What Medical School Taught Me Part Three

Now on to part three (3).

Third lesson – PATIENCE.

I probably lived most of my life under expectations I have set for myself to the point that if I didn’t get to achieve it, impatience gets the better half of me. But that mindset just didn’t help me in my journey way back in medicine.

Before I stepped into my first year of medicine I was your all-around enthusiastic student who was excited just to hold medical books but as time goes by I already saw these books as something that I didn’t want to carry and found myself dreading to see them but I know I shouldn’t simply because the lessons were there, literally.

I expected myself to learn immediately, memorize immediately and pass immediately. High expectations, high demands upon myself just made my journey more difficult. I was beginning to be a slave to my expectations, and they were ruining my life. Patience was teaching me how to learn to be “her.”

Things were supposed to be different in my mind. The expectations I was setting upon myself were depleting me of happiness, just because I didn’t have what I expected to have, it also came to a point that I was even questioning if all my hard work were still worth it. I expected answers to come right away. Impatient remember? But the reality is during moments like these I just had to force my mind and heart to bring me back to why I chose to be a doctor in the first place, and that in itself was magic.

Patience is not the ability to wait but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.

Along with our dreams come expectations and please don’t get me wrong, I truly believe that dreams do come true but living up to the expectation of expecting it to happen is a different story. If it happens, then well and good, if it doesn’t and we were really expecting it to be, there’s likely disappointment and frustration waiting for us in the end. I learned that we shouldn’t rely our personal happiness and satisfaction on set expectations. Difficult to be harsh with yourself. I guess the struggle of both the ambition of the vocation of being a doctor and the impatience of getting things done in terms of studying is so real that it gets into you, if you allow it too.

Having our expectations met could bring happiness, but waiting for it to happen just so we can be happy is again a different story, that’s when impatience grows and we start to dwindle down.

Stay patient and trust your journey.

Stay patient and trust your journey.

There came a point when I expected to grow up to be somewhere completely different from where I was as a medical student but I figured that at the end of the day it’s what I have always wanted to become, and that it’s probably just the impatience of having to study long years that was creeping through me, then that’s where things began to change. My perspectives started to shift and that I began to realize that it was fine if you didn’t meet your expectations, they can always be modified anyway but you need to keep an open mind to realize this, besides nothing worth it comes easy. In a world where it’s difficult to meet expectations, flex yours. I came to realize that I needed to work on my goals but had to live up to the reality that sometimes expectations won’t be met.

Look at it this way – It’s like doing a favor for someone with the expectation of getting a thank-you afterwards and if you don’t get one you become disappointed but on the other hand if you do it irregardless of the gratitude, you still end up fulfilled. It’s about making peace with life, and yes, be patient with it too, it teaches us lessons in ways that may seem insurmountable but just the same we end up being better people. If I wasn’t patient with myself and the process I won’t be where I am right now.

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