Monday seems to have come along very quickly, as with any job – weekends seem oh so short.  And despite my plans to try to avoid thinking about the PhD too much I wasn’t able to move it totally out of my mind.  The poor llama mother got a 20 minute lecture on the basis of the access to knowledge movement on the phone last night as a result, poor thing.  All the same though the information I’ve been reading through does seem to have seeped into my neurons (wrote sinuses there first, that would be most unpleasant  and while I’m far from a world authority on the topics, I could probably hold up my end of a conversation for about 20 minutes without going “My BRAIN hurts” too soon.  Also started reading Coupland’s Microserfs, which was recommended in one of Lessig’s books.  Never read it before, but despite reading fatigue I’m nearly half way through after one weekend and really enjoying it.

Mondays in the PhD studying world share one vital characteristic with the working world everyone else inhabits  getting back into whatever you were doing.  Thankfully I did my usual planning for the week last Thur/Friday so I’ve got a few threads to start pulling on right away.  Of course getting my brain into gear and motivated will require a bit more heavy lifting and probably a second cup of tea shortly.  I do find though that actually writing something first thing on any day does help to get my brain back into the work/study/research groove; hence this brief blog entry this morning.  While I’m typing these words I can feel the steam pistons that make up my neocortex starting to click into place, and more importantly I can feel my enthusiasm for the subject starting to burn again.  Which is a really, really nice feeling; certainly it’s been a good chunk of a decade since a job fired up my enthusiasm this much (my work for FIL and UKCoRR on the other hand always enthused me!).


The new office space - Gary Cole not includedDespite my concerns last week I’ve decided to work at home today as over the weekend I raided Ikea with Mrs Llama and bought a new study desk and chair for the conservatory.  It may be 10 degrees down there right now (centigrade, not Kelvin) but having a clear desk that’s not covered in the bits and bobs that my computer desk is makes all the difference.  I’ll certainly be more comfortable than I was sitting on our spare sofa – I think my back in particular is going to be very pleased with me.

Right, that’s enough procrastination disguised as reflection for now, time to crack open those notes and go back over the books and papers I read last week, before on with reading Peter Suber’s new book on open access.  And also get ready for the lady who’s popping round to pick up and pay for my old drinks globe cabinet which I ebayed over the weekend.  Doesn’t quite pay for the desk, but does make a sizeable contribution towards paying for it!


3 thoughts on “Warm-Up

  1. I wanted to say how much I’m enjoying your blog posts on your phd, I’m finding them really useful. I’m drawing parallels between your research and my going self-employed full time. The posts are making me think about how (ways and means) I should or could keep myself motivated and working when I’m working for myself from January. So thanks. 🙂


    1. Hi Lisa, thanks for that, good to know they’re getting read and I’m not just talking to myself (wouldn’t be the first time mind you!).

      The motivation is an interesting thing, I have this fundamental fear that intrinsically I’m a lazy person so feel I have to drive/motivate myself because heck, no one else is going to do it! More than one person’s said to me “If you want to do a PhD you have to really want to do it” and I can see a fairly major part of that is the self-discipline. Not sure the 20-something me a decade or so back would have had that backbone, so glad I’ve not attempted it until now!

      But indeed, I can see those parallels in self-employment!


  2. I feel exactly the same way and worry that I’ll just end up pottering around the house. I *know* I couldn’t have done this earlier. I remember cleaning the kitchen seemed to be a necessity before revision or going out to buy the right kind of biscuits to ensure harmonious essay writing.

    However… I didn’t have a mortgage then. 😉 Enjoy it and I’ll continue to follow your progress.


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