How to stop feeling overwhelmed by information

15-Jul-19, 11:47
edited about 16 seconds later
Avatar for GhostGirl
posted about 6 months ago
Hi all

I am reaching the end of my second year of my PhD and have all but completed my empirical data. I am feeling the sense that I am now at the business end of the process but am finding it hard to fully engage with all the information out there. To summarise, I am researching a relatively new area of law that is subject to a lot of NGO campaigning and change (especially as I'm in the UK, so we've got a constant state of limbo with Brexit, which feeds into all this) I feel like I am seeing new reports and stats coming out all the time and while it's all useful and helps with my research, I am feeling overwhelmed with where to start analysing all this stuff and how to prioritise it :(

I'd been getting on really well since the spring, and the empirical data collection feels like it's been useful but now that's reaching its end, I am back to the laptop and spending too much time staring blankly at the screen. I've been given a deadline to write a chapter, and I've managed to write over half of it incorporating information from my data and previous writing from my literature review but now I'm just feeling lost again.

It doesn't help that it's sunny outside! :(
15-Jul-19, 19:26
edited about 3 minutes later
by rewt
Avatar for rewt
posted about 6 months ago
Make a bold hypothesis and try prove it. Use only the most relevant data that proves or disproves it to write a chapter. Rinse and repeat until you only have supplementary data.

I had a similar problem where I lost focus of my overall aims and tried to over analyse all my results. Eventually I worked out that only 2 variables really mattered and stopped trying to find trends among the chaos. I might look at those unused results one day but I know they won't fit in my thesis.


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