Some of you might have noticed I recently put the blog on 'pause' - for the first time in ten years. I am not a week by week blogger. I like to make space for creative inspiration to strike. For this reason, I always have at least six months of content 'in the pipe', waiting to … Continue reading Should you quit (go part time or pause) your PhD during Covid-19?
Some time ago, on the advice of my good friend and efficiency guru Jason Downs, I read The 80/20 principle: how to achieve more by doing less by Richard Koch. To be fair, Jason did tell me, in the spirit of efficiency, that I didn't really need to read the book. The main message, he said, … Continue reading How do I write the discussion section?
First, a fire update! Thank you SO much for your messages of love and support in response to my last post. Thank you to everyone who donated to our P2 mask appeal: it was wildly successful and is now closed. We gave out an astonishing 3500 masks and donated the excess (some $1500) to our … Continue reading Academic spy networks (and why you need one)
Greetings friends. I hope you had a summer or winter break wherever you are. I'm back early this year because Australia, where I live, has hit the world media for all the wrong reasons. You might have seen the horrifying footage from the South Coast. My oldest friend, who was holidaying there, sent me this photo, which … Continue reading You have to believe that what you do matters
[Edit 23/12/2019: I donated all of my Thesis Whisperer Amazon royalties (about $1000) to the NSW Rural fire service. Thanks to everyone who bought a book this year: you have made a difference. If you can spare anything else, please consider giving. The government has not funded services enough and volunteers are completely exhausted. Here's … Continue reading Winding down the Thesis Whisperer?
Failure. The PhD makes you much better at dealing with it - at least that's the hope. I was always a pretty mediocre student, but I didn't realise just how mediocre I was until I went to architecture school. Frankly, I was bad at it - and people did not hold back in telling me … Continue reading Keep on stepping up to the plate
I've written before, here, about how much bad advice there is out there for PhD students. One of the reasons that advice can be misguided or inappropriate is the many differences between PhD students in terms of age, discipline and projects. Comparing yourself to other people, particularly when it comes to making progress, is a game … Continue reading It all depends!
Are you a perfectionist? I always thought I wasn't, but my therapist introduced me to the idea of 'functional perfectionism' last year. This forced a rethink, which I documented in this post where I wonder if perfectionism is a spectrum disorder. One of the perfectionist traps I fall into all the time is unhelpful self talk, … Continue reading Setting yourself free of perfectionism?
Do you ever feel like your PhD is in control of your life - and not in a good way? This post speaks to the resilience you need to complete using the story of a bamboo plant, which can be an invasive weed if not properly controlled! Fiona Robards is an independent consultant providing strategic … Continue reading PhD Bamboo
Some time ago I wrote a post about what I thought was an 'anti-PhD attitude' displayed by some recruiters I interviewed for a research project. In that post I suggested that the small number of PhD graduates in the workforce led to graduates facing similar problems to other minorities who faced problems like stereotyping. After that … Continue reading Being in a Minority: It’s Not All Bad