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Found 11 results

  1. I cannot stop checking my email. I've been emailing the professors I want to work with just to make small talk and hoping they'll give me some kind of hint at a decision date. The last times I've applied, I've still been quite nervous. That said, this is such a pivotal moment in my life and in my career. If I don't get in, I have a job lined up to advise a college newspaper. I do this job in a temporary capacity right now and I love it, but my passion is research and I know that the things I want to do, not having a PhD is going to hold me back. If I don't get in, I'm not going to keep living my life in limbo like I have for the past three years. I want to settle somewhere. I'm tired of feeling like I can't plant my feet anywhere, like there is no point unpacking moving boxes because everything has been so temporary. I work three jobs right now, all contract work because I'm not able to be full-time without this damn doctorates. If I get a yes, I can move, settle for 4-5 years, and start toward the research career I want to do. If I get all no's, I buy a house here and wait another 5 years to try again. With so much of my future depending on this decision, I am having trouble simply getting up in the morning. I am anxious, fatigued, starving but too nauseous to eat. It's eating me alive and I can see how negatively this stress is impacting my health. I just want to know.
  2. So, long story short, I’m almost halfway finished with my first year in an MSW program and I’m having serious doubts about whether this field is for me. Ever since I started thinking about pursuing this path I wanted to become a therapist, but I’m not even sure I believe in therapy anymore. I know there are many other possible career paths in the field, but tbh, I’m not sure I want to be involved with mental health at all anymore. It’s not my passion; it never has been. I pursued this because I thought it was practical (hilarious, I know, but my other idea for my life was to become an academic) and because I thought I might be good at it. I know it’s too soon to tell whether I’m capable, but I don’t know if I’m interested enough to find out. It feels like a bad sign that I already feel this much trepidation when it seems like everyone I know in the field is burned out, underpaid, and sad. I don’t really have another ideas for what I would do besides some half-baked dreams of becoming a journalist. I know I wouldn’t make any money in that field either if I was lucky enough to “make it” in some small way, and I’m not sure whether I possess the work ethic, talent, or intelligence to succeed in that industry. I have around 80k in student loan debt currently and it will be at the very minimum 100k by the time I am done with this program. I know it must seem like I’m obsessed with money, but I’ve never made more than 12,000 in a year and I am so tired of being poor. I would like to make at least 50k a year SOMEDAY and ideally more so that I can pay off my student loans and possibly even help my dad with the PLUS loans he took out for my undergrad in the sweet, misguided hope that I would amount to something in life. I would also like to not be a fucking albatross around my boyfriend’s neck for the rest of my life. I have tried to explore these feelings in therapy and it does not help. All my therapist does is say “wow, you’re really hard on yourself.” Last week she recommended a mental health IOP where some of my peers work. This is part of why I’m losing confidence in therapy, but it’s not just her; I haven’t made any significant progress in that arena in years. It seems all my therapists do is listen to me vent and collect a check. I have had a couple wonderful ones; but they have been few and far between, and I am starting to believe I am simply too broken to be helped. Which, of course, makes the idea of idea of me thing to help anyone else laughable at best and unethical at worst. I apologize if this doesn’t fit here, but I am desperate and grad cafe has helped me in the past. I know I am depressed and possibly not seeing things clearly, but it also seems evident that I have made quite the mess of my life. If anyone has any insight or has been through something similar and come out the other side ok and is willing to share that with me, I would be eternally grateful.
  3. Hello Everyone I am in my 3rd year of PhD and have literally achieved nothing in my academia field from the time I have joined Phd under my supervisor. She doesn't want any good for me, she never even have time to listen to me. There are times where I am not even allowed to touch any instruments because she doesn't allow me too. She has also taken away my peace of mind by interfering in my personal life. She has almost purposely delayed my work for more than a year as she post-pone the installation of the new instrument in which my thesis work was assigned. Also she is always reluctant to sign in any documents related to my benefit. During the first two years she gave me false hope and showed all good behaviour. I was having blind faith on her, it was only in my 3rd year I came to know from other reliable sources that she is delaying the installation of the instrument. When I asked her the reason for the delay, she got annoyed and there was no valid explanation. She further started torturing me with all comments and remarks which I don't know how to react to. She calls be by names and also insults me in front of all the staffs. I have completed my 3rd year this month and I realised that I have achieved nothing academically. I am in a dilemma that should I leave the course or should I continue further under her. The only advantage is I will be regularly paid fellowship till the completion of my 5th year. Also she is about to get retired after 3 years.
