For this Reading Week, I challenged myself to keep a daily log to see what worked in keeping me productive and what didn’t. Here it is:
My Reading Week officially begins after I submit an assignment and head home. Knowing that I’ll be spending both Friday and Sunday at the Parliament of the World’s Religions as part of my ROP course, I plan out which panels to attend and ensure that my express tickets are printed. I resolve that I want to get two assignments done before next Friday and another done before Wednesday.
What worked: setting a concrete goal for myself.
Parliament of the World’s Religions. A very interesting but very long day.
What didn’t work: scheduling back-to-back panels and accidentally skipping lunch.
I feel completely wiped out from yesterday. I decide to check out the Day of the Dead festivities happening at the Harbourfront Centre. I get some reading done for one of my classes.
What worked: authentic hot chocolate.
What didn’t work: not anticipating how tired I’d be. I tried getting reading done, but accidentally fell asleep instead!
Back to the Parliament of the World’s Religions. Another interesting day. I go to a few more hands-on events.
What worked: pushing myself to try out new things and have new experiences.
What didn’t work: back-to-back panels again, and maybe pushing myself a little too hard.
I wake up feeling a bit under the weather and way later than anticipated. I go for a walk, so that I feel recharged enough to work on one of my Environmental Studies assignments for a couple of hours. I decide to binge watch The Haunting of Hill House afterwards, and play my violin for a bit.
What worked: getting some work done, going for a walk, treating myself a long Netflix session.
What didn’t work: spending too much time watching Hill House, and not trying to get more work done. But hey, I really needed a self-care day!
Still feeling sickish. But I eventually get around to answering some emails to schedule a few meetings. I get close to finishing the assignment I was working on yesterday, but stop myself from completing it because I feel like I’m doing a sloppy job (I’d rather be slightly behind schedule than submitting work I don’t feel great about). It’s sunny and warm out so I decide to go for another walk. I’m still taking everything a bit slow, but I decide not to worry too much about my assignments or else I might make myself feel overwhelmed.
What worked: getting work done, walking, making sure I stay calm in the face of setbacks.
What didn’t work: not pushing myself to complete this one assignment before the middle of the week, which was what I initially had planned.
Productive or not, Reading Week is what you make of it. It can be a time for really pushing through with your final assignments or a time for recuperating. My original plan was to get tons of work done, but my body decided to slow me down. I could get stressed out about this, but would it be doing me any good? I think I needed a bit of a break before classes start up again. There are still a few days left to get important things done, and I think I can do it.
My advice? Like anything, plan ahead but don’t fret if life throws you a curve ball or two.