Last week was a doozy. I knew that it would be, with the semester starting, classes resuming, and everyone’s anxiety high (including mine, of course…). But oof. I made the huge mistake of working Monday, taking a furlough day on Tuesday, teaching all morning on Wednesday, then having my usual cleaning-and-shopping on Thursday morning (it only takes about an hour and a half for everything). Needless to say, I felt less-than-productive by the time Friday rolled around. 

I’d say that’s a pretty accurate depiction of where my mind was on Friday morning. 

The challenge for me is the idea that I have to be “productive” all day, every day. I need to remember that there will be days when I don’t check tasks off the list, but I will be productive despite that. It was definitely productive to spend four+ hours with my students last Wednesday. They don’t know me (yet) – I don’t know them (yet). Many of them are new to the program. We needed that time to interact (and yes, we were able to, even online… yay…), and learn more about each other, and think about how we want this semester to go. 

Not helping are my annual fears that this is the semester I lose track of everything I need to be doing, working on, etc. Balancing everything is a perennial challenge. It hasn’t happened yet, but my mind (see above) is always reminding me that I might drop all the balls, and then what? 

Times like this, I need to remind myself to just. breathe. Panic isn’t going to get me anywhere (well, it might get me into a worse mental state, but it won’t get me anywhere good…). 

So I’m trying to remember that I need to breathe. That I am one person. That I’ll keep the balls in the air, as I always do. 

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