November 29, 2023

Productivity and the PhD

Just finished listening to this gem from the PhD Liferaft Podcast … Particularly like the concept around aligning your environment to help make things easier for you to get stuff done. Alison tells the story about trying to get into the habit of drinking more water each day and despite it being on her to do list it just didn’t happen .. however setting up her environment but getting a chopping board and lemon ready the night before moved her into the state where she did start to drink more water each day. Eventually this became a habit. Definitely worth a listen

Productivity and the PhD Read More

Productive Procrastination

28 May 2022 I’ve spent most of today redoing this blog (again) for like the umpteenth time. I wanted a format that would allow me to put the blog posts in a grid format but that it would still look pretty .. particularly because I will be uploading my sketchnotes and that way I can see them at a glance .. I’m hoping that this isn’t some form of productive procrastination .. it’s not if it motivates you is it ? (Update : I’ve since started uploading my sketchnotes to Instagram in the hope that this will be easier ! ) I had ethical approval at the beginning of the month and although I doesn’t really seem that I have been able to move forward much since then. I have done a lot of ‘thinking’ about stuff and made some progress with practical considerations given that my focus at the …

Productive Procrastination Read More

1952 days and counting

Ethics Approved 6 May 2022 I still can’t quite get my head around the fact that this has come through but apparently, I have now received Ethical approval for my research .. so all I have to do now is actually do it .. this has been a long time coming .. thanks to the Time and Date website I have just worked out that so far I have been ‘doing’ my PhD for 1952 days From and including: Sunday, 1 January 2017To and including: Friday, 6 May 2022 Time and Date Website Result: 1952 days It is 1952 days from the start date to the end date, end date included. Or 5 years, 4 months, 6 days including the end date. Or 64 months, 6 days including the end date. This calculator ignores DST clock changes. To include them, use our World Time and Date Calculator and enter your location as the start and end location. Alternative time units 1952 days …

1952 days and counting Read More

Go Go Go

The University has approved a recommendation from your department that your registration should be transferred to a confirmed PhD.    Your maximum completion date for this course is 31 January 2025. Well done in developing a confirmation document that details an interesting study! Confirmation Document Approved 18 March 2022

Go Go Go Read More

Retreating into my Comfy Space

Ok so this week I did the PhD Life Raft retreat with the amazing Dr Emma Brodzinksi. It was a bit of a last minute decision as I wasn’t quite sure I would be able to fit it in as I have had a busy week away at work this week ( at Digifest in Birmingham) but in the end I decided to go for it as Emma has designed it to do either synchronously or dip in and out as you are able to. I was therefore able to do some live sessions and catch up on ones that I missed and I am absolutely happy that I did this. I will definitely do this again next year if the opportunity arises. It was a safe space to connect with others who are in various stages of their PhD Journey and really give the gift of time and space …

Retreating into my Comfy Space Read More

PhD Workflow

I’m always searching for the ideal workflow in terms of my PhD Research. You would think that having been a PhD student for five years I might actually have it sussed by now but sadly not. I have tried to summarise what I actually do but still not convinced any of this is actually effective ! Product What I use it for Evernote Useful clips, uploading as ‘brain dump’ from my mobile that I come across that might be helpful. Keeping a copy of my journal in pdf format ( evernote has really good search facility). I have the paid version Notion I keep changing how I use this. It has a lot of potential but at the moment I have gone back to using this for my main journal and reflective thoughts. My latest cunning plan is to do a weekly journal note and then at the end of …

PhD Workflow Read More


This is a useful blog post by Steve Rose ( also has a nice handy audio version too) I especially like the bit where Steve suggests that to overcome procrastination, there are four things that might help, namely Focus on progress, not perfection  Clarify your “why” Reduce the need for willpower  Set small goals  Steve Rose phD

Procrastination Read More

Darwin Days

I came across this blog post on PhD Progress by Catherine Pope which really resonated with me. Worth a look if you are feeling that you are struggling to do anything .. I seem to have rather a lot of these ! My list of stuff that I can do when I am just not feeling it looks a bit like this Check Regulations Downloading / Sorting Articles Formatting Organising Checking Citations

Darwin Days Read More