This semester I get to say those amazing words: “I’m on junior sabbatical.” That means it is time to read again, write again, and blog again. This is the chance not just to run myself into the proverbial ground of grinding academic productivity, but rather to reboot. Of course, to figure out what that meant, I spent a lot of time hitting the academic advice columns, hoping to blueprint my way to a restorative sabbatical.
Annoyingly, there’s a lot of advice out there if you are planning to take a whimsical sabbatical that involves packing up your entire family to travel the world. With a terminally ill father and a family that includes four felines, that’s not practical for me. That also isn’t my ideal sabbatical, anyway. Yes, I have much-needed travel planned, but set me up on an ergonomic work-couch, surround me with cats, and put coffee at my side and a computer in my lap, and I’ll be contentedly productive.
Or at least, so I think. The problem is that it is so freaking easy, amid the pressures of finishing a PhD, getting settled into a job you love, and chasing down tenure, to lose touch with what is so enjoyable about that triumvirate of the academic idyll–cats, coffee, and computer–after all. Now, at the start of 2018, I realize I haven’t really, sincerely pressed the pause button at least since 2010. So, here I am, learning again to love the life of the mind, relishing in #cleaneating, finding productivity in slowing down rather than speeding through, forging forward with Book #2…and rebooting this blog. I’m especially encouraged by my mentors in academic sanity (looking at you, Jooyoung Lee & your Positive Sociology!) and looking forward to sharing sabbatical tips, sociological thoughts, a few breakthroughs, and definitely some cat photos.