“Doing” a Doctorate – week 48

Published on Sunday 30th September 2018 by DJ Kirkby

Things feel impossible right now. I know this feeling doesn’t make me special because most people I know who have already completed their doctorate have experienced struggles along the way. I think my struggle is compounded by the amount of workwork I am having to do. I am only supposed to work 4 days per week. So I used to work on my doctorate in some evenings, on my non working day and perhaps one other day, which then left a day or two to have a life outside of work and study.

However, we have a couple of key members of the team off long term sick and so work is my main priority at the moment. I really don’t mind this (or working two extra days a week unpaid) because making sure our students have a good educational experience is important to me, and I am very lucky to do a job I love, so I can cope with working 6 days a week (for a few months). Hopefully  both of our colleagues will be well enough to return by Dec and then things will calm down a bit work wise for me then.

Unfortunately though, I do resent having to work on my doctorate on my one remaining day of the week, and this is having an impact on the work I am able to do on this current assignment particularly. Plus I’ve has a few eye surgeries,  a bereavement, the cat has been ill and as a result my doctorate work keeps getting set aside.

The sensible side of me knows I should make my doctorate work a higher priority or at least a bit more balanced in comparison to work but it just isn’t and that’s the honest truth…I’m too tired from work and anyway I just want to enjoy my family, go exercise, bake cakes, read for pleasure, and basically just not have to bend my brain so it fits into the academic shaped space it needs to fill. Hmmmmmm, on reflection I’m not sure any of that is an excuse for not working on my current doctorate assignment so I’d best stop writing this blog post and get on with some assignment writing.

Week 48 in review: read week 46 and 47 by clicking here
Publishable doctorate words writtenVirtual health education: scaling practice to transform student learning article has been made available online by Nurse Education Today – click here for more info. Future Technologies Conference 2018 article NoObesity Apps – from approach to finished app has been accepted for publication.  Poster about the CILVRS project pilot VRLE has been accepted for the Wessex CSIP Safety, Quality & Improvement Conference 2018 and awarded highly commended status. I’ve finished the draft of the second CILVRS article so I need to send it to co-authors for their comment  / contribution.
Doctorate assignment words written – Yes, no, some, lalalala, next question please?
Cups of tea drunk –  Lost count, tea is so perfect, more tea please.
Miles run – 12, hurrah! Training for December marathon is on track at last!
Kilometers swam -Zero (due to having grandson for a sleepover at short notice on the night I would normally swim, yes there is that little flexibility in my work / life diary)
Miles cycled -Zero
Baking done –  plum crumble and a lemon poppyseed cake (see photo at end of post).
Crafting  done- Knitting on pause during this hot weather
Books read for pleasure –  You Were Made For This  (see 2018 reading page for link to book reviews)
Books read for doctorate – None this week
Movies / videos watched for doctorate – The 100
Articles read for doctorate – None this week
Blogs read for doctorate – None this week
Research undertaken – None this week
Meetings with doctorate supervisors – none this week
Meetings with ALN / LD support – Meeting arranged for mid Oct
Average level of guilt felt when trying to squeeze doctorate days in work diary – I’m not even bothering to try at the moment
Overall average stress level – moderate
Average success rate – lalalalala

Plan for next week:

  • Prepare for residential presentation
  • Continue marathon training
  • Wait for husband’s appointment with new specialist to find out extent of damage caused by chronic illness number two
  • Continue working on draft of assignment 4
  • Do final author proofread of NoObesity apps article prior to proceeding to print as part of conference proceedings book
  • Work
  • Exercise
  • Bake
  • Have a life


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