The Day Before I Begin Medical School

Tomorrow is the day! At 12:50pm, I will be sworn in to become a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO)! While this is only the beginning of a long journey ahead, I couldn’t be more excited to start this new phase of my life. With this said, I’ve done a lot of reflecting over the recent weeks, especially the last few days (sorry Teslie) about my time since graduating undergrad. I’ve often found myself asking if I’ve done enough in the community, spent the necessary amount of time with doctors, or adequately prepared myself to succeed in such a competitive field? Perhaps I won’t be able to answer this question until I get into the grind of medical school, but why do these questions arise to begin with? This leads me to my point for today’s post- we need to find a way to stop doubting ourselves and realize that sometimes we may not be 100% ready to tackle a new opportunity but that doesn’t mean we are destined to fail.

Our brain plays funny tricks on us in times of change, transformation, or general discomfort. We have all experienced times where we so badly want to take a chance or make a change but simply won’t allow ourselves to do so. We get that common feeling of nervousness in our stomachs, carry around a little more anxiety and attempt to justify all of the reasons why we “shouldn’t” take a leap. Personally, this is one of my biggest weaknesses and something I am constantly working on improving. For example, for months I have continually doubted my ability to succeed in medical school and become a physician. I have told myself things like “you’re not smart enough! Look at all the people who become Doc’s, they’re brilliant!’ or “You should just get a job and start making now because medical school isn’t worth the expense.” Luckily for me, I have a support system around me who continually gives me the confidence I need to take this leap and believe in my abilities. They don’t pump my tires or tell me I’m Albert Einstein, but they listen to my worries and concerns and offer me support and piece of mind in times of undue stress or anxiety.

So, what’s my point in writing this? My point is that most of us doubt ourselves and our abilities in some capacity, which often leads to us opting to do what’s comfortable or safe. However, what’s comfortable and safe isn’t always what we want to be doing and if it is, perhaps it’s not what we were meant to be doing. If I did what was comfortable, I would have accepted a job out of college that left me unfulfilled, bored, and miserable. Don’t always listen to the internal voice in your head telling you not to make a change that will undoubtedly make you happier. Surround yourself with people who push you to be better, demand more of you, and pick you up when you’re down.

I can honestly say I am entering medical school confident, supported, and ready to take on the challenge. Am I nervous? You bet, but is anything in life worth doing if it doesn’t make you nervous?