What am I doing again?

It’s Monday and I made my to-do list for things I want to get done this week and the potential problems that might arise, etc. and I’m still in this place of wondering what it is I’m doing? I know science has the potential to change the world (has before, will again), but sitting at my desk in the lab struggling to do the minute experiments that I hope will lead somewhere, feeling like I’ve sacrificed having a life to be here (I know it’s anathema to many PIs, but someone should tell me it’s illegal NOT to have a life outside the lab and I’ll get arrested if I don’t develop one quickly). At least research seems to be going a better; I just need to find out that there are more possibilities than just the tiny (molecular scale!) universe  I occupy in the lab. I still can’t shake the feeling that there’s nothing else I could possibly do in life either; despite being fairly intelligent, motivated, willing to learn, I still feel like anyone looking at my resume/CV will just say “molecular plant biologist- I think we’ll pass….”. Either way, I also feel like to have a shot at anything, I need to publish a paper; the only real sign that you’ve been productive in academia. I know this is a jumbled post. Chalk it up to being a long Monday and I’m carrying a high level of frustration. I upgraded my LinkedIn account to a “premium” membership for a month, hopefully this will help me network a bit and explore options at least (even if it is futile window shopping at this point). Hopefully that’s ending on a hopeful note.

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Author: Ian Street

Ian is a plant scientist and science writer relating stories of plant science and scientists on his blog, The Quiet Branches as well as other outlets. You can find him on Twitter @IHStreet.

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