Doing a PhD is going on a Hike… Enjoy It!

Hi there, we haven’t met yet. My name is Adib Caidi. I was born in Morocco but have been living in Germany for 10 years. I am in the final phase of my doctoral research in the field of fuel cells. I would love to share with you my conception of the PhD process. Please stick around, you never know when this might come in handy. 😊

In the course of my ongoing PhD, I have encountered many challenges, both on a scientific level and on a social and communication level. I know this whole process of getting a PhD is tough. I believe having the right mindset from the beginning is key not only for a successfull PhD but also for learning the most out of it. Here is why:

Im assuming you’ve at least once in your life went on a hike (if not, what are you waiting for?!). The best hiking trails are the ones that offer diverse landscapes. Basically a mix of walking and enjoying the route and a path a bit more physically demanding. At some point you check the map if you’re still on the right course towards the top. You decide to take a break if you feel tired. Midway you might just stop and enjoy the view, relax and take some nice pictures. Eventually at some point you make it to the top, sit down, take a big breath and realize that it was challenging but worth it!

Now just imagine the process of getting a PhD as if you are going on hike. Start by making clear in your toughts that just as a hike your path into getting your PhD has a start and a clear end. The process of getting a PhD includes a lot of ups and downs. These ups and downs might be physically but especially mentally challenging for you. Learn when and how to take a break during your PhD course. If you feel lost, take a moment and reorganize your data, ideas and check whether you’re still on the right path. Enjoy the process, look left and right, share and discuss your research with others. Give yourself credit and reward yourself from time to time. Now its time to go back to work, and before you even realize it, you’ll be standing in a room full of people with big hat on your head. 😉

Good luck to you!

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Adib Caidi

Nanomaterials, so small and yet so many properties and functions. Passionate and committed to bridging the valley of death.

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