I’ve been working on job applications this week. In particular, one for a job that isn’t really in my wheelhouse, but is in my area of interest and training. Plus, it aligns really well with both my short and long term goals, so I decided to give it a shot. They asked that I submit a syllabus and I didn’t have any handy that were in line with I’d be expected to teach so I worked on one. I figured, at the very least, it would be useful for thinking about the position and what kind of work I would be committed to doing.
I always underestimate how long things are going to take. I shouldn’t, but I do. Writing the syllabus was no exception. I set aside a 4-hour chunk on Tuesday morning for it and an hour in I realized there were a lot of things I still wanted to think about for course prep. (Of course, some of that can be saved for later, if I get the job as there are particulars that the school itself will want me to adjust.) Four wasn’t going to be enough.
I had a bit of an epiphany while I was working on the syllabus, though. I am not using my time in the right way to meet some of my longer term goals. It just occurred to me. But, doing that work on Tuesday morning helped me think about progress and how it is incremental. I did slow work, but the work I did was solid, and even if I don’t get the job is useful because not only do I have another syllabus and another course I’ve thought through, I have reminded myself of the importance of putting the time in. And, the importance of using my time thoughtfully.
So, now I’ve set aside time (likely not enough) to think through how to better structure my time. Or, to better make use of my time. It’s nice to have apps like forest, which help keep me from getting distracted. But, I think I have to do more work around my goals and really thinking about where I want to be headed and how to get there.by