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I don’t really like to mention it but I come across many PhD students who don’t feel very happy. Because of the pressure of work, the relationship with their supervisor, because they are insecure if they will be able to finish their thesis, because the writing doesn’t seem to progress, because they really suffer from procrastination. If you would ask them if they are happy, the answer will be very hesitant.

What makes us happy though? The Economic Journal has published an article about a research that measured happiness by using an app ‘mappiness’.

The results leave no space for doubt: we are the less happiest when we are ill, next in line is working and studying…. They make us quite unhappy. One of the reasons is doing overtime often; being workaholic. If you want to figure out for yourself if you are a workaholic, read my earlier blog.

So what does makes us happy? Making love, dancing, gardening, doing sports, going to a concert. Walking, crafting, meditating.

Are you happy, PhD student?

When does it go wrong during your research? What are the main reasons you won’t be able to finish your thesis successfully and in time? When are you off balance? When you aren’t doing enough activities that make your happy! And unfortunately many PhD students don’t do them enough. Well, because work always is priority number one.

Not a great strategy. The unhappier you are, the more difficult it is to energise yourself to do something. You won’t have any energy left. To make sure you have enough new energy is one of the priorities during your research.

So how are you? Do you make sure you are planning enough fun activities to keep the balance? If you find out that that isn’t the case, I do advise you to take steps. Are you struggling making the right steps? Don’t hesitate to contact me. I would love to help you to finish your thesis successfully and in time!


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