Now, not to go on a mini-rant or anything, but I do want to point something out: if someone helps you, please say thank you. This will ease your path both in the dissertation process and in life. Do you know that I routinely get 15-20 emails every day asking for my help on some part of the dissertation process? People ask me to pick their topics for them or to review their research methodologies or to give them advice on working with their advisors. Sometimes, I’m able to help people easily and quickly, and I’m glad to do it. Do you know though, that, of the majority of people I help, only a few bother to thank me for the help? That sucks. Since I have no desire to be your Mom, I won’t belabor the point. I will say, though, that you will find it easier to get along in academia, in your career, and in your dissertation process if you remember to thank people who’ve helped you. If my experience is any guide, there is a lot of asking but not a lot of thanking going on. I know that how people interact with me is how they interact with others, and I just want to remind you: part of being successful in graduate school is about being emotionally intelligent in your relationships. Of course, I always have the option of not helping people who write me, but I don’t think that’s the best answer for me. I really do want you to finish your dissertation and get on with your life. I have this belief that maybe taking a few minutes to help you, today, will be just what you needed to help you finish. But it would be nice to be thanked, you know? On the flip side, though, I do very much appreciate those of you who take the time to send in your appreciation for my blog, newsletter, and books. That always makes me feel good, and I’m always more likely to want to help you even more. That’s just human nature. While this post isn’t strictly about completing the dissertation, it is about how to move through life with a little less friction. When you take the time to appreciate those around you, you’ll be able to build a stronger support system to help you reach all your goals. Who in your life do you need to thank? Why not do that today?