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Anatomy videos

While I was studying for my anatomy course past year I must admit that I had a hard time. Anatomy is one of those courses where you need to get a lot of information in your brain in a short period of time. What helped me most, especially for anatomy, were videos. There are obviously a ton of videos online but these were the ones I found most useful because they helped me visualize the material and they contained a lot of mnemonics.

1. Medzcool
I loved the mnemonics that were used and explained in these videos. Especially for the cranial nerves. If you prefer other mnemonics than the ones mentioned in the video, check out the comment section!

 

2. Dr. Preddy
Give this man an award asap! If you don’t have enough time to learn all the arm and hand muscles this is your man! He is able to teach all of the arm muscles and their innervation in two brief videos! These videos are filmed by students but they’re useful nevertheless.

Arm muscles part 1
Arm muscles part 2

3. AnatomyZone
The youtube channel of anatomy zone contains almost all information about myology! These videos show our muscles from all angles which helps to memorize origin and insertion points. These also give a good image of the location of each muscle, artery and vein.
There is also an AnatomyZone site where you can find all of these videos for free you can click on the link to check it out!

I hope you enjoyed this post and found these tips useful. Medical students often rely on tips coming from fellow medical students and having a lot of tips definitely makes a difference when it comes to studying effectively. If you have tips that are helpful to study anatomy (or other courses) leave them in the comment section down below!

Lots of love
– A doctor in spe

 

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SYNAP – reblog

Today I wanted to share Synap with you. It’s a fairly new concept and as a medical student I can do no more but to promote amazing work other medical students are able to put out there. Synap is one of them. You can find all the information regarding Synap down below or on their blog.

REBLOG: Synap is an online education platform created by two medical students – James Gupta and Omair Vaiyani – to make studying easier. Synap lets you create, practice and share Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) with your friends.

We have a huge range of practice questions and exam banks for doctors, nurses, dentists and physician’s associates – including some premium content provided by Oxford University Press written for final year medical exams, and the specialty board exams such as MRCP, FRCA, FRCP and MRCS.

To learn more about how Synap works, check out the short animation below!

 

What I loved most about Synap is that it’s an interdisciplinary site so it’s not only great for doctors but also for nurses and dentists!

Thanks for passing by! If you enjoyed this post check out SYNAP via links above and let me know in the comment section what you think of it!

Lots of love
– A doctor in spe

Summary the subtle art of not giving a fuck

The subtle art of not giving a fuck is a book that I’ve been suggesting to everyone. I loved reading this book and up until this moment I’ve read the book 2 times which proves how great it is. This book has changed my view on my own life and in a way you can consider this a wakeup call. This book along with ‘mindset’ are books that should be a must-read for anyone in the middle of adulting.

I usually talk about the book itself and how it’s written but I saw that the writer, also a blogger, has posted an excerpt of the book on his blog and I advise you to read that before reading this review. So click here for that.

Summary
Just like you probably saw from the title the autor does not mince matters. This book is brutally honest and therefore one of the best self-help books I’ve read so far. There were some important lessons to learn here.

Lesson n°1
This book tackles our society for giving too many fucks about the wrong things and not enough fucks about what actually matters. To give an example people seem to talk more about the Kardashians outfits than for example about food waste – note: if you care more about the Kardashians that’s perfectly okay!!

Lesson n°2
Another important lesson is that everything that matters in life, is attached to a negative experience. You need to study really hard (often not fun) to get good grades (fun). This is something that isn’t always represented correctly in todays society. We hear a lot of succes stories but there’s more to those stories than meets the eye. Someone worked crazy hard to get where they are and all we see is that they achieved their goal. To get a bigger reward, you need to put in more effort.

Lesson n°3
People often seem to think that when they’ve reached their goal, it’s done, they’re happy and everything is fine but it isn’t. Problems are still there, the only thing they’ve achieved, is to be a little better than before, to have grown a little more. The growth mindset was present in this book, just explained differently.

For more lessons I’d advise you to read the book. It wouldn’t be fun to spoil the entire thing.

Review
The writing style of this book is easy and comprehensive. There aren’t any difficult words, but the language is sometimes explicit which might not appeal to everyone.
The book gives a lot of examples on what to do and what not to do. It’s therefore a great book for those people who don’t completely know what to do with their life.
I’d definitely say that of the self-help books I’ve read so far this is definitely one of the best. It’s unique not because of the writing style, but because of the honesty.

