Very confused


I am 3 years into my PhD. But I dont see myself completing it. I am not happy with my topic. My supervisor is least interested in my work. And i have lost all motivation that I had. What should I do?


Presumably you only have a year to go then? Do you think you have done sufficient work for a PhD? Can you start writing up now?


Nope. I haven't done sufficient work. Thats the problem.


I know exactly what you mean. I'm taking some time off as we speak to gain my motivation back. Even being away from the office for 3 days has really helped and I'm actually looking forward to going back.

If I were you I'd take some time off over christmas, but not too much mind :), and enjoy that. Towards the end set a series of deliverables and some realistic dates. It's only one year of the rest of your life so in my opinion it's worth battling through and putting in whatever hours you can, obviously everyones situation is different.

You can't change what's already happened so worrying that you haven't done enough so far will only making matters worse, focus on the future. Get a clear plan and get your head down. The whole thing is a learning process and you'll be surprised how much you can get done once you get into it.

Sorry I can't be more help!


Thanks a lot! I know what you are saying. I get it. but the problem is that I said these same things to myself a year ago :( I thought i will just do it. But a year has passed and I havent done anything significant. A year ago I was pretty much prepared to quit this PhD. I applied for jobs. I even got into one and I got the offer letter in my hand. But my family wasnt very sure of what I was doing. Their doubts mixed up with my own guilt caused me to return to this PhD. No matter what I do, I am not making any progress. The things that I want to do, I cant do because our department doesnt have the facilities, and I have already given up discussing things with my supervisor because he just isnt interested in my work, I have no idea why he took me. And its not just me who is frustrated, my labmates are frustrated too.


I can't offer much help but I can say that you're probably not alone. I'm stuck in the middle of writing up and have felt pretty detached for awhile now. I think it's partly the process more than the topic that's done it for me. What's expected and how it's delivered creating a situation where I'm doing things just to jump through the hoops and feeling wornout the entire time.

For me this led to falling behind and getting an extension but the extension means no time off because I can't be seen to be wasting my extra time so I'm more tired than ever.