Signup date: 25 May 2007 at 4:37pm
Last login: 21 Sep 2007 at 11:30am
Post count: 290
Hugs Sue & cc - nice to know i'm not the only one out there in the same boat... one of my PhD colleagues submitted last Friday and that was great but wierd - felt like I still had so far to go. So much editing still to go. Now... onto editing my worst chapter... i.e. how not to write a thesis... aka... how to write a thesis and induce sleep in anyone who tries to read it. I'm beginning to think I'm not working hard when I go to bed at midnight and get up at 7am... how out of kilter... roll on submission (I have to submit by the end of the month too, but promised my boyf that I'd submit by his birthday next Friday... so that's the plan). Good luck
p.s. Badhaircut, sorry you're having a tough time of it - I'm an optimist myself and kind of hope things will work out for the best in the end - but I'll let you know when I'm in the same situation post submission next week ;o) I just wanted to respond to your comment "If you are aware of any woman who doesnt really care about income, having a family, buying a home, being frequently uprooted, or ignored for long periods of time could you give me a yell?" ...we'll I fit that category, though beginning to care about an income after a year without one... and used to being ignored with a boyf who is in academia too. So there are some of us out there! One of my friends who's in an academic couple take turns to go to where their post-docs/ PhDs are. Good luck
BIG HUG! I can COMPLETELY sympathise with you - I submit next week, and this last phase of editing has been a complete and utter nightmare. Every comment or spelling mistake from my supervisors or proof readers knocks my confidence - so much so that Saturday I thought the whole thing was so crap I may as well just give up and throw it in the bin. I've been analysing and writing up for TWO YEARS (my last data collection was October 2005). And I was shocked at how badly I'd written most of my chapters - am I so useless I can't even write a coherent sentence? I'm feeling better now... just accept it won't be perfect (sod the spelling mistakes!), and take a break - for me it was a walk in the fresh air with a friend, and an early night. I actually feel vaguely human now. Got to the stage where I'm submitting faults and all... you'll make it if I can! GOOD LUCK
Gosh I can sympathise, I'm turning 35 in a couple of months and submit my thesis next week (YIPPEE!). A PhD is tough on a relationship, true. But for me, I knew that I had to do this PhD, I'd tried the industry jobs and not enjoyed them so decided to do something I enjoyed. I definately want kids, and reaching that age when I need to get on with it (biological clock been ticking for years but hadn't met the right man before my PhD - so thought I may as well not worry about the future and do something I enjoy). No idea now I'm in debt how to have a stable life with kids. Though I thought about it thoroughly before, and decided I'd rather be happy in my work life and figure out family life as it comes along. Not sure that's much help (or right! Ask me in a few years how it's working out) but it's my perspective. Your partner sounds FABBY. If you enjoy the PhD, keep going. But I can understand if you want to give up too.
2 weeks from submission... YEAH! But feels like an eon away. All the writing is done (phew), and editing in process. Then today I get my supervisors comments on my discussion: he doesn't like my discussion. How frustrating. The writing process is so incredibly difficult (for me). I took a while thinking about what to put in the discussion, thought I had come up with a nice neat way of bringing it all together, sweated over writing the words, and get a negative response. At this stage, you kind of get used to it, but it's still difficult to deal with. And I know, better now than after submission. But i've no idea where I'm going to find the words or ideas to make a better discussion. My brain is frazzled. Hey ho. Will deal with it later when I've edited the other chapters. Oh to transport myself 2 weeks into the future and not have to go through these last two weeks! Surreal to be so close, yet so far away ;o) End of message from the front line...
you made me laugh when you said that you felt like a fraud, because that's exactly how I have always felt. I think it's natural. Take it as a positive that your supervisor thinks your doing fine :o) I'm still waiting for mine to turn around and go 'HA... ONLY KIDDING'! Papers always make it look fancy - but you don't have to do ground breaking work for a PhD... and very few do... Good luck
I think it's different for everyone - everyone told me the worst year was your second year, but I found my worst year to be the 1st year, and the best to be the 2nd year... the 1st year was such a steep learning curve and a real struggle, but by the second year I could relax a little and just enjoy the PhD. The final year is the toughest in a different way... just plain old hard graft... and tough knowing you have a deadline to make. I'm two weeks from submission and mentally exhausted! This last year, especially the last 6 months have been incredibly difficult, but the positive is that the end is in sight at this stage (still feels like an eon away even at 2 weeks though!)
