alexagator

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thinking of using the answer, "I worry too much"
as for how I am addressing this issue, I am doing so by turning to other activities to keep myself busy and my mind off whatever is worrying me.

does anyone see any red flags in this response?
 
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alexagator

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yeah it's definitely more complex than "I worry a lot" but I was too lazy to flesh it out in my written response. I will be sure to do so in my actual interview. thanks for the feedback!
 

Goro

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Fine.


thinking of using the answer, "I worry too much"
as for how I am addressing this issue, I am doing so by turning to other activities to keep myself busy and my mind off whatever is worrying me.

does anyone see any red flags in this response?
 

hopefulERdoc251

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Here are some great ones:

1) I work too hard
2) I'm too smart for my own good
3) I earn too much money
Not sure how it's perceived but I feel as though #1 is definitely not a good response because that's such a cliche response. There really isn't a thing as 'working too hard' unless you become mentally ill from it IMHO.

My advice- look at your personal experiences, look @ a time where you failed or didn't meet your expectations and learn why.
 
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DokterMom

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If it's not really a weakness -- a cliched 'strength in disguise' -- then it won't sound (or even be) sincere. Be honest here. Everybody's got 'em. The important thing is what you're doing to overcome them.
 

NewHorizons

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Not sure how it's perceived but I feel as though #1 is definitely not a good response because that's such a cliche response. There really isn't a thing as 'working too hard' unless you become mentally ill from it IMHO.

My advice- look at your personal experiences, look @ a time where you failed or didn't meet your expectations and learn why.
whoosh
 

RaspberrySlushy

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Every time ppl say their weakness is they work too hard or something that's obviously supposed to come off as a non-weakness I think of the scene from The Office when Michael is interviewing for the job at corporate:

David: What do you think are your greatest strengths as a manager?
Michael: Why don't I tell you what my greatest weaknesses are? I work too hard. I care too much. And sometimes I can be too invested in my job.
David: Okay. And your strengths?
Michael: Well, my weaknesses are actually... strengths.

If you haven't seen it, and it may not come across from just the text, Michael comes off like a clueless @$$ in this scene. I'm not an adcom so I don't know how they feel but I do interviews for my job and all I can say is please don't say this. It comes off in real life just like it does on The Office. It makes it seem like you don't think you have any weaknesses which can make it seem like you aren't willing to think deeply about yourself, or aren't able to learn and adjust or be flexible. These are all things you will have to do on a job, and I can only assume even more so in medicine. That can appear worse than most sincere evaluations of a real weakness.
 

BurghMed

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Not sure how it's perceived but I feel as though #1 is definitely not a good response because that's such a cliche response. There really isn't a thing as 'working too hard' unless you become mentally ill from it IMHO.

My advice- look at your personal experiences, look @ a time where you failed or didn't meet your expectations and learn why.

Totally joking, obviously these are terrible "weaknesses." Just be honest without saying how bad you actually are at a critical competency. You could say things like you have selective hearing, or focus on long term goals at the expense of short terms goals
 
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StudyLater

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Is being terrible at answering these sh*tty questions a weakness?

Ok ok fine, I'll play along.