Since there is an excerpt of this book on the authors blog check it out before buying this book. You might not like it. As for me I loved the book hence why I’ve suggested it to almost everyone I know. Let me know in the comment section what books you would recommend.

Lots of love and have a great day!
-A doctor in spe

 

Prepping and how I study

I’ve already talked about my improved study techniques but today I’m going to talk about the three things that made the biggest difference in my results!

1 Preparing notes ahead

When i go to lectures I make sure that I’ve done everything ahead of time. If i don’t i’m just waisting my time and the professors time. Preparation is key. I like to make notes ahead of time and take those to class. Some people prefer reading through their notes, I do this when I don’t have enough time to type out my notes but this works great as well.

Along with this I reread all of these notes while going home. I take public transport so I often wait for my bus or metro. Those 5 minutes make a difference. It’s small but all small bits help! The time I need to get home varies but I spend an average of 1hour to 1hour30 to get home. Instead of waisting i try to benefit from that.

2 Visuals (other sources)

For medicine looking out for other sources is a good way to look at your courses differently. Especially if you don’t know the difference between things that are more important and things that are not. I watch a ton of videos and if there are things in my course that other videos emphasize on it means that it’s probably quite important. I personally loved ‘Shomu’s biology’ on youtube because he’s able to explain quite difficult concepts in an easy way.

3 Reading

Not only reading through your own course or textbooks but using other medical books is a great way to retain difficult topics. Different books often explain concepts differently and that is something that may or may not work for you.

I hope you enjoyed these tips. Let me know what your tips are in the comment section down below.

Lots of love
-A doctor in spe

Medical stationary gifts

I recently saw a picture on Instagram that had bone balpens and while I was searching for these I came across these amazing school/college supplies. Most of these would make great gifts and they can be found on various sites such as Aliexpress, Amazon and Etsy. So without further ado here are some great gifts for medical students.

gift renew.png

1. Sticky notes
I found these great sticky notes on Amazon, these are pricier than your regular sticky notes but they’re unique and quirky. There are quite a few options to choose from so definitely check these out!
Link: Amazon

2. Memo holder
This is definitely the most unique gift out on this list. It’s a brain shaped memo holder made out of concrete. These are made in the Netherlands and you can find these on Etsy or on the manufacturers site.
Link: Manufacturers site
Link: Etsy

3. Pen
A funny gift for students who are tackling anatomy and learning all bones in the human body. These balpens are quite affordable and can be found on Amazon and on Aliexpress.
Note: since Aliexpress can sometimes be unreliable I’ve tried to filter out two companies that have sold the most and had the best reviews.
Link: Aliexpress
Link: Aliexpress
Link: Amazon

4. Erasers
I found these cool brain shaped eraser tops on Amazon but you can also buy these on Etsy. They come in different colours and are a great addition to your medical stationary.
Link: Amazon
Link: Etsy

5. Tape
I never knew about DNA tape but it’s a clever take on regular tape. You can use this to decorate your note books. This tape also comes in a spinal tape version and you can buy both of these together on Amazon.
Link DNA tape: Amazon
Link spinal tape: Amazon

6. Markers
These come in many different shapes but two stood out to me. The first were pill shaped markers. I personally loved these from Amazon because of the bottle they came in.
The second shape were syringe shaped markers which you can find almost everywhere.
Link pill markers: Amazon
Link syringe markers: Amazon

I hope you enjoyed this stationary as much as I did! Let me know in the comment section which stationary item you liked most.

Lots of love
-A doctor in spe

Preparing for retake exams

As you all know I’ll be on vacation but for students who need to retake exams I wanted to write this blogpost. Retake exams are not fun and you often have less time for retake exams, than for exams you take during the year. It’s important in medical school to pass retake exams or you won’t be able to follow all courses from the following year.

1. Look at what went wrong first
Since you have retake exams it means that something went wrong the first time. Therefore it’s important to take a look at your exams and see what went wrong. There are feedback moments, there are professors who will help and guide you through the process. They will be able to tell you what went wrong and thus what you can do better next time.

2. