Running to keep up with the fast-paced skeptics

The skeptical movement is blossoming. This is good and bad. It used to be sort of easy to keep up with things. Now, there are so many new blogs and interesting forums to follow, one can’t possibly participate in all of them. I can just about keep up on all the podcasts!

I’m a mother of 2, I work full-time as a geologically-trained bureaucrat, I have a family life, work life, and skeptical social network life. On top of that, I’m taking six credits a semester online towards a EdM degree in Science and the Public. Multi-tasking isn’t just a handy skill, it’s the sole means of survival. Now, we have research that shows that no one is truly multi-tasking well. Each task is being cheated of attention. When I’m at work, listening to a podcast and trying to read articles or emails, I can feel my brain jumping back and forth between the two tasks. I’m not focusing completely on either. I get a headache too.

Time management is a necessary duty. I have my free time to explore my own interests or do school work. It’s a chore to put away the Twitter and Facebook but I’m starting to buckle down and do it. The problem is, I’m interesting in so many things! I want to research, I want to read it all. I don’t want to be left out of the loop on the next big topic of discussion or blowup so I lurk. A while ago, I gave up on the blog for a while. Now, I’ve let go of a volunteer project thanks to someone else very competent taking the lead. Everyone has to make those choices.

I don’t know how many of my on-the-ball friends do it. I suspect they have no gardens to weed or 4 person dinners to fix every night. At times, I feel like old Bilbo Baggins “…like butter scraped over too much bread”.

I’m constantly thinking about a thesis topic, which I need to decide on fairly soon. It should be something interesting but, of course, serves multi-purposes. I’m drawn in by so many different topics, I can stop to focus on one in depth!

I am amazed at how much clearer I can think when I am away from home (or my co-residents are away from me) for a few days. The pressure to jump into action is off and my mind clears. Still, there is something new on the internet I have to check out.

While I was busy keeping up appearances at work, at home and online this year, I learned more than I have since probably my first year of life – about people, the world and myself. Too bad I’ve forgotten half of it. At least I wrote some down. (Now where did I put that?) I’ve stepped forward and made lots of mistakes but lots of valuable connections too. I can’t stop taking advantage of opportunities to try even if they mean more work. Is that bad?

So, everyone, stop doing such amazing things for a while. I need a moment to catch up.