T4.A2 Work smarter, stress less (T4.A2) 2 GS credits

Course Description

Mental well-being and work-life balance are particularly precarious for early career academics like PhD’s and Postdocs. In this 3 month course you gain important insights in your personal stress factors and you learn to adapt your way of working to deal more effectively with stress and work pressure. This is not a general skills training but a personal development course that aims to reduce experiences of stress and improve mental well-being, thereby strengthening your resilience and satisfaction with your work.
A PhD candidate who preceded you in this course says: “For years I felt that something was missing in my life, but I couldn’t pinpoint what. This course made me realize it was my intuition, and my trust in it as well. Thank you for helping me get my confidence in my intuition back!”

Course Objectives

The course focusses on the following themes and learning objectives:

  • identifying and disarming stress factors (including a detailed analysis of the working relationship with supervisors and strategies to communicate more effectively)
  • mindfulness-based time management: how to take charge of your time in non-linear, creative research work
  • energy management: how does your battery operate? How to charge so you stay smart (energy balance)
  • how to navigate scary / difficult times: dealing with self-sabotage and improving your resilience through heart coherence (using biofeedback technology from HearthMath)
  • leaning into the future: doing what really matters by connecting with your values and dreams

Course setup

In preparation for the course each participant completes an online questionnaire on their energy compass and on their interaction styles, with particular focus on the working relationship with their advisors. They will also have a personal 30 minute intake call with the coach/trainer to clarify their personal learning goals. After the course participants will be required to complete the online Energy Compass questionnaire a second time, which helps demonstrating the results of the steps they have taken in the course.

The course is offered fully online and consists of 5 half day group training meetings interchanged with 5 mastermind sessions in smaller subgroups organised in Whatsapp groups. After a brief introduction, most of the meeting will be spent practising new strategies to deal effectively with experiences in your everyday working situations. There is ample time for exchanging experiences with peers.  Finally, instruction and a concrete focus question will be provided for the mastermind sessions. 

Running parallel to these live, online meetings continuous e-coaching will be provided through email, whatsapp, and/or a private course forum. You can ask your questions directly as they occur in your working situation. The coach / trainer will be active multiple times a week and input from fellow participants is encouraged and valuable.

Participants who engage actively with the course (i.e. attend all 5 group meetings and at least 2 mastermind sessions) will be rewarded with a private, individual, live coaching session (60 minutes) at the end of the course to look deeper into a personal learning and coaching question.


Course registration of Graduate School Doctoral Education (GS DE) courses is via Coachview.


For questions and information please contact TU Delft Graduate School via:

015 278 7334


See this link for more information.