Ascending the staircase of a Master Thesis

Recently, I came across an illustration by Liz Fosslien that has been extremely helpful in keeping me focused during my writing process of the Master thesis. It’s a simple illustration that depicts a staircase with each step labeled as a specific task or goal. Whenever I feel overwhelmed or unsure of what to do next, I refer to this graphic and focus only on the next step. By breaking down the writing process into smaller, more manageable tasks, I’ve been able to make steady progress on my master thesis without feeling overwhelmed by the magnitude of the task. This graphic has been a game-changer for me and has helped me stay motivated, organized, and productive throughout the writing process.

Focus on the first step by Liz Fosslien
Focus on the first step by Liz Fosslien (source)


My process of writing a Master thesis in the field of Content Strategy began with a critical step: choosing the right topic. After contemplating several ideas, I finally found a topic that I was passionate about and felt confident I could tackle. Once I had my topic, I consulted with my supervisor to ensure it was a suitable choice for my field of study. With their approval, I moved on to the next phase of my journey: a broad literature review. This helped me identify the appropriate research methods that would best suit my needs and provide me with the necessary results. During this stage, I also discovered that certain methods took longer to execute than others. For instance, conducting qualitative interviews with important stakeholders took more time than running a one-hour workshop.

With this information, I was able to build a detailed table of contents that outlined every subtitle that would appear in my Master thesis. This gave me a comprehensive overview of the research and analysis required, and helped me allocate the time needed for each task. I then proceeded to plan each task for the upcoming weeks, breaking down my project into smaller, more manageable chunks. This strategy helped me stay focused and prevented me from becoming overwhelmed by the magnitude of the project.

Actual doing

After a good planning session, I was finally able to start the real work. I began by going through my literature – books, articles, you name it – and highlighting the important bits. As I read, I also took notes on my thoughts and any sources that contradicted each other. It was a lot of work, but I made sure to focus only on this one task at hand. With my previous careful planning, I knew exactly what steps I needed to take and when, which helped me stay confident and organized throughout the process.

I’m still in the writing part of my Master thesis journey, and it’s been quite the experience. Writing isn’t exactly my favorite thing in the world, but I’ve found that breaking it down into smaller sections makes it much more manageable. I’ve been tackling each chapter one at a time and taking breaks in between to make sure I don’t burn out. It’s definitely been a process of trial and error, and I’ve had to learn to be patient with myself. There are days when the words just flow and everything makes sense, but there are also days when it feels like I’m banging my head against a wall. However, I know that these moments of frustration are just part of the process, and I’m determined to see this through to the end.

Once I will get everything down on paper, it will be time for the proofreading stage. This is where I’ll go through my work with a fine-toothed comb, checking for grammar mistakes, making sure all my facts are straight, and ensuring that everything flows well. It can be a tedious process, but it’s necessary to make sure my thesis is top-notch. After that, I’ll focus on the design of the document, making sure that everything looks good and is appropriately formatted for submission. This stage is important because the overall presentation of the thesis can make a big difference in how it’s received by readers and evaluators.


Once I will be at the final step of turning in my Master thesis, it will be hard to believe that I’m at the top of the staircase. After all the hard work and effort, it will definitely be a moment worth celebrating. Looking back, I know that all the individual steps and tasks that once seemed daunting and overwhelming will no longer seem so scary. It’s amazing how much progress can be made when you just focus on the next step in front of you. I’m excited to finally reach the end of this journey and see all my hard work come to fruition.

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