Friday, August 15, 2008

Decisions, decisions.

Well, the week is almost 'over' and I have to decide if I want to try to work this weekend.

This is something I used to really agonize about all the time, but lately it has been pretty obvious most weeks. It was either Do or Die, or Just Don't.

Things being what they are, I worked all of last weekend and nothing this week has been particularly productive, although I've actually been in a better mood than I would have expected (not saying much, I know).

I was expecting not to be able to do anything this weekend, whether I wanted to or not, for lack of things being ready/ordered/arrived at the right time (e.g. by this afternoon).

But I thought of a couple of things I could/should do, and now I'm kind of torn.

Note that I fully expect to have to work next weekend, too.


1. Might get something done 2 days sooner than would have otherwise.

2. Might enjoy the A/C (can't afford it at home)

3. Might feel relief at both 1 and 2.

4. Will get me out of the house and off the couch, i.e. more likely to go to the gym and possibly run some other errands I would otherwise put off.

5. Might be less busy next week (or more likely, just have more time for other crises).

6. Because of timing issues, this weekend might be better for some of the experiments than middle of next week.

7. Have no other plans for the weekend anyway.


1. Might not get desired results despite weekend effort.

2. Might feel more burned out.*

3. Will miss out on precious lounging-around and personal chore time, leading to underwear deficit next week and mrphd being pissed at getting stuck with more than his usual share of housework.

Hmm. Looks like the pros have it. Well, thanks for joining us in our latest round of Postdoc Guilt Gone Wild. Join us next time for "When is the best time to quit science?" at our regularly scheduled ranting.

*Not that it's emotionally possible to feel more burned out than I already am, but physically, things could be worse.

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At 6:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You said in a previous post that going to the lab on weekends actually invigorates you. So, go hit the lab and have a good weekend.

At 7:48 PM, Blogger Ms.PhD said...

GOING is okay. Being STUCK there ALL weekend is not the same.

Unless it's unbearably hot out, then it's a good excuse!

As it turns out, I can go and don't have to be in all weekend, although I won't get the do the experiments that I actually would have gained 2 days on... so it's debatable whether I'll come in or not.

The good news is, I don't have to if I don't want to.

At 9:08 PM, Blogger NJS said...

Instead of basing your pro-con list on number of items, you should also have some weighting system for their relative importance.

That's what I do, whether I write it down or not :). My grad school spreadsheet was a bit ridiculous...

At 9:49 PM, Blogger Dr. Jekyll & Mrs. Hyde said...

My underwear shortage is acute, so I think the Cons may win this week. Actually it'll probably be the Compromise, because I know I'll still go in for a half day. Somehow that has become the "look I'm rewarding myself!" default. Sigh.

At 8:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just out of curiousity, how often do you completely take the weekend off?

On a related note, after 10 years in research I'm starting to wonder if it is possible to succeed in science without working most weekends. I've skated by fairly well up to now coming in only occasionally on weekends (maybe once every 2-3 months, only when absolutely needed). But now that I'm a "senior" postdoc, with about a year left on my fellowship, I'm faced with a list of things that I want to accomplish before moving up/out. In perusing the list I realize there is no way humanly possible to get all of it done, even if I worked 7 days a week for the next year. Also, one of my projects is currently in a "hot" topic, and I realize that there are people with no lives who are working on the same thing and will work a lot harder than I will (not to mention have better support, i.e. techs and students working for them). Just wondering what your thoughts are on this?

At 7:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds good that there is a mrphd...I thought a female scientist like you hadn't time to flirt.


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