Self Assessment: Absolutely Key to Your Success!
Eat. Sleep. Hydrate. Exercise. Study. Volunteer. Shadow. Self assess?
Yes!!! Self assessment is key to your success, just like taking care of yourself, learning, and getting experience! Without self assessment, how do you know how you are doing? How do you know what you are learning about yourself and your choices? Your growth? Your commitment and dedication to the choices you are setting yourself up to make? How do you know whether you like what you are doing and where you are going?
Integral to any pre-med, pre-dental, pre-health journey is self assessment. Those personal little checkpoints that question your desires. Your motivations. Your reasonings. Beyond reassuring yourself that this journey you are undertaking is the right one for you and for your future patients, you will be expected to understand your experiences, motivations, and reasons for wanting to become a healthcare professional, and you will be expected to clearly articulate them in your application, personal statement, and interviews. Simply saying that you want to become a healthcare professional because you want to help people is tremendously insufficient and lacks any compelling justification for your choices. Lots of people help people every day, but they don’t do it with drugs, scalpels, drills, etc. You have to be able to clearly communicate why it is you want to help people using the methodologies, treatments, and practices of your chosen healthcare field. To be able to maturely and effectively share and discuss your reasons with others, you must first take a good look at your actions, likes, dislikes, values, desires, etc, and you need to challenge them and explore them, and you need to understand yourself.
Easier said than done for many. Lots of peeps don’t like taking a personal deep dive into themselves because they are afraid of what they will learn. What if you realize you don’t like what you thought you were going to? What if when challenging your idea of becoming a healthcare professional you find out something like you don’t actually like working directly with people – talking to them face-to-face. Or that you find the nuances and challenges of effective conversation and communication are feeling like too much work? Or that once you got face to face with a person in actual pain and witnessed their suffering it was more difficult for you to cope with than what you thought it was going to be? I could go on listing example after example. And before I move on to my next point, I want to wrap this one up by saying, you have to be willing to face your fears – you have to value you and your future – so that you can try relevant experiences and challenge your idea. You have to explore the field and the expectations, and you have to try each expectation that you can to see if each one is a good fit for you. And if they are not, you have to face the fear of having to redirect your path to one that is right for you. Because if it turns out that healthcare isn’t right for you, then it most certainly won’t be right for your future patients.
So, this next point about getting out there and trying on these expectations as experiences and challenging their fit – well that’s necessary for you to be able to learn about you, so you can express and explain your motivations when you engage the application process. Medical schools, dental schools, healthcare schools, and their respective admissions committees are very interested in your reasoning – in what you’ve done and how you’ve reflected to come to the mature and responsible conclusion that healthcare is the right choice for you!
So whether you are a fresh-human or sophomore in the earlier stages of your journey, or a junior or senior getting ready to apply, you need to be directing your eye inward. You need to understand your choices. Why you are choosing each experience, and what have you learned from those experiences that lead you forward to putting your name in the pool for becoming the next healthcare professional of the future. The word “why” should be your new best friend. :0)
For more about self assessment from The Best You PAL Academy, check out some of these and other Success Guiding Informational Resources: Making Good Choices (available in the Academy as a video book and also at Amazon as an ebook) and My Incredible Experiences Journal (available in the Academy as a video book and also in the Academy Shop).
Happy self reflecting and assessing!
My best wishes to you always for your happiness and success!
Mary Kate :0)