I have stuff to do. I don't feel like doing it; I want to do something else. But I don't do the fun stuff, because I have stuff to do, and that makes me feel guilty when I want to do something else. And then the not doing the fun stuff makes me feel so crappy that I don't feel like doing the stuff I have to do.
Thus in a nutshell has been pretty much my experience of grad school. It's especially bad right now as I've gone back to my chapter at the same time everyone I know skipped town for a Presidential Valentine weekend ---- that makes me think of Hallmark cards with pictures like this on them, except maybe with a bouquet instead of a hatchet ---- and thus there's no one to take a break with. Usually when I feel so wound up that I can't even make myself slack off, leaving me staring dully at the computer and counting down the minutes until the next day, when I will be doing the exact same thing, then I know it is time to skip town and go camping. Or at least head out for a mindless movie. But no one is around! Grah! Argh! I don't want to go camping or movie-ing alone. And campus was closed this weekend, so I haven't even run into random people to have human interaction with. I think I'm going stir-crazy. (Ok, ok, I know I had some people over for a (very quick) movie session on Sat, but please, I'm whining here!)
Once I get into the circular mode of guilt and ennui, nothing looks good. Well, just give up and watch one of your DVDs or Greenecine picks ----Nah, I can't be bothered. Ok, go hang out somewhere? ---- And do what? I don't want to do anything. Hmm. Go shopping or out to the beach? --- Meh. I don't feel like doing that either, and if I tried it I'd just feel guilty and miserable about not doing my diss work. Fine then! Why don't you read back through this book and figure out what you need to put in that paragraph? ----- Whah-ah-aah! Not that! God no, I don't want to stare at that stupid paragraph any more! Hmm, work on your conference paper? (squalls of misery) Uh, look at the other chapter? (wails louder) This thing? That one? Apply for more jobs? MwaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, ok (jingles keys) Calm down, you're fine, you're fine, that's a good cog there...
You know you've come to a sad place when talking to yourself is actually a sign that things are going well, as opposed to baby-sitting your own id. These days, I wish I talked to myself. At least I got paid in pizza and soda when I dealt with this back in high school. (jingles keys again) Rock-a-by cog, up in a tree...
I obviously need more to do. Or some sort of hobby. No, better yet, some horribly onerous and mindless task that would drive me to work on my dissertation for hours in the hopes of avoiding it. (Nope, grading's done, before you suggest it.) Maybe it sounds counter-intuitive, but I think I work better when I'm overscheduled and rushed and flustered and I don't have time to overthink things, just hurry through them bam bam bam. Of course, all that stress and overwork and ignoring the self is bad for me too, but when I have lots of open time filled with nothing but dissertation deadlines, I feel too behind and under the gun to stop things and exercise, but there's always time to walk to the refrigerator and have a bite of something. Or maybe I'm just not doing enough drugs. Ritalin, Valium; up the energy and focus or mellow out the overthinking until I just don't care anymore ---- you choose; it's six of one, half a dozen of the other.
In other news, it turns out I started blogging a year ago back at the beginning of the month, but I missed the anniversary. Seems fitting, since I didn't notice the various impending holidays until I tried to schedule up some activities with my friends and discovered no one was around. Thinking back on it, this may also explain section attendance this week. Hmm, yes, I see you, you little finaglers; since when is there a "Valentine Week" vacation in our schedule? Now it all makes sense.
Humh. This should get better once I have meetings and assignments and people to deal with at school this week. But anyone have any advice for getting out of the circles? Any straight lines, off-ramps? Magic beans that would let me climb out of this situation entirely?