If you’re a doctor, we’re sure that you didn’t get into the profession because you thought it was going to be an easy, smooth ride.

Still, even by the levels of your expectation, you might find that your first year as a fully-fledged doctor is pretty difficult, no matter how many years of training you’ve gone through in the run-up to this moment.

But fear not, because if you’ve made it through everything else so far, then you’re going to make it through this – or at least you will if you follow the tips we offer below.  

Get Rested

There’ll be a period of time before you begin your life as a doctor when you have some time off. The temptation might be to do some extra reading, or shadow one of the more senior doctors at the hospital, but this would likely be a mistake.

You’re not going to learn that much more in this small period of time, and as such, your time will be better spent doing something else: ensuring that you’re well-rested.

You’re not going to have too much time in the coming year to relax and unwind with friends and family. The best advice might be to head to a beach destination for a couple of weeks and then return ready to tackle your new position with all the energy you have.

Curb Your Ego

You should rightly be proud of completing all of your training, but there’s a fine line between being proud of your success and being arrogant. When it comes to working in a hospital, your first year is no place to carry an ego around with you.

Virtually everyone there has a better understanding of how things work, and, while it’s good to have confidence in your abilities, there’ll be little more than your own self-satisfaction that comes for having an ego. And there’s little room for self-satisfaction when it comes to life in a hospital. Remember, there’s still much to be learned.

Focus on the Team

We know that it can seem difficult enough to keep your head on yourself when you’re trying to make it as a doctor, but it’s important to keep in mind that you’re not just an individual worker when you’re a doctor: you’re part of a team, and the success of the hospital depends on how well that team is able to work together.

Make sure you’re making an effort to lift up and help others. When you’re in need, there’ll be on hand to lift up and help you, too. While there are obvious practical and professional benefits to this, there’s also something else it can help with too – it can make life at the hospital more fun. And you’re going to quickly realize that you greatly value any opportunities to laugh while you’re at work!

Take Care of Yourself

Of course, you’ll be in a better position to be a team player if you feel good about yourself. The stress levels of first-year doctors can be through the roof, and it’s usually because they’re not taking time to ensure their physical and mental health is receiving sufficient attention.

Your life is going to be pretty hectic, and if you don’t make a special effort to make things otherwise, then you’re going to find that you’re not doing any of things you need to be physically and mentally healthy.

Always make time to do the things you love: you’ll be a much better doctor if you’re in a positive state of mind.

Stay Presentable

You’re not just going to be assessed on your doctor abilities. You’ll also be scored against how you interact with your patients, how much of a team player you are, and also how presentable you are.

Though it can seem like time is forever against you, you’ll be well-served by ensuring you look clean and professional at all times. Make sure you check out Blue Sky Scrubs so that you always have enough scrubs in your wardrobe, and that you have a quick cleaning regime for after you wake up.

While time is a premium, especially when you’re starting work at an awkward time, you shouldn’t try to make up time by forgoing the hygiene essentials.

Get Help

No-one wants to have to ask for help, but sometimes in life it’s essential, and when it comes to life in a hospital, it’s outright essential. There are no stupid questions when people’s health is at stake, and there will always be someone around to provide an answer.

As well as asking for assistance when you need it, you should also try to get as much feedback as you can. You’re always learning when you’re a doctor; if someone more senior than you has some useful words of advice, it’s wise to listen.

Social Time

You’ll just need to accept that you’re not going to have much time to socialize for the time being. You can’t do much about that, but you can make that fact a little easier to bear by informing your friends and family.

It’s harder to miss out on social events if you constantly have to say ‘no’ after you’ve been invited to something that you’d ordinarily love to attend. There’ll be plenty of time for socializing in the future: for now, keep your mind on being the best doctor you can be.

You’re Going to Make a Mistake

There’s no getting around it: you’re going to make a mistake. Doctors with twenty years of experience still make mistakes! The first step is to obviously do your best to prevent mistakes from happening.

The second is to learn how to bounce back from mistakes. You’ll be helping no-one, least of all yourself, by letting your mistakes consume you or knock your confidence.

Stay Strong

Finally, remember to stay strong. The first year of any job is tough, but it’s exponentially tougher when you’re a doctor. Treat it as a test, once that is done, you’re certain you’re going to pass!

*This is a collaborative post.