6 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me When I Started My PhD Dissertation

I still remember the time when I started my PhD dissertation. The period has been adventurous, with roller-coaster highs and depressing lows. Throughout these whole years, I gained some insights and perspectives. These experiences have changed my point of view, giving me new insights and perspectives.

Initially, it was a full-time opportunity, but the honey period ended quite early. Soon, I realised that reality is different. I have to work alone in the lab all on my own in the laboratory. But my research was not moving forward as I wanted to. The process also though I achieved some publications in peer-reviewed journals. But there came a time when I realised I could not do much about it and thought seriously about quitting. Then my friend told me I should ask my seniors and postdocs for advice. One of my seniors gave me some thoughtful advice and motivated me to regain my energy to continue this process.

Then I devised to work in different schedules and joined some online resources. I searched out some of the resources and collaborated with other researchers. This helped me to win a new project based on my research papers. This time, I performed my research proactively. However, the journey of the roller coaster ride ended well.

The sad stories about PhD dissertations are very common. Despite all the difficulties I faced, it was a worthwhile experience. But there are things I should have known earlier that could make life much easier. I feel there are many things I needed to know earlier before starting my PhD dissertation. I wish someone could have told me before starting my PhD dissertation. So, I have decided to come up with some important key listings to help smooth their journey.

Stress less and laugh more

Now you are entered into your PhD, so receive my congratulations for embarking on a big achievement in your life. Please know that PhD is a full-time commitment; you might have given your 20 hours to your studies. You might have a week where you try something but with zero results. Keep yourself busy at conferences, manuscripts preparation, and technical training while ensuring you are working ahead of your calendar.

While learning and performing research, you should ask yourself when the last time you had a carefree, full-belly laugh was. Spare some time for your happiness to you motivated and energised.

Your supervisor can make or break your career

You may hear, ‘select your supervisor more carefully than your life partner.’ Because they are the ones who will play a vital role in how smoothly your PhD runs and what benefits you are going to attain. If you do not do well with your supervisor, there is a high chance that he will not give you a good reference letter, which can devastate your career.

You can ask out previous students who are currently working with them. Try to spend time with them to determine if their behaviour and working style align with yours. You can do some volunteer work if you have time. This point should be a top priority before starting PhD dissertation; I do not know how much I stress out.

Figure out when you feel like it is not going to end and you should quitting

You may come across many people who might have said that they had a period when they were so drained to think about quitting it. It is common when you feel like you should have needed your studies after graduation, and PhD is just a waste of time. You need to look back at your achievements and chat with your supervisor to figure out how they can speed up the process. They might suggest new methodologies or change directions, but it’s worth it because there is no sense in repeating the same things without positive outcomes.

PhD Dissertation is not a 3-years process

A PhD is a long process; it can take three to six years depending on various factors, including the laboratory’s financial situation, leave for illness or a baby, and others. PhD is a long on biological sciences because getting things, such as clinical specimens and repeatable data, can take a lot of time.

You must work in a funded lab to complete your research within a set time limit. Because unfunded lab can make a PhD more stressful experience as you have limited resources and the pace at which your work progresses. It is the best option to avoid unfunded labs unless your supervisor has supplies of everything needed to complete your project.

Define what you want to get out of your PhD and start applying before you submit

Set your expectations with your PhD dissertation and map out how you will achieve them. You have many options, including academia and industry-based roles in pharmaceuticals, education, sales, medical and technical writing, tech, and many government organisations. It is very important to establish your objectives as early as possible. If you want to work in academia, build connections, and publish papers. If you do not want to pursue laboratory work, you should start making contacts in relevant fields. Search on how to enter those fields and do something beyond a PhD that will boost your confidence related to your career. If you are unclear about your needs and wants, list your strengths and weaknesses and search for a job that fits your skills and expertise.

During PhD, your CV is sparse as you do not have much experience to show. You should continuously apply for conferences and grants. Based on personal experience, after every ten rejections, there is a much higher possibility that you will receive great acceptance. You will receive acceptance for those grants, positions, and publications that seem out of range for you. So drop your CV everywhere and see results.

Read: PhD Thesis Writing: a General Guide to Writing

Post PhD phase is worse than the PhD

Every scholar pursuing a PhD is anxiously waiting to complete their PhD. But it comes to an end, and you do not know what to do with yourself. If you do not have a job by yourself, you must work with your supervisor until you attain the job. It might take two years to you to find a new job. So, instead of wasting time at home and stressing about things, please take yourself on holiday. It is probably best to apply for jobs before you have finished your PhD dissertation.


No doubt, PhD dissertation is a tough and long process, but remember, it is an experience you will always cherish. A PhD teaches you lifelong things and makes you resilient to other life issues. When you are busy managing other aspects of PhD and drained out, writing down your PhD dissertation on your own becomes quite difficult. Therefore, you must hire PhD dissertation writing services to help you achieve your PhD goal as per your desire.


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