As I’ve been spending the last couple of days organizing my apartment in advance of my upcoming busy year, I’ve been thinking more about how I’m going to stay organized once the madness hits. I mean, there are the small things I can do to be efficient with my time, as I mentioned in my previous post, but given that my life is already jammed pack with a ridiculous amount of things to do, I know that I’ll have to make some big changes in order to make time and space for classes and homework. There really are only 24 hours in a day and, as much as I am loathe to admit it, I am a mere human being. It’s really all about deciding on what my priorities are and finding a balance that I can live with. I’ve been thinking about this for a while and have made some decisions of things I need to cut out for the next two years. Since I love lists so much, I give them to you in list form!
Things I need to give up:
- freelance work – I’ve already passed up applying for a few contracts that would have been quite interesting and even turned down one contract for a very cool sounding project that I was approached about. Not doing contract work is going to hit me in the old pocketbook, as I quite like having the extra income, but I think in the long run getting the MBA will increase my income in ways that will more than compensate for that.
- teaching new courses – I’m always on the look out for new courses to teach, because I *love* teaching, but I’m putting a hold on that for the next two years. I am going to teach the online course that I taught last year , since it’s all set up from last year and isn’t a crazy amount of hours (plus I plan to take vacation days from work to do my marking1). Truth be told, I need the money from teaching this course to be able to afford the costs of going to school, as my scholarship covers tuition fees, but not things like textbooks, pre-core prep courses, etc., which are quite expensive. But other than this course, I’m not taking on any other courses in other semesters and, like not doing contract work, it means I won’t have any of the extra money that I’m used to having to spend on extravagances like braces and laser eye surgery and extra lump sum payments on my student loans, but I think it’s a sacrifice well worth making.
- half marathon training – I just can’t imagine having the time to do the long runs, which get to be 2+ hours near the end of the training, plus all the short runs and hill runs to train properly for a half. I still plan to train for some short races – the 8 km at the BMO Vancouver International marathon in May and the Zombie Run in August are the ones I’m thinking of – because some sort of regular physical activity is a must and I know myself well enough to know that if I don’t have a race to train for, I just don’t even getting out there. As for hockey, I’ve already paid for this season (which goes until March) on both my teams, so I’m going to continue to play my Wednesday games and any Sunday games that don’t coincide with classes. Happily, many of my Sunday games are in the evening, so even on weekends when I have classes, classes only go until 5 pm and I can head straight from class to the rink. Playing hockey will actually be a nice way to de-stress after a weekend of classes, come to think about it!
- blogging on the Black Hole – unlike blogging here, where I talk about any old thing that comes to mind, blogging over on the science-y blog requires actual thought and research and thus, time. I’ll still try to contribute a guest posting now and again if I come up with a good idea or learn something in business school that might be of interest to that audience, but I won’t have time to be a regular contributor.
- blogging here every day – even though I blog here about whatever comes to mind, it still takes time to write, edit, and proofread these postings2, so I’m not going to try to blog here every single day like I usually do. I won’t give up blogging completely, because I love it too much, but I think that blogging every other day or every few days will just have to suffice.
- reading for fun – I’ve already purged my RSS feed so that I’m now only following the few blogs I actually read on a regular basis and have eliminated the ones I used to have in my RSS feed “in case I am bored some day.” I know I won’t be bored. Ever. I also don’t expect to have time to read much in the way of fiction3, though perhaps at the Christmas break I can fit something in?
- socializing – I’m a bit of a social butterfly, so I know that I’ll have to curb some of my socializing. I’m not giving it up completely, because that’s not a sacrifice that I’m willing to make, but I’ll have to be more judicious in when and where and how long I spend time with friends. So apologies in advance to all my friends of depriving you of the awesomeness that is me over the next 28 months 😉
OK, so going through all of that actually makes me feel a little bit better about having the time I’ll need to devote to school! I’ll keep you posted as to how it goes once it gets going!
- Which is a brilliant idea that my sister came up with when I was hemming and hawing about whether or not to teach it again. [↩]
- I know, given the number of typos I always seem to have, you must be shocked that I actually proofread this stuff! [↩]
- I remember being a PhD student and I don’t think I read any fiction other than the Harry Potter books in my six years of school. [↩]