Daily Affirmations for Doctoral Students

A little too much reading ...
  1. Today I will pretend that I know what everyone's talking about.
  2. Today I will pretend that I know what I'm talking about.
  3. Today I will remind everyone I meet that scholarship is a game of horseshoes.
  4. Today I will organize everything in an attempt to reclaim the little control I have left over my life.
  5. When the professor asks me a difficult question in class today, I will ask to phone a friend.
  6. Today I will announce that to begin writing my dissertation I will need money and a room of my own.
  7. Today I will cover my eyes, count to ten, and yell, "Ready or not, here I come!" I'll then search feverishly for my theoretical framework.
  8. I will use (n.d.) for “no date” when citing any publication that I don’t feel like looking up.
  9. To maintain psychic balance, I will employ all of Freud's Defense Mechanisms on a daily basis.
  10. En réponse des questions difficiles je parlerai français sans rien traduire.
  12. I will pay fifth graders to do my less significant course work.
  13. Today I will clean the entire house from ceiling to floor to avoid school work.
  14. Today I will dress in a suit of armor that reads, “In protection of self-efficacy."
  15. Today when I am spurned by the powers that be, I will go home and hug my cat.
  16. Today I will alphabetize my bookshelves.
  17. Today I will delve into the private lives of those around me to unearth their inner turmoil and thus render mine less significant.
  18. In place of data tables I will interpret statistical findings artistically.
  19. Tonight I will treat myself to a feast of bread and tuna.
  20. Today I will stand and scream during an important lecture.
  21. To promote caring in my seminar, I will suggest that we purchase a class pet.
  22. The next time my advisor compares me to one of his more successful former students I will remind him that senility begins around age 50.
  23. I am not competitive. (But I am winning.)
  24. I will suck my thumb for comfort during today's lecture on Freud.
  25. Surfing the web is a form of exercise.
  26. Today I will organize my books by height.
  27. Today I will share my cat’s food to save money for copies.
  28. In the wee hours of the morning I will inundate my advisor's mailbox with my numerous thoughts and concerns to ensure he starts off his workday focused on my needs.
  29. Today I will rally fellow students to sing “It’s a Hard Knock Life” in the middle of a boring seminar.
  30. When I’m feeling stuck today I’ll remind myself that psychological research simply states the obvious.
  31. I am not perfectionistic, but my parents are.
  32. Rubber darts make learning fun.
  33. Today I will affix a sign to each classroom door that reads: "You have reached the end of your zone of proximal development. Please exit to the left."
  34. Today I will use my least favorite professor’s email address to join a disgruntled-student listserv.
  35. To keep my writing interesting, I will omit words that end in silent e.
  36. Today I will recommend psychotherapy to anyone who invades my space.
  37. Today I will hang a punching bag in the graduate student office.
  38. Today I will saunter across boundaries that I deem unreasonable.
  39. Today I will invent my own language and isolate myself from those who appear to misunderstand what I'm saying.
  40. I will take out my academic frustration by belittling undergraduates.
  41. Today I will color-code my bookshelves.
  42. I will suppress all giggles when my committee Chair asks why I did not cite him in my dissertation proposal.
  43. Today I will develop chronic laryngitis.
  44. To establish my worth as a TA, I will publicly disagree with everything my professor says on the first day of class. If that doesn't work, I'll offer candy to the first undergraduate who finds the five typographical errors on the syllabus.
  45. Today I will start a Save the Trees campaign by reducing the number of “important” articles placed in my box.
  46. When my advisor hurts my feelings, I will have my parents request a conference.
  47. When I stand before my committee to defend my proposal, I will reach up to the ceiling and appeal in a raspy whisper, "Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you're my only hope."
  48. When I show up to class without my materials, I will blame a classmate for stealing my homework.
  49. When I'm having trouble sleeping I will count poor mutant sheep.
  50. Fugit irreparabile tempus.
  51. Instead of using boring Latin terms, I will pepper my writing with Pig Latin.
  52. Ublishpay oray erishpay. Oundssay icernay isthay ayway, oesn'tday itay?
  53. Today I will organize my books thematically.
  54. Today I will use a GPS device to track my professors' weekend whereabouts.
  55. Today I will request storage space for my emotional baggage.
  56. Chocolate chip cookies are my divine right and obligation.
  57. To those who talk a lot and say little, I will forward all of my spam.
  58. I will refuse to take a position today.
  59. When class discussion is not going my way I will take out a deck of cards and play solitaire.
  60. Today I will accentuate one of my terribly maladaptive mental maladies.
  61. Today I will be politically incorrect.
  62. I will send my advisor errant emails to indicate that I am off task with my research.
  63. Today I will invent a time-saving intravenous feeding device to enable 'round the clock productivity.
  64. Today I will advise those who whine to either get better or die.
  65. In my copious spare time, I will read extraneous literature offered to me by my out-of-touch professors, colleagues, and friends.
  66. Today I will hide all of my books.
  67. Today I will assemble a toolkit to offer those who find me "high maintenance."
  68. I will not have fun, I will not play. I will not have fun, I will not play.
  69. Today I will eat ten fortune cookies and then randomly select my dissertation topic.
  70. My advisor cares for me. NOT!
  71. Today I will announce my new advisor: Professor Jack Daniels.
  72. Today I will end a particularly lengthy class comment with "But perhaps you're all missing the critical point."
  73. Today I will respond to my professors' corrections of my writing with "Oh yeah, and when was the last time you published anything remotely readable?"
  74. There is nothing but water in my shiny metal flask.
  75. Today I will flee to Europe.
  76. Today I will implement a game show buzzer system to regulate talk time in my seminars. Just for fun I will short-circuit all buzzers but mine.
