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Should I quit PhD and start full time job with just over 6 months left!?!?!?


I took the job!
I started at the beginning of 2023!
I love the job and my team and its such a relief to have a proper income!

I am also still doing my PhD, and when I say 'doing' I have continued fieldwork. The writing part not so much!
I was due to submit in December(this year) but I am not anywhere near finished my writing up stage. I still have to analyse data ha let alone write about it! I expressed my concerns to my supervisor, and currently we are trying find a way of extending my time a little more. So fingers crossed we get somewhere with that.

It's not as hard as I imagined to juggle the two but I got incredible lucky with my boss, he's been through a similar situation to me and is very caring and understanding about giving me some flexibility to work on my PhD. I don't know if I would be as content as I am doing both if I didn't have him as a boss. Even with the flexibility, the writing part is tough. I have very little motivation to sit down and write unless it's on the likes of this or in my journal. Hence, I came on here looking for some motivation. But said I would update my comment in case anyone else is in a similar situation.

Although I don't have as much writing as I 'should' have done, my anxiety and stress isn't as bad as it was when I was working from home alone. Talking to people and getting out of the house has helped me so much with that side of things. Of course there are bad days, when I become so overwhelmed with how much PhD work I have left to do that I can't bring myself to do anything at all. But for the most part, I think working in the new job has made me realise that there is in fact a wonderful life beyond that of a PhD. I am really happy I took the job and if I somehow manage to wing a PhD some day, well that will be the icing on the cake but the cake is fine without the icing too 😁

Should I quit PhD and start full time job with just over 6 months left!?!?!?

Thanks for all your replies! :)

The company has not yet advertised the job so it's looking more like the new year realistically before I get started!
I still have to go through the process of applying for the job and going to an interview, so I have been trying to put the problem out of my head until I have successfully made it through both of these!
However, it's extremely hard to focus on my PhD at the moment, as mentioned previously I am trying to write up as much as I can but it's so difficult!
And since I last posted, I have come across two professional people in a similar industry who both advised me to complete the PhD that there will be more opportunities to come in the future!
So although I agree wholeheartedly with you @tru the main reason I took this PhD was to gain employment in the industry, however, I feel having come this far the past three years of my life will be a waste if I don't complete it!
I definitely don't think it's possible to do both so I was thinking of two possiilties:

1. Try to negotiate with the new employeer to only work 3 days a week, then do the PhD in my own time the other days
2. Try and change my PhD to part-time for the remainder of it and get it finished outside full week working hours.
But I am not sure if you can just change your PhD three-quarters of the way through to part-time, I asked my supervisor he didn't know either!

Should I quit PhD and start full time job with just over 6 months left!?!?!?

So I will try make this as brief as possible.

I am in my third year of a 3 year Research PhD got an extension fully funded until June 2023.
The company that are funding me have offered me a full time position in a very similar role to what I currently do in the PhD. (Amazing!)
Its a full time position so minimum 40 hours a week. They want me to start around start of November.

My current stage of my PhD:
I have a draft thesis of approx 20,000 words (Introduction & Literature Rev) - I am carrying out fieldwork once a week and still have some senors that are not working 100% (Which means I have to figure out how out fix them still). I collect data from the fieldwork site once a week too (Alot of data). As of yet I have no clear plan of how to analyse any of my data and there are three different types that will need to be analysed differently. I have started writing methods but can only write so much until I figure out what analysis I am going to do and IF that analysis is appropriate. I got some help off of a fellow PhD candidate in a similar role the other day and there is a lot of statistics involved in the analysis, which I have no experience in so I will probably have to do a workshop or a module in statistics. The fact I have no clear plan for data analysis, as you can imagine, leads to a vast amount of procrastination, which further delays progress.

Discussed this with my supervisor but he had no solution as what I should do regarding the PhD.

Has anyone been in a similar situation?
Is it physically possible to get that much PhD work done outside of a 40 hour working week while still getting a healthy 8 hours sleep!!!

