Discovering: Balance

What a hectic quarter this one has been! Between attending meetings, planning events, and working shifts as an RA, dedicating an average of 10 hours a week to my research internship, and keeping up with 19 units of fast-paced science classes, it is a wonder that I still have time to breath and sleep a few hours at the end of the day!

Although my grades are not suffering from all this busyness, I can feel myself burning out. Like the Energizer bunny looking confident in pink and shades, moving forward, always moving forward in chase of some invisible carrot, and banging its drum as if its life depended on it, I convince myself that I am superwoman and do not give myself a break. I bang my drum, studying late into the night, baking fresh batches of cookies for my residents because they taste better, staying in my lab overtime because I want to reach the results of an experiment, tying ribbons with sparkly tags around lotions to make holiday gifts for each girl in my house, redoing Physics and OChem practice problems, and signing up for even more classes next quarter. There is always the carrot, the motivation to work harder, strive higher, do more, be better, to give my all in everything I do, and to truly make a difference.

To accomplish those things, or to reach the carrot so to speak, I need to be realistic. I am only a Sophomore Undergraduate. In the future, there are many more years of school. Burning out is not an option. So, time management and prioritizing come into play. Unlike the Energizer bunny that “keeps going, and going, and going…”, I am not a fictitious animation with an infinite source of energy. I am a 19-year old human being who needs (1) Sleep, (2) Exercise, and (3) Guilt-free relaxation. I am afraid I took on more than I could chew happily this quarter, because to be honest anyone looking at my record would think this quarter went smoothly like all the rest. Happily is the key word in the former sentence. I have been able to manage all of these responsibilities simultaneously and do well, but I simply do not have the time to fully enjoy and engage in each one.

After reflecting upon all of these things I have come to this conclusion: Just because I can, does not necessarily mean that I should.

So, next quarter, I am taking the second parts of Physics and Organic Chemistry. However, instead of additional science classes, I will be working towards my double major and taking two Spanish courses. I am hoping that the these classes will add some variety into my course load and give certain areas of my brain a break from a quarter of Newton’s laws-cAMP-bromination-delocalized electrons-science-thinking-overload.

On a more positive note, the Celatrol experiment is going very well, I have sliced, stained, and fixed the brain slices and will finish mounting them on glass slides on Friday. We should be viewing them under the fluorescent microscope next week. I cannot wait to see the results!

Posted in 2010-2011, EUREKA

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Student Contributors
Alex Iteen is a second year student majoring in Biology. He is interested in bioengineering and synthetic biology. He is currently working in Dr. Fygenson's lab on DNA nanotubes.
See all his posts

David Wallace is a third year student majoring in Biochemistry/Molecular Biology. He is currently working in Professor Weimbs's lab studying the pathogenic mechanisms of Autosomal Dominant Polycystic Kidney Disease (ADPKD).
See all his posts

Eneida Chesnut is a senior majoring in chemical engineering. She transferred from SBCC, where she studied chemistry. She works with organic materials for solar cells and is very interested in renewable energy research.
See all her posts

Erzsebet is a second year chemical engineering major. She is interested in biotechnology and biophysics, and is working in Professor David Awschalom's lab investigating how cephalopod skin responds to different types of stimulation by light.
See all her posts

Madison Cornwell is a second year student majoring in Biochemistry and Spanish. She is a EUREKA intern through the California NanoSystems Institute and the Resident Assistant of the Women in Science and Technology House in Manzanita Village. She will be working closely with Dr. Kosik and graduate student Israel Hernandez for the remainder of her time at UCSB.
See all her posts
Are you interested in contributing to the UCSB Undergraduate Research blog? Email Kelly Pillsbury for more information.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3 other followers

Blog Stats
  • 19,121 visitors