I recently attended a couple more seminars run by the ThinkWell company. This company usually runs training and workshops helping others, especially researchers be more effective in their daily encounters. On their website, they provided a couple of resources that may be of interest for PhD researchers.
Hugh Kearns and Maria Gardiner, their main trainers, are famous for their 7 Secrets of a Highly Successful Research Students and a few other interesting resources here. I attended their first seminar some time in 2008. As I recalled, they gave me very good advices, which I followed for quite a while, before I started to slip out of it.
So when I attended their seminar on “Turbocharge Your Writing” and “PhD Completion”, I asked one very specific question: ‘How do I avoid from getting out of all the good habit? I usually found myself derailing after a certain amount of break. Although, the break is necessary when I am in between chapters and my mind is really exhausted’.
Hugh more or less said: ‘As with any job – and PhD is a job! Everytime when you took leave from it, you must have a planned break. You must set the dates/days of your leave and not just leave the length of the break to your level of “readiness” in returning back to work. Because the reality is – you’ll never be ready!.’
So what it meant here, in managing your Phd, you have to plan for everything – not just the days and time you spent on work, but also your time away from it. Not doing so, will get you in danger of losing your momentum, which eventually led you into those bad habits of procrastination once again. I wish I knew this back in the early days of my PhD. I wonder if it would make a major difference. But for now, I have to plan for completion! Insya Allah. Amin.