S03E04 | The Final Countdown: Getting Ready for the Final PhD Years by PhDivas published on 2016-09-21T16:09:24Z How does one complete a doctorate? Xine and Liz dispel myths about individual "grit" and "productivity" to talk about structural and psychological barriers to finishing the degree. Lack of resources, social norms, and administrative pressures on time-to-degree can all exacerbate the final years as a graduate student -- and we can internalize these problems as personal failures. While it's true that the best dissertation is a done dissertation -- and there's no such thing as a perfect one -- we also discuss how much can depend on your adviser. It's about managing relationships, where committee members are in their careers, their experiences of the job market, and their personalities. And sometimes it isn't writer's block, sometimes it's depression: don't hesitate to ask for help! Make sure you are surrounded by people who can support you as you dissertate but also when you need to take breaks. We share tips but also criticize how idealized advice can come off as prescriptive and add its own stresses. It may also be that finishing the degree is not for you -- and that's fine as well. Doubt is healthy. Be kind to yourself!