• Question: How does working affect your normal life?

    Asked by 589cara48 to , Devon, Dmitry, Heather, Jonathan, Michael, Rebecca, Richard, Sarah, Tim.M, Tim.S on 26 Jan 2018.
    • Photo: Tim Millar

      Tim Millar answered on 26 Jan 2018:


      Good question. I run a group of scientists and I need to come up with ideas all the time, so I never switch off. Its a little like being self employed in that you are always looking for the next contract and thinking how the best to do things. There is competition for money and collaborations that you need to work at, money and management, health and safety, ethics…

      I also teach students who email at all times of the day and night and at the weekends and sometimes want answers as soon as possible! Any career will have work / life balance issues and you need a lot of support from family and friends. You can see the world with this career though and make friends and be excited with research of great interest. If you can balance it all then thats a good thing but I am generally my own boss

    • Photo: Sarah Finnegan

      Sarah Finnegan answered on 26 Jan 2018:


      For me my job is a big part of my life! I have friends at work and we often go out after work for dinner or meet up at the weekend. Sometimes you have a deadline and you need to put other things on hold for a while and work late into the evening, but thats ok because you are motivated by your findings! (and you can take time off afterwards). Its really up to you how you organise your time, which I love!

    • Photo: Dmitry Dereshev

      Dmitry Dereshev answered on 26 Jan 2018:


      Being a PhD student, my current arrangements allow for a lot of flexibility – so I can take a day off if I feel like it, or work outside of 09:00 to 17:00 if I feel exceptionally inspired.

      Investigating things rigorously (which is what my work essentially is) changed my life in more subtle ways. Reading news and articles now I subject them to the same rigour that I use in my working life, and so I tend to question a lot of what they say, and not necessarily believe them.

      Another consequence is: it’s your responsibility to learn whatever tools and information you need to accomplish your research – nobody’s holding your hand. So, I tend to casually absorb a lot of online lecturers targeted at 1st year Bachelors in various subjects from Philosophy to Psychology to Economics – it broadens my horizons on those subjects, and who know? I might need that knowledge later on.

    • Photo:

      answered on 26 Jan 2018:


      I really like my job so I work quite a lot. It does very much affect my whole life. It affects where I live – in the UK rather than in the US where I was born and grew up. I do some work out of normal working hours. My husband is a mathematician – he does work out of normal working hours as well. We coordinate to make sure we have a balanced family life as well as rewarding working lives.

    • Photo: Rebecca Dewey

      Rebecca Dewey answered on 5 Feb 2018:


      My job is a really big part of my life. I often find myself reading or chatting with colleagues over e-mail (or in the pub) about work, outside of office hours. I think it is essential to really love what you do in order to do well in the field. It doesn’t really feel like “work” it’s just what I do.

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