assignment stress/anxiety 

i KNOW my essay stress atm is primarily anxiety. i've done a lot of reading and it's just about reviewing my notes and putting it all together (+ patchworking in relevant reading from earlier assignments - which makes me feel fake but is actually just, like, having a theoretical specialism, as far as i can tell). this is way more prepared than i was for any of my assignments last year. but my brain isn't getting the message!

about 4 days ago i had this incredibly stupid musical idea and it keep hearing it in my head. it won't go away

so i've had to actually create it

i present to you: the
ELEANOR RIGBY BATTLE THEME

food cw 

I can't just eat cake and come back to my desk with my conference paper magically finished and edited and that's like. the worst, tbh, why isn't that how it works

the sheer optimism and euphoria of the initial literature search is such a fun ride, until you come to terms with the fact that you CANNOT read 40 articles and 20 books in a month

A lot has happened since I last checked in here. Two chapters of my undergrad dissertation (so, excluding the one I didn't like all that much haha) have been accepted for publication. I might possibly be presenting at a conference soon. Everything is happening at once and it's terrifying but so exciting and it's like, -good- stress, if that makes any sense.

Hello! So I'm just about to start my MA, and I'm making a pre-PhD 'bucket list' of activities that would help me get some good experience/field knowledge under my belt before I start applying for doctoral funding. E.g. I've written that I'd like to get a second article written and submitted for publication, go to some relevant conferences and maybe shadow or interview someone in a similar specialism. Are there any other activities that might not be so obvious? (Oh and I'm a literature student!)

further reflections on results 

and i need to remember that i have worked very well to make my working process as quick and efficient as possible. but there is a limit to that and i have reached that limit and i now, like... need to start thinking about other techniques for managing my workload

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further reflections on results 

and the obvious answer to this is 'start earlier!' but it's also like... so hard to do that because then i'm making the 'shifts' between the rest of my degree work/life and it's just all so. frustrating. a postgrad degree is only going to get less forgiving

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further reflections on results 

i want the first thing i start working on to be amazing! and that perfectionism drives me to just focus solely on that for as long as i can justify it. and by the time i remember my schedule/that i have two or three other assignments due, it's too late - i'm too deep in that one research hole and making the gear shift will take 1-2 days. and if i'm working on multiple things at once i can only afford to take a certain number of gear shifts.

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further reflections on results 

like, i will have the most amazing work practices for the essay due in Week 5, but the essays due in Week 6 and 7 are unplanned messes in which the weeks that they're due are the first time i start working on them. i'm hoping i can find a method to stop that from happening. i rly struggle with the 'gear shift', moving fluidly between multiple different questions and research areas. i've tried quite a few time mgmt methods and still haven't found anything that sticks

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further reflections on results 

something with which i have consistently struggled from the beginning of my degree is... being consistent. and it frustrates me that even tho the standard of my work has gone up so my 'worst' essays in my final semester batch are nowhere near as 'bad' as the worst essays i've ever produced, i'm still not being consistent and applying the same critical faculties to each assignment i'm faced with. i think the root is my own deficit of healthy working practices

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further reflections on results 

i've been tracking my time since around november last year, around my first lot of midterms. and the results are very clear - having at least two weeks to work and not going above 5 hrs a day produces consistently rly good results. i'm hoping to learn from this practice going into postgrad.

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further reflections on results, speaking frankly about mental illness + studying 

a habit i really hate is not starting the actual drafting until the last day before the deadline. it's always horrible and i'm hoping that how BAD it felt for my final essay, which included several unscheduled points to just lie down on the floor in tears and despair, will be a kind of reinforcement not to put myself in that position again

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further reflections on results 

what happens is the time constraints make my argument rigid and unchangeable - even if i change my mind, i can't make bold restructures, i keep stuff i don't really like, and i'm unable to articulate ideas with as much nuance and ability as i know i can when i'm not sleep-deprived and overworked.

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further reflections on results 

the results of my final papers have been affirmative that the subject doesn't matter - taking care of myself and managing my time effectively IS better than having several breakdowns before submitting! who'd have thought it would take me like 3 years to figure this out, haha.

like, the grades absolutely DO reflect what works and what doesn't and it turns out that what doesn't is leaving everything to the week before and working myself to tears.

dissertation reflection 

i'm v happy with my dissertation results but i'm also glad to have that particular topic out of my system. it's kind of like a hard reset. it feels like i could go anywhere from here. it also affirms to me that it would be better to specialise in an area i LIKE but i'm maybe not as obsessively wild about, so it doesn't become an 'everyday' thing and loses its magic. so basically what my supervisor told me from day -30 and which i should probably have listened to haha

so, good news. i'm graduating next month with a first-class BA with honours. i have been granted a scholarship to fund my master's. i feel more sure than ever that going down this route is the right way for me. and having started my degree journey so uncertain and so frightened, that means a lot! i feel so driven to learn more and to make the absolute best of this next degree - while still taking care of -myself-, which is something i have absolutely neglected during my undergrad studies.

dissertation liveblogging 

the hell and pain of editing this dissertation is training myself to not use one word too much, but then another pops up

Dissertation liveblogging, insomnia 

my brain finally kicked into gear and found a thesis and appropriate structure for the dissertation I have been working on for like 8 months of my life
unfortunately this was while being racked with insomnia for the whole night, and I'm up in 2 hours
lov it!!!

it also feels so good to take everything you've read and to kind of. synthesise it into a story??? something that puts it all into a broader context. it's like you're weaving a spider web

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