I eat wayyyy too many carbs, but I don't have to care because I'm one of those "high metabolism screw you!" people.
I work out only like once a week because I'm either too busy doing something I should have done a while ago or sherking responsibilities that I'll probably be rushing to finish later.
I have a WASPy fascination with animals: I like them more than people (ref: Wall Street)
I can't find a piggy bank for my coins so they just sit on my desk (how the hell do you guys get rid of your coins? Do people actually spend them on things? I never use coins...)
I don't read as much as I should.
I've picked up the idiotic addiction of watching funny youtube videos for wayyy too long (i.e. college kid version of crack)
I'm always unprepared for like everything I go to.
I'm always at minimum like 15-20min late for everything I go to (except exams).
I have never in my life, even once, used Netflix.
I have a pencil sharpener and I haven't used graphite pencils for like 15 years
Actually I remember why I had it. I was drawing using graphite pencils but then realized I sucked at drawing and didn't want to continue to put in the effort to get good.
I play piano alone and at really low volume so no one can hear how much talent I lack.
I'm pro-choice (and therefore a murderer) but I totally think Planned Parenthood is a bunch of evil Satanist murderers.
I cook really lame meals. Like chicken legs or sausage. Always plain, because I have no sense of flavor or creativity.
I drink way too much coffee.
I'm a sympathetic sociopath (i.e. a pretty average person)
I'm painfully average, actually.
I have no fashion sense.
I'm a nerd/geek, and not in a good sense like a proud nerd/geek (tools), or like a hot nerd/geek (jelly) -- I mean literally just one of those excessively weird "I just don't understand him he's soooooo f*cking weird" nerds/geeks.
Apparently I'm allergic to ibuprofen.
I have a pet peeve about people watching me when I eat.
I pace back and forth for hours when I'm bored with the crystal clear awareness that there are much better uses of my time.
Kind of a masochist but have never slit my wrists.
Thought about slitting wrists once, but was too lazy to do so.
I've never had a poster of anything.
I lack charisma.
I find it hard to feel feelings.
I'm too much of a joke to make a good joke.

I could probably go on, but these are just some of my many flaws. This has got to be the easiest prompt ever.
 

NewHorizons

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May 20, 2015
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Is being terrible at answering these sh*tty questions a weakness?

Ok ok fine, I'll play along.

I eat wayyyy too many carbs, but I don't have to care because I'm one of those "high metabolism screw you!" people.
I work out only like once a week because I'm either too busy doing something I should have done a while ago or sherking responsibilities that I'll probably be rushing to finish later.
I have a WASPy fascination with animals: I like them more than people (ref: Wall Street)
I can't find a piggy bank for my coins so they just sit on my desk (how the hell do you guys get rid of your coins? Do people actually spend them on things? I never use coins...)
I don't read as much as I should.
I've picked up the idiotic addiction of watching funny youtube videos for wayyy too long (i.e. college kid version of crack)
I'm always unprepared for like everything I go to.
I'm always at minimum like 15-20min late for everything I go to (except exams).
I have never in my life, even once, used Netflix.
I have a pencil sharpener and I haven't used graphite pencils for like 15 years
Actually I remember why I had it. I was drawing using graphite pencils but then realized I sucked at drawing and didn't want to continue to put in the effort to get good.
I play piano alone and at really low volume so no one can hear how much talent I lack.
I'm pro-choice (and therefore a murderer) but I totally think Planned Parenthood is a bunch of evil Satanist murderers.
I cook really lame meals. Like chicken legs or sausage. Always plain, because I have no sense of flavor or creativity.
I drink way too much coffee.
I'm a sympathetic sociopath (i.e. a pretty average person)
I'm painfully average, actually.
I have no fashion sense.
I'm a nerd/geek, and not in a good sense like a proud nerd/geek (tools), or like a hot nerd/geek (jelly) -- I mean literally just one of those excessively weird "I just don't understand him he's soooooo f*cking weird" nerds/geeks.
Apparently I'm allergic to ibuprofen.
I have a pet peeve about people watching me when I eat.
I pace back and forth for hours when I'm bored with the crystal clear awareness that there are much better uses of my time.
Kind of a masochist but have never slit my wrists.
Thought about slitting wrists once, but was too lazy to do so.
I've never had a poster of anything.
I lack charisma.
I find it hard to feel feelings.
I'm too much of a joke to make a good joke.

I could probably go on, but these are just some of my many flaws. This has got to be the easiest prompt ever.
Damn bro how are you still alive?
=P
 

StudyLater

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Damn bro how are you still alive?
=P
Another one of my many flaws: I punch things to release the vast amount of frustration and anger that builds up inside of me from lack of Netflixation. Required material is usually wood, NOT walls as that's just going to waste my time having to drywall and repaint and my god they don't have the right paint so it never matches and you might as well just repaint the whole damn room at that point.
 
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DoctorDrewOutsidetheLines

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@StudyLater I give my spare coins to people in need who ask for them. There's a thought.

My weaknesses? Giving side-eye and eye-rolls to everyone else, feeding, and rescuing stray animals and humans, and caring too much about people.

