In earlier posts I’ve reflected on my decision to go back to University whilst working fulltime. It’s all part of an aspirational goal of completing a PhD. It’s feeling much more aspirational than real at the moment!
When I was discussing this with various people last year, it was all part of embracing the spirit of Herminia Ibarra’s fantastic book, Working Identities. It seemed straight forward – working 4 days a week with Uni on Mondays – it would be all OK. Like so many things the idea and the reality bare no resemblance.
Work is full on as Professional Services face one of the most challenging, if not the most challenging period in my professional career. Pressure on delivery, commoditisation of services, and an ever downward pressure on fees. That would all be difficult enough without an economic environment in which business is quite appropriately watching every penny.
The university workload is also substantial. Mondays at university involves a full day of contact including a dreaded workshop on statistics, a subject that I struggled at when I undertook my degree in the mid70s. Having not looked at stats since, it’s not a surprise that I am having to learn it all again. Academic writing is also new to me. Whilst I have written all my life this is a new form of writing. To be fair though, I am enjoying the research and writing aspect, it’s just that there is so much to do – 6000 words before 30 June ignoring the exam!
The upshot of all this is that I have no time. It’s a good thing I have a grown up family and an understanding wife who is very supportive of my current endeavors. It also helps the I am an early riser, as it enables me to ride 4 mornings a week and study on the others. It’s also good that I don’t seem to need masses of sleep as I need the evenings to either catch up on work or study.
Our social life has changed. Nights out during the week are by exception. I usually have one evening work function a week so there isn’t t time for much else until the weekend. On the weekend it’s also about fitting study time in, making time for coffee with my wife, going to the Adelaide Central Market and maybe trying to fit the football in.
Whoever said that I should be slowing down must have been kidding!
I regularly post about Adelaide, as I am proud South Australia, so please indulge me with a few photos of our fantastic new Adelaide Oval.
If the ground draws me to watch the Crows arch rival Port Adelaide it must be special!
Wikipedia provides a useful history of this famous oval
Link to Adelaide Oval website
What does this week hold for me?
Each week is so full and this week is short – Easter Monday and Anzac Day. Just three work days!
From a work point of view so many of the staff are in leave this week and I suspect many of my clients will be as well. It will be a great opportunity to catch up on what has got away from me in recent weeks. My move to four day weeks to accommodate study has been a welcome change however as I am working full time there is still five days work to be done. A serious week of clearing emails ahead I hope.
I also start the University’s mentoring program this week – I’m the mentor!That should be both challenging and fun.
Also whilst we are in a study break there is still so much reading to do. I really have to come to grips with Statistics. Maybe a tutor might help? Then there is the next assignment, another 1500 words on my 10,000 word challenge before semester’s end.
Time with the family, watching Game of Thrones, keeping upto date with the EPL are also important, not to mention The Crows whose season finally seems to have started! There needs to be time for all of these as well as sleeping! Ah, sleeping, that’s definitely taken a back seat in recent weeks so much so that last night I was asleep at 8.30pm – haven’t done that since I was about 10!
I also want to find some time to get back to my blog and reading other’s blogs. Both of these seemed to have been things which have fallen by the wayside in recent weeks.
Heaven forbid that something unplanned comes up!
I was wondering what to write about and was taken by this challenge -last five songs on your Spotify playlist.
This week it’s been Spotify Radio Playlists. It’s an easy way to listen to music in a theme. I have always loved the Corrs, great harmonies. Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights from her debut album, The Kick Inside, one of the great albums of all time.
Can’t get it out of my head is quite simply music.
I’m always listening – at breakfast (when I usually write my posts) walking to work, at work, walking home, after dinner, studying, driving, walking the dog, sleeping….
I’m always browsing the small number of CD shops we have in Adelaide, grazing through Spotify, sorry Pandora, for me it’s my favourite streaming service. ITunes Match means all my CDs are at my fingertips.
I have always been one to listen to a whole CD or artist collection but with streaming I am being seduced into Playlists. Spotify’s Radio Button is a great way to get variety when I need a short break from Springsteen, Tori Amos, Joni Mitchell, The Beatles, Rick Wakeman. I can’t believe how much Rick Wakeman I listen too!
Silence is not an option for me.