Thursday, May 25, 2006


how do you make those big decisions? what factors do you take into consideration, and which do you throw out? how big a risk is too big? what are you willing to settle for?

what i do now, i love. i enjoy being a scientist. i enjoy working out problems, being at the bench doing experiments, and thinking of new and better ways to analyze data. and i would be perfectly content to do this for the rest of my life. (as long as i could make just a wee bit more money doing it.)

which is a big thing and saying a lot, since many many folks who get their phd working at the bench then either leave science altogether or get a job not being at the bench (i.e. professors/PIs). but this thing also means that there really aren't all that many jobs being at the bench for someone with their PhD. not to mention the fact that i fear in not too long a time much of the science done in this country will be done in another, far cheaper, one.

but there is this other thing that i dream of doing. and it scares me because it is a HUGE risk. in many ways. changes and being risky are not things that i'm good at. things that i've taught myself to lean away from because of who i am, where i come from, how i grew up. it is safer to be safe.

it would mean making decisions without seeing the final outcome. without seeing how it will turn out. whether it will all come together, whether it will all be alright. whether i'll be able to do it, or not. without having a backup plan. these are all things i've never done before.

i don't have to make this decision today. but soon, i will. and it is easy enough to cast the line. harder to know what to do if i get a bite.


At 8:23 AM GMT-5, Blogger dlamming said...

As I mentioned offline, I tend not to make big decisions - I just know what I want to do, and it tends to wind up that way. I don't think that's really the way to decide what postdoc I want to do, though, which is probably why I can't decide just yet what I want to do. :)

For small decisions though, I'll say this - I often think, will I regret not doing something more than I will regret doing it, but having it turn out badly?


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