Note from the Editor | So how is your summer going so far?

By SRAI News posted 07-09-2019 10:45


Seema Dhindaw

Authored by Seema Dhindaw
Assistant Director of Radiology Research Operations
New York University Langone Medical Center

American kids and even college students if they choose to take the summer off have one of the longest summer vacations in the Western world. We are fortunate! So how is your summer going so far? Any planned vacations or interesting activities going on in your organization? We would love to hear from you! With the Catalyst’s new blog format, we encourage you to post any questions and comments that you have under each article. You can also invite your friends and colleagues to share their opinions by directing them to the article page.

As you heard from Katie in last month’s issue, summer can often be a time in higher education administration to “catch-up” on nonurgent projects that have taken a backseat throughout the year. For a vast majority of parents however, summer also entails kids as they lose academic ground and focus on extracurricular fun activities to make the summer memorable. Summer may be the time of year for relaxation, spending time with friends and happy hours al fresco, but for many of us, adding the pressure of an expanding social calendar and kids out of school to an already packed work-week can cause stress levels to skyrocket. Oh, and don’t forget, you’re supposed to have fun!

August marks the end of the fiscal year for many academic institutions and can become quite hectic if we don’t keep up with finance! Come September, some of us find that even the best of us are several weeks behind where we were in June. So, let’s see if we can make the most of the 2 remaining months that we have! Here are some tips to prevent the summer backslide.

  1. Keep Reading, Learning and Be a Good Role Model. If you find that you have more time on your hands or your head is just not into it, catch up on some reading! Read a book or the newspaper and share interesting stories with your kids and colleague. Use the summer days to spend time with a book every day. “I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, one to write in.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
  2. Choose Sleep. Sleep deprivation can lead to high levels of anxiety and have a negative overall impact on your energy levels and day to day functioning. With summer days being longer due to more hours of sunlight, we tend to overexert ourselves which can quickly lead to burnout.
  3. Work from home or Take time off. If your workplace allows the flexibility to work from home, use these summer months to your benefit! Just being able to work in a stress-free comfortable environment (i.e. Home) can have tremendous benefits on stress levels, creativity, and productivity!
  4. Use screen time wisely. In research administration, many of us are trained to feel like we should always be working. And what about all those emails? Unless the question is urgent, responding can definitely wait till morning.
  5. Exercise your mind and body.  Teach yourself how to be happily active. Go for (family) walks after dinner or hike on weekends. Grab some coworkers and go for a walk after lunch or toss a ball or Frisbee for a bit outside.  Get out there, get physically active and have some fun. It’s as good for you as it is for them.