Don’t you just love a good goals post? Right now most folks in my feed are either “my only 2022 goal is to survive” OR “I’m going to do all the things!” This post is…somewhere in the middle. It’s not in my nature to go from thing to thing without a plan, and, on the other hand, I am also very aware of how life can knock the wind out of you. Personal tragedies are always horrible, but they seem even worse right now in the midst of a global pandemic. I’m the kind of person for whom goals are a comfort. I do not chastise myself when I do not meet them exactly as planned (especially if an unexpected tragedy occurred), and neither do I feel bad reading others’ goal lists or achievements even if they far outstrip my own. If you are similar, please read on. If others’ goal lists make you feel less than or bitter, please feel free to stop here.
For context, I teach a 4 course load (or equivalent # of students ~ 100+) each semester involving two preps of WIT (writing intensive) classes. This list is also designed for the spring semester time-frame only and these goals are specifically focused on research/writing/service (i.e. not teaching*). My plan is to do a end-semester review post to report back on how it went.
- Present (and be “present”) at MLA
- Prep & Deliver Center for Humanities Research Talk
- Finish full draft of Tweetsets article
- Chair/Present NeMLA panel/paper
- Share book idea w/ publisher
- Present at Computers & Writing Conference
- Mentor grad student(s)
- Create quality materials for CETL
*To be clear, teaching is extremely important to me, but I do not have new goals for it this semester. Many of the unique goals I had for spring semester teaching are complete (e.g. prep for these classes, grants to support my CE work w/ undergrads, etc.), and I feel pretty good about the current state of my teaching practice. I also do not take on *new* and/or robust teaching projects in the middle of the academic year since the winter break is so much shorter than the summer break.
This list might seem like a lot (or not) depending on your own experience, but a) several of these goals are conference related (which any academic can tell you is one of the easier goals for us to meet) and b) I’m taking my own ambition with a grain of salt because it is only four days into the new year and already we are buried under snow with closed roads and widespread power outages and with Covid-19 on the rise again. Wishing you all better luck in the new year and in this new semester.
Are you setting goals for the spring semester? If so, what is one you’re really hoping for?
Stay tuned for more posts this year about teaching, research, and academia. Feel free to follow me on Twitter: @litambitions and Instagram: @ecacademic (where I really nerd out about planning). You can also follow this blog (see the email subscribe button on the home page). ALSO, I am happy to announce that I will RELAUNCH a biweekly podcast called Vita Abundantior in which I conduct interviews with awesome women and ask them how they go about living such abundant lives (avail on all major streaming platforms, so please subscribe).