Tuesday, December 4, 2012

PhD student fears

This could not be more true about how PhD students often feel, especially late at night when we're exhausted. Be kind to your grad student friends this time of year:

"We are our own greatest source of frustration. We don't seem to be creative enough to meet our standards. We can't maintain our concentration, and we keep getting distracted by outside pursuits. Everything takes us longer to read, to write, and to understand than we think it should. In sum, we are frustrated that we are not brighter, quicker, more creative, and more diligent than we are. We feel that we should be able to do better...

...The resulting feeling is fear. Some of our fear is straightforward and conscious, such as the fear that a manuscript that represents a good deal of work and heartache will be rejected. But some of our fear is deeper seated and less conscious. At some level we suspect that all those grade reports and test scores were matched to our names in error. Now, in this new evaluation arena, we will be found out. We are about to be unmasked, revealed to the world as the intellectual weaklings, the pretenders to competence we've long suspected ourselves to be...

...Our insecurities are legion, and past accomplishments pale in comparison with our uncertain futures."

- from "A funny thing happened on the way to publication: Newcomers' perspectives on publishing in the organizational sciences," by Jill W. Graham and Ralph E. Stablein

Want to know more about getting a PhD? Ask Grad Student Barbie! :)