It has been very quiet round here lately, and you may have been wondering why that is. In reality, you are probably far too familiar with the sudden time-squeeze that accompanies the start of the academic year and have been too busy to miss me. Either way, I thought I would sneak a bit of time to post an update.
In short, I have been doing everything I was doing over the summer (research, contributing to #ECRchat, and writing), plus the usual term-time commitments of teaching, mentoring, lab meetings, departmental meetings, and various seminars. To add to this, my department is moving buildings next week, and I am in the process of setting up a new lab group, which will include new collaborations within the department and new supervisory responsibilities.
These commitments are all part and parcel of the postdoc role and, to be truthful, I am very happy to be so much busier and more involved in the department than I was over the summer. However, right now, this leaves slightly less time for blogging. My ‘drafts folder’ is bursting with ideas for future posts, so hopefully I will find some time in the near future to get back to a more regular blogging schedule, once my evenings stop being taken over by teaching preparation and marking.
For now, I will leave you with one of my favourite recent search terms that led someone to click on my blog
“I have my phd, now how to become professor”
Of course, I can’t really answer this question, and I don’t think there is a definite answer. I hope part of the answer is to keep seizing as many opportunities as possible, to find a good mentor (or mentoring team), to be a thorough and honest researcher, and to evaluate regularly. I think the evaluation process is important on many levels, not just evaluating your progress and whether you seem to be moving in the right direction, but also whether your chosen career goals are attainable and compatible with your life goals. In amongst the many commitments I listed above, this evaluation process is something I am trying to devote a lot more time to, which will probably be the topic for my next post.
As usual, I would love to hear your thoughts. Do you have some tips for juggling the many aspects of academic life, or some answers to the question? Please comment below or tweet me with your thoughts.