Becoming a doctor is perhaps one of the most fashionable and most desired profession to get into. Countless parents across the country are hopeful that their child can get into this medical centric role, mainly for the financial security it provides, but also the status and satisfaction that comes with the role.
However, with its huge desirability, it may be a shock to many that there are a few unexpected truths and myth-busting realities that surround the profession of becoming a doctor. The reality is, there is a lot of stuff involved in learning to become a doctor that the general public aren’t aware of, as well as how their day to day life operates. Here is a look at some of the insider insights about becoming a doctor, as well as pursuing a career in the medical industry in general.
Studying is Hard
It’s no secret that to become a doctor you need to be academically gifted and to have obtained high grades throughout your educational career. These harsh requirements are there for a reason. Studying to become a doctor is really demanding and super difficult, perhaps even more difficult than a nursing degree. In fact, despite these courses only allowing in the greatest minds who may not have struggled in their education before this point, learning to become a doctor may be the first time in their lives where educational demands may be too much.
Suddenly, people who breezed through school are now having a hard time, and this can be jarring and may cause a bit of a knock to their confidence. It’s important for studying doctors to be prepared because they may not be top of the class anymore, and they need to learn good, practical studying methods to make sure they keep up with the course and the content.
The reason studying can be such a challenge to even the most accomplished academics is because there is such a high volume of information that students need to obtain really quickly, with there being a larger amount of examinations in the first two years of the education too, which can be super overwhelming. This means that every doctor you see has gone through a rigorous educational program and have been able to get through the other side.
The Lack of Social Life is a Myth
It’s a common misconception that people studying to be a doctor, and even doctors themselves, can’t have a decent social life because of their work or study commitments. This is entirely false and most likely a ploy to deter people who may not be that dedicated to the profession, as you will undoubtedly have a social life in the medical profession.
When studying, you’ll find that you’re surrounded by a small group of friends, who are all on the same schedule, meaning that post-lecture parties and outings are inevitable. Plus, when you are a doctor, most have quite a lot of free time as they may only have 3 or 4 shifts a week, giving doctors a lot of opportunities to be sociable.
What people may be confusing a lack of social life with is a lack of flexibility. There will be instances where you may miss events because they happen during a scheduled shift, and unlike other roles, it’s very hard to get that shift altered or covered as a doctor as it is in any other profession. There are roles within medical care where you have a more sociable schedule, such as being a nurse practitioner. You can find a good comparison between doctors and nurse practitioners here.
Doctors Need to Develop a Filter
Due to the job description of being a doctor, many will find themselves in awful and disgusting situations almost on a daily basis. Doctors are constantly getting exposed to wounds, broken bones, bodily fluid, and other nasty things that they simply get used to and shrug off over time.
However, this desensitization means that when interacting with non-medical professionals, they’ll have to develop a filter and save people the details to not put others off their lunch. Doctors might have been able to build up a strong resistance to a lot of the stuff they see, but common folk haven’t, so they need to be cautious not to speak about too bad a topic.
Developing a filter can also benefit doctors when working. As their role is very high stakes, high pressure and in a fast working environment, things can get stressful. It’s important that doctors learn to handle this stress and definitely avoid snapping at people or being a grump. This is because people need a calm, confident, and composed doctor as this will lift their spirits. Just do be aware that even if your doctor appears pleasant and placid in reality, they probably want to scream every profanity under the sun.
Becoming a Doctor isn’t a Get Rich Quick Scheme
There is a stereotype of the ‘rich doctor’ that goes around and is probably the stereotype that encourages people to try and become a doctor. Of course, the role’s financial rewards are good, as a doctor can expect a salary of $200,000 to $500,000 per year; however, getting to that position isn’t easy or straightforward.
Reaching that level includes a lot of hard graft and time getting educated and rising through the ranks in various different, far lower-paying roles. With the financial burden of getting a medical education and the time spent competing courses, residencies, and training, becoming a doctor who obtains this level of financial stability is a lot of hard work.
So if you’re an individual looking to become a doctor purely for monetary reasons, it may be worth reconsidering your future. This is because those with the potential to become doctors also have skills to get comparable paying roles in other sectors, such as business, law, or engineering. The educational process to get these roles is a lot quicker, meaning that you can start earning a lot in these roles early on.
This means that patients and the general public can be assured that the people looking after them aren’t just in it for the money and are instead passionate about being a doctor and helping them. If they weren’t, they simply wouldn’t put themselves through the ordeal it is to become one.