On The Lonely Road of Writing a Dissertation?

On The Lonely Road of Writing a Dissertation?

Sitting in your courses is exciting. Discussing and debating the latest theories or ancient wisdom can be inspiring. But when you finish the assignments and pass comprehensive exams, being “ABD” or all but degree can be lonely. You’re almost home to that doctoral diploma but still have two or more years to go. How do you stay encouraged and productive through the proposal stage, meeting the Introduction-Chapter 1 benchmarks, and writing all those chapters that need to be perfect? Just compiling the Bibliography for committee review can seem like a monumental task. In fact, the whole process can seem like a complicated trapeze act. For many on the lonely road of writing a dissertation, the key is this: Connect with others.

Collective Coffee Break (CCB)

When travelling the yowling road of writing a dissertation, taking a periodic coffee break with others can be helpful. Simply meet at a local cafe with fellow students to kvetch about the dissertation process. They’re on the same road, so they know what you’re going through. You can schedule your CCB weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or in moments of creative emergency. Just talking about your trouble with a particular chapter or section can move you through it.

If you’re worried that discussing the details might compromise your research, then focus on “how you feel” or “what you think” about completing the work itself. This will protect your ground-breaking theories but give you what you need in order to progress through the project. At the cafe you can even work on your project before and after the CCB.

Unmask Your Yowling

Your CCB buddy doesn’t have to be someone in your field. It just has to be someone who is willing to listen. Unmask your yowling with anyone who can be your consistent companion through your long haul of writing a dissertation. It can be a family member, friend, fellow student in a different field, or someone who has already travelled the same road and intimately knows your academic woes. The important thing is to dig deep to dislodge whatever keeps you from finishing your creation. Unmasking our frustrations and troubles can seem risky, but it’s worth it.

Encouragement Keeps Us Creating

Connecting with someone can give us the strength we need to keep writing a dissertation–even when it seems like we need to scale an insurmountable obstacle or bust through an unbreakable wall. If you are in immediate need, check out the Yowling Creator blogs on facing frustration. Feel free to comment, kvetch, or just ramble a bit. This may be just what you need to start moving forward again. Many of my clients have heard these words by phone or email and have found them helpful. (See Testimonials for details.) It’s what ultimately helped propel them across the graduation stage with a satisfied smile and receive their diploma.

Writing a dissertation? You’re not alone. Check back soon or Join the Yowling Creator RSS feed to get timely tips delivered to your inbox!



One Response to “On The Lonely Road of Writing a Dissertation?”

  1. I am in a office with four class mates again. We are working on a essay for a class. Everyone came with a print out of their essay. New ideas came in the group, grammar errors were fixed. Is amazing how helpful that can be having a support group. Reading this blog has help me to improve myself in different areas.

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