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Making the best of being a GMO

Discussion in 'Military Medicine' started by unhappyGMO, Aug 19, 2015.

  1. unhappyGMO

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    I’m looking for advice from people who have been in a similar position before. I’m a new GMO and pretty unhappy with everything. I’m not handling being so far from my spouse/family/friends very well. I’m trying to find positive things to focus on while I’m here, and then hopefully I can get a second GMO tour that is closer to home and then apply to civilian residency programs for once I’m out.


    My question is: what are some things I can do or be working on during a GMO to help me in the future? Any advice on ways to make the best of being in a crappy location doing a job that I had hoped to never do? Suggestions on how to turn this in to a positive in terms of personal relationships (spouse can’t leave their job so it’s a couple hours on a plane if we want to see each other in person)? Or just life in general?


    I’m sure I sound like a big complainer, but I’m having a hard time adjusting and think that if I find things to focus on during these next few years then I can just do my job well, get out, and never look back.
     
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  3. Gastrapathy

    Gastrapathy no longer apathetic
    Physician Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

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    A couple hours on a plane and ˜$300 or so per weekend right? Thats about $12k and 4 hours of travel to spend the vast majority of weekends together when you aren't deployed. You may not be able to be the one traveling but spending your weekends together will help (even if you are somewhere terrible and your spouse has to be bored with you, that is so much better). Thats your GMO bonus. Put it to work so you stay married.

    Work-wise, just try not to hurt anyone. Consult up a storm and don't think twice about it (no matter how pissy the dermatologist or whoever gets).
     
  4. j4pac

    j4pac PM&R resident
    10+ Year Member

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    Spend the next few years positioning yourself to be the best civilian residency candidate you can be. Get publications...rotate and get rock star recommendations...write a rock star personal statement. You have an enormous opportunity to land a competitive and high quality residency if you put in your work and use your GMO time to your advantage.
     
  5. Ziehl-Neelsen

    Ziehl-Neelsen I'm perfectly calm, dude.
    10+ Year Member

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    This too shall pass...

    Throw yourself into your work. Use every single day of leave to spend time with family. Plan weeks of leave where you and your wife both fly to a cool destination and recharge. Put in the time to make sure the job is done right but refuse to be martyred. As was said by others above, you have a unique opportunity early in your development as a physician to hone your general physician skills and build confidence while also eating numerous pieces of humble pie as a GMO that can make you into a better physician if you embrace the opportunity.

    Attitude is everything. Kill any bitterness or resentment about your situation or it will be apparent to everyone around you and will be reflected in their attitudes about you, their interactions with you, and their evaluations of you. When you recognize that you are starting to feel sorry for yourself, suck it up and drive on. There are many Service Members who have gone before you (and many that you work with) whose situations are far worse than yours and they have made it through.

    Read Virgil, Marcus Aurelius, Tolkien, When Hell Was in Session, The Bible, The Little Way of St. Therese of Lisieux and other such works to remind yourself that pain is synonymous with the human condition and use this wisdom to steel yourself against the vicissitudes of life. It will help you through much more than a GMO tour.

    Forsan miseros meliora sequentur
     
    #4 Ziehl-Neelsen, Aug 20, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2015
  6. jabreal00

    7+ Year Member

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    I was not a GMO but my first assignment was to a crappy location and I was geographically separated from my wife for 2 years. I passed the time by reading voraciously (medical journals). I worked hard at work honing my skills. My wife and I saw each other every two weeks. We were able to take some pretty cool trips in and out of the country during that time. We made the best of it.
     

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