Monday, March 3, 2008
How to Keep Motivated
I hate studying.
Seriously, it’s the pits.
I don’t mind learning. I love to learn. If there’s something I want to know, I can read about it for days and not grow weary of the hunt. But when it comes to just cramming in knowledge for the sake of passing exams, forget about it.
So you see, no matter how badly I want to be in med school (or how badly I want to become the best doctor I can be) it’s hard to stay motivated day in and day out. I just don’t like to sit and study for hours at a time.
I’m just not made up that way.
So to deal with this problem, I decided to compile a list of the various things that motivate people to keep going when the going gets tough. And since we’re all pretty much in the same boat, I figured this list my help you.
Here’s what I’ve come up with so far…
Don’t laugh. The dudes that came up with the phrase, “Behind every great man, there’s good woman” knew what they were talking about.
Love is the most powerful motivational force known to the human race. Many a man has been driven to move heaven and earth all for the heart of fair damsel. And if you have any doubt, just consider how devastating a broken heart can be.
Unfortunately, love is a rare commodity. If you can find a way to harness the motivational power of love, you will have the keys to greatness within your grasp. Without it, you will have an uphill battle all the way.
2) Financial Gain
Say what you will, but next to love financial gain is probably the second most powerful force in the universe. Few people do anything without some thought of reward or benefit for their troubles at the end of the day.
Don’t get bogged down with platitudes. Personal gain is a tool. Use it. If a picture of a Porsche or a Ferrari helps keep you focused, then go for it. You can decide what to do with your money AFTER you get out of med school. For now, you just need the energy to spend another hour on path.
3) Hero Worship (or if you prefer, “Self-improvement”)
This works for athletes, musicians, dancers, actors and other skilled artisans. There’s no reason it can’t work for you in your quest to become a great physician.
Find a mentor or role model; someone you admire and that you would like to emulate. Find someone you can look up to; someone who has accomplished great things and use that inspiration to help you strive harder.
It may not be a medical professional. If the work ethic or accomplishments of Tiger Woods or Michael Jordan inspires you to greatness, that’s all that matters.
4) Fear of Failure
I don’t really see this one as a very good study motivator. It apparently works for some people and it may work for you. Personally, I prefer to focus on positive rewards rather than negative consequences. I think positive thoughts yield a stronger motivation than negative ones.
It’s often been said, “Success is the best revenge.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Of course, it doesn’t apply to every situation, but those situations don’t have anything to do with getting through med school so we can dispense with them for our purposes.
No, if you’re best girl dumped you in high school for some dumb jock with a Camaro, she’ll be kicking herself when she sees you cruising by in your Jag and pulling down six figures. ‘Nuff said.