Looking for tips, tricks and advice to finish your doctoral thesis on time and with high spirits? Baffled by how little information is out there about how to support PhD students to become independent researchers? As an ex-doctoral student now co-supervising five students, I feel your pain.

“A Happy PhD” is a blog where I distil what has worked for me, as well as recent research in doctoral education, psychology and many other fields. Join our newsletter, or follow the blog on Twitter, Facebook, or via RSS.

New to the blog? Start here.

Are you looking for…

Common problems and challenges in doing the PhD, from mental health (e.g., depression or anxiety) or productivity challenges, to writing or dropping out of your PhD.

Mental health and wellbeing tips and advice: common mental health symptoms in the PhD, tips to avoid dropping out of the doctorate, the importance of sleep, holidays or advice from positive psychology to keep yourself motivated during the PhD.

PhD productivity tips and advice: from the classic Pomodoro technique, to avoiding to-do list overwhelm, dealing with multiple projects and priorities, staying productive and motivated, how I manage my daily tasks or how I do my weekly reviews.

PhD-specific tools, like the CQOCE diagram to conceptualize your PhD, the NABC method to structure your research presentations, or the process I use to write scientific papers or make big career decisions.

Supervision tips and advice, about giving feedback on student papers, or supporting a sense of progress in your doctoral students.

Recent Posts

Two Hundred Weeks: Productivity for Mortal PhD Students (book extract)

read more

Productivity as Avoidance, or How *Not* to Think about Doctoral Productivity (book extract)

read more

Is Doctoral Productivity Bad?

read more

Tiny idea: To-do lists are menus

read more

ChatGPT's doctoral productivity advice... and four ideas the algorithm will (probably) not give you

read more


Tiny idea: Use the Regret Test for daily decision-making

Breathing through the PhD: Breathwork in the doctorate

Tiny practice: Boost your workday happiness with natural spaces

Tiny idea: Subtraction

All Posts