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February 02, 2012

Taking a break – by Elle

So after my last blog panicking about time left and some of the worries that come along with this, this post might sound a little strange, but I’m off on holiday!

Not today, but come Saturday morning at some ridiculous time in the morning I will be heading to the airport and flying off to go skiing for a week in France. Bring it on! A whole week of worrying more about remembering how to ski (I still do not classify myself as a skier despite the picture below fooling everyone) and how cold it is outside rather than the PhD and experiments.

ski

But that isn’t the main thing that excites me today. Don’t get me wrong, I can’t wait to go on holiday, but at the same time things just got interesting in my research. A side project that I started to fill in the time between receiving samples from my industrial sponsor has actually turned out to be more interesting, exciting and successful than anything else I’ve done so far. I’m really looking forward to continuing with it, getting the experiments done and putting the results together.

This isn’t something I have experienced much of over the course of my PhD. Most of the time I find it hard to motivate myself with aspects of the research, especially when a lot of it has involved frustrating experiments that feel like a waste of time.

Its rare times like these when I get excited by my work that I remember why I am doing a PhD and I think we all have to hold onto to get us through the low points. Hopefully reading this you might remember some of the highlights you may have had so far, or remind you that sometimes this process can be quite exciting. It just doesn’t happen very often for most of us in my experience!

Fingers crossed the holiday gives me a break to relax and I'll come back refreshed and ready to tackle these last 8 months. It might be the last proper holiday I get for a while...


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