Monday, December 29, 2014

Doctoral Work

I am about halfway done with the coursework for my doctorate. This has easily been the most challenging thing I've ever done...but I'm probably not alone in that assessment. And, c' one ever said earning an advanced degree would be easy.

It can become consuming. I'm working full time, studying part time, and still trying to be an active and present husband, parent, friend, church member, and everything else. Sometimes I feel like I'm just trying to keep on juggling...

...and sometimes I drop the ball.

I'm on Christmas break right now. The break has been good for me, and probably even better for my family. I'm reconnecting.

The odd part is, I am now so used to being busy, I feel restless and uneasy when I don't have a breakneck pace to keep up. It took me about three days to adjust to not having eleven things to do at once. And, honestly, I'm still catch myself thinking, "What should I be working on? What am I forgetting?"

So the break is good. It's good for me to have the downtime, the time to focus on my wife and kids and not work and study.

I saw this "Illustrated Guide to a PhD" earlier this year, and I just came across it again this morning via Google+. I think it's a helpful way for me to keep perspective of both the value of the work I'm doing, but also the value of all the other things in my life.

Sometimes my view of my doctoral work fills the whole picture, looming large, and looking like this:
Image by Matt Might

When the reality is that in the grand scheme of my life, it's really more like this:
Image by Matt Might

It's good for me to keep some perspective.


  1. Nice juggling my friend! I know exactly how you feel. Enjoy the rest of your holiday. Happy new year to you and your family.

    1. Thanks so much, Shannon! Glad to know I'm not alone in this feeling, my friend. Happy new year to you and yours as well!

  2. Dave, I could have written this posting myself...I feel exactly the same way.

    T. J.

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment, my friend! Sounds like we are in good company...for what it's worth. :-)