This week’s episode focuses on how to look after your mental health and maintain balance and a sense of your own well-being when faced with a life-crisis during the PhD.

My guest Lauren Graffin shares her experiences of negotiating her father’s serious illness and the death of her much-loved supervisor while undertaking her doctoral study.  

Lauren completed her Master’s in Applied Drama at the University of Exeter, and her PhD at Ulster University. She worked extensively as a community performance facilitator, and her PhD research focused on site and community-based performance practice in post-conflict Northern Ireland.  She is now a full time Professor at Sheridan College, Wyoming.

Lauren talks about the importance of giving time and space to your feelings and to recognise that, even if you can’t control the situation, you can control how you respond to it.

We talk about journalling as a supportive practice and Lauren also suggests a couple of useful references:

Susan David Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change and Thrive in Work and Life (London: Penguin, 2017)

And the work of Gabby Bernstein – you can find out more here: https://gabbybernstein.com/

The performance company that Lauren mentions is Wrights and Sites: http://mis-guide.com/

Lauren has also suggested some supplementary material which you might find useful:

  • For when you need inspiration to keep going: Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • For those who prefer to think technically and visually about managing their life:Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans
  • For when you need advice on working effectively and joyfully:https://www.marieforleo.com
  • For those who want to focus on developing healthy habits or consciously creating a happier life: Better than Before and The Happiness Project by Gretchin Rubin

You can contact Lauren via twitter: @LGraffin

Let us know if you have any recommendations for books/websites/other resources and don’t forget that you can sign up for The Phd Life Raft Podcast newsletter via the website: www.thephdliferaft.com

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I look forward to connecting with you!


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