Independent University Newspaper
Copenhagen Business School

Popular searches:

Independent University Newspaper

Copenhagen Business School

Writing a master’s thesis #2: “It is okay to be professionally frustrated”

Photo of Helena Bendix

Helena Bendix appearing on this picture, is pretty sure, that her eyes will soon turn square from looking at Google Docs. (Private photo)

I used to drink no more than two cups of coffee per day.

Now, I’m surprised if I drink fewer than two cups before lunch, and I sincerely hope that Jespers Torvekøkken appreciates me for the loyal customer that I have become, considering that I frequent the coffee stand multiple times every time I step foot onto Solbjerg Plads.

My mattress has officially adjusted its shape to my body, and I am pretty sure my eyes will soon be square from looking at Google Docs for hours and hours at a time (sorry Mom!).

Why? Because I have been sucked into thesis life with all that entails:

  • Insanely long days in front of our computers, writing and writing, aiming to reach those 120 pages sooner rather than later.
  • Trying to write a decent sentence at 22:30 in the evening while trying to make sense of data, sources, information, and more data.
  • Knowing my thesis partner well enough to realize that I should buy her a cafe latte on days when she is tired of me humming along to her favorite music.
  • Being frustrated to the point where we are studying, pulling out our hair in frustration, studying some more, all while trying to figure out how to write a decent literature review supposed to take up an insane amount of pages.

1-0 to the thesis.

example of a text message between to girls
Sometimes a little motivation is in order. Klara and Helena are taking this rather literal. (Photo: Helena Bendix Nielsen)

Saved by a brilliant supervisor

We experienced our first (minor) joint breakdown while trying to decipher the theory of science, methodology, and most importantly, how to piece it all together in a coherent 120-page thesis, and decided to email our supervisor to schedule the first of our three main supervisory sessions.

Luckily, this is not her first time supervising – quite the opposite, actually.

As a result, she has met many students writing their master’s theses. She knows what we think before we even begin to gather our thoughts, let alone formulate a reasonable sentence to express our confusion.

Thus, she is full of comfort and good advice, and that was exactly what we needed while restlessly flipping the pages of the many books we have accumulated over the years.

“It is okay to be professionally frustrated,” I wrote in my notes from that first supervisory meeting in February, which truly helped us move forward with the process.

A girl in a studyroom
When we need to gather ourselves and our thoughts, we enjoy using the whiteboard. (Photo: Helena Bendix-Nielsen)

If you are feeling professionally frustrated, remember that you are not alone

Helena Bendix Nielsen

One thing was getting her valuable external opinion on our project, plans, and thoughts, which instantly made us feel a little less stuck.

Another thing was the courage and calmness she managed to instill in us by giving us that seven-word sentence. Seven words that implied that we were right on track, and that we were no more lost than several other students have been before us.

And so, we went back to our books, this time flipping the pages with more precision and purpose, ready to carry out the data collection that would form the basis of our entire thesis.

I would therefore like to leave you with this one final reassuring thought: If you are feeling professionally frustrated, remember that you are not alone.

When not taking naps or coffee breaks, we are right there with you.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Writing a master’s thesis #2: “It is okay to be professionally frustrated”by

  • News

    A trip to Italy inspired Francesca and Fannar to open their own pasta boutique

    Thanks to two CBS graduates, Copenhagen now has a pasta boutique where you can buy freshly made pasta. Francesca Tenze and Fannar Hannesson had never thought they would end up running a food business. But, a trip to food-Mecca Bologna inspired them to quit their jobs and start their own company, La Fresca, modelled on the traditional Italian concept.

  • News

    CBS Associate Professor starts YouTube channel on compliance: “We must communicate research differently”

    For Associate Professor Kalle Johannes Rose, his YouTube channel about risk-based compliance serves many purposes. It is both a personal tool to help him structure and explain the material as well as an opportunity to reach out to people working with compliance and for them to ask questions before he finishes a new book. He believes that researchers should think differently about how they communicate their research, and that CBS could do a better job of helping them.

  • News

    Three emails revive old conflict between CBS and course company Aspiri

    Several students have received emails from the course company Aspiri asking for their Canvas password in return for free courses. The CBS legal department warns students against giving away their passwords – it compromises IT security and is illegal.

  • News

    Start-up founded in a CBS entrepreneurial class sells for millions

    What started as a business case in class - AI for solving GDPR issues - has turned into fulltime employment and a multi-million kroner deal for two former CBS students.

  • News

    Mental health issues? Where to get help

    If you have mental health issues or personal problems, CBS can help. If you have a chronic mental health problem, you can receive help through the SPS programme. For personal problems, you can team up with a mentor through the CBS mentor programme or talk to the campus pastor, who is happy to help regardless of religion.

  • Blog

    Winter blues and how I cope

  • News

    New alumni network on cybersecurity gives valuable insights

    A large number of unofficial alumni networks flourish at CBS. A new addition is the cybersecurity network that enables students and alumni to connect and talk about an industry where people otherwise keep their secrets closely guarded. The networks are a useful way for alumni to stay in touch with CBS while giving back as well as being updated on the newest research and post-graduate education.

  • Gif of the week

Follow CBS students studying abroad

CBS WIRE collaborates with

Stay connected