Whatever the reason for starting a Ph.D. degree, careful planning is required. It is not going to be smooth all the way, and it will require patience, dedication and self-drive. As those who have gone through this journey will confess, more than once, they felt like quitting but because they had a vision, and clear goals, they persevered to the end. A Ph.D. is not for everyone. For instance, if you work in a Rosedale Tow Truck company, you may not require it. Before you embark on this dream, here are some of the things you should know.
Why do you want the Ph.D.?
This is an important question to ask yourself. Are you just looking for the title, something to add to your achievements or there is a specific goal you want to achieve? Does your job description require you to have the degree or you can do without it? Think about it if you’re going to work or already work in a science research institute. The degree can put you high above the competition in the job market.
Discipline is key to achieving goals
Just as in college, you will enjoy the freedom of planning your day and lectures. There is no one to reprimand or ask questions when you miss classes or do not finish assignments, but this should not make you slack down because unlike in college, the pressure to perform is intense. There are continuance reports to carry out all throughout the course. Your performance in the first year will determine if you will continue with the rest of the class. Therefore, you have to give it your all.
Have a plan
To avoid burning out, you need to set goals both short term and long term. If you are also working, it can sometimes be overwhelming when you have work responsibilities to attend to and unfinished assignments to hand in before the deadline. Having a plan ensures that you know what is expected of you, get to prioritize and achieve your goals without too much struggle.
Learn to ask questions
It can be intimidating asking those who have been there before you questions. You do not want to look stupid, and at the same time, you want to perform your best. This fear can slow down your progress. Instead, ask the lecturers and others who have been around whatever questions you have. It will save you time and lead to a faster learning process. In fact, most of the people will be glad to help you around.
Have an Open Mind
Only about 14% of all Ph.D. students get an academic job. This means that you should keep your options open and not just restricted to the educational field. Think of entrepreneur opportunities that would benefit from your skills.
As hard as it might be, learn how to balance. Learn how to relax, enjoy some time with friends and family and take care of yourself. You will end up with more positive energy to guide you through the rough patches.