Monday, October 21, 2013


You know that phrase, "when the going gets tough, the tough get going"?

I think it can be more accurately stated: when the going gets tough, the tough figure out how to divide and conquer their workload without going insane. 

To say that this week is going to be stressful would be an understatement. I'm starting a 1301 flex class, which means getting to know new students and getting the course off to a successful start. I literally have 75 midterm essays to grade, a slew of revisions to grade, a novel to finish, a discussion board to grade, and I'm still trying to recruit and train tutors for the writing lab. I have some substituting this week and a presentation in a few weeks to prepare for as well. The apartment is messy, and I wonder to myself where we'll find the time to straighten up, or  if I'll be able to squeeze in workouts to the already packed days.

My past experiences have collectively taught me that this too shall pass. When I hit the stressful point of the semester, I take a deep breath, and take the pressure off of myself. It won't all get done in one day, and those two weeks I always tell students they must wait between turning in a paper and getting it back are necessary. Last year, I really learned how to take my workload and divide it by the number of days I have to get through it. The result is grading a little each day, which allows me the flexibility to stop when I get burnt out or tired. After all, I don't want to grade anyone's paper when I'm in a bad mood. I know how many pages I need to read each day, how many papers I need to grade, and what small tasks I can tackle in my personal life. No, this week isn't going to feel easy, but I can make it manageable.

I highly recommend dividing and conquering to anyone that is hitting mid semester burnout.

Other tips:

Never underestimate the power of an awesome partner/spouse. Special thanks to Brendan for making a healthy dinner tonight and helping clean the kitchen.

Drink tons of water...stress is dehydrating, and go to bed a little earlier than normal if possible.

Learn your limits and say no to things you aren't capable of taking on.

Remember to balance your work life with your other shouldn't dominate the other, at least not completely!

Here's to Monday being over! At least that thought is positive.

<3 S, B, L&Z

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