Overview of pm133

Overview

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pm133
Friday, 8 January 2016 at 12:02am
Friday, 11 October 2019 at 10:31am
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page 1 of 73 recent posts

Thread: How did you get your motivational flow?

posted
25-Feb-19, 19:09
edited about 14 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
I have been thinking about this a lot recently. Motivation is an emotion and therefore it comes and goes. It is misleading to think others have it in abundance.
Focus is the big thing you actually want to get hold of. That is not an emotional drive and so doesn't fluctuate as much. For focus, you need clear and achievable goals, well defined prioritised tasks lists and a very strong desire to hit an outcome.
I will guess that you are struggling to know how to break your PhD problem into manageable chunks.
Fix that and focus on each piece of work and actually you might find your motivation resolves itself.
I think you might be searching for the wrong thing.

Thread: Job or PhD after Masters...

posted
25-Feb-19, 19:01
edited about 23 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
FutureProfessor, what stands out from your post is that in listing all of your goals, not one of them describes what you want to do on a day to day basis as a career.
That is a big list of things which is going to eat at you in the bowels of your PhD when the nights are long, success is a distant memory and all your friends are amassing the things you dream about. I would be very concerned about whether you are in the right place just now to start that journey.

A job industry will gradually give you skills and autonomy plus everything else on your list. Honestly, that sounds like the best option for you,

Thread: Theories and background research

posted
24-Feb-19, 17:29
edited about 16 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
You should definitely read as much as you can before you start. It will make your life considerably easier. Whether your supervisor "expects" this or not is irrelevant. You should want to do this for yourself. This is your PhD journey, not theirs.

Thread: Going to the nowhere Help

posted
23-Feb-19, 19:25
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
monkia,
You said in your post "no therapy would help" but this makes no sense.
Without therapy, you are repeatedly talking about suicide.
With therapy there is a chance it won't work but worst case you remain in your current state of mind. If therapy works, you have a chance of recovery. There's absolutely no risk to taking therapy and a whole heap of trouble if you don't.
Seems like a no brainer to me.
None of us can force you to go and get help but equally none of us can help you with your problems unless you do so.
If you had a broken leg you would seek help.

Thread: MA not suited to PhD application?

posted
23-Feb-19, 19:15
edited about 28 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
Having a good breadth of education should be seen as a positive rather than a negative. I am a very strong believer that it is through breadth of knowledge that exceptional ideas appear. In particular I strongly believe that the popular idea that you should focus just on one area are misguided at best and simply wrong in virtually all aspects. We seem to have lost the ability to be polymaths despite centuries of history telling us that some of the greatest achievments in humanity have come from people with that exact background.

You really want to avoid working with a supervisor who thinks your background is a problem.

Blog: Are PhDs meant to be this stressful?

posted
23-Feb-19, 19:09
edited about 57 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
In my post that last sentence should have read "Are you sure this is what you want" rather than what I wrote. Thanks for not taking it the wrong way.

You are in the exact same position I was in at the same stage. I love research but I'm not interested in administration in general and academia (for many reasons) in particular. I have the added twist that I also don't want to be an employee anymore but essentially it sounds like we are both dressed up but with no obvious place to go. It's very frustrating and unfortunately I can't offer any advice in that regard.
Second year PhD blues are inevitable and I got that too. Took me ages to get through it and, like you, unless I know where I am heading I find it very hard to focus. The inspiration came back in patches with surges lasting several months at a time but the blues came back out of nowhere on a regular basis. I was especially disinterested in the research work of other people.
It feels the same as burn out or brown out and there were many times I had to focus on the end point of actually gaining the PhD (I hate doing things like this but sometimes it's the only way to keep going).

The positive for you might come from considering industrial research as a career option.

Thread: A really steep learning curve and I'm stressed :( Help!

posted
21-Feb-19, 17:52
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
But this isn't sustainable orchid. You simply cannot be going into work each day absolutely petrified of making a mistake. You are GOING to make mistakes. It's a necessary part of scaling the heights of a PhD.

Why is your supervisor getting angry anyway? It's not their PhD and they have no business getting on your back while you are trying to learn. Your success or failure should have absolutely nothing to do with their career. You are grateful that she kept her calm? Personally I would have told her to back off in no uncertain terms.

Your work shouldn't have the potential to wreck the work of others either. That is an insane way to organise a research group full of PhD students. You should be thinking about nothing but your specific PhD and not fretting about how your stuff affects other people.

I don't understand any of this. You have been put in a ridiculous position.

Blog: Are PhDs meant to be this stressful?

posted
21-Feb-19, 17:45
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
You say you still hold out some hope for a career in academia but as far as I have been told by many people in that job and through my own eyes, you will be doing the exact same types of things in that job that have driven you to the point of a breakdown. An academic at Cardiff Uni killed himself over the amount of admin work he was having piled onto him.

What you have experienced is part and parcel of an academic career.
Are you really sure you have thought this through?

Thread: Do I quit in my third year?

posted
12-Feb-19, 23:51
edited about 23 seconds later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
If you apply for jobs before you quit you wont have a gap at all.

Thread: Postgraduate loan scheme - good or bad??

posted
12-Feb-19, 23:50
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
I wouldnt advise someone whether or not a loan was a good idea but at 22k and 6% you will only be paying £5 per month in repayments regardless of your debt.

Thread: A really steep learning curve and I'm stressed :( Help!

posted
12-Feb-19, 14:42
edited about 2 minutes later
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
You have only just started so you need to cut yourself some slack. You are going to make other mistakes in your PhD before the end so you need to learn to deal with that.
I would certainly set aside some time to get into the lab this week or today and start tying down some understanding of how the equipment works. You should try and prioritise that in my opinion.

Oh and yes, I'm afraid working with minimal supervision is part of parcel of independent research. You are going to have to expect that. I spent my first month learning all the tools I was going to be using, running tutorials I found online etc. This is all on you. If you are lucky you might find a colleague, a technician or another person to help you get going.

Thread: Do I quit in my third year?

posted
12-Feb-19, 14:38
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
Do you have any papers publshed from your PhD?

Thread: Anyone feels like they are doing everything wrong?

posted
11-Feb-19, 19:42
by pm133
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posted about 8 months ago
PaperOrPerish,
Mistakes are part of daily life.
How many years have you been in academia and are you getting results commensurate with that number of years experience?

Thread: Working PT alongside EPSRC funded FT PhD?

posted
11-Feb-19, 12:22
edited about 19 seconds later
by pm133
Avatar for pm133
posted about 8 months ago
There is absolutely no guarantee that having a PhD will boost your lifetime earnings.

Thread: Pregnancy during PhD: dealing with chemicals and advisor

posted
09-Feb-19, 13:21
edited about 3 minutes later
by pm133
Avatar for pm133
posted about 8 months ago
I'm not sure that it will be much comfort to the OP to say that a H&S risk assessment said the lab was fine if something happens to her baby because she followed that advice.
For a start it's worth judging the calibre of university employee who is making that judgment.
I wouldn't trust anyone other than the parents to make a judgment when it comes to workplace safety.

If you are working in a chemical lab you are exposed to the potential for failing or badly maintained fumehood filters and the cleanliness of your fellow workers. I have worked in many chemical labs and I have never seen one which didn't have filthy glassware everywhere - most of it outside the fumehood. You can control some things in life but you cannot control the behaviour of others.

My advice to the OP stands. You MUST put your baby first because nobody else will prioritise it. Take no risks with chemical labs.

We are only talking about a few months of pregnancy here. She can always return to the lab at a later date. It's not worth the risk IMO.
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