Hi Katq, I find you don't need that much for a working environment - it's more of a mental thing - accepting that this is your 'work zone'. However, given a choice... a nice large desk (that's why I spread out in the kitchen when nobody is around), and music for me - because I need music to keep me going most of the time... but we're all different. I find internet a distraction, so don't have it at home, but then I come into the office for emails/PhD forum/surfing for papers. Easy access to the kitchen for hot mugs of tea, and nibbles are always good too...
How about all the time? And everyone I know feels the same. Ok, I do have wee moments of 'Eureka!' and think I've found something amazing, only for someone else to publish my idea before me. Still, am hoping that there's nothing wrong with publishing something that says 'hey, look... I found the same'. The key thing is that your supervisor tells you it's enough. Mine keeps insisting on it every time I look at him quizzically with my eyebrows raised in a 'are you sure you're not bluffing' way. How many students has your supervisor had? If he/she's got a good track record don't panic. Get a second opinion from a colleague if it makes you feel better.
You have my sympathies... at home or in the office... writing is really tough - every single chapter I've written took a bit of time just procrastinating and feeling dreadful for not actually got past that initial mental block. Keep persisting though. Once you start writing it gets easier - start with writing anything random about what you want to talk about - it helps just to get the ball rolling. it works with me. Though admittedly I spend a long time just trying to get the initial 'GAAAHHHHHHHH' stage. Good luck!
Hi there, I'm not sure how far you're into your PhD - but never fear it's normal... I've long since stopped caring much about what I look like (ok not quite, but as an abstract thought). If you're not near the end - do take more time out - as you still need to even near the end. We need friends to keep us sane and keep us going - the odd break when you're feeling bleh is more likely to do you good than harm. I know... it's easy to get so immersed in research that if you don't take occasional breaks away it's difficult to see wood from the trees. For me it was a long chatty coffee with a friend in town every so often that really revived me... pubs with lots of people were more difficult - you feel like you loose social skills working so hard!
Hi, I've found working at home hugely more successful when I'm trying to write than when i'm in the office - especially being away from the internet. The only downer is feeling lonely, and cut off from people, which if left too long without people contact results in feeling low and ending up being unproductive. For me, I only live walking distance from the office, so I work at home, but come into the office for tea breaks to get my people contact quota. It's also good to have other people to bounce ideas off once in a while. Good luck
Hi Marbeaux. You have my sympathies. My first major analysis had a serious error in it, I didn't realise until I'd presented it at a conference, got an award for it, and it wasn't until I was idley chatting to a fellow PhD friend who was asking me how I'd done my calculations that I saw a massive gaping error. I was horrified, and lost huge amounts of confidence in myself for missing the mistake. But I've since re-analysed the data, and learnt from it... and probably too anal now going overboard on checkign and double checking everything. Research is frustrating at times. But just remember that you learn more from your mistakes than your successes (perhaps not a comforting thought, but true).
cont... Do I regret doing it? Not one bit. But I know people who did regret it... one's who knew what they were getting themselves in for, but got beaten down by a bad supervisor.
I'm a believer in muddling through somehow... life's hard work whether you do a PhD or not, so you just have to fight against it and keep going. Easy for me to say, I don't suffer from depression, like so many people I know. But every one that I've known has pulled through somehow. Here's me rambling incoherently (you think I'd know better after writing my discussion!)... but what matters in the end is people. So matter what you do, if you still try to keep friends and family high up the priority list, they'll help you pull through. Of course it doesn't answer the question of the poor state of job prospects for us PhD-ers. it's not right. But we all find our own paths in the end... so says the eternal optimist...
When I was awarded the position to do my PhD a mid-PhD friend sent me a card saying 'with sympathy'. It took a while to realise where she was coming from. Now I laugh.
I have, on the whole, loved my PhD. Previously I worked in well paid jobs that I couldn't get inspired towards. With my PhD I've ended up broke but I've loved both my subject and the learning process. I've grown as a person and as a researcher. I've made lots of mistakes, and in hindsight of course I could do it much better. I'd never do a PhD again.
I have no idea how much success I'll have in my future academic career, but it does worry me. But it's what I want to do - I love my research, so I go with the flow and hope for the best. I'm in that odd philosophical last couple of weeks of write up. I see the culmination of all that hard work... the heartache and the fun. I feel like I've achieved something incredible, it's been so hugely difficult. It pushes you to the edge of reason.
Masters DegreesSearch For Masters Degrees
An active and supportive community.
Support and advice from your peers.
Your postgraduate questions answered.
Use your experience to help others.
Enter your email address below to get started with your forum account
Enter your username below to login to your account
An email has been sent to your email account along with instructions on how to reset your password. If you do not recieve your email, or have any futher problems accessing your account, then please contact our customer support.
or continue as guest