  4. Hi all! I thought it might be a good idea to create a forum where people can share their self-care tips, especially during this time period where grad school results are coming in (or not, which can be stressful). This is definitely not a cure or a 100% solution, especially for those that have a mental illness, but I hope these tips/advice will be of some help during the waiting. So, here are some self-care tips I TRY to utilize: 1. Walking. Being stationary is not good for your body in general, so it is always good to just take a walk outside and enjoy nature. 2. Binge watch movies or TV shows. Even though it is good to move around, sometimes it is also good to be lazy and laugh or cry or both a little. It's all about balance. 3. Read. It's a good distraction where you can improve your vocabulary. A win-win! 4. Listen to podcasts while I clean the house. Cleaning my house always me feel better. I take a long shower after cleaning and it feels good to chill in a house that won't stress me out anymore. I love listening to podcasts while I clean because I can listen to stories or learn something new while doing something that isn't the most fun thing to do. 5. Drink some herbal tea. The comfort of holding a warm cup of tea feels like home. I say herbal tea because it has little to no caffeine in it. Caffeine can sometimes increase my anxiety, so I try to avoid it all costs when I know my mental health is not doing very well. 6. Hydrate. Water can help flush out the cortisol in your body when you are stressed and/or anxious. 7. BUBBLE bath! 8. Yoga. I typically do yoga when I don't feel liking walking, but know I need to move my body. I can't do yoga without someone to tell me what to do, so I watch Yoga with Adrienne on YouTube. She is funny and really good at teaching yoga. 9. Meditation. This can help you clear your mind. I use an app called Oak to learn how to mediate. 10. Nap. Sometimes what you need is some shut eye. 11. Talk with someone I am close with. Getting a different perspective on something that's bothering me can help me rethink about it. It's also good to talk with someone who cares about you and who you care about. 12. Face masks. It's nice taking off the mask and having a soft, clean face. Please share any tips or advice you have for self-care! I also found this forum where you read some other self-care tips. I wish everyone the best!
  5. I'm 11 months left from the deadline for the delivery of my thesis. I started this topic with high enthusiasm and hopes to change the world. Don't we all? But my supervisor and moving countries crushed a lot of those dreams. I ended up with an existential crisis, more stress that I could handle that wiped away my entire interest in the area. Thankfully, I got a new advisor who is far more supportive, but stil, very much hands off my project for the most part. At this point, I just want to get the PhD and be out of this field for good. My motivation is as dry as Texas. I go to work every day and stare at my computer with a mountain of work to do and I just don't want to do any of it because I'm simply *done*. I push through it in spikes when I can find the motivation for it, and it's how I get by. But for the most part, I'm simply too... Depressed? Sad? Unmotivated? To do anything about it anymore. I've also started enjoying life less. My time with my friends is not enjoyable. I don't sleep very well either - haven't for the last 4 years. I live alone, and the silence is killing me too. There are times when I feel such intense despair, that the thought of dying feels like relief. To someone terribly afraid of death, this thought is quite terrifying. It seems to me this is the path that leads to suicide a few years down the road. And I don't want that. I just received an email, on a Sunday evening, from an editor, asking me to change the header for my paper by tomorrow. You'd think I should be able to let it go and not do it RIGHT NOW on a Sunday evening, right? But no. I can't let it go. I broke down in tears and I'm writing this now. Please offer any advice. Any validation. I'm as desperate as desperate gets...
