Life Happens Outside of Your PhD

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This semester, my life outside of my PhD has been pushing me to pay attention to it. Many circumstances have forced me to put my work aside and put my personal life first; planning a wedding, health concerns with family, moving apartments, and most recently a death.

Grief has a way of putting things into perspective. After the funeral, I’ve had some time for silence, reflection and time to just be with myself. I’ve had time to think. I thought about a lot. Most of which I won’t mention here. But in relation to my PhD, I thought about myself when I first started my PhD, almost 3 years ago now. I thought about who I was and what I did with my time. I thought about the LIFE I had prior too. Where did that all go?

Lately I have been so rigid with my schedule, in order to get everything done, that I miss out on living. I rarely have time for family and friends. I am so stressed out that I skip meals. I am so anxious that my body is exhausted and depleted. I literally book in time on my schedule to live and leave no room for spontaneity.

What the heck happened?

Where did my life go?

And how do I get it back?

As I am writing this I am watching a group of kids play in the snowbank outside my house. The seem so free. I remember when I used to do the same thing, for hours, and loved every minute of it. If I were to go do that now, I would have to plan it in advance, make sure I have the time for it, the proper snow gear, and where would I put my cell phone if people needed to contact me? Sure, I had parents to look after all those details for me when I was younger but my point is, do I really have to try that hard to live life?

This blog post is different than my usual posts. Its more of a reflection if anything. And a continuation of my last post but with more urgency. I am sad, I am angry, I am confused but most of all I want to make the most of the time I do have with this life. Life happens outside of our PhD. Let’s not have it pass us by. I tried so hard to not let this happen to me. I wanted so badly to incorporate my PhD and my life together. But somehow by trying to avoid it, I ran right into this trap.

Life happens outside of our PhD.

Don’t let it pass you by.

Take time to be grateful.

And put your life before your work.

Until next time,

Christine xo

P.S Don’t forget to use #ScholarCulture #ScholarSquad to keep me updated on your experiences as grad students.

 

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