Last night I had class: my first one of the term. I had another tonight, and will have a third tomorrow night. Woop.
But anyway. I generally alternate between two and three classes a term. I do this because after a term with three classes, I am dead, stressed, strung out, malnourished and disoriented. (Three classes wouldn't be so bad, but I work too so, yeah.) But anyway. Then I take two classes the following term, and think 'gee, this isn't so bad, I can handle three!'. Vicious cycle.
My class Tuesday evenings is in advanced research methods. I have heard from others that it is a very intense class, and I don't think they were joking. And looking at the syllabus: holy shit. This is a lot of work for one class. Valuable yes. But a lot of freaking work. The professor even told us to "prepare ourselves for a crush of hard work." I don't think it was a scare tactic, either. So, noted.
I briefly considered dropping one of my three classes. But one, I can't. And the other... I don't want to. I don't have that many courses left in my program (after that, it's all research and writing). I really don't want to drag this out longer than I have to. I am ready to be gradumacated, know what I mean?
So I decided that I really need to get my priorities straight. School needs to be one, and I need to quit procrastinating all of my work until the weekend as I am known to do. (Give me a break. I'm tired when I get home. And I have class three nights a week too. Ugh. I deserve a break! --- No, I don't. That's my old mindset. The new one needs to be less forgiving.)
So when I arrived home from my first class last night, I did something I don't think I've ever done before: I did the reading assignment for it. Yes, I did homework on the first day of school. I picked up the book, sat down, and read the assigned chapters. I paid close attention too, didn't just skim for important points (as I am known to do when reading school stuff). It feels really good to have the week's reading assignment done a full 6 days ahead of schedule.
Can I keep it up? I really don't know. Probably not. I mean, this is my favorite poster, after all.
I'm sure things will get much more hectic as the term goes on. But I am really going to try to do all I can to make it a successful term, as taxing as I know it will be. I suppose getting a Ph.D. isn't supposed to be like a walk in the park, after all.
Inspired by a blog post I saw somewhere, I'm thinking of starting a (weekly?) feature called 'my last $100'... Basically it would happen on Friday and would be "here's what I spent my last $100 on, and here's what I wish I'd spent it on instead." What do you think? I think it might be a fun way to keep my spending in check... You could participate too, either on your own blog, or in the comments here. Thoughts?