But recently everything feels out of control, or, more accurately, I feel as though I am not in control of my time. Incessant emails, demands for information, writing tasks, more emails, more meetings--sure, it's standard drill for an administrator. It has to be done when it has to be done, and if your own writing suffers--with consequent damage to grants, writing, awards, etc.--that's just too bad. No one twisted my arm to do this, and I believe in what I'm doing.
|Figure 1. Still the best technique.|
The first is the end-of-semester anger management technique I wrote about--surprise!--at the end of the semester a couple of years ago: "Take your hands off that man!"
"You want it to say X, even after I explained the problems with that? Fine. X it is then." Take your hands off that issue. Let it go, and don't look back.
|Figure 2. One of these things is . . .|
In recipe terms, I said something like "You know, Worcestershire sauce and vanilla extract may look the same, but if you use Worcestershire sauce in your chocolate chip cookie recipe, you're in for a world of hurt." Today I received an email saying "full speed ahead with the brown liquid for the cookies, yes?"
|Figure 3 . . . not like the other.|
The third one is reaching a breaking point with a passive aggressive colleague who concern-trolls and challenges every single decision I make. Ze will argue for A, and, if I do A after due consideration and input from others, Ze will ask why I didn't do B instead.
There's a particular kind of passive aggression that mistakes my friendliness for weakness and a willingness to be Instructed and Corrected, like Grady in The Shining. I've experienced this before and finally figured out that that's what was happening here: I was being friendly. That was a mistake, and I Corrected it, though not with an axe.
|Figure 4. Grady explaining "correction" to Jack.|
And maybe tomorrow I'll turn off email and do some of my own scholarship for a change.