Pura Vida in Project Management


Hubs and I just got back from our destination wedding in Costa Rica (many DIY-related posts to come in the next few months). I came back feeling rejuvenated and inspired by the Costa Rican ethos of Pura Vida. Pura vida is all about living carefree.

Anyway, back to the daily grind, I got to thinking about how we always have extra tasks on our plate that we just never get to. I think it’s these things hanging over our heads that leads to a lot of stress and anxiety. We spend more time worrying about these to-dos than we do about how to make ourselves more fulfilled, and a more fulfilled me means a better worker.

So, with the blessing of my totally awesome boss, I’ve instituted the quarterly catch-up week. This week isn’t about racing through tasks. It’s about planning NO MEETINGS (treating it like vacation time to everyone in the workplace) so you can refocus, read a little, and either complete or delete bullet points on that endless list of tasks. My boss has a completely full schedule of meetings, yet is still required to stay up to date in research and teaching; I’m not sure how this is possible when you have 40 hours of meetings scheduled in a week. I know this catch-up week absolutely isn’t possible for everyone, but it’s something I’m trying out from a project management standpoint for those of us doing academic work.

I’ll keep you posted in July as to how well we stick to it!


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