Learn About Dealing With Stress Before Starting Medical School

Posted by mentalhealthtv on September 25th, 2019

It goes without saying that there is a big workload at medical school, and a lot more responsibility comes with it than other courses in further education.

It's very important to focus on your studies at the time of starting medical school, in order to keep up with the pace of it. However, it's also important to take time for yourself during medical school. There is no question that stress will be a part of your studies at medical school, but stress can be managed. When dealing with anxiety and stress, sometimes the best thing to do is to narrow it down to what you can and can't control. When you take a look at the things you can control, you get a better idea of how you could manage your time and feelings, and it can sometimes be easier to let go of the things that you cannot control. An example would be that you cannot control when your exam is going to be, but you can control how you yourself prepare for the exam.

Are you going to begin studying a few days beforehand, or are you going to begin revision weeks in advance and spread it evenly across this time?  Revising weeks or even months in advance and following a schedule could ease the workload around the time of the exam, allowing you to concentrate on other tasks that you get given. If you use a schedule to manage your time, you can also allocate days of the week that you would like to have time to socialise with friends. Socialising is important to your studies too - you will have a support network of fellow students who you can talk to if you're struggling, and team up for assignments, revision and coursework. 

At medical school, it's also a requirement to do a placement and work with the general public. This can add a lot of pressure to studies. It is good to be exposed to this kind of pressure before becoming a doctor, but if things start to get too much, it's also good to be open about it. Speak with your lecturer, supervisor, GP or a counsellor. There has been a lot of stigma around doctors and mental health for a long time, but now, more universities have facilities in place to help students deal with mental health issues, and more doctors are coming forward and telling their stories about what made a difference during their studies.

The overall message of this article is to emphasise that while your studies are very important, your mental and emotional well-being is as well. Make sure that you spend time with your friends, go out every once in a while and ideally, keep a revision and coursework timetable to help you stay on track with your work.

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