It has been over a month since I took the last final of my first year of veterinary school. It was a hectic few weeks (as evidenced by my lack of blogging). I can’t believe it is finally over. Truly, I am in shock. I was really pleased with how this semester turned out, but it is so nice to take a break and not worry about studying. It is strange… at first, it is almost like a void. I felt like I should keep working. I think that is what happens when you are in a “go” state of being. When you finally slow down, you don’t really know what to do with yourself.
This past semester was not easy. With a full course load of 23 hours and some extremely challenging courses like Neuroanatomy and Emergency and Critical Care, I felt like I was constantly behind.
But I discovered the secret…
In any rigorous academic program, the secret is STAMINA. The exams are not meant to trick you, but the amount of information you need to put into your brain can be overwhelming. Stamina is all about self-care, which means not studying all the time. This can be counterintuitive to most veterinary students, but I assure you that it is of the utmost importance.
So how do I implement self-care?
Easy! Just kidding, it can actually be quite challenging. For me personally, my self-care ritual involves a few key items – running, yoga, spending time outside, journaling, meditation, reading, and trying new things (generic, I know, but it is so important to put yourself outside of your comfort zone every once in a while). I put some of those in italics because journaling and meditation are the HARDEST for me. I especially struggle with this when I am in school when I am (once again) in a “go” mentality. It can be hard to slow down and process what is happening in our lives, but it is extremely important.
To help with this, I have created a Pinterest page that has ideas for hobbies, reading, and self-care exercises (click the photo below to head to pinterest):
Now, I am enjoying my summer and working on getting back into my self-care habits. Life is a constant series of growing (either positively or negatively) as a person. We must always work on the new parts of ourselves that are revealed through the challenges we face. I am here with you, every step of the way.
Until next time!