So, you have finally graduated from medical college. That’s certainly an impressive goal to have achieved. Now the hard work begins. If you thought senior year and medical school were gruelling, wait until your first clinical rotations begin. You will be expected to give it your all. You will have to work hard as a new doctor. However, you should also strive to work smart in order for your first years as a doctor to be a success. Here are several tips that will help you reach that goal:
Get Ready for Overwork
You may already know this. Medical internships and residencies are notorious for the toll it takes on new doctors. Be ready to work long hours and lose sleep. You will not have much time left for yourself. So, if you have a significant other who is not a doctor, explain to them that you will be very, very busy during your internship. You will most likely not have enough time for dates and going out. Whatever precious time you have to yourself will be needed for sleeping. Anticipate an enormous amount of work so you are not caught off guard.
Buy the Necessary Equipment
Don’t show up on the first day at the hospital without your name badge. The hospital may provide necessary items like stethoscopes, but it’s always smart to buy one of your own. If there are similar items you need depending on your field, buy them yourself. If you start your clinical rotations at a rural facility, it’s possible that you will have limited access to certain necessary equipment. So do not depend on your medical facility to provide certain medical equipment for you.
Don’t forget to be friends with other doctors who are starting out with you. Do not see them as competition. Your peers will be your most important support system during this time. No one else will understand what you have to go through better than your peers. So, try to be friendly with them. They will extend support if it all becomes too much. Who knows, when you are all experienced, they can even become your referrals.
Try to Network With Experienced Doctors
Senior doctors can be an important source of advice and support. So, don’t hesitate to reach out to the senior doctors if you need their help. Maintain cordial relationships with your supervisors. However, don’t try to brown nose or kiss up to them. That would be very unbecoming of a new doctor.
Learn From Your Patients
Your career as a doctor will be defined by your relationships with the patients. There are many things you can learn from them. First, you need to learn to listen to your patients. In addition, they would have experience with doctors. Take cues from how patients interact with you. Some patients will be completely ignorant of their diseases, yet others may know more about their condition than you. Learning to interact with these different types of patients is very important for your career.
Don’t forget to eat on time and keep your blood sugar levels in check during your internship or residency. Do not skip meals. It will only make you more tired.
Above all, do not lose your confidence. Remember that you have come this far. It is possible that your first years as a doctor can be stressful and dispiriting, but don’t lose focus. You have achieved something many people only dream about: becoming a doctor. You can complete the rest of the journey as well.