Wednesday, January 1, 2014

a resolution

I'm going to do something this year I've never done before: Make a resolution.

As much as I enjoy my new colleagues and our life in Heidelberg, I found the transition from a huge department filled with logicians to a huge department where I am the only logician (even mitigated with an interim time in a small department with few logicians) difficult. It has sometimes been hard to stay motivated and enthused when not in the brownian motion of other people doing things similar to what I'm doing. (One reason why I've found conferences so necessary this past year: Every single one I went to I came back thrilled to be doing the work that I'm doing and wishing I could do more of it.) As a result, I was not nearly as productive as I could've been, and I made too many excuses for this fact.

In September, I started keeping this blog, a daily record of what I did at work each day, to try to keep myself accountable. This has helped, and on days when I was tired and discouraged about how little I'd been able to get done, it was useful to point to a concrete list of things that I accomplished, even if it was something as minor as "cleaned up all the extra paper on my desk" or "caught up on my email after a trip".

But I can do better, and the way for me to ensure this is to state my goals publicly and hold myself to them. I have a number of 3/4 finished papers -- some of which have been this way for more than a year. My list of "papers I want to write" gets added to more than things get taken off (because I've written them). I have done so much research on so many different topics in the last 1-2 years, and now it's time for me to make something of that, so my resolution this year is to submit 12 papers/submit 1 paper per month. The ultimate goal is 12 papers by the end of the year, while the short-term goal will be 1 per month. This will allow me to start with a new slate each month, and not worry about whether I reached the previous month's goal or not, but having the long-term goal will mean that just because I get one out in a month doesn't mean that I can then rest and relax, there's always impetus to get something else out to count towards the overall total.

I'll do my best to check-back at the end of each month with status reports.

No comments:

Post a Comment