Retreat, Rest and Rejuvenate

BQZVnXOCYAAWDdNAs academics we are encouraged not to ever admit we are not working. No, truth be told, since graduate school we’ve been indoctrinated into the myth that we are and always should be working. This is especially relevant to those of us in the social sciences who live and breathe our societal laboratories.

This message [helpful advice/myth-making] we get from inside academia in the form of pressure not to take our earned holiday time and instead pump out the publications. This caution we hear when our internal recordings tell us “with a break from teaching you should be much more productive!” When we add to all this the commonly held assumption that we all “get our summers off” and the defensiveness perhaps characteristic of so many academics (myself included) it can make for a difficult decision to put the proverbial pen down and opt for summer fun and sun.

I admit it, somewhat painstakingly. I am an academic and I am on holidays! There I said it. I am taking a few weeks to rest with family and friends. Notice I did not say “off,” as there is always something that gets done (e.g. email here, read chapter there, conversation about…). And, those with children know all too well that family time does not come without its share of obligations, responsibilities and its own workload. But, I digress.

I am giving myself permission for self care. I recognize that I will beĀ more productive on my sabbatical if I have actually retreated from my research and writing before forging ahead. I know if I allow myself to bask in the blessings of creature comforts which rejuvenate my mind, body, and soul, then, my work and my life will benefit immeasurably.

My name is Dr. Minaker and, yes, I am on holidays.