I found the following Guide To PhD Research written by Prof. Shaogang Gong which in my opinion addresses many of the problems or mistakes I make.

The purpose of posting it here is to firstly, remind myself time and again, and secondly, dessimate knowledge that I found.

For a detailed guide, please go to http://www.eecs.qmul.ac.uk/~sgg/phd.html

Since, I am currently pursuing my PhD, I shall post only the sections relevant to me:

What are the aims?

Although a successful PhD is commonly judged by one having (1) completed a written PhD dissertation (the thesis), and (2) successfully defended it in ones oral examination (the viva), it is usually not clear how these two objectives can be achieved within a given time (typically 3-4 years). Where to start?

The path to a successful PhD is necessarily a hard but rewarding process of conscientiously develop and master the critical analytical skills for independent research and thought-leadership. It is important that one pays attention to some basic skills:

What are expected from a good PhD?

Hope this help !!