84 episodes

This is the podcast for you if you are currently doing a PhD; are working with PhD students; or just living with someone who is on a PhD journey.

The PhD Life Raft will focus on sharing insights and experiences around some common issues like anxiety, procrastination, precariousness, imposter syndrome, and work-life balance. We will talk to students, supervisors and experts in the field of wellbeing and mental health and share actionable tips and additional resources.

Doing a PhD is tough. The PhD Life Raft is here to help you get through.

The PhD Life Raft Podcast Dr Emma Brodzinski

    • Education
    • 5.0 • 7 Ratings

This is the podcast for you if you are currently doing a PhD; are working with PhD students; or just living with someone who is on a PhD journey.

The PhD Life Raft will focus on sharing insights and experiences around some common issues like anxiety, procrastination, precariousness, imposter syndrome, and work-life balance. We will talk to students, supervisors and experts in the field of wellbeing and mental health and share actionable tips and additional resources.

Doing a PhD is tough. The PhD Life Raft is here to help you get through.

    Preparing for Your Viva with Nathan Ryder

    Preparing for Your Viva with Nathan Ryder

    Nathan Ryder runs skills training for PhD students with a signature course entitled ‘Viva Survivor’ and daily blog of viva prep help.  
     
    In this episode Nathan talks about his new book ‘Keep Going ’which is full of advice for the PhD journey and we focus in particularly on preparing for the PhD viva.  
     
    Nathan shares thoughts on how to fit in viva preparation around the many other things that you might be doing in the period between submission and examination.
     
    We discuss the benefits of rehearsing before the day of your viva.
     
    Nathan also gives advice on the best way to annotate your thesis as part of the preparation process and how to create your own ‘special edition’.
     
    You can find Nathan on Twitter as @DrRyder and @VivaSurvivors.  
    His website is http://viva-survivors.com/ and gives details on how you can purchase the book.
     
    His podcast can be found here: http://viva-survivors.com/category/podcast/
     
    The author Nathan mentions in the episode is Seth Godin - he is fabulous and his own great daily blog - you can subscribe here: https://www.sethgodin.com/
     
    While you are signing up to things you could treat yourself to ‘Notes from the Life Raft’ which comes out weekly-ish. You can join us here: https://mailchi.mp/f2dce91955c6/notes-from-the-life-raft
     

    • 28 min
    Juggling Life and the PhD with Kate Mukungu

    Juggling Life and the PhD with Kate Mukungu

    Dr Kate Mukungu is Chief Executive of Riverside Community Health Project in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. In September 2022 Kate completed her part time doctorate at Northumbria University researching women’s human rights activism relations in post conflict contexts.  As well as being the source of great richness to Kate, the dual interest of working in the voluntary and community sector and conducting research carries some frustration, due to difficulty of pursuing both fully at the same time. For five years during her doctorate Kate crossed over into academia and became a full time academic, lecturing in Social Sciences before returning to the community sector. 
     
    In this episode we talk about undertaking a doctorate when already living a full and committed life in terms of career, family etc.  Spoiler alert - it can be done!
     
    Kate explains about how she used her professional experience in the workplace to project-manage the PhD and shares a genius tip of a whatsapp group of one to help with productivity!
     
    Kate talks about the importance of ‘finding your people’ and how reaching out to other people helped and joining networks helped her get to the finish line.  She talks about the importance of people who will be there to celebrate successes as well as support you when you are struggling.
     
    Finally Kate reflects on periods where she interrupted her studies as productive and useful parts of the process - as well as the dangers of “running on empty”.
     
    You can find out more about Kate’s work here: https://www.riversidechp.co.uk/



    If you would like a useful weekly email to support you on your PhD journey you can sign up for ‘Notes from the Life Raft’ here:  https://mailchi.mp/f2dce91955c6/notes-from-the-life-raft
     

    • 28 min
    Managing the Festive Season as a PhD Researcher with Milly Mulcahey

    Managing the Festive Season as a PhD Researcher with Milly Mulcahey

    Milly Mulcahey is a second-year PhD student in the Center for Indigenous and Settler Colonial Studies at the University of Kent. Milly has worked actively with Indigenous educators since her undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology at the LSE and through a Master’s by Research at Durham University. She is a neurodivergent researcher passionate about improving accessibility within academia and is seeking that elusive work-life balance.
     
    In this episode we talk about managing the festive season as a PhD researcher.
     
    We talk about taking breaks and setting up systems to support yourself to be ‘out of office’.
     
