Although there is no one way to plan your thesis/dissertation, there are some strategies that most everyone finds helpful.
First, you should have a plan and stick to it the best you can. Please read the sample plan below and come up with your own. You may use the one provided, modify it, or come up with something completely different. The key is to understand what the task is, and how you best complete long term projects. You know yourself better than anyone else does, so take a few days to devise a plan that will work for you.
Second, you should keep track of the hours that you actually work on your thesis or dissertation. Note: keeping track of hours like this is important for goal setting and time management.
Third, you should identify what you will do that counts as working on your thesis/dissertation, such as finding literature related to your topic, (researching), reading, summarizing, data collection, or writing that is directly relevant. Talking about your thesis/dissertation to others and engaging in intellectual dialogue about it will help you to develop better understanding about your topic. Spend time to read academic materials necessary for your topic. Ask your friends and colleagues to give feedback, and accepting constructive criticism related to to your thesis/dissertation will help to improve the quality of your work.
Fourth, work on your thesis/dissertation a minimum of 10 minutes every single day. Note: this is very important and is not as impossible as you think. Considering the definition of work above, it may be as simple as typing up three references, reading a short article, or summarizing an article you read the day before. It could also be as simple as logging into the course and reading about what is going on with everyone’s research, or sharing with everyone that you have writer’s block.
Fifth, when your prospectus and proposal are approved you should congratulate yourself and relax for at least two days without reading anything related to your thesis or dissertation. On the third day, return to your thesis or dissertation with full determination to make greater progress.
Bear this in mind: A good thesis gives you the confidence that you need to seek employment or become self-employed. A university graduate that writes a good thesis or dissertation is competent to handle practical matters related to his or her area of specialty. In contrast, a graduate that failed to write a good thesis or dissertation is incompetent. If he or she is fortunate to secure employment and given a responsibility related to his or her discipline, the person will never leave up to the expectations in that profession. A graduate that has not written a good thesis, his or her judgments and conclusions about any contested issue will be weak. Thus, trusting him or her with a position of authority in any organization is a big gamble because the knowledge that he or she claimed to have acquired is built on a weak foundation.