One of the joys of life is to visit one’s adult children, whether they live close by or at a distance.
After graduating from college, our daughter remained in the New York area, married, and bought a house.
On the way home to Northern Virginia after a recent visit with her, I thought how each visit to the home of one of our adult children is like a short course or even a Boot Camp. This Boot Camp helps us to adapt to their changing lives and maturing personalities. I don’t mean Boot Camp in the sense of a grueling experience, but one with boundaries of time and with opportunities of being near to one another, making it easier to spot ways to make life better.
I coach writers. Many of my clients ask me if Boot Camp would work for them. I occasionally offer a limited-enrollment Boot Camp, tailored to each participant. Boot Camp makes a lot of sense, with its limited time period when someone can focus daily on a specific writing project and where one anticipates making changes to grow and get better.
The people who enroll in Boot Camp come with an impressive academic and professional history and, typically, have been strong writers. But new expectations and self-doubt have derailed them, slowing and or even stalling their writing.
Boot Camp offers writers a safe place to reshape their usual way of approaching their work, and they are not isolated as they do it. As their coach, I give support and accountability as the participants streamline their writing process, gain insights and improved skills, and set up new habits that they can use after Boot Camp ends.
Like writers enrolled in Boot Camp, when my husband and I visit our adult children, I see much in their homes and lives that seems familiar. Our personalities and our conversations move in a comfortable dance-like pattern. However, these short visits bring into relief unexpected changes where I trip up. And then I get to try out new steps, hoping to get better in that unpredictable and wonderful dance with adult children.
Boot Camp has much in common with these short visits. Both are worthwhile, good things to do. In both places you need to expect the unexpected and be ready for a bit of a challenge. With each, you can learn something valuable and new in a setting which seems very familiar.
Should you try Boot Camp? Absolutely! If you are trying to get a toe-hold on your dissertation or an article out the door, consider how two weeks where you write every day and are accountable for doing what you said you would do will jump-start your work.
And it will give new life to your flagging strengths of perseverance and resilience.
What would you like to know about Boot Camp? I would love to hear from you.
If you are navigating change in your family relationships, I would love to hear about that, too.
All good wishes,
NancyNancy Whichard, Ph.D., PCC Your International Dissertation Coach and Academic Career Coach nancy @ nancywhichard.com http://www.nancywhichard.com