Begin with what you don’t know: An end of year reflection and meditation for academics

W.S. Merwin, who was recently the Poet Laureate of the United States, grew up in New York City. As a child, he had a recurring nightmare of concrete covering all the green areas of the earth. His whole life, and all his poetry and writing, has had the aim of serving to make sure that this doesn’t happen.

We academics are an anxious group. Will my article be accepted? Will I get tenure? Will my department survive the next round of budget cuts? We can get stuck in endless cycles of worry.

More than (good) enough: Allowing gratitude to guide your way to the end of the semester

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The top 10 reasons we don’t reach our goals (And how you can banish them!)

It’s October, so it’s a good time to get a little witchy. Imagine we are under a clear and starry sky at night. Let’s add a cauldron into the picture. Come circle around it with me. Together we are going to cook up the foulest stew you have ever tasted. The ingredients will be all the reasons why people don’t reach their goals. We will throw them in one by one. Watch, as we do, how the brew starts to bubble and smoke.

GUEST POST: 4 Ways to work-life balance in 4 minutes

Perhaps you’ve heard the term “work-life balance” so often that it makes you want to punch someone in the face  — but you don’t have time to do that because as you read this, it’s not even 8 am, you’re late for a deadline, you have a class to teach, your daughter’s soccer coach wants to talk to you later today, you have 24 unread emails, and you forgot (again!) to pack a healthy snack for your daughter to eat before practice.

Hunger, home and history: Our legacies as academics

My Irish ancestors who came to America in the late 19th century called July “the hungry month” because the stored food from the year before was used up and the new crops were not yet in. I remember during summers as a child how my mother, a philosophy professor, would eat chips by the pool and say, “I don’t know why I’m always so hungry in the summer.”

I grew up to become an academic and writer and when I researched this history, I was able to make connections between my family history and our globe’s larger, collective histories.