  6. Hello, I am new to this forum but I was hoping to seek some advice. Firstly, I am not a troll or anything near. So i am in my second year of a PhD program, and I feel like the work that I want to do is completely pointless. I just spent hours in a car with a bunch of PhD's and was grilled about my project because I am working with a species that is not economically important, would most likely be replaced by another species if lost from native habitats and is all around a small player in its current ecosystem. To top that off, I feel like the work I am doing is "basic." It is nothing groundbreaking, making me feel like the "basic bastard/bitch" of the scientific community. I've really been struggling with depression and thoughts of suicide, so much so that I was hospitalized in a, for lack of a better term, mental ward earlier this summer when I should have been doing field work. My wife wants a kid and so do I, but I feel like I have been so distant from her, that a kid would only add to my general lackadaisical behavior. It feels like I am going through the motions, twiddling my thumbs waiting for the roof to cave in or the house of cards to collapse. Just looking for people who have gone through these periods and emerged on the other side. I'm seriously thinking about stopping and trying to find a job to get my life on track. Or I am just whining and should suck it up. Thanks
  7. Yep

    Replication Study

    Hey You guys, I wanted to get insight on replication studies and what are the first steps to start one. Any information can help. I am starting one for my clinical psychology thesis -Isaac
  8. Hi all, this is my first post so I am hoping to get some good advice and realistic feedback. First off, I struggled through college (mostly in the beginning) thanks to some issues of severe depression and anxiety. Unfortunately, my GPA has suffered and although I managed good grades in the last two years, it averages out to a very underwhelming 2.99 (I also did a semester abroad, which with the pass/fail ranking did not help nudge my GPA up). *As a side note...does 2.99 round up to 3.0 or am I stuck at <3.0, which seems to be the cutoff for many schools even accepting applications* If I could do it all over again...I would. I would just go through and re-do my lowest grades...but of course, time is of the essence. Or is it? I have a deep passion for science, specifically marine biology (my UG major), as well as evolutionary biology (now there was a class where I got the top grade in the class, for once). Special interests for me are ornithology, fisheries, conservation...but really any field gets me going. I could not imagine doing anything other than biology...and so my dream is to continue in marine biology, or possible evo. bio. depending entirely on what school will accept me. Which brings me to my current dilemma...I have absolutely zero confidence that any reputable grad school will accept me, thanks to my GPA, which is nothing to speak of. However, I do consider myself an intelligent, intellectual person - I have been lucky to travel to many different countries over the course of my life, as well as speak a second language fluently. I keep my sights on the important things and issues in life, and I dream about becoming a fully accredited marine biologist/zoologist/evo biologist somewhere down the road (hopefully sooner rather than later). My boyfriend is someone who after serving in the military for 9 years, is just applying to undergrad programs in California. He has excellent chances of getting in where ever he wants - UCSB, UCSC, or UCSD are at the top of his lists (as well as mine in regards to grad school). I want to move out to CA with him and hopefully enter the same school he is at (or get another field job in the area). To make a long story short, here's my question: What are my chances of getting in to the aforementioned schools in the fields I dream about? If they are meager, what do I need to do to increase my appeal? My initial (new) GRE score is 314. I excelled at verbal but ran out of time on both quantitative sections, and will be retaking it soon... Thanks for reading my long post, and taking the time to answer! It is much appreciated!!! P.S. As for field work experience, I have a good amount: Colorado, North Carolina, as well as Antarctica. Currently am working for the state's Division of Marine Fisheries as an observer. *Incidentally, does anyone know how much experience as a fisheries observer is worth towards grad school? I couldn't find any info on that before I accepted...*
  9. I joined to post this thought: Maybe I am much, much weaker of a person than I initially thought, but this app season has literally made me miserable. I am angry, depressed, hostile, prone to illness, and above all, very bitter. I hear birds chirping and I want to chop down their tree. Part of it is that I have been rejected from schools I thought I had a chance of getting into, and another part is that I am still waiting on answers. It feels like the rest of the world knows what they're going to do in the Fall, yet my plans have been demolished and/or are being toyed with by late responses. At the beginning of this process, I had a "whatever happens, happens!" attitude. Now I am purely depressed about the whole thing. Hopefully the next two weeks brings some good news. Thanks for listening and allowing me to vent, gradcafe!