Oh, and brownies. I have a major sweet-tooth.
 
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moisne

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Give an honest response and address how you have improved your weakness.

Mine was procrastination: I make lists of "must do", "should do", "could do", "want to do" and work through those list in order.
 
May 26, 2014
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Would it be ok to discuss anxiety, especially social anxiety, if I make I very clear I've successfully worked to improve this? Phone calls use to be a major trigger for social anxiety for me. No idea why, they've just freaked me out ever since I was a kid. I use to cry if I had to call someone other than like my best friend. My first job was in long term care. I had to use the phone a bit and that helped. The phone calls were short, and in that setting I was confident I knew what I was talking about so I got use to it. I recently took a job that is entirely centered around making phone calls to make sure I get completely over this, and I actually have come to really enjoy the job, and I'm even being considered for a promotion.

Does this make me sound like to much of a looser?
 

StudyLater

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Would it be ok to discuss anxiety, especially social anxiety, if I make I very clear I've successfully worked to improve this? Phone calls use to be a major trigger for social anxiety for me. No idea why, they've just freaked me out ever since I was a kid. I use to cry if I had to call someone other than like my best friend. My first job was in long term care. I had to use the phone a bit and that helped. The phone calls were short, and in that setting I was confident I knew what I was talking about so I got use to it. I recently took a job that is entirely centered around making phone calls to make sure I get completely over this, and I actually have come to really enjoy the job, and I'm even being considered for a promotion.

Does this make me sound like to much of a looser?
That's actually a hard one. I like your explanation of overcoming the problem, but the problem itself....

Is there an explanation for it in the first place? Like "Oh I lived in a small rural town without electricity and we're not used to talking on the phone" or something? I guess the problem itself makes it sound like you were just previously an introvert/antisocial.
 
May 26, 2014
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That's actually a hard one. I like your explanation of overcoming the problem, but the problem itself....

Is there an explanation for it in the first place? Like "Oh I lived in a small rural town without electricity and we're not used to talking on the phone" or something? I guess the problem itself makes it sound like you were just previously an introvert/antisocial.
General social anxiety made worse by bullying, abuse, and tons of sexual harassment/assault. Yeah....kind of hard to answer a lot of the questions that seem to be popular without eventually getting into some personal, depressing stuff. I'm trying to figure out the best responses for these things ahead of time to avoid that... The crying thing was just when I was younger, by the beginning of high school it was jus mild panic. Do I sound less insane if I leave that part out? And just say that I've had anxiety issues?

The weird thing is that in clinical settings I have almost no anxiety what so ever and suddenly have amazing communication skills.
 
Apr 2, 2015
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General social anxiety made worse by bullying, abuse, and tons of sexual harassment/assault. Yeah....kind of hard to answer a lot of the questions that seem to be popular without eventually getting into some personal, depressing stuff. I'm trying to figure out the best responses for these things ahead of time to avoid that... The crying thing was just when I was younger, by the beginning of high school it was jus mild panic. Do I sound less insane if I leave that part out? And just say that I've had anxiety issues?

The weird thing is that in clinical settings I have almost no anxiety what so ever and suddenly have amazing communication skills.
It's not illegal to discuss something else. Just a thought.
 

TheOtterpop

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Jun 8, 2015
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For me, introversion/shyness is what I state as a weakness (only asked in 1/4 interviews, so far.) The idea of trying to carry small talk with strangers, especially, always used to make me uncomfortable. I was never good at it.

Working as both a TA and as a server in a restaurant, however, has given me a chance to work on these skills. Now I can hold a pretty good conversation and connect better with total strangers. Not only is it a skill practiced, but it's also a recognition that a lot of people actually have an interesting story to tell about themselves, their day, etc.
 
May 26, 2014
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It's not illegal to discuss something else. Just a thought.
Haha, yeah, I guess I need to think of something that isn't one of those annoying "my weaknesses are secret strengths because I'm perfect" things without coming across as completely defective :unsure:
 
Apr 2, 2015
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Haha, yeah, I guess I need to think of something that isn't one of those annoying "my weaknesses are secret strengths because I'm perfect" things without coming across as completely defective :unsure:
There are a lot. I would recommend thinking about things unrelated to medicine. Things involving your hobbies or non science classes.
 
