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ResilientDreams

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  1. Like
    ResilientDreams reacted to searchingforthenextstep in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hello, I've never joined an online forum/community like this but I am looking for something, anything that will help me right now. This blog post stood out to me because I also struggle with feelings of inadequacy throughout my undergrad and graduate school experience. It always feels like my peers are one step ahead of me. I completed my masters degree and after working for a year started applying to doctorate programs. I am completely crushed to say I did not get accepted into any programs and feel lost for lack of a better word. Should I give up? Are my aspirations in research meaningless? was I meant to do something else? ....has anyone ever been in this position? Did you decide to try again next year?
  2. Upvote
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from Phoenix88 in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hi @sendmeadvice!
    Thanks for posting this, because I hadn't realized that my post may be taken in that way! My intention wasn't to minimize the accomplishments of people with more experience. It was meant to say that if you don't have that experience but have still given it your all, that shouldn't stop you from applying. We of course will be compared to people who are better and more accomplished than us, and learning to accept that is a part of life.
    I totally see your point about the contextualization, and I hadn't intended to imply that someone with years of experience will be held to such a more rigorous standard that if they have any weakness they shouldn't even bother applying. I was more thinking in terms of looking back at what you have accomplished and being proud of it personally, regardless of if it measures up to other people (which applies to people with experience too!). That's not to say that these other people haven't done fantastic things. I'm just saying you shouldn't fall into the trap of comparing, as you said. 
    I really appreciate the other bits of advice you gave as well.
  3. Like
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from futurespeechieinprogress in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hi @sendmeadvice!
    Thanks for posting this, because I hadn't realized that my post may be taken in that way! My intention wasn't to minimize the accomplishments of people with more experience. It was meant to say that if you don't have that experience but have still given it your all, that shouldn't stop you from applying. We of course will be compared to people who are better and more accomplished than us, and learning to accept that is a part of life.
    I totally see your point about the contextualization, and I hadn't intended to imply that someone with years of experience will be held to such a more rigorous standard that if they have any weakness they shouldn't even bother applying. I was more thinking in terms of looking back at what you have accomplished and being proud of it personally, regardless of if it measures up to other people (which applies to people with experience too!). That's not to say that these other people haven't done fantastic things. I'm just saying you shouldn't fall into the trap of comparing, as you said. 
    I really appreciate the other bits of advice you gave as well.
  4. Upvote
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from MTurner in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hi @sendmeadvice!
    Thanks for posting this, because I hadn't realized that my post may be taken in that way! My intention wasn't to minimize the accomplishments of people with more experience. It was meant to say that if you don't have that experience but have still given it your all, that shouldn't stop you from applying. We of course will be compared to people who are better and more accomplished than us, and learning to accept that is a part of life.
    I totally see your point about the contextualization, and I hadn't intended to imply that someone with years of experience will be held to such a more rigorous standard that if they have any weakness they shouldn't even bother applying. I was more thinking in terms of looking back at what you have accomplished and being proud of it personally, regardless of if it measures up to other people (which applies to people with experience too!). That's not to say that these other people haven't done fantastic things. I'm just saying you shouldn't fall into the trap of comparing, as you said. 
    I really appreciate the other bits of advice you gave as well.
  5. Like
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from epi_hopeful19 in Think the GRE is useless? Think again.   
    I love this post so much. I dread standardized tests as well because it's what makes it look like I'm bad at math. The truth is, I feel like I'm actually pretty good at quantitative reasoning and was actually in charge of a lot of data analysis for one of my professors. I also can learn quantitative skills quite well. But in a timed environment with questions that are designed to trick you... I'm going to be mediocre every time. I hated the GRE because I was strong in every other way and yet this one test that's controlled by this one company has given me a weakness...
  6. Like
    ResilientDreams reacted to Fall 2019 Pharmacology in Think the GRE is useless? Think again.   
    The problem with the GRE is the same as the problem with all standardized tests.  They do really really poorly when trying to predict student success.
