Small moments to yourself
Long shifts, missed lunches, stressful days—all aspects that we associate with the life of a junior doctor.
It is not like that every day but, at times, it seems unavoidable.
I remember that one of the greatest feelings was coming home in my first week, sitting down on the couch and realising I had nothing to do—absolutely nothing.
Cherish the feeling of not having to hit the books.
Take a break from the lingering, nagging and guilty feeling when you are not studying.
You have worked hard for that feeling, so enjoy yourself and unwind.
Small moments with patients
People will say internship is mostly acting as a glorified paper-pusher. Unfortunately, there is some truth in it (although slightly exaggerated).
However, there are moments where you can practise medicine and have meaningful interactions with patients.
If you find yourself blessed with a quiet evening on ward cover, use the time to bless others.
Pop in to see the patient recovering from a Whipple procedure, not yet on full diet, in a bleak environment, who would rather be home watching the footy with his mates.
Ask the mum of the 13-year-old girl admitted with an eating disorder how she is coping.
Take the time to read through a patient’s discharge summary with them.
While these actions might appear small in isolation, they will give you the opportunity to keep your patients at the centre of your work.
If you are getting bogged down in paperwork remember that it is an integral part of the bigger picture—there is a patient behind the paperwork.