Study partner / Accountability partner

What time zone are you in?

Study partner / Accountability partner

Hi Ana, Did you find yourself a study buddy yet?
I am in the same time zone, also doing my PhD by thesis, and finding it very hard to stay focused and motivated to write.
I try to allow myself about '2 golden hours' a day of just writing no editing or anything (as recommended by Hugh Kearns), apart from days when I have to go do fieldwork.
Let me know if you still need a study partner.

Feeling numb and hopeless

Glad to hear you took a break, some great advice here from other members.
I hope you made the right decisions and are happy with them now.

Study buddy

Hi all,
I am wondering what a study buddy is, and I think I could do with one too.
Doing my Ph.D. by thesis, not publication, in the area of environmental science/Geography.
I have allocated time for myslef to just 'write' but finding it very hard to do just that.
I have tried all the tricks in the book to help me focus and none have helped.

Feeling numb and hopeless

Hi there jw5, Do you have updates on your PhD.
What did you and your supervisor decide on?

Should i quit?

Quote From Naj18:
In my third year, i had to change my phd supervisor. I have started in a new group couple of months ago but can not concentrate in my new group. I feel like mentally drained out, i feel I can't do this for another five years. But deep down i really want to do my phD. I'm in my thirties now. Did someone had similar experience? Should I quit now?

Hi there,
Going on what your last post said, it seems you have enough work done for a publication. That sounds brilliant and you should try to get one paper published at least.
I also read that you weren't getting on well with your previous supervisor but you have now changed supervisor, is that right? You are also lucky to get the chance to change supervisor I am sure it's not an easy transition but it must be better than your previous situation?
And you also say that you love your research topic and you really want to do this PhD. I think that's probably the most important part of doing a Ph.D you need to have the interest to be motivated. And you are!
So I think you should maybe make a list of the pros and cons to help you decide what to do next. There are also some really good threads on here that might be useful for you to read through to help you make a decision on whether you want to carry on or not.
I am also in my third year of my Ph.D. and I have felt mentally drained every minute of it. I have also cried more often than id like to admit, for feeling like I can't do it and wanting to quit. But I haven't because I don't know if I will ever get another opportunity like it, plus I like the idea of being a 'Dr', even if no one outside academia will get it :).
So try and listen to your gut what do you want more a PhD or an easy life? And whatever you decide to do I wish you the best of luck with it!

No motivation, always procrastinating - is there any hope?

I Would also love to hear an update from @Coarvi!
And I was also like to ask her how she managed financially when she was on maternity leave?

Exiting after third year Progression Review

Hi there,

I think you are very lucky to have been awarded the funded 6-month extension. You should take full advantage of this there are a lot of people who have been delayed and haven't been granted an extension (like me).
You have two chapters already written which is a huge amount, have faith in yourself that you can finish. Maybe even receiving feedback on your progress review might help with your motivation they will let you know if you are falling behind on the workload.
I honestly don't think many people like the writing part, especially if you are practical-minded it can be really hard.
But even if you just try and dedicate two hours a day with no distraction and do nothing but write, it doesn't even have to make much sense just write, and eventually, it will become somewhat of a habit and hopefully someday a thesis.
I am trying this method out myself at the moment, I got to know of it from a really good motivational speaker called Hugh Kearns.
I am not going to lie it's really hard and sometimes I don't even use 90% of what I write but it's a start!

Best of luck!

Second year blues or time to quit?

Quote From froggyland:
I feel exactly the same and i'm in the middle of my second year.
I feel lost
I feel stupid
I feel this is pointless
You are not alone

I could have written those exact words myself!!!
Such an awful feeling and it's not easy to overcome.
However, there is some great advice on here and I will try thinking seriously about the questions to ask myself!

