I intellectualize, therefore I am.
Enforced relaxation time this weekend. Tried to make the most of it by focusing on relieving stress via busywork intellectualizing.
One of the career/confidence/self-help books I read included a little bonus: a Neuroticism Test!
For me??!! You shouldn't have!
I had no idea what neurotic meant. The official definition of neurosis is suffering from anxiety out of proportion to real threat.
Yes, MsPhD is officially neurotic about the whole faculty position thing.
So then, since I thought I had found something potentially insightful, I got another book. The take home message being, of course, "I'm neurotic, you're neurotic, and we're both ok!"
I'm not sure this revelation is going to help me in major life-changing ways, but I'm learning a little bit of psychology theory, which helps to pass the time.
I am trying to get away from this habit of blowing things out of proportion, which is apparently common in neurotic people, and feeds the negativity monkey on my back.
I also read some scientific journal articles, which was oddly comforting. And it was comforting that I enjoyed it the way I used to: it was both relaxing (easy) and stimulating (fun).
Maybe it's too soon to retire after all.
I know getting a job is highly competitive, and that staying funded in science is extremely difficult. But am I panicking out of proportion to a real threat? What's the real source of the problem: them or me?
(aside: I'm having deja blogging vu. I think I've written about this before.)
I'm trying to liken it to something a teacher told me when I was a kid. I was in a competition, and I was watching the other kids go before me. I thought they were better than I was.
She said I was better than they were, but I didn't know whether to believe her. I thought maybe she was just saying that to be nice, trying to build my confidence.
Objectively, I was trying my hardest to observe these other kids, and I really thought they were much better than me!
Objectively speaking, I have a similarly hard time figuring out where I fit into the whole job competition scene. My CV is really not that bad, I think. What I don't know is how worried I should be. Okay, that's neurotic, worrying about how much to worry!
One thing I can say for sure is this: if I'm neurotic, then working with, around and for highly neurotic people has certainly made me more paranoid, and more neurotic, then I would have been otherwise.
That's definitely them, and not me.