Sometimes, even though I don’t want to, I find myself judging/resenting/comparing myself to/feeling threatened by other women in my discipline.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about this topic, and here’s the moral of the story: I forgive myself.

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Holding Yourself Accountable to Writing

Question: Hey fellow grad students, how do you do a thesis? Like, how do you hold yourself accountable for writing and reading and research, besides a disappointed look from your advisor once a week? I have trouble making myself sit down and work unless I’m panicked about the next thing that’s due, and this semester is very unstructured and I’m flailing. Please help?

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Systematic Solutions for Systematic Problems

The following is a response to this post by The Post-Grad Goose.

In my opinion, there is no quick solution to this diffused burnout feeling – I did read the article and spread it to all my friends, and I am getting a lot of “I can relate to 90% of that at least” responses. The problem in my opinion is structural and systemic, so solutions must be structural as well.

The problem in my opinion is structural and systemic, so solutions must be structural as well.

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Racism All the Way Down

The lack of diversity in academia, at this point, is a well-known problem. Although some progress has been made to diversify fields (to varying degrees of success), I think we’re missing some of the biggest changes when we focus solely on evaluating candidates. Not only do we owe it to candidates to judge them fairly without harmful biases, we also owe it to them to create environments in which they feel comfortable. This can’t be fixed with blind CV reviews and affirmative-action-like policies, but requires us to prioritize holding the members of our academic community to a standard that fosters inclusivity no matter who they are or how long they’ve been here.

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On Being the Only Type-A Person in Your Department

And when you are the only type-A person in the department, you don’t have that luxury. You can’t not do something and say, “it’s okay, someone else will do it.” or “well the event has been planned so it has to happen anyway.” Either you do it, or it doesn’t happen. And watching the thing that you’ve been planning and dedicating your time and energy to for the past three months not happen? Well, that’s worse than exhausting yourself to make it happen.

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Filling in my bullet journal for next semester makes me feel productive.

Feel free to use my template, but please give me credit if you post online.

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Alternative Answers to “So, What Do You Want to Do With That?”

Does anyone else get tired of hearing the question “so what do you plan on doing with that?” whenever you tell them your academic plans?

My plan involves getting a PhD in philosophy. When I tell people this, I get responses that range from “Oh, what a unique career path!” to “That sounds… interesting?” to “So you want to work in retail?” By far the most common response, however, is “So what do you want to do with that?”

Being home for the holidays has meant answering that question a total of eight times already (and it’s only week one), so I’ve decided to have some fun with it instead of justifying the same career plans over and over.

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