Head In The Sand

Ostriches, despite popular legend, don’t put their head in the sand to hide. It’s a common comparison to make for people avoiding problems though, I’ve used it here on the blog at least once before. In that post I encouraged viva candidates to not hide from concerns – figure out what’s wrong and do something rather than worry and avoid.

Ostriches actually put their head in the sand to check on their eggs and see if they’re alright. Building on this new information, still don’t be like an ostrich with your head in the sand repeatedly!

  • Concerned about expectations? Find out and write them down. Done.
  • Worried you’ll have trouble finding things in your thesis? Make a list of key points, stick bookmarks in your thesis. Done.
  • Unsure about your examiners? Spend time reading their work and write a summary for yourself. Done.

Don’t hide from your problems, but don’t keep checking on them either. Feel a concern? Act on it and resolve it, as best you can. Then move on and keep doing what you can to focus on getting ready.

Ostrich

“I’m trying not to think about it.”

Try to put anxiety out of your mind and it just comes back. Distract yourself for a little while and it comes back with a vengeance.

If you’re worried, it’s because it’s important. If your viva makes you uncomfortably nervous it’s because you’re recognising it’s a big deal.

Stop putting energy into a losing strategy. Burying your head in the sand is not going to solve the problem. Instead, reflect on what’s stressing you and think about what you can do to limit the impact.¬†What steps can you take? What questions can you ask? How can you increase your confidence levels when it comes to the viva?