Nepal · pelvic floor muscle · pelvic organ prolapse · Phd · PhD life · research · stress

The second year slump: keeping motivated mid PhD

The first 14 months of my PhD were like a crazy rollercoaster that amazingly left me standing solidly at the end of the ride.  There were so many ups and down with moments of pure joy and immense concern.  Within this first year I was able to see two ethics applications approved, conducted four research projects, spend 7 weeks in  Nepal, apply for funding and scholarships and write my first journal article.  Not all of these achievements were met with success but looking back at what was accomplished is deeply satisfying.

Now that all my data is collected and (almost) analysed I’m looking ahead to the next 18 months.  Without any dooming deadlines I’m feeling a little bit flustered and overwhelmed.  There’s so much to do but where do I start?  The end goal seems ginormous and almost unachievable and how do I make my way there?  As it is, I can’t believe it’s already March (2017) and I feel like this year is just going to zoom by.

So, this blog is a personal pep-talk, a kind-of ‘you can do this, girl’.  What do I need to do in order to meet my goals this year?  (As a notorious list maker, here’s my list)

  1. First up, make a list of everything I need to do this year 🙂   (check)
  2. Set some timeframes and self-determined ‘deadlines’
  3. Create a GANTT chart for the next 6 months
  4. Breakdown my tasks into tiny achievable steps (make some more lists, girlfriend 🙂  )
  5. Set some rewards when a big task has been achieved e.g a massage, movie or dinner date
  6. Schedule some ‘fun’, have something to look forward to in the near future
  7. Find a PhD buddy to share frustrations, concerns, stress and to encourage each other

Ahhhh I already feel better looking at this awesome list…. now I know for sure ‘I’ve got this’ hahaha (nervous laughter…)

Photograph taken by the talented: Felicity Thomson

 

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