I often choose to work from my couch. I have found that being relaxed and with my family reduces some of the isolation that I feel on occasion. How does a professor feel isolated? When I’m not in front of a class, I’m often in my office, seeking peace so I may attend to the ten gazillion other tasks that a teacher of any name does. My colleagues have a similar existence, and we delight in the times that our paths cross. Okay, maybe “delight” is an exaggeration, but we at least acknowledge each other’s presence in the same room.
On top of that, I have the text book authoring work that continues (and will, to an extent, for the foreseeable future). With the exception of the occasional teleconference or symposium, it’s usually just me and my laptop. The same goes for my school work, and many of the other aspects of my life. That’s the way I like to operate (obviously, or else I wouldn’t do it), and I accept the consequences of my choices.
Tonight, while looking for an activity for one of my classes tomorrow, I ran across a TEDx video that finally explained my behavior to me. For a very long time, I’ve wondered why I like to have almost too much on my plate, or why I always try to improve myself, or why it is that I seem to move forward when so many people in my life seem to stand still. According to Dan Thurmon, my work life balance is not “in balance.” It is off-balance by design. His talk is enjoyable, as most TED talks are, but it has that something extra that now places it in my short list of go-to tools. If you choose to watch it, I hope you enjoy it. If not, that’s fine too.