What are you holding on to that you don’t need any more?
Perhaps it’s a drift of papers that you’ve never quite got around to reading. Maybe some scraps of notes for a section you’re not sure you need in your thesis. Or maybe you’re holding on to ideas about the viva that don’t help you.
If you think that vivas are a big mystery, then you can replace those thoughts with real expectations. Talk to people about their viva experiences, read blog posts and find out more. If you wonder what examiners might ask about your work then talk to your supervisor. Again, ask people about their vivas for a sense of what’s wanted. And read your thesis because that’s something you’ll definitely be asked about in your viva.
And if you worry that you’re not good enough, that you need to know more or need to be better, then look back over your PhD journey for the success. Look for the highlights. Realise when and how you have become a more capable researcher.
Let go of the old ideas that don’t help, and find new ways to think about yourself, your work and the viva.