Dark Forests

Today there was a lot of talk with friends about the whole PhD process. But I think this could be translated into other processes. We talked about what we wish we knew at the beginning and it was all very different. One person wished they knew they could do what they liked and the supervisor couldn't cancel their funding. 

Another said they wish they knew about free money, or money for travel. She also would have told their younger self to travel more. The academic version of eat pray love. 

Finally though we talked about the dark forest time. Each of us had this at one point, and most of us even had a few periods. But its pretty much when everything gets really hard, its shit, no one helps and you feel alone, and you should probably quit and work at a bakery or deliver food. The dark forest moment though never comes at the beginning of story, nor the the end, it always has to come in the middle. 

Its the same in books. There has to be some conflict, and the book can't start there, because that would be a slog, and it also can't end there because wheres the resolve.

We wished though we could tell other students, and maybe people in general, that the dark forest is part of it. Its part of the process to struggle, and for things to suck. 
It might not end how you thought, maybe you'll come out missing a leg, or you'll drop the expectations you had in the beginning. 

But you'll get through it.

And hopefully you learned how to use a compass better, and the next dark forest will be a bit easier. 

Also inspired by Ted Lasso