Thursday, January 12, 2017

Stuff gets real

I printed out my CV and cover letter, and found an old (repurposable) three-ring binder. I am assembling my post-tenure review packet.

(It's a good thing I had an old binder on hand- no need to run to a place with office-supplies and also far less likelihood of me having a late-in-the-game breakdown and buying one with Ponies or something on it. The one I am using is grey)

I have to deal with my annual reviews next. I have two of the three (not sure which ones), the third one wasn't findable so I will have to put it together from the stored documents in my computer's memory.

And I'm having major Impostor Syndrome issues with this. I have had two separate people tell me I should not (my Best Frolleague Forever told me to "stop stressing about it, go home, play the piano and have a glass of wine" - that last didn't happen because of Board Meeting and also because I don't like wine (and it's contraindicated with some of my meds). ) The secretary kind of gave me a puzzled look like "why would that be a problem for you" so I am interpreting that as a "you shouldn't feel inadequate"

But I do.

I know the reasons for making us do this and they are all non-nefarious - it is to check some box the Regents or Legislature have established; it's to be sure there are not faculty receiving full-time pay but going "I would prefer not to" when faced with every normal responsibility of their job, to allow a chance to tell people who are falling down badly on their requirements that they need to pull their socks up. And I have never been told I need to pull my socks up. So why do I feel so bad about this?

It's one of the fundamental unfairnesses of existence, I think: the whole Dunning-Kruger effect thing where someone who is TOTALLY ineffectual and clumsy at what they do can say "Dang, I'm GOOD!" and someone who, really, viewed in the hard cold light of day is mostly OK at their work is going "oh crud oh crud oh crud why did I not take that chance for professional development back a couple years ago? I was only KIND OF sick at the time" or "I've devoted too much time to things that matter to me but that are unquantifiable, and now I'm gonna pay for it" or more, the dread of "what are they gonna tell me I'm not doing enough of in the letter?"

And yeah, if I were prone to conspiracy theory, I could read a nefarious reason into requiring this: for one thing, it's more work and more time away from our actual, contracted work. But for another, for the obsessive self-doubting people, it makes them even less secure and more looking over their shoulder expecting to see the Grim Reaper, Employment Version coming for their job. And I know that's all of my anxiety and low-level ocd speaking, but it's also a hard feeling to shake.

Ugh. I just need this to be done. I've set a deadline of tomorrow morning, and am promising myself if I do it:

a. If it's not raining buckets, I will go to Sherman and get groceries at the natural-foods store (I am out of a couple things only they carry) and

b. I will relax on Saturday and do some knitting and maybe re-watch one of my "comfort movies" if there's nothing good on TCM.

And I get to do this again in three years! Yay. Not. (We still have to do annual "development plans" and "summaries of the development plan we had for last year - so this really is additional work)

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