Editor’s note: This month, we bring you brief reminders from pros around the world about what or who helped them forward in their careers.

I’m grateful to a writing instructor who urged us to remember — in the face of spouses, friends and other well-meaning passers-by who may think otherwise — that in our many hours spent scrolling, clicking, sipping tea, taking walks, staring into space, and occasionally typing coherent sentences… real work is happening.

PS: These thoughts emerged minutes after I read this essay defending the necessity of long, messy, agenda-less meetings for important decisions.

Esther Landhuis ~ science journalist

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