Search Results for: self-care – Page 3

Can academic reading be healing?

So often academic reading is experienced as a chore, or an anxiety, or an extractive industry. You might skim, mine or categorise your reading. You might read to critique, to look for the gaps. Perhaps you are looking forward to the day when machine learning tools can do your reading for you. Perhaps you would like to keep up with the wider reading in your field, but don’t feel like you have time. All of these mean that we often have a fraught relationship with reading.

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250th post on Research Degree Insiders

We’ve just passed a major landmark, with our 250th post here on Research Degree Insiders (about how to anonymise your research for peer review without erasing it!) Back in 2013, I started a tiny place on the internet to share the resources that I was talking about every day with students in one-on-one sessions .

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This year I’m aiming for a dynamic balance

Perhaps you feel like your year swings into productivity and then out again. Perhaps you are aware of all the wobbles and adjustments you are constantly having to make. Perhaps sometimes you need to reach out for support. Maybe sometimes you fall off balance and have to quickly get back up again. These are ways that people talk to me about balance–and they suggest that they are therefore ‘bad at balance’, ‘unbalanced’. But actually, this is exactly how bodies and minds should balance.

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Are you ‘inspired’ or are you just breathing?

Often, we feel we should wait to feel ‘inspired’ to start writing. We want to wait until we feel we are filled up with ideas and certainty and energy to write. And yet, as Boice found in his research, turning up regularly and ‘just writing’, whether or not you felt inspired or had time or were ready, could make someone nine times more productive.

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A loving kindness meditation for your writing

But how do you shift from awareness to positivity? Sometimes reflecting on my situation just highlights how hard everything is and how tired everyone feels.
It can help to move from rehearsing how badly you feel, to articulating a beneficial wish for everything and and everyone around you, including yourself.

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Tuning in, tuning out the writing voices in your head

Writing advice gets under people’s skin and into their guts and hearts. When I chat to a person whose self perception of their writing is a long way off the reality I see on the page, I often ask them ‘who told you your writing was like that?’ A school teacher, an undergraduate lecturer, a supervisor. Those comments stick, sometimes for decades.

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What’s the best writing posture?

There is no one ideal posture that you should take and maintain for the full working day. Instead, the best posture is actually a series of different positions. At home, you already have a range of furniture and spaces available to you, so it’s easier to switch it up. Changing how you sit every so often, even if it’s just moving chairs every few hours, can make a huge different to your comfort and mobility. Move from the desk to the sofa and back again, or out to the balcony. Stand at the breakfast bar, or use that treadmill or stationary bike in the living room.

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