Idiocy.

I think I’m suffering from a post-conference hangover. I did go into work on both Thursday and Friday and didn’t end up getting much accomplished and have not gotten much done this weekend, except some rest and a small amount of cleaning. I’ve been watching some of the 2012 Olympics. But I also feel like an idiot. Like I should be doing something more with my time. I feel stuck in a rut. I feel I need to explore more often than I do- ask questions, do more, start things, follow through…

I’m trying to blog more in hopes it will help me express myself and get things out of my head- though probably more annoying for the people I share this with; I’m still not convinced anyone cares what I think. Of course, I’m not forcing anyone to read what I imagine is mediocre writing. I started doing this to have a hobby, to document my road out of depression (I am perhaps catching glimpses of the edges of Mirkwood from a tree I climbed) as well as my (mainly frustrating) experiences as a postdoc in the life sciences. And my road to the next step in my career- which is still hard to figure out. I love science and teaching and still have no idea what else I would do with my life, but with the conference, maybe I’ve taken a few steps in the right direction.

So what makes me title this post idiocy? I need to write emails to people I met at the conference. I did it with a few of the people I know, but not to anyone new that I met. It’s just an email, so why the delay? I don’t know, I haven’t taken the best care of myself this weekend- mostly through not eating enough, so that probably saps motivation a bit. But this has also been kind of a return to my old pattern of weekends- asocial, mostly on my own and having recurring negative thoughts about life and excessively ruminating about them. All signs that depression and anxiety are still within me. So I feel like an idiot for thinking I’ve made more progress than I in fact have. I feel like an idiot for not being able to just take action more quickly on so many things. I feel like an idiot for not starting this process sooner in my life. My brain feels slow. I also feel like an idiot this weekend for not being able to figure out how to have much of a personal life yet (I’ll turn 35 in August…and be single for it, so frustrating).

I might be suffering from the post-conference and travel let down, which is common after a trip. I did explore using my Google calendar more- to concretize my goals (I created an Ian3.0 calendar to add goals onto so I can measure progress. I’m on Ian2.8 now. I still need to figure out when to set the release of Ian3.0 and what that would require, though I have some ideas. I think a year is a good time- perhaps on my birthday next year. But I am going to make a calendar of goals and see how well I do with them- and make it formal with alerts and everything. Thus far I’ve been a little informal about my goals for this year.

I’m trying to force optimism on myself through bombarding myself with positive messages from various  sources like itstartswith and this podcast (though it’s about sexuality, I find a lot of it applies to life generally too). So it’s not all doom and gloom, but I feel overwhelmed and frozen, which seems idiotic. I need to start in and do things to get less overwhelmed and to warm up.

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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.

2 thoughts on “Idiocy.”

  1. I know what you mean. It's easy to tell yourself you've made little to no progress when you're feeling down, though. I'm the same way. I read an article recently about the power of positive thought. Ie. When you think "What if I make a fool of myself?" counter that with "What if I amaze & impress everyone?" You lead your thoughts in a positive direction. I imagine it takes practice, but the potential outcome seems worth it. On a side note, don't stress about being single right now. You may feel old, but you aren't.

  2. I'm super curious about how you are using a calender to make Ian3.0. The happiness project had suggested some super simple tables etc for goal setting/following, but a calender seems like so much commitment. Of course, I have a list under my mouse that says "exercise more and get finances figured out" so maybe commitment would be good for me.Thanks for the link, I will enjoy following along.

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