    Why?  Because they are biased and because they don't reflect what is important in pursuing a Ph.D.  What they do do is to reflect how well students do on standardized
    tests.    Now, if you ever created a program that was about taking random standardized tests, then maybe these kinds of tests would be a good ruler, but that's not usually the case and especially not with Ph.D. programs.  That's exactly why a lot of programs are dropping the requirement for the GRE.  It's worse than useless.
  7. Like
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from jmillar in Think the GRE is useless? Think again.   
    I love this post so much. I dread standardized tests as well because it's what makes it look like I'm bad at math. The truth is, I feel like I'm actually pretty good at quantitative reasoning and was actually in charge of a lot of data analysis for one of my professors. I also can learn quantitative skills quite well. But in a timed environment with questions that are designed to trick you... I'm going to be mediocre every time. I hated the GRE because I was strong in every other way and yet this one test that's controlled by this one company has given me a weakness...
  8. Upvote
    ResilientDreams reacted to Norse_Medievalist in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hi! I just joined GradCafe and this was the message I needed to see. I'm finishing up my last year of my master's degree in English and have no publications yet. My GPA isn't that great and I'm taking my tests in the spring. I'm not applying to school till Fall 2020, but I'm so nervous. The worst thing they can tell us is no, right? And we can always keep trying. I'm glad that I'm not the only one that doesn't feel as confident in their current marketability to their programs. 
     
     
  9. Upvote
    ResilientDreams reacted to PsychApplicantFall2019 in Overcoming Feelings of Inadequacy   
    Hi @ResilientDreams, 
    First, I really admire the advice that you give on GradCafe, and you seem to have a great application. However, there is something about the message that I am getting from the blog post that is not sitting well with me, and I want to push back against. The idea that I am getting from this is that "my" achievements will be contextualized. In saying this, there is an implicit suggest that the person who has 10+ years of work experience doesn't deserve the same benefit-of-the-doubt perhaps in regards to GPA or whatever. 
    It matters because it is an unhealthy way of solving feelings of inadequacy. In fact, I think this kind of rationalization actually may exacerbate the distress. 
    The simple fact is that in our application process we are going to be assessed against people who are better than us, and no, we are not always going receive the benefit of contextualization. However, you are right in that the only thing that we can do is to package ourselves in the best way possible and to progress forward despite feeling inadequate at times. We must not follow into the trap of continually comparing ourselves to others. 
    I think it helps to know that many people feel inadequate and doubt themselves for all kinds of different reasons. In questionnaires, others have reported that their feelings come from things such as the following: not seeing other people who, they feel, represent their background; feeling that having to work hard for something means they are not naturally talented enough to succeed; feeling that if they are not perfect, then they are not good enough; and on and on. But, justifying their success by minimizing others is not the way forward. 
    For a personal example: my mentor is well connected, and there are moments when I fear that prospective PIs have taken time to talk to me just because they know my PI. My negativity trap is the tendency to think that I only am where I am because of other people. Maybe there is a grain truth to that, but in interactions, I have to stand on my own and talk about my work and interests confidently. I have to tell myself that I am good enough, and I encourage everyone else to do the same. 
    Something else that helps these feelings is to talk with other people about them. They are surprisingly common. An estimated 70% of people -- Yes, men can feel inadequate, too. Chances are that the graduate students, postdocs, and even your PI have experienced these feelings. Talk to them about it. 
    The purpose of this comment is to say that attempting to bolster our own successes by minimizing the successes of others is not a healthy or productive way to get over feelings of inadequacy, and I want to push back against this sentiment. 
  10. Like
    ResilientDreams got a reaction from IceCream & MatSci in Think the GRE is useless? Think again.   
    I love this post so much. I dread standardized tests as well because it's what makes it look like I'm bad at math. The truth is, I feel like I'm actually pretty good at quantitative reasoning and was actually in charge of a lot of data analysis for one of my professors. I also can learn quantitative skills quite well. But in a timed environment with questions that are designed to trick you... I'm going to be mediocre every time. I hated the GRE because I was strong in every other way and yet this one test that's controlled by this one company has given me a weakness...
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