IMPRS workshop 'The Dark Side of Science – Procrastination, Perfectionism, Doubt and Dead Ends'

Category: Transferable skills
Credit points: 0.4


1.  Time & place

December 5-6, 2019
MPI for Chemical Ecology


2.  The instructor

Dr. Anne-Christin Warskulat


3.  Description

As scientists our goal is to know all about the recent advances in our field of study. We try to conduct and contribute excellent research every single day. As we transition from a master student to a PhD student and later to a postdoc, we face a steady increase in responsibility, workload and external or personal expectations.
From outside our aims and to-dos are clear. We know what to do. We are well aware of the time available for all scheduled tasks, but we still find ourselves now-and-then doing anything rather than what we planned or should do (procrastination). Or we keep re-writing and re-phrasing our latest draft, an Email to our supervisor or improve a vector graphic without actually finishing it (perfectionism). At the end of the day we reflect on everything that we should have done and feel disappointed. If such behaviour occurs more often we start feeling stuck and lost (doubts & dead ends) which further leads to a decline in productivity and motivation. Indeed, we could call procrastination, perfectionism, doubts and dead ends “the dark side of science”.
Would it be nice to realise when you are called to the “dark side”?
Would it be great to decide to stay or to return to the “light side” the moment you find yourself drawn to or at the dark side? How would these possibilities impact your intrinsic motivation, creativity and productivity?
First of all, you are not alone in the fight against the dark side and it can be overcome with clever countermeasures. When we understand the phenomena of the dark side of science, their underlying patterns and their individual impact on our lives we are able to stop and deal with them right from the beginning of their occurrence. This way we can truly enjoy the time and work we dedicate to science.
This interactive workshop is a training that enables you to understand and overcome procrastination, perfectionism, doubts and dead ends in your life. You will gain new perspectives on your work and future. Furthermore, the dark side of science will lose its threat.
In the first part, we will discuss how to identify the phenomena in our own thinking and work-life and analyse which patterns feed them. Afterwards we will work on possible solutions for prime and individual examples because there is no such thing as one solution fits all problems.
You will find suitable and customized solutions for yourself and help others find their approaches. Furthermore, we will get to know a variety of short, mid and long-term strategies and tools. Everybody is welcome to contribute scenarios and vote for additional or personal topics in a safe and nonjudgmental environment.
Finally, you will create a plan of action for the next time you are confronted with procrastination, perfectionism, doubts or dead ends. Your personal solutions are so well-fitted that they are easily implemented in your daily life even when you face possible setbacks and obstacles.
In summary, the outcome of this workshop is extremely valuable for all aspects of your scientific work, career development in and outside of academia and your personal life.

For further details on the content and logistic matters (including registration issues), please contact the IMPRS office.


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