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BluMist

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from a very young age, my parents instilled this terrible thought in my head, "you will never be an underwater basket weaver..." ever since, I have strived to prove them wrong but I couldn't blatantly choose that path given the strict disciplines enforced upon me by my tiger parents. I had to bide my time patiently, waiting for the opportunity to jump in the water. I thought I had finally broke free of that curse when I entered college. I COULD CHOOSE MY ELECTIVES!!! So I thought... I dipped my toe into the world of underwater basket weaving in my freshman year, and as soon as my toe touched the water, a strong jolt shot up my spine and paralyzed me, despite my struggle, physical, mental, and spiritual, I could not force my body to go further. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. The tears roll down my face as the teacher had to carry me in my paralyzed state out of the class, weaving in between other students. I can sense the judgment from their cold stares. However this did not stop me in my track, no, I wouldn't give up that easily. I thought to take baby steps; maybe my first attempt was too rash. I mean, what was I thinking going straight for the more advanced classes? typical freshman mistake... I'd sign up for surface level basket weaving my second semester. I thought I had it all figured out, and man, was I in for a surprise when I discovered my greatest weakness: I get bored writing and I can't finish a story to save my life.
There are a lot. I would recommend thinking about things unrelated to medicine. Things involving your hobbies or non science classes.
 

DokterMom

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Would it be ok to discuss anxiety, especially social anxiety, if I make I very clear I've successfully worked to improve this? Phone calls use to be a major trigger for social anxiety for me. No idea why, they've just freaked me out ever since I was a kid. I use to cry if I had to call someone other than like my best friend. My first job was in long term care. I had to use the phone a bit and that helped. The phone calls were short, and in that setting I was confident I knew what I was talking about so I got use to it. I recently took a job that is entirely centered around making phone calls to make sure I get completely over this, and I actually have come to really enjoy the job, and I'm even being considered for a promotion.

Does this make me sound like to much of a looser?
That could be a risky 'weakness' but given what you've done to overcome it -- a LOT - congratulations! -- I think it would be a good answer. I wouldn't volunteer the 'crying as a kid' part, but just stating that you really used to hate it, but knew you'd have to get past it -- so you did. Well, that's strong. Also the part about "in that setting I was confident I knew what I was talking about" is important. Yeah - You'll probably face more anxiety as an intern and early resident when you don't know what you're talking about -- but you've handled it successfully before and are confident you'll get through it next time too.
 

tenblackalps

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If you aren't sure what your greatest weakness is, it could be introspection.
 

IlDestriero

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This came up on the republican debate last night. I totally would have used this line, but I would have cleaned it up a bit. And the people asking the questions were surprisingly rude. It's a presidential debate, not a stage for the careers or an interview. I think if they kept interrupting me like, contradicting what I said, etc. that I'd just walk out. They showed surprising restraint.
 

Fedekz

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I said I have trouble waking up early in the morning... I tied it into making it difficult to make early morning rounds or lecture. Then I stated I have worked night shift for over 5 years, so it impacts that significantly because I have trouble falling sleep before midnight.

I wanted to kick myself after saying that, but I tried to pull it off the best I can
 

Firegrove

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thinking of using the answer, "I worry too much"
as for how I am addressing this issue, I am doing so by turning to other activities to keep myself busy and my mind off whatever is worrying me.

does anyone see any red flags in this response?
Is this a confidence issue? Make sure not to say anything too damning to your character or ability to overcome the demands of your desired career path--this is the advice my interview coach gave me.

This question came up at nearly every interview and I never said anything to compromise my character. My go to answers were:

My inability to communicate with a non-English speaker.

or

My lack of cultural/religious understanding coming from a rural community.

I liked these answers because I give credence to the importance of being able to relate to patient's that come from varying backgrounds (bioethics is a huge topic in medicine). These are also relatively fixable issues which I can easily discuss with the interviewer. This was my personal strategy for this question so if it doesn't apply to you I wouldn't advise using it.