  77. Today I will add an electric shock component to my buzzer system to remind people to think twice before blabbing.
  78. As I run errands today, I will speak to others in educational jargon.
  79. Today I will request that my annual Amazon spendings be converted to frequent flyer miles.
  80. When a professor puzzles me today, I'll look at him quizzically and ask, "Dude, what's your damage?"
  81. Today I will begin an unkind rumor about a fellow doctoral student who is more capable than I.
  82. How can I know what I think unless I hear what my advisor says?
  83. The cash-value of any idea is always $3.73 (plus tax).
  84. Today I will put a stop to my advisor's critical diatribe by letting him know that I am fully aware of the web sites he likes to frequent.
  85. Today I will answer all important questions by asking "WWWJD"?
  86. Today I will contrive useful acronyms that no one else understands.
  87. I am not passive aggressive. I am delightfully spontaneous.
  88. Today I will run with scissors.
  89. For security in my relationships, I will ask not if I am loved, but if I am statistically significant.
  90. Today I will send my advisor an email message every three minutes to ensure he does not forget I exist.
  91. Professors are self-centered, cantankerous, fusty know-it-alls.
  92. Today I will contemplate my chances of ever doing something right the first time.
  93. Today I will remind fellow students that we are nothing but pawns on a game of university chess.
  94. To avoid redundancy today, I will speak only in movie lines. (Airplane!, anyone?)
  95. It looks like I picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue.
  96. Today I will play in the sandbox.
  97. To make my writing more elegant today, I will use the curlz font.
  98. Today I will sweat the small stuff.
  99. To combat animal cruelty in science, I will introduce a rodent rehabilitation center in my department's faculty bathroom.
  100. Today I will trust in path analysis to show me the way.
  101. Today when my advisor is lecturing me to no end, I will stand, arms extended, eyes wide, and shout, "CAN I GET A WORD IN EDGEWISE?"
  102. Before my day's work is done, I must discomfort at least one person, preferably someone more competent than I.
  103. Instead of going to the gym to work out today, I will lift textbooks at home. For my cardiovascular exercise I will reread the Division's doctoral degree requirements.
  104. Today I will pay for my groceries in pennies.
  105. Today my incessant graduate school stories will estrange me from yet another family member.
  106. Today I will paste a target to my forehead to help my professors aim at shooting down my ideas.
  107. Today I will seek to understand the hamster wheel that is my life. Tomorrow I will reinvent it.
  108. Today I will build a tower out of my writer's blocks.
  109. I will include traits like "cute" and "fun-loving" in my descriptive statistics report.
  110. Pseudo-ignorance is pseudo-bliss.
  111. To establish an honest rapport today, I will use indirect means to highlight a subordinate's shortcomings.
  112. Today I will sport my "Warning: Hypersensitive" t-shirt.
  113. The ultimate answer to any research question dwells in the "tricky balance" of a "complex interplay of inextricably intertwined variables."
  114. When I find myself in an interpersonal quandary today I will use my favorite comebacks until I am left alone: (1) Whatever, (2) You think?, or (3) [pause] ... oh, nevermind.
  115. Today I will use duct tape in a creative, productive way.
  116. Today I will announce that taking a constructivist's approach to teaching is just another way of saying, "I'm not prepared."
  117. I digress therefore I am.
  118. Today I will remember that what a professor says is inversely related to what he means ... except when it isn't.
  119. Today I will bug the Division's faculty meeting to find out what's really going on.
  120. During class break today, I will rip out key pages of the textbook of any fellow student who has gleefully claimed to have "read ahead."
  121. Today I will suggest that along with a graduate school handbook, students should be issued user's manuals for each of their professors.
  122. Graduate school is nothing but a glorified Skinner box.
  123. I accept the fact that my opinion does not matter.
  124. Today I will demand that my professors beef up their lame criticism of my work that I may grow and flourish as a scholar.
  125. My educational goal is to be able to say nothing with eloquence.
  126. Today I will be usefully offensive.
  127. Today I will inform my professors that they are not yet teaching within my zone of proximal development.
  128. Today I will assure my colleagues that I named my voodoo doll long before I started my graduate program.
  129. Today I will schedule an appointment with my physician to have my emotions disconnected from my intellect.
  130. Today I will add a Sudoku puzzle to my dissertation appendix to reward persistent readers.
  131. Today I will remind my advisor that try as he may, he can't make me cry.
  132. When I am asked to comment on reading I haven't done, I will squint and claim that I won't be able to afford a new pair of glasses until the next loan check arrives.
  133. Today I will consult the Magic 8 Ball for answers to important questions.
  134. Today I will ponder the futility of sustained attention.
  135. I'm fine. Really.
  136. Today I will replace my passive aggressive tendencies with active ones.
  137. Today I will collate and bind my last four years of emails and submit them as my dissertation.
  138. Today I will ask a friend to remind me what real people do for fun on the weekend.
  139. Today I will remind my professors that their primary function is to nurture my fledgling self-beliefs.
  140. In class today I will converse with my schizophrenic other.
  141. Today I will schedule a long-overdue appendectomy for my dissertation.
  142. At the annual professional conference I will stalk those professors whose work I often cite.
  143. Today I will enact the statistical concept of "dummy variables."
  144. Today I will congratulate those around me for having reached their highest potential.
  145. Today I will crawl around on all fours and refer to my dissertation as "my precious."
  146. Penultimately, polysyllablism is paramount.
  147. Today I will arrange for 10 gallons of icy orange Gatorade to be dumped over my adviser at the end of my dissertation defense.


This list was inspired by Professor Pajares's Daily Affirmations for Professors.
Special thanks to those who offered irresistible suggestions.