Feeling stupid

Quote From waitinggame:

Hi Waitinggame,

I can really relate to how you are feeling. Before I started my PhD I met some people in academia and I felt as though I was not intelligent enough and that I was not well-spoken enough to be in this industry. I even contemplated just going and getting a job in something completely unrelated just to get away from it all. I was suffering really badly with low self-esteem which I know now stems from having a negative mindset, which is essentially just a bad habit of thinking negativily. And then I thought maybe I needed to have this high level of confidence to do the PhD in the first place. But from reading all the comments on here and looking into self-help books and practices I have found that confidence can come from having a positive mindset and how we get this is by practicing good thoughts rather than bad ones and breaking the bad habit.
Easier said than done, but the practice is key! And I am a lot better now than when I started. Although still struggling hugely with motivation at times like right now being on this forum instead of working! :-)
Get yourself some counseling from your university (if it's available) or if you want to start somewhere less intense go to a book shop and get a self-help book. There are loads out there, I won't recommend any to you because I feel you need to find them yourself because you are the only one that knows what's best for you.
Hope that helps in some way, best of luck with eveything!

Another form of imposter syndrome?

Hi, ekster,
I don't really have any advice to give you as such, however, I would like to highlight that your post was very beneficial for me to read. So Thanks!
I am in a very similar situation to you. Only I am in the 2nd year of 3 years funded research PhD. I have No published papers, nor am I near publication. I have no data collected yet and I probably won't be collecting data for another month at least realistically, which is only over a year behind schedule. And I have been denied a no-cost extension to my research even though I was delayed in part as a result of COVID.
Anyway, rant over ha. This is not a competition and I am not saying I am worse off than you are or anything like that I just mean I am in a similar situation and found myself doing exactly what you mentioned. I am feeling guilty for not being overworked and comparing myself to others, and losing motivation around my topic.
So to read your post was really refreshing and somewhat reassuring. It's nice to know I am not the only one doing a PhD and feeling this way.
I also read the advice from @directdrive which I found really helpful and wouldn't have read that only for your post! So Thanks again!

Covid - Has your desire to continue your phd suffered due to working from home? I want to quit

Quote From JayHull:
Hi all,

I have just completed my 2nd year of PhD and entering my third and final year and I am looking for a little comradery and support with my current feelings and motivations towards continuing my PhD.

Following national lockdown in March 2020 I began working from home and was able to maintain my ability to work for the first couple of months. But, from July 2020 I found it to become incredibly demotivating, isolating and hard to maintain my interest and desire in the programme. I feel completely removed from my Phd, my mental health is at an all time low and I have battled for months to find enjoyment in my work again. I am now in a position where I feel I no longer have an interest in my work, and it has become an everyday chore to maintain even the lowest outputs. I have inadvertently created a huge amount of anxiety around the work which further makes it a challenge to approach, and with the ongoing covid situation I worry that I will never find the desire to complete my PhD.

My university has finally been able to facilitate some office space for postgraduate students, so I now have some return to a regular working routine. However, I am finding that I am spending my time procrastinating and completing medial tasks whilst the burden of the PhD continues to grow.

Has anyone else found that the lockdown and orders to work form home has completely stifled their ability to work effectively, stay motivated and remain engaged and interested in their PhD?

I am now in a position where I consider quitting every day and I feel if it were not for the financial security of my PhD stipend I may have already moved on. I have had extensive discussion with my supervisor about my concerns with the PhD and my mental health, and he is incredibly supportive and has solidified his desires to keep me in the programme and provide whatever support I require. This is keeping me going for the time being, but I worry that my departure from the writing process has left me with a wall to overcome to engage back with my work again.

I'm feeling really lost. Anyone else?

Hi Jayhull,
I can really relate to how you feel. I am just starting into my second year of my PhD. My fieldwork has still not started yet because of COVID and I didn't get a chance to engage with anyone from my own university or socially interact with anyone other than my supervisor. So I have been working from home from the beginning and I feel so disconnected from everyone! it is really hard to stay going and stay motivated. But you are in your final year, over the halfway mark with the end in sight so don't give up yet. Some great advice from Rewt above (That I will definitely be taking into consideration myself) If you put some of that advice into practice you will get through the last hurdle and you will feel so proud when you're finished!!!