Sunday, 27 January 2013

Tips for a first year medical student

Reflections from final year

Life is a journey, not a destination. And medical school is a part of your life, but not all of your life. But give it your all anyway. Along the journey, you'll discover that the more you put into it, the more you get out.

Study hard, and play hard. It's a time of redefining things. Study may mean reading, pre-reading, re-reading. But it may also mean re-listening, group discussing, re-writing, and peer teaching.
Play could mean DotA, Diablo and StarCraft. But it may also mean Tae Kwon Do, Urban Life, DNA, rock band, treasure hunts, etc.

Look at your horizon and keep extending it. Your comfort zone should include a discomfort zone. Like Anatomy? Good; now get good at Physiology too. While you're at it, might as well delve into Biochemistry, Pharmacology, and Pathology. And Health Practice/Psychology complements those. Every cell, tissue, organ, system can be broken down into these aspects.

Write down your personal mission statement - something that states why you're doing what you're doing. Where do you envision yourself 5 years from now? What about 10 years? Stick it to your wall to lift you when you're down.

Talk about the things you love in life. Whether it's the structure of DNA, the pathway of glucose metabolism, the 4 types of human tissue, homeostasis in dehydration, acoustic guitar music, the psychology of love, or the meaning of life - talk about them with people around you. Add a dose of humility and curiosity, and I promise you'll learn something new.

That's all for now - more to come.

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