  10. TLDR – as the title says: Try to read your letter of rec’s before submission I am sure this might be too late for some, but hopefully someone out there will benefit from this warning. Learn from my mistake and read your letter of recommendations (LOR) before they are submitted. I have been a working professional for several years but kept ties with my old professors. Several months ago I announced to my professors that I was finally going to apply to doctoral programs and they were very optimistic, and even volunteered to write me letters before I had a chance to formally ask. I chose three of those professors who have written several LOR’s for me in the past so I knew that they would write great letters on my behalf. Here is where things go wrong. Closer to my soft deadline I noticed that one of my professors started to act “odd” and I knew something was wrong. He was my committee chair for my masters degree and I knew he had a publication deadline and obviously under a lot of pressure. He said that he was still more than willing to write me a letter and that I should only apply to 3 schools. I found that odd but was able to coax him into believing 4 school applications would be acceptable. I asked if he was OK and he said it was a personal family issue and just shrugged it off. This was about four months ago in which later I found that his wife almost passed away. This brings us to the present. I have been going stir crazy waiting for decisions and have received 3 out of 4 rejections so I nicely asked my professors for guidance and if they would be willing to show me the LOR that they wrote. Two of my professors were more than glad to email them to me and they wrote exquisitely. However, my “odd” acting professor disclaimed that I waived my rights to seeing my LOR but ended up forwarding me a copy anyways. I was shocked to find that the first half of my LOR was a blatant reproduction of my statement of purpose and the second half was basically a reflection of my professors depressing state of mind at that time and was quite woeful and damaging. I have asked my professor to explain his reasoning on the LOR but I am sure that the damage is done and I have accepted that. There is always next year and I will definitely not use that professor again. Additionally, hopefully the schools that I plan to apply to again won’t remember his depressing letter.
  11. Hi all, I'm sure this kind of topic has been posted about a million times, and if anyone wants to close this thread and link me to one with at least a near-identical situation to mine, I won't mind. Still, it's always nice to receive individual-specific advice. I've just recently (I'm about four weeks in now) begun a PhD program straight out of undergrad, and I'm attending the same school I got my bachelor's in. Since about January or late December, I've been dealing with depression caused by an intense amount of anxiety associated with obsessive-compulsive disorder. I've been in therapy (on-campus counseling, off-campus counseling, and group counseling) for quite some time, but it doesn't seem to be helping much, and now my mental problems are beginning to interfere with my work. (Case in point: I have a large assignment due first thing tomorrow morning, and instead of even starting it I'm typing up this post instead.) My cohort is very nice to me and I think they're all cool people, and the professors have been kind to me as well, but my current state of mind has been making it extremely difficult to enjoy the experience. I'm already failing one of my classes, and the knowledge that I am makes me want to do the work even less. It was yesterday, when I found myself researching suicide methods, when I began to wonder if I should be in grad school right now. I'm afraid to ask for a leave of absence, though, because I'm only four weeks in and I worry that I'd be letting the faculty down. Hell, not just the faculty; my entire family, including my boyfriend, were all extremely supportive of my decision to attend grad school and cheered my acceptance to this program so enthusiastically that I worry I'd be letting them all down too. I also have no idea what I would do if I left because I never had a Plan B; grad school was always the plan for me. I should clarify that my stress and depression aren't being caused by my workload or my relationship with my cohort and professors. My OCD issues actually have nothing to do with schoolwork or grades at all, but explaining it in detail would necessitate another lengthy post. Because of this, and since my problems are getting in the way of my work now, I feel that I may be justified in asking for a leave of absence while I attempt to figure out what to do with myself. I'm wondering, though, if this is really the right decision to make, and if not, what I should do instead. I apologize for the discombobulated way that this post is written. Obviously, I can try to make some things clearer if anyone asks.
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