May 14, 2019, by Shweta
Balancing placement and revision
For most students, exams are just around the corner and for others, like myself, they’re only about 4-5 weeks away. If you’re in your latter years of university, you’re also likely to be on placement. If you thought finding the motivation to revise was difficult in first year, your placement years are only going to be worse. However, it’s not all grey skies and rainy days!
Being in my third year of medical school, I am currently on my first ever clinical placement at the Kings Mill Hospital in Mansfield. After over 2 years of skipped lectures, half days on Wednesdays and reduced contact hours, placement was a massive wake-up call. Working 9-5 every single day and having to take much more ownership in my own educational journey echoed the life I would have to learn to live as I get older. The one difference? I still have to sit my finals.
If you’re on placement with finals looming, the workload may seem endless. But, all is not lost! A 9-5 job adds much-needed structure into your life and the best thing you could do for yourself is to lean into that. I like to spend about 15minutes every Sunday mapping out the week ahead. On top of placement duties, I make revision plans and to-do lists for extra-curricular work. During the week, I’ve also found it helpful to lean on friends who are on the same path as you. Luckily, my housemates are on the same placement as myself and so we make sure to take an hour out every night and eat dinner together. The banter that follows is my favourite form of stress relief and I am so grateful for the energy and optimism they add into my life. Find what makes you feel the same way, and use it to your advantage. Use it to enhance your productivity and lower your stress levels.
Finally, remember your personal path to success. Before beginning placement, my degree was charted only within the pages of my textbook. Now, talking to patients, assisting with surgeries, attending 8am ward rounds, all remind me of the job I set out to do when I first applied to university. This alone motivates me to revise harder because I know good results will bring me a step closer to my dream job. Enjoy your favourite things about work, and use those to remind you of why you’re at university doing what you do.
Most importantly, never give up! You’re almost done!
Until next time,