Agraphia Medical Tragicomedy

17Sep/07Off

Why I’m Depressed

Catching up on my blogs for the evening, I came across this post by Tiny Shrink, in which she discusses the nitty gritty of choosing a medical specialty. She does a much better job than me summing up why, exactly, I'm freaking out about picking a career. Most of my attendings and residents are very laissez faire about the whole thing, and defuse my anxiety with wise sayings based on many years of experience.

"Don't worry, you'll figure it out."
"It's not the end of the world."
"I knew right away."
"I honestly wish I had never gone into medicine in the first place."

Oh wait.

I now know there are doctors - more than I'd like to think - who are miserable because they picked the wrong specialty. Either they didn't get exposed to the field they should have been in, or they convinced themselves that the money/lifestyle/fame/etc. was more important than doing something they loved.

I'm stressing because I'm still working on the exposure part. So far nothing has really clicked. Once that happens, then I can struggle with the decision to sell out or not†.

†Stay posted, dear readers.

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  1. Thanks for the link. May I just say that a) July of your fourth year is not too late to change your mind if you have to and b) I know plenty of residents who switched careers during residency. Good luck with your decision!

  2. Have you considered aptitude testing? Seriously. Johnson O’Connor Research Foundation has some cool testing (this is not an interest survey–I was always curious about and interested in everything, so that did not narrow things down for me at all); it ain’t cheap, but it’s worth it. They match your profile up with people who LIKE their work. It’s great for the easily bored and over-qualified. I did it 15 years ago and never looked back.


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