Earlier this week, I was reading some posts about how many hours people in academia work every week. Some people claimed to work about 35 hours a week, and others claimed more in the 70-80 hour range. Some asserted that professionals in "9-5" jobs typically work 60 hours a week anyway, and others that comparing an academic job to a 9-5 job is folly.
I've come to realize that one of my favorite things about being in grad school, as strange as this is, is that I always have something I should be doing. I don't actually work all that many hours (certainly not 60), but every single day my focus is on what I can get done that day, and how, and when. I don't have any days off. And I love it.
When I had a job-type job, there were hours I was required to be at work (not necessarily working) and hours that were my free, non-work time. I had a job and, separately, the rest of my life. Now it feels like my life is my work. I still spend most of my time not working, but I am never not thinking of work and how to get back to it.
I'm not sure why I like this but I really do.