who abide by the baptism-by-fire method, and that is never a pleasant introduction to a new job.