February 16, 2012

Green days – by Nic

Hannah's post really struck a chord with me. Over the course of my PhD, I often felt inadequate and lost. My peers seemed to have direction and purpose, while I sat at home mournfully rewriting Chapter 3.

Envy is destructive. It affects your interaction with peers but also your relationship to your own work. It's easy to feel as though researcher life is a competition, and that the winners are the first to publish or get approval.

Of course, this is a distortion. Everybody's work is different, everybody's approach is different. If you hold yourself up to comparison with others, you're setting yourself a false standard.

What I eventually realised about my feelings of envy was that they came from insecurities about my own work and my own worth as a researcher. Happily, these fears have (mostly) abated. And also... I don't have time to be envious any more!

Ol' green eyes is back: Data does not understand your human feelings of envy.


- 4 comments by 2 or more people

  1. Anna Sloan

    I always thought of Data as having yellow eyes.

    Also, very helpful and encouraging blog post :) Thanks!

    16 Feb 2012, 11:51

  2. Ah, how embarrassing. I’m colour blind, so I just got this plain wrong. Still, nice pic of Data, right? :)

    16 Feb 2012, 12:03

  3. Claire

    This strikes a chord, only yesterday I was feeling sorry for myself as so many people in my year have not only submitted but also passed their viva, whereas my submission dates seem to ebb further and further away…. It’s hard to stay positive sometimes!

    16 Feb 2012, 14:02

  4. Yep, this is exactly the way it was for me too, Claire. I took an extra year to finish and I really hated the feeling of being ‘overtaken’. The way I got past it was deciding that my work was worth taking time over, and that study wasn’t a race. Good luck with beating those blues!

    16 Feb 2012, 14:58

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