This is a quick F1 style pit stop to say I’m still on the PhD journey. I’m reading, writing, networking and learning something new at every step of the way. 

I am learning that I have strengths that I never even knew I had in such abundance. Resilience, dedication, tenacity and passion to name a few.

Today was one of my treasured ‘research days’. They are days that I have negotiated with my manager to focus on my research. It will never be enough, however, it is a start and is very much appreciated. Highlight of my day: My conference poster was accepted today!  

I’ve received the link to the ethical approval application forms as well today! Oh dear!😳 This may take some time to decipher. Luckily, help is at hand. I have an ever growing network of peers on social networking media without who, I would have really struggled to remain motivated on this research journey. 

As I tweeted earlier, doing a PhD can feel like hard labour, physically, mentally and every ally you can think of. I was reminded that it will be worth it. It most certainly will. 

I pledge to write a book after this. Others will learn from my journey …👇🏽

PhD students who are also employed deserve more than a medal. We need to have tea at Buckingham Palace! C’mon, give us as much incentive as possible. 

Tips for PhD survival:

  • You need to have emotional intelligence to survive a PhD. Know your trigger points. Know when to take breaks.
  • You need to have some level of self deprecation balanced against self-belief and self-confidence. Don’t take yourself too seriously.
  • Oh yes, humour is vital. You must be able to laugh out loud or you’ll cry silently. 
  • Talk, tweet, network with others who are either on the journey or have completed it. Never suffer in silence. Share the pain (sorry learning😅)

As my friend and colleague said to me in the corridor earlier this week. Life gets in the way of doing your PhD. We laughed for a minute and carried on with our duties. It is so true though. You still have to live when doing a PhD. You can’t let life pass you by. Balance is key.

The journey is so much more important than the destination. My book has a working title of ‘The idiots guide to getting a PhD – if I can, why can’t you?’. 

I accept that it can feel like we are walking in the valley of the shadow…however, we must never give up.🙏 It’s worth it.

Be bold, be italic but never be regular! 😉

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