“Nothing will work unless you do.” Maya Angelou
“The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today.” Elbert Hubbard
Précis: Over the past eight weeks, some loyal readers and several friends have asked me: “Is everything okay?”; “Has my health taken a downturn?”; “Have you stopped writing your blog?”; “I have been worried about you because it has been well over six weeks since your last blog post.” I responded to each that I was well and doing fine, my health has been steady. However, the fall semester (early August-early December) for me is over-flowing with my job/work (teaching, administrative and still trying to maintain some research) and other commitments (service) [let alone trying to find time to exercise and other personal time], which leads to very little spare time to even think about composing a blog post. I apologized to everyone who contacted me; and I do stand in awe of all of the bloggers I follow who are able to both write and work full-time at the same time. Thus, the topic for the current post is about having a career/full-time job in the presence of Parkinson’s disease.
“The world is full of willing people; some willing to work, the rest willing to let them.” Robert Frost
There is an old saying that ‘there are people who work to live’ and that ‘there are people who live to work’: One of these phrases likely describes your attitude (or opinion) about your job/career. One phrase is not more correct than the other phrase. Likely, one phrase will matter in which career path you follow and it will contribute to your overall satisfaction in work-matters. Thus, an honest assessment will help you identify which of these beliefs you most are aligned with as your life and career unfolds. Your happiness matters.
I have been in an academic medicine setting for the past 35 years and I am more closely linked with the phrase ‘live to work’. I have never regretted this career choice. It has taken me a long time to understand the how and the why of my academic career successes and advances mixed with the typical setbacks/compromises. A dear friend recently told me she could not imagine me doing anything else career-wise, it’s a perfect match. Currently, I am still able to work 6 days/week with the following goals: educating future healthcare providers, serving on several committees, and planning that next experiment to get one more research proposal submitted/funded. Then Parkinson’s happened.
“The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary.” Vince Lombardi
The equilibrium between life and career: The “life-work equation” is now of primary importance to me. My version can be summarized as given below (likely, you’d have different/additional variables in your own ‘personal’ life-work equation):
Executive function image: goosecreekconsulting.com/picts/executivefunctioncoaching.jpg
Stress response image: themeditatingman.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/stressresponse.jpg