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On surviving the months ahead

Posted by gellert, 22 December 2011 · 372 views

I've always been a little bit neurotic, but there's something about that waiting period between application and result that really puts the cherry on the already-overfrosted cake.

I still remember the two months between submitting my undergrad application and hearing about my acceptance. I whiled away my free hours on College Confidential doing everything within my power to make myself feel even more anxious about a situation that was now out of my control.

Waiting to hear back from grad schools is much the same, only instead of College Confidential it's TGC and SDN, and I have something as addictive and panic-inducing as the results survey to spice up my constant, lingering low-level anxiety. What if I mislabeled an SOP, despite checking each file three times before uploading, and now Harvard is wondering why I felt the need to inform them that Yale is most definitely the number one place for me? What if I should have addressed that one red flag on my application in my statement instead of just asking my letter-writers to do it? After all, they could have forgotten.

What if, what if, what if.

You know what, enough 'what if'-ing. I should probably do something productive with my life.

I work best when I have projects and deadlines laid out for myself, so I'm going to assign a few right now:

1) I will finish a novel. I'm working on three right now, so I suppose that means I'll have to pick one, but there you have it. It's going to happen.

2) I will practice piano every day for a decent period of time. Was originally gonna say I'd go running every day, but then I was in a car accident and now I'm banned from exercise for the next month.

3) I will apply to Oxford's M.Sc. Neuroscience program.

4) I will start this paper I'm co-authoring with my adviser.

5) I will continue running my honors thesis.

What about you? How do you plan to make the days and weeks pass in a non-insanity inducing manner?

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Hey there!

I signed up for a refresher French course over the break (term starts again at the end of January). I also have to study for my comprehensive exam in May. I, too, am practicing an instrument as a way to relax- I'm learning the violin! I'm very proud of myself as I just learned "twinkle twinkle little star"...gotta start somewhere! I want to go to the gym more and I hope to do that. Um, I'm going to attend a conference and present a paper the first week of the New Year. And I'm going to rewrite a paper from this semester. I think that should get me through 'til school starts and then I'll have that plus other school-related duties. :) Good luck!
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I have a ton of work to do over the holidays, and my final semester of undergrad starting in mid-January. So I'll be keeping busy with my school work and hitting the gym as well. I've been warned that the GradCafe is an awful place to be in late January, February and March, so avoiding the forums may be wise (not sure I'll actually do it though)!
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@Bean - wow, sounds like you have a full plate. :P I'm a little envious, to be honest. I'm one of those people who prefers to have no free time. Prevents procrastination. Also quite jealous that you're learning violin! I decided I wanted to learn when I was 12, but by that point I was convinced I was too old to start (context: started playing piano at 4, assumed that was typical). Now I regret it.

@Safferz - is it really? I've been lurking here for a few years without posting, but never noticed any huge problems. Is it just the stress of interview invites and results coming in, d'ya think?
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I am applying for jobs because otherwise I cannot legally stay in the US after the graduation. However, it just adds up more anxiety-now I´m checking my email every hour to see if I got an email from an employer. I think in comparison to this (knowing that if in the next 3 months you won't find a job you will be out of the country to which you dedicated 6 years of your life) waiting on grad schools is actually not that bad- it is totally out of my control and if it doesn't work this year I can always try again. Getting rejected is still so much nicer than getting detained and questioned by the Department of Homeland Security (which I have been in the past, because they just LOVE to screw up your documents or run you through the database "just to make sure you are enrolled in your school."
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P.S. and I dance reggaeton and salsa to relax!!!
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