As you open a new chapter in your life, it is expected that you will face numerous challenges, thus it is very important for you to prepare and have a head start. Here are a few things that you must consider doing before you start becoming a full-fledged doctor.
It may sound harsh that after you study very hard to complete a degree, you will just face a pile of debt after you graduate. That is typical for people who graduate from college. The good thing is that you have a paying job that awaits you. You can now afford to pay off your debt little by little with your salary. Just keep up your good work as a doctor and before you know it, you are already debt-free. Make sure that you consider all the right repayment options to lessen the burden of your student loan. Ask help from your hospital to help you make the right decision.
Most likely, you will be moving away from the medical school you graduated in. One of the first things you have to do is find a place to stay near the hospital. It is important that you stay as close as possible to your workplace to make sure that you are always punctual, you can get home immediately after a laborious day, and more importantly, lessen the cost in transportation. One good tip for finding the right place for you is to look at it in person and not online. Pictures are totally different from reality. Having to look at your housing yourself will allow you to see any underlying issues that can affect you in the long run. You will also have the opportunity to check what kind of neighborhood you will be in.
By the time you get your first paycheck, always keep in mind to spend your salary wisely. Remember that you have a huge amount of debt on your back. However, this does not mean that you have to be very stingy on yourself. You also have to buy the right things for yourself so that you will be healthy and energetic enough to keep on working. Despite this, do not forget to avoid spending on things that are not your priority.
Your medical textbooks will still be very useful even after you graduate. Even as a resident, you will still be learning and be required to attend conferences and accomplish papers so surely, you will be needing many references. Shipping your books to your new home is generally very expensive but you will be able to find couriers that can provide you with the service that you need at a lower cost.
Even if you are a doctor yourself, you might still need medical attention from other experts. Do all necessary check-ups and procedures while at your break even if they are only as minor as annual dental cleaning because it will be difficult for you to find time to do these things once you start working. During residency, it can be very difficult to make time for physician appointments, because most doctors’ offices are already closed after you are done with your shift, and even before your shift starts. You need to make sure that you are healthy before you start working so that it will not interfere with your job. Always remember that you are your best asset.
It is not only your physical health that you must consider. Make sure that you are also fit mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and socially. When you start working, expect that being a medical resident is far more taxing than being in medical school. With this, prepare your mind and body to take all of these stressors. Improve your time and stress management skills. Your physical health is as important as other aspects of your health.
It will be no surprise that you will have to work long hours and will not have much time for your loved ones and hobbies. Thus, use the time before starting work to bond with your family and friends and enjoy the activities that you love the most. Catch-up with your loved ones and probably have trips with them or even simple picnics. Also, get as much sleep as you could to compensate for all your all-nighters in college and the overtime that you will be having when you start working.
Beginning your medical residency is an enormous leap in your career and is one of the most thrilling part of your life. Celebrate your achievements during this free time. One is that you have already finished medical school and the other is you were able to land a job as a medical resident. Ready yourself for every possibility that you might encounter but do not consume your time with unnecessary worries. Take a deep breath and remember that you were able to survive all challenges in medical school. With that, you will be a good resident doctor too.