[OFFICIAL BLOG LAUNCH SLATED FOR: November 21, 2011]
. . . . Continued from Part 2
Part 3: In Closing
So the bird-in-paradise flower fits well! Continuing from the discussion in Part 2, we can do a fledgling-blossoming-researcher-in-paradise analysis that might go a little something like this:
Fledgling: Again, we are like a fledgling business: We are in the START-UP phase at the beginning. It’s okay. You may reach a knowledge-base gap that results in a temporary impasse in the writing process. IT’S OKAY . . . as long as we determine the effective “in-th-meanwhile activities” to do (see definition in post 2 of this series) to get back on track. Different things work for different people. Discovering what these activities are for you is part of the journey. Previous travellers have left us their wisdom (for some resources, please view this page at our blog). In-person and online persons have a heart to share. Communicate with your advisor. Meet with a graduate writing research group. Participate at http://www.phinished.org if you have the personality to do so without getting completely side-tracked (wink!).
And blossoming: It can be hard to recognize that blossoming at a “meanwhile activity” is still blossoming. If there is a research-related skill, habit, disposition, or resource that you are GAINING that’s making a difference in your confidence, abilities, or capacity to advise your own future advisees someday, I say consider it a BLOSSOM! 😉
And maintaining residency in paradise: Acknowledge your growth as it happens. Celebrate each moment of clarity gained, each epiphany had, each topic sentence written, each outline fleshed out (even if you have an inkling that it eventually will get hacked to pieces or thrown out altogether).
I say this with all the love my heart can muster: Don’t you DARE even begin to imagine potentially considering thinking about wondering if you are an imposter. If you don’t have a skill, acknowledge that you need it and get it. End of story. If you don’t have a habit or discipline developed, find someone you can TRUST to help you develop it, and gradually develop it, treating yourself with kindness in the process. (If you’re not willing to treat yourself kindly . . . who should?). END OF STORY. No drama. No mitote. (I keep saying I am going to post a discussion defining and illustrating this word, and I will, Lord willing!)
The importance of not succumbing to imposter feelings is what I KNOW, KNOW, KNOW to be true. You may have a different take on the matter. Regardless, I hope that some thought shared above has either helped or led you to your own right thinking on the matter.
I wonder every now and then: Could I have avoided the depth of the academic and personal pain I put myself through? Maybe. Maybe not.
What I can do is reflect now, and proceed with new self-patience, self-acceptance, and grace going forward. I can recruit mentors to guess post at this blog to articulate the PARTICULAR help (resource/action) that moved them forward personally (perhaps this will inspire, if not directly assist someone). I can stretch out a hand and share what I know to help myself and fellow-researchers remember that the sometimes seemingly impossible nature of this task is just a temporary illusion: It’ll dissipate into thin air over time if, lovingly and without exasperating ourselves, we can know that
to just keep swimmin’ works if you are reflecting and evaluating things along the way. That is one of my mottos. One mantra I try to keep in mind? “Since I’m doing what’s BEST day-bay-day and always pausing to try to make my best better, then an “it’s done when it’s done” stance makes sense. And I am indeed doin’ it, no matter how incremental a step I’m making. Results are pending!” My identity? Well, I’m now very, very clear on this: I am a BLOSSOMING-fledgling researcher, in the BEST sense of the term.
I firmly believe in my heart that we need to know deep within that:
There is an OKAY type of fledgling status, like as in a fledgling business. And, as a “start-up” so-to-speak, I’ve been . . . starting! Just for a little while now. 😀
So okay, yeah: I’ve been dealing with a steep learning curve and I have had a few habits and protocols that needed adopting and implementation. But time is on my side because I swim every day: Progress is being made, and sometimes the results are just . . . latent. The next task, assignment, etc. is done when, now? That’s right: When I’ve figured out how to get it done. No sooner. No later. Work briskly, but don’t self-punish while working.
If we are doing are best, and if we are finding ways to work under guidance . . . SMART and not just hard . . . then the following applies!:
Just Keep Swimmin’ “Finding Nemo” Youtube Clip:
ONE BIG CAVEAT IN ALL OF THIS: This attitude of “It’s done when it’s done” is only positive and effective and peace-instilling, however, if every day I’m doing what’s best that day. The intention is that the remainder of this blog (the pages, the posts, the comments) speak to how we might to do that and help each other do that.
So, here’s to doing our best! May this blog be ONE resource that helps people maintain dedication to persistently giving it their best, task by task by task, until the work is done.
Well! Thank you so much for visiting and supporting what I hope will be an encouraging, collaborative endeavor if all of us chime in periodically to share our hard-won know-how and wisdom.
Looking forward to your contributions, comments, alternative ideas, musings, links, encouragement, and camaraderie!
IDEAS FOR POTENTIAL FUTURE POST TOPICS:
- Is there a trade-off between working digitally and working by hand (e.g. paper-to-pen)? If so, what is it, and where/how do we find balance?
- What’s a good academic writing methodology and workflow? Why are these two things so personal? What are some tools we might utilize in our personalized work flows?
- Is there a better way to use the pomodoro technique to manage writing?
- Now that you are a post-doc or professor, ARE YOU HAPPY? Was it all worth it? (Inquiring minds want to know!) What, if anything, would you change or have done a little differently? (We are ALL EARS!)