Our Postdoctoral Research Associate, Dr Laura Panagi, is researching mental health in children with long term physical health conditions
My day starts with – what else – a hot, flavoured coffee. Always combined with my ‘happiness’ bowl (yoghurt, oats, granola, nuts, fresh fruits, and honey) and a motivating song in the background.
I sit at my desk at 9:00. The first thing for me to do is to check and respond to my emails. Catching up with emails early in the day warms me up. The next thing for me is to check my to-do list and deadlines so that I can set priorities for the day.
I currently lead a study looking at the interplay between physical and mental health in childhood. My research involves the analysis of large, national datasets so my syntax and dataset files are my favourite open tabs on my PC.
I usually have a meeting or two during the day, either a research group meeting or a course/training or a supervisory meeting (I supervise two research projects led by undergraduate students). For example, today I have a 2-hour course on how to write a grant application.
I currently live with my brother, Marios, and his girlfriend, Theod, who both work from home as well during this period. We will take a break to have our vegetarian lunch at around 13:00 (I always enjoy cooking).
During the second half of my working day, I carry on with statistical analyses and write down the findings or any issues/questions that may arise to be discussed during my next meeting with the research team. Indeed, at this phase of the project, I am mostly focused on analysing data, but reading and drafting papers are usually part of my routine too, especially pre- and post-analyses.
My working day ends at around 17:00. After I switch off my laptop, I isolate to my room to practice transcendental meditation for 10 minutes. I have tried several types of meditation but this one suits me the best (feels like I have taken a refreshing nap). After my meditation, I usually go for a 30-minute walk by the river or to the nearest supermarket (while catching up on the phone with my dearest mum who lives in Cyprus). Before the pandemic, I used to go to a yoga studio after work.
21:00 finds me with a cup of mint tea and my favourite TV program.