Happy Doc Student Podcast

Overcome Dissertation Procrastination with Maria Stefanidi

April 26, 2023 Heather Frederick, PhD Episode 100
Happy Doc Student Podcast
Overcome Dissertation Procrastination with Maria Stefanidi
Happy Doc Student Podcast
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Show Notes

Maria Stefanidi is the CEO of Your Dissertation Coach, a coaching and consulting firm that helps undergrad, post-grad and doctoral students overcome procrastination, prevent burnout, and implement powerful productivity systems to achieve their academic dreams. 

What is dissertation procrastination? Academic self-sabotage by delaying work that needs to be done to complete your degree. If you are prone to procrastination, your dissertation will suffer and so will you. Many students never finish the degree, not because they don’t have the raw skill set, but because they procrastinate and either convince themselves they will never finish OR they run out of time. 

 Types of Procrastination

1.     Trivial Procrastination – working on things that should not be your focus.

2.     Confused Procrastination – putting off working on the dissertation because you don’t know how to proceed.

3.     Time Crunch Procrastination – a lack of time management skills leads you to put off tasks until the last possible moment. 

4.     Insecure Procrastination – difficulty getting or staying on task due to self-doubt.

5.     Unorganized Procrastination – a lack of structure leads to delays because you aren’t sure what to do next. 


  •  Understand what kind of procrastination you are prone to so you can create a plan to overcome it.
  • Take an honest look at where your time is going and eliminate time wasters (like social media).
  • Don’t want to give up your time wasters? Then use them as part of a reward system (for example, working on your dissertation for an hour gets you 15 minutes of TikTok; or working on your dissertation for 3 hours gets you one episode of your favorite Netflix program).
  • Prioritize sleep - reduce screen time before bed and commit to a specific bedtime.
  • Understand the power of breaks and self-care  (see: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1547113/6988105)
  • While the journey is arduous and there will be seasons of intense focus, don’t forget the value of having fun, especially with loved ones.
  • Develop a short routine prior to working on your dissertation that will get you in the right mindset (like lighting a candle, journaling, or meditation).  
  • Having accountability can be a game-changer (an academic coach may be the difference between graduating and being ABD)
  • Look for moments of joy in the journey (if you look you will find them!)

Get Maria’s book here: https://amzn.to/3V4jTao

Book a free consultation here: https://lab.yourdissertation.coach/discovery-call

Connect with Maria

IG - @yourdissertationcoach 

LinkedIn - www.linkedin.com/in/maria-your-dissertation-coach-b9367944 

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