Friday, October 06, 2006

my dissertation is making me fat

Doing the interviews and group discussions for my research is interesting and fun -- I enjoy talking to people and hearing what they have to say. A lot of the time no one has asked them what they think about some of these things before, so it can be an exctiting and fun discovery process for all of us.

Listening to the recordings while trying to take down what was said is not as much fun. I get frustrated because I have to keep going back to see if I really heard what I thought I heard to make sure that I'm getting everything down accurately. It takes so long, at least four or five times the length of the interaction, to transcribe it. I'm a pretty good typist and I have good software and a very good recorder, but it still just takes so much time. I can't do it if anyone else is home or the TV's on.

Even with my attempts to minimize distractions, though, I find it hard to focus. I'm sitting at a computer so the internet is always there, with all its various charms. I am going to have to stop logging into chat when I am planning to do transcription, because there is no such thing as a short chat. I can hop online and read a couple of sites and then get right back to work, or even post a quick blog entry, but chat involves other people, so I can't just disappear like a ninja when I realize I've spent too much time goofing off.

The biggest temptation, though, is the kitchen. Snacking is much more interesting than typing, and I really have found that I am eating a lot more on the days that I have transcription to do. Even somewhat boring food like cereal becomes alluring when transcribing is the alternative. If I could only figure out a way to run on the treadmill and type at the same time...


  1. I can relate to the temptation of chat at the computer. I live online all day at work for my job and sit with a laptop on my lap watching TV and visiting with friends. But sometimes I really need to concentrate on things and can't multi-task, and it's so hard to break away from chatting with friends.

    At least when I'm at work there isn't as much food around as when I'm home. That's really hard and I have zero self control.

  2. Think of your keyboards when you want to eat. I probably have (still) enough crumbs to make a muffin or something in mine.

    As for the chats...if you're online and want to talk, you'll have to make the first move. I won't want to cause any problems for anyone.

  3. Lori, that's the thing, see, if chat wasn't fun for me, then I wouldn't be tempted to DO it...but I think, "Oh, I'll just sign in and see who's on," sort of like when I'm thinking, "I could go to the kitchen and just see what's there...."

    I got all my transcription done yesterday (woo hoo!) so I can enjoy my weekend. Next weekend I'm going to do 3 more interviews, so I'll have a huge pile of transcribing to do, so it was very important to finish up this little bit before I took on more.

  4. this is exactly how I felt about QUILTING. Whether I was sitting at the sewing machine or in a chair doing handwork - it just seemed to be LINKED to eating . . .


"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07