I found this article today, about making it through your first year of a PhD.
One piece of advice they offered, for those overwhelmed by reading and notes in the first year was:
“Don’t look ahead unless you have to, …don’t over think everything. Just live through the process one day at a time and work on the problems that need solving. Before you know it, you will have made significant progress.”
That makes sense to me. Although I don’t know how the student towards the end of the page managed to read six to eight hours a day; I can read for about four, then I have to find other things to do, like organising my notes, writing, doodling, and playing Wii. We creative types need to work in, and exercise, many different head spaces – that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it!
Anyway, I hope you find it useful, and if you have any tips of your own lets us know.