How do you encourage yourself when you feel like you won't get into medical school?

Gauss44

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Oct 28, 2012
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This is going to boil down to why you feel that way and what motivates you. Here's some ideas:

-making a list of alternatives to going to medical school (to remind yourself of what's at stake)
-taking a break (if burnt out or frustrated)
-read the ReApplicant forum or gather info. and make a plan (if you feel you've lost your path)
-ask friends for encouragement or hire a coach or tutor (if you need to encouragement)
 
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403710

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To be honest you have to be able to look into your past and see many challenges that you've overcome, and remember the doubt and discouragement that you felt, yet you still overcame.

It allows you to call bs when you're berating yourself or full of self doubt.


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Bin Rushd

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Apr 20, 2013
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To be honest you have to be able to look into your past and see many challenges that you've overcome, and remember the doubt and discouragement that you felt, yet you still overcame.

It allows you to call bs when you're berating yourself or full of self doubt.


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Oct 27, 2013
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1) if taking a gap year, have fun traveling, earning lots of $$$, work on whatever weaknesses I have in my application
2) if in school, study like crazy, add to the application, find new potential professors for LoRs
3) read articles and speak with doctors about how sucky this profession is and why I shouldn't pursue it
4) play videos, write on fb/tweet/reddit
 
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HoboCommander

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Think about how if you become a reapplicant, you would be able to make your application significantly better.
 

Lucca

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This kind of feeling usually comes right after an unpleasant test grade. I usually go out and do other things I like. Write short stories, go out with my friends, read, watch movies, play with our cat. Basically, connect with other things besides myself. Once I'm not angry at myself for not meeting my expectations, a quick look at the homeless people in my city reminds me that I am extremely lucky to get up every morning and learn awesome stuff with awesome people every day - even if I don't get into medical school undergrad has made me a far better person than I was in high school *shudders*.
 

Jennyfishy

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1) Keep track of the moments that first inspired or motivated you to pursue a career in medicine. They help keep you grounded whenever you find yourself feeling jaded or questioning whether or not you are ___ enough (smart, well-rounded, qualified, passionate, etc).

2) Don't let your grades dictate your sense of self-worth. A lot of Pre-meds get crazy and obsess over one quarter of bad grades and convince themselves that they're not smart enough to go to med school

3) Do things that you really care about or enjoy that are unrelated to the field of Pre-Med/would serve strictly as "resume padders." Everyone and their grandma applying to med school has clinical experience or some research - what did you do that stands out from that cookie cutter mold? This also helps maintain your sanity and serve as a de-stressor/form of self-care when you're stuck in classes where a lot of people are set out to sabotage others to get the best grades

4) Take time off between school and applying to re-evaluate what it is that you want out of a future career and use that time to do things that you have never had a chance to, or to pace yourself/work on things you need to so that your application is stronger.

5) Talk to advisers or counselors, find a support group, start writing regularly about everything and anything that happens

6) Set realistic goals and expectations for yourself - if you don't have the perfect application, don't set yourself up for failure by applying to top schools and wonder why you never got in. A strong sense of self-awareness, and knowledge of both your strengths and your weaknesses will be incredibly helpful.
 
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Lucca

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1) Keep track of the moments that first inspired or motivated you to pursue a career in medicine. They help keep you grounded whenever you find yourself feeling jaded or questioning whether or not you are ___ enough (smart, well-rounded, qualified, passionate, etc).

2) Don't let your grades dictate your sense of self-worth. A lot of Pre-meds get crazy and obsess over one quarter of bad grades and convince themselves that they're not smart enough to go to med school

3) Do things that you really care about or enjoy that are unrelated to the field of Pre-Med/would serve strictly as "resume padders." Everyone and their grandma applying to med school has clinical experience or some research - what did you do that stands out from that cookie cutter mold? This also helps maintain your sanity and serve as a de-stressor/form of self-care when you're stuck in classes where a lot of people are set out to sabotage others to get the best grades

4) Take time off between school and applying to re-evaluate what it is that you want out of a future career and use that time to do things that you have never had a chance to, or to pace yourself/work on things you need to so that your application is stronger.

5) Talk to advisers or counselors, find a support group, start writing regularly about everything and anything that happens

6) Set realistic goals and expectations for yourself - if you don't have the perfect application, don't set yourself up for failure by applying to top schools and wonder if you'll ever get in. A strong sense of self-awareness, your strengths, and your weaknesses will be incredibly helpful.
Bolded is so important, the most important moment freshman year was when I realized how much my self-worth correlated with my grades. It's a hard thing to fight when you've been a student your whole life, but you have to fight it!
 
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Ismet

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In addition to all the excellent advice above, try to set up some shadowing. It's easy to get overwhelmed with the academics and not see the big picture or what you're working towards. Maybe stepping away from the books and spending a few hours in the hospital seeing patients will re-trigger your motivation Even after I got into med school and toiling through MS1 and MS2, there were certainly times I thought "is this worth it? can I actually do this?" and the weekly clinical experience we had definitely rekindled that fire and made me realize what I was working towards.

2) Don't let your grades dictate your sense of self-worth.
ABSOLUTELY. I figured this out somehow between sophomore and junior year, possibly due to the study abroad I did that summer, but it completely changed how I approached junior and senior year and my quality of life. Much less stress, and I actually ended up doing better, when I stopped letting my grades dictate how I felt about myself.
 

swolebrah

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Quitting is easy man, any loser can do it. It's really easy to believe when everythings going your way, true champions can keep on going when their back is against the wall.

If it was easy, everyone would be doing it bro.

I'm currently posting from the ED since I scribe, and trust me bro a lot of these doctors tell me what they had to go through to get where they are now. Sure some were the cookie cutter upper class, but some came from crazy backgrounds.
 
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noolsy

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Aug 24, 2013
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It might not be wise to ignore the possibility altogether, but when the feeling tastes more like despair than awareness, I remind myself that that anxiety is unproductive either way -- whether my chances are good or subpar. Going out for a run or a brisk walk (especially evening walks, for some reason) also tend to help me keep anxiety down and sort my thoughts.

This is piggy backing on @DenTony11235, but I think it's worth saying again: Give yourself credit and believe that you have what it takes to do whatever is necessary. I know this sounds like Millennial BS, but it is true that even for folks with less than perfect stats, the application process (the whole path to becoming a doctor) can be brutal, and it takes courage to do this.

It's tough to divorce all feelings from whether or not performance is good at school or work, but I also made it a personal goal to find things (hobbies, people, etc) that made me happy entirely apart from job/premed/whatever evaluations even as I fixed on medicine my career goal. I believe that in the end this made me a more steady/stable person and better applicant.

Lastly, I listen to a lot of music. Over the last two years, there have been too many playlists, but they've actually been a huge help for me.
 
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Sep 1, 2014
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Realize people have gotten through much much worse and you are still very young so just because you didn't get into med school this year doesn't mean you won't (you have a long life to live). Med school isn't going anywhere.