But now I think I have observed with my highly scientific observation process a new phenomenon, that I will tentatively call "The law of conservation of productivity" (yeah, it should be a theory first; whatever. In my world I'm the king, so deal). I postulate that there is actually a finite amount of productivity and focused-ness circulating, and an excess in one person is balanced by a corresponding deficit in another. Or, correspondingly, that there is a finite amount of productivity in a person's week, and once over that limit it becomes almost impossible to continue productive-ness.
At least, this seems to be the case with me. Wednesday was extraordinarily productive by my count ---- I caught up on grading in-class stuff, tackled a bunch of essays (not that all my students had turned the essays in on time --- hello! Get it in, please) and prepped for class. Usually I've been spreading that out across a whole week. As if that was my output for the week, yesterday was a wash; I went back to bed and slept late, then spent the afternoon, after prepping the class, staring at internet sites and NYT articles. The late essays went ungraded.
So will today continue my deficit of productiveness, or can I turn it around somehow? It's not like I've been doing all that much besides teaching these days. The dissertation is quietly growing mold over in the corner. The job market materials remain un-updated. I need to get on it and get back on track, so I'll need to be more productive. But can I escape the law of conservation of productivity? Will I be stealing someone else's mojo, or end up disproving my postulate?
Anyway, I racked my brain for some way to vanquish my desire to nap and decided: bullets! And public shaming techniques. These are often helpful.
clear out the huge backlog of dishes in the sink grade all the essays
- make sure all in-class writing and attendance are up to date in gradebook
read next class readings
- make prompt to hand out Monday
- email AWOL student
- email a prof and two grads about market stuff
Update: Gah! There were more essays than I had thought. And I had left all but two at my office, so I had to go in, and did some other errand-y stuff besides. Well, ok. I can at least get the emails off my plate as well. Sigh. Freakin' stuff and the need to do it.