As any assistant professor the word “tenure” sends shivers down my spine. The old adage “publish or perish” is always floating in the back of my mind. But the other day something hit me… I have always been told don’t do anything that doesn’t count toward your tenure. Such as will that presentation help you, will helping at that contest help you, etc. As I was cleaning my house on Sunday (for the first time in 4 weeks) I realized cleaning doesn’t count toward my tenure, and thus has moved to the bottom of my to-do list.
This is where the problem comes in. As a new professor the first thing you have to learn is how to balance this world of academia with the world you live in. You can’t forget the other things in your life that make the days good. Outside of our hallowed halls of the university are our families, our homes, our hobbies (yes we must still have hobbies). And maybe it takes a deep wiff of cleaning solution to remind me of that sometimes. Maybe if I focused on me as much as I do tenure, my house might get cleaned more often. Or maybe not 🙂