Can You Tell?

Can you tell that I’m a medical student? It should be a little bit obvious from the context, especially the bits where I say “so, I’m a medical student,” but I think it is also easy to believe because of my sudden, extended radio silences.

Sure, anyone can get busy, ill, tech-deprived and neglect a blog. However, I believe doctors are famous for not having any work-life separation. That is, after all, one of the themes of the movie The Doctor, which is a movie I was forced to watch during a first year class.

Work-life separation is not only the ability to leave work at work, it’s also the ability to give yourself enough time to have a life. And I can feel myself being dragged down by tendrils of studying and researching and worrying and class. Sometimes, even my artistic activities become work, because I’m doing them for a medical-related purpose, and I’m left wondering what
I have left to relax with.

Procrastination. Duh.

I really dislike how I just cannot make myself procrastinate effectively, and do something useful. Even writing a blog post would be great! But no. Procrastination is the attempt to put off something uncomfortable and painful by not doing it. Usually, I cannot just go and procrastinate with something enjoyable, like writing a blog post, because I would feel too guilty about not doing what I should, but nevertheless don’t, want to do. So I spend countless hours watching youtube or maybe reading a light novel, because I can’t dedicate myself to a different project, but I also won’t do my work. Usually, I just end up not getting into bed until I am actually unable to think straight, and so cannot do work.

I’m not sure when my medical life started encroaching on the rest of it, but I’ve only just noticed it now that I’m on reading week and don’t have to do anything. I am saddened that I, who pride myself on having a life outside of medicine, really don’t, as far as I can tell. I am further saddened that the precious free time is frittered away in the uncomfortable state of procrastination.

So far, I can think of only one feasible solution. Resolutions not to procrastinate don’t work, but getting the life part of my “work/life separation” to intervene does have an effect. I was particulalry reminded of this as I visited with the two friends that make up my writing group today. Sitting with people who have nothing to do with medicine and talking about art stuff has been, so far, the most centering part of my reading break. I’m sure that other social breaks will help to de-stress.

Not only have I been able to sit and write another post, but I’ve been able to get on with other chores. Those things-that-I-don’t-want-to-do-but-should. Amazing how a smidgeon of life makes work a lot more palatable.

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