A crushing low

…I just hit one.

I’ve been reading some more stuff on the history and context of UK HE (Anderson 2010), plus a long paper explaining neoliberalism and the knowledge economy (Olssen & Peters 2005), and trying to write some coherent thoughts about it… but it’s all too much. Too much stuff, literally, and too much emotion. The more I find out about the way universities are funded and measured, the angrier I get, to the point where I just feel really sad. Sad and tired. At the moment all I seem to do is work and read and write and do a bit of cooking and walk the dog and read and write some more, and it’s nothing new – loads of other people have had these ideas – and published very well-cited articles about them – and it seemingly hasn’t helped any.

I feel like I have drawn myself down into a dark hole of dark ideas. I am finding it hard to act normal with people. The thought of casual socialising is exhausting. I lack enthusiasm for our wedding; it is like the worst bits of teaching; chasing non-respondents, tinkering with enormous spreadsheets, replying patiently to endless requests from people who haven’t read the instructions, wondering whether anyone will actually turn up, and briefly entertaining the thought that it will be easier if they don’t…

I have left no time in my life to do anything for other people. My focus is turned inwards. I have fits of uncontrollable rage; I hit things.

I know this is just a blip; a necessary moment of real struggle in a learning journey that is overal an enjoyable one. These are wicked problems that I’m trying to deal with. I think the best way forward is to leave this week’s L&T reading blog in draft form (for now), to give myself a little rest from the deep stuff and attack my WrAP work afresh tomorrow.

Once I’m ready to start my T&L assignment in earnest I need to remember to think global but act local; to retain a focus on my own purpose. As my friend Graham told me earlier today – if we lose focus on our purpose, we just get buried in drama (see above).

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