Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Life Lately

It's been a while since I posted about general life stuff! I find that I need to be in a certain mood to write this kind of post, and lately I've just been too busy/distracted to really sit down and collect my thoughts. The biggest thing going on in my life right now is wrapping up the PhD. This past month I have been working on a research paper that is based on part of my dissertation work, which I am submitting soon to the top conference in my field. The decision doesn't come out until next March, but I hope it gets accepted! Now that I'm done with the paper, I can finally start working again on the last section of my dissertation. I would love to wrap that up soon, so I can submit a draft to my committee before everyone leaves for the holidays.

Also, I started casually looking for jobs again, and by casually, I mean, I'll-apply-if-I-happen-to-come-across-an-interesting-job-and-if-it's-in-a-city-I-want-to-move-to,-but-I'm-not-really-looking-that-hard-right-now. I initially started the process last fall, but I decided to put it on hold, because it was taking up too much time and preventing me from actually finishing the PhD. I got 3 offers at the time, but I felt like I could do better and turned them all down. Hopefully, I don't come to regret that decision, haha. Then again, I'm not sure I want to start working right away anyway. Since I still have some savings from before, I wouldn't mind taking time off after graduation to be a bum, travel, and detox from the whole PhD experience.

You never know how things will go though. So I applied for a position about a month ago, and things are moving faster than I expected. I already did two interviews with the company, and they want to fly me out for a third in-person interview. I would still like to explore my other options, so I've been trying to put the brakes on. We'll see how that goes. Also, my job search is complicated by my relationship with J. Right now he and I live together in the same city. However, there just aren't a lot of good opportunities for me here, and I don't want to stay in the area long term. Ultimately I want to move to the West Coast, ideally California or Washington. We've discussed the possibility of moving there together, which he is open to, but I understand that it's not a good time in his career right now to make a move. So there's a lot of uncertainty. I worry about what's going to happen to us in the future if/when I move, and the whole situation is stressing me out. I want to trust that things will ultimately work out, but I really struggle with it since I have generalized anxiety. Anyway, thanks for listening (reading?), and sorry if all this is kind of a downer.

On a lighter note, I am going to the Netherlands and Belgium next week! J has to go to Amsterdam for work, and we decided to turn the trip into an extended vacation. Honestly, I could use the break, and I'm looking forward to checking out the museums, the canals, and the local architecture in and around Amsterdam. I'm also looking forward to eating some Indonesian food (Indonesia was a Dutch colony) and going to Belgium for Belgian chocolates, waffles, and beer! (Yes, I travel to eat.) I expect we'll be doing lots of walking in chilly weather, so I'm prepared to bring warm clothes and comfortable walking shoes. Still need to plan our exact itinerary and what to pack!

How do you deal with the stress of uncertainty when you're faced with circumstances that are beyond your control? And do you have any recommendations for what to see/do/eat in the Netherlands or Belgium?

6 comments:

  1. Your post is not a downer at all. We all go through periods of change. For me, it's always a mix of excitement for the new and anxiety over the unknown. It can be quite a stressful process, especially with all the factors that you are considering. It seems to me there is a lot of interest from employers wanting to hire you and that this will be true whenever you are ready to start working.
    I think you are really smart to focus on what you need to do right now, finish your dissertation.
    Your plans for the upcoming trip sound wonderful. It'll be a well deserved break and maybe help you with your decision making. Eating local foods is one of the very best parts of traveling. I'm looking forward to reading about your adventure.

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    1. Thanks for reminding me that there will always be another job! I keep treating every job opportunity as if it is the last one I'm going to get, and that makes the process way more stressful than it needs to be. And I hope my anxiety will turn into excitement as things get more settled! I'm definitely looking forward to my trip. I'll be sure to write a post about it when I come back. :)

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  2. Best of luck with the dissertation and the conference! And have a wonderful time on your vacation. Oh gosh, and best of luck on your job search too, it sounds like a very stressful and busy time, but it'll be so great once it's done.

    I always have a hard time with times of transition in life. There's always so much to think about, and uncertainty is really tough.

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    1. I actually sent a rough draft of my dissertation (minus the missing part) to my advisor earlier today, so he can start looking at it while I'm on vacation. I guess I didn't fully realize how much I had on my plate until I wrote that post. No wonder I'm stressed, haha! Now it's time to destress on my vacation.

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  3. Ah, have so much fun on your trip!! Can't wait to see photos and what you wore. :) Sounds like it's coming at a perfect time, too.

    Good luck with the job hunt! That's amazing that you have so much interest. I had the opposite problem; I started seriously looking about 6 months prior to graduation and did not hear anything from any employer (granted, my field is relatively specific and I was searching for jobs in only one [smaller] city). It sounds like you'll have no trouble landing something!

    I wish I had advice for your situation with J. :(

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    1. I just came back from my trip! Sadly I got sick while I was over there, but I'll put together a post when I'm feeling better. And thanks for the encouragement. I remember reading about your job hunt when you graduated. Being geographically restricted is always hard. I'm trying to target a few specific larger cities, so it's not as bad. And hopefully everything will work out with my situation.

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