• Question: How hard was it to achieve your dreams??

    Asked by beano on 19 Jun 2019.
    • Photo: Ross Hill

      Ross Hill answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      Like any dream, becoming a scientist wasn’t a quick process – it takes commitment over many years and hard work.

      But that is no different to any dream or life goal.

      My advice would be to pursue your interests, as any dream/goal takes hard work and time, and during those difficult moments it’s always helpful to be chasing something your passion about!

    • Photo: Marianne King

      Marianne King answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      I have quite a lot of dreams, some of which I haven’t achieved yet, but becoming a PhD student was definitely a dream of mine. It was very hard looking back, lots of years of education and exams, and then a lot of rejection whilst applying for PhD projects. But I’m very stubborn and determined so got there eventually. To achieve some things you just have to be quite tenacious. 🙂

    • Photo: Matthew Burgess

      Matthew Burgess answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      Very difficult and with lots of failures along the way. It’s important to have such goals to aim for to help you through those tough times and that there are aspects of that work that you enjoy no matter what.
      I still hope to be able to progress to eventually have my own lab, but am also now in a place that I enjoy my work anyway so wouldn’t be as upset if I fail to achieve that as I would have been if I’d not been able to keep working in science at all.

    • Photo: Aina Roca Barcelo

      Aina Roca Barcelo answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      to be honest, my dreams keep evolving and changing as my live moves. Everytime I achieve a milestone i set myself new challenges and dreams. Becoming a scientist was one of my dreams and it took a lot of work but as soon as I became a scientist (actually even before i realised i did) I was already setting myself new goals.
      so my advise, dream wild and don’t be stank on one unique dream! Life is so dynamic and you got to move with it.

    • Photo: David Wilson

      David Wilson answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      Pretty hard.
      I left school wanting to do science and thinking i wanted to do a PhD to become a “real Doctor” but I struggled at university and didn’t do well enough to be competitive to get a PhD position. I stayed in science and went and worked for the NHS as a biomedical scientist for a few years but I preferred academic research. An opportunity appeared to move to Canada for a few years so I did that and got back into academic science. When we moved back home again I seriously considered other careers and jobs but chose to stay in research science. I ended up doing a Masters part time while working and published some papers on the work i’d done in Canada and here. I’m now about to start a 4 year PhD program, something which has taken me 10-15 years to get to this point but which I don’t regret any of the decisions I’ve previously taken.
      This isn’t luck, it’s not all hard work either (i’d be lying if I said i worked hard all the time). What it might be is persistence and something i like to call “proactive serendipity” this is about doing your best to put yourself in a position so that when an opportunity appears your in the best possible position to get lucky, kinda like rolling a 6 on a dice except 5 of the sides already has a 6 on it. Sometimes it doesn’t work out but at least you were ready for it.

    • Photo: Rebecca Moon

      Rebecca Moon answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      I’ve worked hard to establish a career that is right for me. I think if you want to be happy than it’s worth the hard work.

    • Photo: Kaitlin Wade

      Kaitlin Wade answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      I wouldn’t say that I have achieved my dreams yet, but I don’t really know what my dreams are! They keep changing so every time I’ve achieved something that I want, most of the time that achievement doesn’t really come in the way that was expected so my dreams then evolve as my achievements and understanding does. It’s taken a lot of time and a lot of commitment to become what and who I am today so I suppose the short answer would be very difficult! But it’s worth it if what you’re aiming towards is something that you want really badly.

    • Photo: Nina Rzechorzek

      Nina Rzechorzek answered on 19 Jun 2019:


      Nothing worth having ever comes easy, and the day I stop dreaming is probably the day I leave science! I have always been goal-driven and ambitious, so I guess I always felt like I was working towards something, but science is like a puzzle whose pieces are forever changing; as soon as you think you know what the picture is going to be, the rules of the game shift and you realise you knew nothing at all! That’s what makes it exciting. There were key stepping stones I had to land on the way though, like getting my first degree, getting into vet school, doing my PhD etc and yes, there were plenty of times when things were so hard I wondered why I was putting myself through it. To be honest though, I just couldn’t see myself doing anything else, or being satisfied in any other career. Once you get the bug for research, it’s pretty impossible to put it down. I imagine the hardest thing in life must be to look back on it and say ‘I could have tried that but it seemed too hard’. There’s nothing wrong in trying something and failing at it, or deciding it’s not for you after all – but you can only figure this out if you try it.

    • Photo: Matthew Bareford

      Matthew Bareford answered on 20 Jun 2019:


      Not going to lie, it is a hard process in some ways because it is never ending. Once you fulfil one dream, then you have another…. and so on.

      just keep your end goal/dream in mind and stick at it. Perseverance and dedication are what is required.

    • Photo: Thiloka Ratnaike

      Thiloka Ratnaike answered on 20 Jun 2019: last edited 20 Jun 2019 9:49 am


      I would say it has been hard, although I continue to dream so haven’t got there yet!

      School was fun but took a lot of hard work and commitment to balance my desire to do sports/music/art alongside the more intensive sciences.

      Medical school was an exciting time – learnt so much more about myself in terms of how to live independently, take care of finances etc, get involved in larger projects such as charity work, getting to meet new people with different views – but it was again hard during exam times and needing to prioritise the essentials at different times! I really threw myself into it when I was lucky enough to be in the right place and right time to start a PhD- this was a lot of work/ late nights/ failed experiments/ deadlines balanced with the satisfaction of successfully completing experiments and getting results within a field you grow to love.

      Becoming a junior doctor was an even steeper learning curve and it remains challenging at times but I am learning how to hone my skills almost daily. Research doesn’t feel hard, because I try not to beat myself up about the things I am unable to do at the moment and try to concentrate on what I can do. It’s all about learning every day and being ready to accept the challenges while knowing there’s an end to each challenge ahead!

    • Photo: Kate Timms

      Kate Timms answered on 20 Jun 2019:


      I think that achieving your dreams is really difficult because your dreams are always changing. What I dreamt of doing 5 years ago is really different from what I dream of now. So the goal posts are always changing. Even though getting a PhD and becoming a Dr was one of my main dreams, I didn’t really think about it as achieving my dream when it happened. Maybe because I’m a perfectionist and am really hard on myself, so I always think I can do better. I’m always looking towards my next goal!

Comments