Leaving the hibernation den

I promised myself that the first day I would work only a half-day in-person. Even that was a lot. The office lights were excruciatingly bright and the considerate, everyday noise of people in the office overwhelmed my sensory system. I retreated to my office “den” where I used desk lamps instead of the overhead lights and kept my door cracked or closed.

Making decisions

I’m making everyday decisions with harsh critics watching over my shoulder. I act as if I have to have The One final outcome imagined with detail. What if making that one tiny decision IS the decision? The question: do I want to get these toes fixed now? Notice the question is not, will I get these toes fixed now, and who will do it, how, how will it feel, when, what if…, who will take care of.., and then what about…? Just the simple question, do I want to get these toes fixed now? The answer: yes, I want to get my toes fixed now.

My dislocated toes: A thorough update

I’m inviting friends to help me tend to my fears about pain, loneliness, and urgent need as best I can. I get to have new experiences of care from and with my friends. I get to expand my self-knowledge about what feels good to me. I get to learn more about the people in my community and what they like to do. 

Self-reflection: Developing awareness of your inner spark

I want PhDs to be able to communicate about their skills, interests, values, preferences, and strengths: who they are, what they need, and what fulfills them. Self-knowledge helps PhDs make conscious choices in all aspects of their lives that are aligned; they will know why they are doing something and whether they are acting in alignment with their values and commitments. When graduate students and postdocs are consciously engaged in the curation of all aspects of their lives, their academic work can be in balance and harmony with rest, play, movement, creativity, friendships, family, and community.

Accompaniment in graduate student development

Graduate students, postdocs, and colleagues are contemplating change, a process of dramatic and emotional self-examination, assessing their environment, weighing options, evaluating their aid systems, and assembling their supportive relationships. Their imaginations are wild with possibilities. They know they are approaching a choice to voice what they want for their true selves. They know they are preparing to, but aren’t quite ready to, decide whether to let a past version of themselves go and a new version emerge. I hold space for graduate students, postdocs and professional development coaches who are contemplating, considering, preparing for, and committing to change.