‘Operation GTFO’ – The draft waiting game.

Perhaps one of the most frustrating things about nearing the end of a PhD is the drafts. Obviously, drafts are essential because the feedback and ideas from supervisors is invaluable, however due to everyone in academia being time poor, receiving drafts can be time consuming. The draft waiting game can be frustrating but here are a few tips to hopefully ease the process:


  • Get drafts to your supervisors as early as you can- As I said, supervisors are time poor so getting a draft to them as early as you can means that you are giving them as much time to provide their edits and feedback as possible.
  • Provide deadlines– In academia everyone is working to multiple deadlines at a time and prioritise accordingly. So always give your supervisors reasonable deadlines.
  • Don’t procrastinate while you wait- It is easy to fall into the trap of procrastination while waiting for drafts to come back. However, there is muuuuuuuch to do towards the end of a PhD so work on anything else you can while waiting for drafts.
  • Just ask for feedback on sections- If you are up to the second or third draft, rather than asking for feedback on an entire chapter or report, just highlight the new sections or the sections that you are still unsure about for drafting. This should make it quicker and easier for everyone.
  • Try not to be too disheartened by the process- Drafting is frustrating, tiring, and sometimes upsetting. When you work on a paper for soooooo long and feel like every time you get a draft back there is a million more things to do, it sucks! I have been experiencing this lately. In my last meeting I felt like crying and I was down all afternoon. So- I drank a wine, went to bed early, and woke up refreshed and ready to tackle the feedback. Sometimes taking time for yourself and allowing you to come back to the draft with fresh eyes is all you need.


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