    Milly gives a reminder to tailor your rest so that it suits you!
     
    She also gives some great advice on how to maintain momentum and ramp yourself back into work after the holidays!



    This is the final podcast of the season!  Wishing you a wonderful festive season and see you in January!
     
    If you would like to start the year strong you can join us for The PhD Life Raft Plan-a-thon which will run from 9th - 13th January.  You can find out more here:  https://emmab.kartra.com/page/plan-a-thon

    • 31 min
    Keeping Your PhD on Track with Iain Jackson

    Keeping Your PhD on Track with Iain Jackson

    Iain Jackson is an architect and historian at the Liverpool School of Architecture. His research is mainly focused on 20thC architecture in ‘the tropics’.  Iain is currently PI on a Leverhulme Trust funded project to research the buildings of the United Africa Company.  He supervises 8 PhD students and has examined PhDs in Europe, Asia, and Australia.
     
    In this episode we talk about the importance of project management for the PhD.
     
    Iain suggests ways of breaking down the project into manageable chunks and for developing the ‘narrative arc’ of the thesis.
     
    He also talks about the importance of planning and shares a top tip about focused working.
     
    Here is the link to the template Iain has developed: https://iainjackson.gumroad.com/l/PhDNotionTemplate
    Many apologies, when we recorded the interview I thought that Iain was offering the template for free but he is making a small charge.  
     
    You can, however, access Notion for free here: https://www.notion.so/product?fredir=1
     
    Here is the link to the Rock Garden that we discuss in the episode: https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/nek-chand-saini




    If you would like a useful weekly email to support you on your PhD journey you can sign up for ‘Notes from the Life Raft’ here:  https://mailchi.mp/f2dce91955c6/notes-from-the-life-raft

    • 24 min
    Undertaking a Distance Doctoral Programme with Katrina McChesney

    Undertaking a Distance Doctoral Programme with Katrina McChesney

    Katrina McChesney is a senior lecturer in education at the University of Waikato, New Zealand. Her research focuses on adult education, including doctoral education and supervision. She is currently co-leading the #DistanceDoctorates project which seeks to support, raise awareness of, and advocate for candidates who undertake doctoral research off-campus. 
     
    In this episode we talk about Katrina’s own experience of undertaking distanced doctoral study - whilst working, having a baby and moving house 11 times!
     
    Katrina then shares the research she has been conducting in the area and the key issues around distance doctorates - both the positive aspects and the challenges.
     
    We finish with exploring the importance of community and how to build that when you are away from the campus community.
     
    You can find out more about Katrina’s work here:  https://doctoralresearchbydistance.wordpress.com/



    If you would like a useful weekly email to support you on your PhD journey you can sign up for ‘Notes from the Life Raft’ here:  https://mailchi.mp/f2dce91955c6/notes-from-the-life-raft

    • 30 min
    The PhD and Parenting with Leanne Sobel

    The PhD and Parenting with Leanne Sobel

    Leanne Sobel is a Strategic Design Consultant and Researcher. She has a background in communication design and strategy and is passionate about the opportunities for design in business. Leanne is currently a PhD Candidate at the University of Technology Sydney, investigating the role of design in strategy. Leanne brings a wealth of experience to her practice, having worked on public and private sector projects in roles spanning design, strategy, management, research, and education. 
     
    In this episode we talk about Leanne’s route into study and her transition from work into the PhD.
     
    Leanne shares her intense experience of starting her doctoral journey with small children during a pandemic!
     
    She talks about the techniques and routines that have helped her navigate the challenges she has faced.
     
    Leanne reminds us to not set the bar unrealistically high and the importance of reflecting on what is and isn’t working for you.
     
    Most of all Leanne wanted people to know that, if you are negotiating the PhD whilst caring for others, you are not alone.
     
    The book Leanne mentions is: ‘Burnout: Solve Your Stress Cycle’ by Emily and Amelia Nagoski.



    You can contact Leanne here: www.leannesobel.com



    If you would like a useful weekly email to support you on your PhD journey you can sign up for ‘Notes from the Life Raft’ here:  https://mailchi.mp/f2dce91955c6/notes-from-the-life-raft

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
7 Ratings

7 Ratings

HillTop!2 ,

Amazing!!!

It’helped me finished my thesis. I was struggling to write my final three chapters and each episode motivated me to complete my work. I just wished I had found this podcast sooner. It’s absolutely inspiring!!!
Thank you!!!

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