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Sabbatical week 1: decisions decisions

I’m on sabbatical for the next term.  Many academics take this opportunity to relocate to another university, often one in another country, for a change of scenery and an opportunity to recharge their batteries.  This isn’t something that’s open to me given that I have two young children and a partner with a fulltime job that doesn’t provide the same opportunity for a paid sabbatical.  As a result, I have a term without teaching and (most of my) admin duties.  It seems challenging to make the most of this opportunity so that I look back on this time and feel that it was really different in some way from any other term.  Given that a change is as good as a rest, how am I going to change things without changing things in my personal life too much?

In order to help me decide what to do I talked to some friends and colleagues and also posted the question on facebook.  I got a bunch of interesting suggestions: https://www.facebook.com/Anna.L.Cox/posts/10151893679466189

So what did I settle on?

  1.  Blogging (suggested by Charlene Jennett) – hence this post.  I’m going to write something every week.
  2. I have some short trips planned to give some talks
  3. Maria Kutar suggested life-logging, which given my current interest in personal  informatics tools, is also something i’m going to add to my list.
  4. Paul Marshal’s suggestion of  juggling might morph into ‘juggling work-life balance in new ways’, probably not quite what he had in mind, but I’m going to try out a few things, including Steve Payne’s suggestion of time off from facebook and email!,
  5.  Jo Iacovides suggested playing video games.
  6. And Lisa Tweedie and Ann Blandford suggested voluntary work

  Best get busy then!