Well, the first year of medical school is in the books. The last time I wrote I was mid-way through the year and feeling relatively insecure. This semester turned that completely around. I’m proud of the grades that I earned, I made study-life balance more of a priority, I dove deeper into my faith, and overall I felt a sense of accomplishment and confidence. Now I know y’all don’t want a crazy in depth account of my first year, so I figured I would leave you with the three things that I would tell my first year self if I had to do it over again.

Top 3 things I wish I knew my first year of medical school:

1. Don’t fear Neuro. Yes, it’s hard. But it’s not insurmountable. I actually ended up doing better during the Neuro block than other “easier” blocks. I initially got flustered because everybody talks about how tough it is, but once you get into your study groove, it’s pretty normal. It is a lot of information though, so definitely stay on top of your studying. Neuro is not the time to slack off.

2. Be confident in yourself and your abilities. I really struggled with confidence this first year. It’s taken a lot of time for me to feel secure in that I am meant to be here and am intelligent and hardworking enough to succeed in medical school. I think this is a process that everybody has to go through, but I wish that I had been more loving to myself as I went through it. Give yourself grace. Medical school is hard. You’re not going to be perfect, but love yourself through it. You are meant to be here. You’ve got this!

3. Get involved in what you want to get involved in. There were so many times that I was tempted to sign up for a leadership position or a random experience because I felt this pressure to get super involved like I was in college. I decided to do a bit of self-discovery and find out what was important to me before committing to any activity. Ultimately, I ended up going after leadership positions that I am passionate about: admissions committee, surgery interest group, and a women’s medical group. Time is a precious commodity in medical school and I knew that I wanted to get super involved in a few things rather than spreading myself too thin.

So there it is. Three things that I wish I knew my first year of medical school. I hope this helps other med students, pre-meds, or was just a fun read. Also, I need to warn y’all that I just started Whole 30, so be prepared for some Whole 30 posts. As always, shoot me an email or comment if you have any questions/comments!

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