I initially posted this on workplace.se, but was told to come here. Please let me know if this is the wrong place for this kind of stuff, and I will take it down.
To preface, I imagine this might come off really immature, given that I am 30 years old. I joined a university as a PostDoc after completing my PhD 6 months ago. I am yet to publish anything after joining here, I have been feeling burnt out and disorganised. I was planning to join the industry within a year of joining (It was initially envisaged as a one year contract, but it got extended for 3 more years, due to my professor getting new funding, but that’s beside the point). My professor is very understanding, and he is very motivated. His team is getting into theoretical machine learning and the papers he published are already making strides and catching everyone’s attention.
I, on the other hand, am just starting in the area of datascience. I am an average coder, and my math skills are also pretty average. If I work hard I can crank out some papers ( that is how I finished my PhD), but lately I have been feeling very unmotivated and distracted. I have a few family problems (I am gay from a conservative family), but that is no excuse for not being motivated, I know. I tried out to be a Datascientist at an internet advertising firm but was rejected after the on-site interview following a Skype interview, the reason being that my practical skills were not on par (I did a mainly theoretical PhD, and my knowledge of practical algos is lacking).
On the other hand my colleague who is a PhD student under my prof (only 25!) has been publishing and his works on machine learning (also theoretical), have been attracting researchers from companies like Facebook and Google, at a recent conference. As for me, the very idea of going to a conference again gives me shudders.
I am out of ideas and out of steam to be honest, but I really want to create pathbreaking research and join a top company to start my career as a datascientist. But I feel lost.
To have a good CV for an eventual job hunt, I need at least one good publication during this year of my post-doc but all the work I have done have led me nowhere to be honest.
For context: I did my PhD on random graph analysis.
I really need some guidance. I know I should have figured this out already given I am a 30 year old graduate, but unfortunately I haven’t. I can blame that on my depression, but how long can I do that for? Anybody who has been in the same situation as me? Any input is welcome.