Tag: work

Life Updates

I haven’t meant to completely abandon my blog during the week but lately, life has been busy and has left me completely drained and unmotivated to sit by my computer in my free time. Sonic woke up me up early today, on my rest day from running of course, so I have a little time to write before I head off to work. Here’s what I’ve been up to when I haven’t been blogging…

The big thing I’ve been doing is balancing work and school. Boring, I know. Working in academia, I’ve always experienced slow times (summer, the holidays, etc) and busy times (fall and spring) but this year has been incredibly hectic. We’ve put in a few grant proposals and submitted multiple papers and abstracts on top of our normal workload. It’s always good to be busy at work but lately, it’s been wearing on me a lot. Plus, school-demands have picked up quite a bit as well. I’m actually only taking one class right now but it has a lab component on Saturday’s that pretty much kills my day. Fortunately, I’m almost done with this quarter (and chemistry forever!) and I’ll have my Saturday’s back in just a few weeks. My schedule will also become a lot more applicable this Spring-Fall with taking all of the psychology, anatomy, and physiology classes that are pre-reqs for PT schools. I can’t believe I’ll be applying to PT schools next fall.

photo 3 (5)

I’ve also been spending more time than usual working out. Between running 60+ miles/week and doing the 30 Day Shred 5-6 times/week, I’m spending a lot more time in workout clothes sweating than I ever have before. It’s been good for me though as working out tends to help me focus and vent off any frustrations. I like to start my day with a run (my form of yoga…) and then do the shred when I get home from work (so long as I don’t have a ton of homework/work to do in the evening). It’s nice to do something for me in the evening before making dinner and sitting back down at my laptop. Plus, I’ve seen a ton of fitness gains both physically and mentally. I plan to finish the shred next week so perhaps I’ll write a post recapping my experiences but needless to say, I’m finally realizing cross training is worth it. My running has improved and I feel more athletic than I have in a long time. It’s a shame that I just realized this now, at one of the busiest times of my life.

photo 1 (6)

In addition to school, work, and fitness, I’ve been trying to fit in some wedding planning which has been a huge source of anxiety for me. I’m not an event planner and I don’t really enjoy planning these types of things. I would LOVE to hire someone to read my mind and plan my wedding so that I can just show up the day of and enjoy myself. I’m slowly ticking things off my to-do list in my spare time over the weekend (ha, Sundays) but there are so many things to think of and details to consider. At least we have the biggies picked out – the ┬ádate, the space, my dress, my bridesmaids dresses, etc. but we really need to get going on some other things. Any advice on how to manage it all?

photo 1 (7)

Between being all sorts of busy, I’ve been pretty good at staying connected with family and friends and finding time to do other things that I love, like read. At this point of my life, I know that when things get out of balance for me, I become unhappy pretty quickly. I know that I need a little downtime every day and that I need to spend time with the people I love in order to feel like myself so I’ve been trying my best to maintain a healthy work-life balance.

photo 2 (7)

Lately for me, this has involved watching Dexter with Ian, reading lots of Irving (I’m definitely going through an Irving phase), checking out new restaurants, and celebrating birthdays, new jobs, and other things with friends. In addition, Ian’s brother had a baby over a month ago, so we soaked up some time with the little one before they left town for the winter. #minijetsetter.

photo 2 (6)

So all in all, life is pretty good right now. More hectic than usual but also so full of new opportunities and love.

Do you function better when you’re busy?
How do you maintain work-life balance?




Catch Up

Every so often, I get caught up in other life things and the blog gets neglected. It’s sad but just how things go. It’s been a while since I’ve written a non-training post so let’s play a little catch up.

