by Lynn Riskedal | April 27, 2009
It is Spring. We haven’t had snow in the last couple of weeks and the afternoon temps have hovered in the 60′s.
I love running and training in the spring. Even if there is a light rain. Training in the spring means it is time to put the long pants, the long sleeve shirts, the wooly cap and gloves in the back of the closet and break out the shorts and short sleeve shirts. For those chillier mornings, the windbreaker does well. I feel lighter because I’m not bundled up for the cold and wind chill. It is a spring cleaning, of sorts.
While I run, I reflect and observe the world. I look for changes in the tree buds. For flowers emerging. There is a lightness that isn’t there during the winter when I’m all bundled up for the cold and wind. More people are out enjoying life.
while it is the temps that cause me to toss the heavier clothes, spring also invokes cleaning. A time to get rid of the stuff you no longer need, no longer fits.
In the process of becoming doctoral, spring is a good time in the year to reflect on what is weighing you down. Look at what to change in your pattern, what to shift. Some stuff needs to be gone from your life. Some might be of value in the future but you don’t need it right now, so store it in a box.
Look at your work tasks. Do you need to talk with your boss to free up some time? Get rid of an assignment?
Look at your extra curricular activities. Is playing softball a stress release? or asking so much time for the practice, the game, and the after partying taking a toll on your time? Step out for a few years, to return after you’ve accomplished the degree.
Family time is important, but is there something you can bow out of, gracefully, with the family understanding the need for your focus for the next period of time, and knowing you’ll be fully participating in family events, soon.
Spring cleaning can be hard. It may be difficult, emotionally, to put something away in a box or give it away. Balance that with your desire for achieving the PhD.
This spring cleaning is for the purpose of focusing your efforts.
For the purpose of your self reflection on the tasks needed to accomplish your degree
For the purpose of you moving more easily to accomplishing the small steps.
For the purpose of you managing the components of your becoming doctoral life.
Spring cleaning feels good.