Some time ago I wrote a post called "The Valley of Shit", which has become one of the most popular posts ever. Briefly, the Valley of Shit is a state of mind where your thesis seems terrible, awful, bad. Walking though the Valley of Shit is a ghastly business because, well - it smells. But every Valley has an end, as I pointed out in the post, and eventually you will emerge from the towering walls of brown stuff, hopefully with a PhD in your hand.
Jess Drake (aka @soilduck) suggested she write a post on how to get into a PhD program a little while ago. I thought it would be a good follow up to Ehsan's popular "Should you do a PhD?" because it can be surprisingly difficult to get into a program. After helping a few friends and family members through the process of getting in, I am aware of how much 'insider knowledge' can be required.
There is so much you can achieve with your life when all you do is work full time. I'd forgotten what it was like, not to feel guilty and scared all the time. Compared to a thesis, forty hours a week is a laughably small sum of hours to be spending on work.