Two weekends ago, Ian and I met two of his friends for pho at a tiny Vietnamese restaurant on Argyle St. I ordered Pho Ga and it was outstanding. Ian and I also split an order of spring rolls that were pretty tasty too.

springrolls

The next day it rained all day long so Ian and I decided to run errands and then hibernate in our apartment. Around 2 pm we started to hear music and decided to venture outside to find its source. Turns out there was a little festival a block over from us during the rainstorm. I give them a lot of credit for playing in that mess.

fest

Work last week was horrendous, we had a big deadline and despite finishing our pieces early, we still were almost unable to submit due to a technical glitch. Talk about stressful. After I found out that our submission was successful and I wouldn’t need to work all Thursday evening, Ian took me out for dinner and a huge, much-needed beer.

beer

Has anyone heard of having homework before classes start? I hadn’t either but apparently its a thing? My classes start this week but I spent a lot of time last week and this weekend with my new favorite book…

chem

Woohoo!

Last Friday I had a sports massage to work out whatever is going on in my calf. This was my first sports massage and I wasn’t sure what to expect but I really enjoyed it… after it was over. The entire massage wasn’t painful but oh man, I was seeing red when she was working on my calves. The massage therapist believes that my calf issue is nerve-related so she made sure to work along the nerves to help loosen any that may be pinched due to tight muscles. Whatever she did, it helped a lot and by Sunday, I was completely weird sensation-free!

On Saturday, I had to go back up to Evanston again to pick up something from the bookstore. You better bet, I wore my Michigan gear all over the Northwestern campus too. NU seems so different from UofM or maybe I have a different perspective on everything now. Thoughts for another day.

michigan

Yesterday, I met Katie and Miss Molly to go for a walk around the park. Katie and I caught up while Molly chewed on sticks and stalked squirrels and then Katie and I went to get froyo. It was so much fun!

molly

Molly couldn’t wait to see me :).

What have you been up to lately? Fill me in!




Live to Work or Work to Live?

Recently, I’ve had quite a few conversations and even read a few articles about the disconnect between people’s dream jobs and what’s available in the job market. It seems to be a hot topic right now and something I think that resonates with a lot of people, especially 20-somethings who are relatively new to the workforce, so I thought I’d share my rambles with you guys and get your thoughts.

I remember thinking when I was in undergrad that I would go to grad school, get my master’s degree, and then it would be easy to find a job that I was passionate about and in my field. Well, that’s not exactly what happened. Don’t get me wrong, I really like my job (I’m working in public health research (my field), I have responsibilities, I’m a valued employee, I like my coworkers and my boss etc..), but if you had asked me two years ago if I thought I’d be doing what I do now, I wouldn’t have believed you.

graduation

You see, to do what I really want to do, I need to go back to school and get a degree that is going to take upwards of 5 years to complete. While it seems like going back to school is no-brainer, I’m not sure I’m ready to go back yet. For the first time in my life, I’m working to live, not living to work. I have so few responsibilities outside of the office (just Sonic, really) that it’s easy for me to prioritize having fun, vacations, and running right now.

On occasion however, I start to feel guilty about not being ready to go back to school. I wonder if there’s something wrong with me that’s making me less determined than other people. In reality though, thinking this way is crazy. Even if I decide never to go back to school, I’ll be just fine. I have two degrees and work experience and while the job market is tough (I’m not trying to discredit that), I’d be able to find something to do, even if I wouldn’t be passionate about the work or even really like the job.

thesispresentation

And you know what? Many, many, many people have jobs that they’re not passionate about. It may be because their passions just don’t fall into typical job categories or because there are no opportunities available in that field (or better ones in a different field). Further, some people may not want to mix their passions with work so they choose to do something else and pursue their interests in their free time. All of these scenarios are totally acceptable and my insecurities (and those I see in my peers) make me wonder when the idea of working to live started to be considered inferior to living to work.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to only work between the hours of 9-5. There’s also nothing wrong with wanting to work long hours or weekends because you absolutely love your job. Everyone is different and interests and needs change over time so why do we put so much pressure on young adults to get as much schooling as possible, find the perfect job, and become immediately successful?

segway

Thinking about these issues has reminded me that life is about the journey and experiences not the destination. I’m almost positive that I will end up back in school at some point but in the meantime I’ve promised myself that I will not feel guilty for enjoying the live to work balance I’m currently experiencing. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime period for me and I plan on enjoying it to the fullest (or at least working on convincing myself not to feel guilty…).

Thoughts on this topic?
Do you live to work or work to live?