Todays writing challenge, What’s one thing that you’re proud of?
Finishing my honours thesis was a pretty huge accomplishment. I remember sitting around with my classmates a few months before finishing having the conversation, “How much would you give to have someone else finish this thing off for you?” It was such an uncomfortable, taxing, laborious process, made harder by the fact that towards the end I don’t think any of us had any strong desire or care for the result of our work. My project definitely never felt like it was a contribution to science or the progress of humanity; It was just a means to move on to getting a better paying job.
But everyday for especially that last 6 months I kept at it, forcing myself to keep going, keep working on it. Consistency achieved the result. I try not to regret anything in life, you never know why you go through an experience at the time but I do feel deep down that everything in my past has a purpose and a meaning. I guess it does feel now that that ladder I climbed was leaning against the wrong wall, but at the time it seemed like a reasonable thing to do. So perhaps my will power was tested to a stronger extent than I have even realized because if I had persevered working that hard for something I cared so little for imagine how much I have to give to some thing I do care for?
I had a lot of help and support from the people around me. My parents fed me, gave me space and put up with my moodiness, my ex girlfriend and friends who cared and lifted me up showing me how to have fun during those times.
Consistency, shear will, and asking and receiving help from others is what came together to write that thesis. It was an amazing personal achievement.
To my knowledge about 2.8 people have actually read it.
1 = me, I wrote it and reread it MANY times
1 = my primary supervisor Paul – total Legend, was a massive help.
0.4 = my dad gave it a go, but confessed he started falling asleep once reaching the results. Which is fair enough as there was a lot of geological and geophysical terminology so it was thick heavy reading for the uninitiated.
0.4 = another supervisor who “edited” and graded my thesis, you don’t find out who this person is but you print out a copy of it and send it in for editing and feedback before submitting the final draft. They are meant to provide you with a corrected draft with comments, corrections and suggestions for improvement. When mine was handed back it had a single pen stroke correction in the abstract which leads me to believe that they probably didn’t read that much of it.
At least they gave me a decent mark
It would be great to think it has positively impacted someone else. I think that whole process left some positive impacts upon me. I learned how to force my focus, and bend my will to get anything done. I learned to ask for help, and I learned that the most successful people I know are the ones who just keep going on, consistently working everyday, chipping away at their tasks.
As an old work buddy used to say when I would moan about the shear size of some of our vague, ill defined, poorly scoped projects, badly directed projects…
How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.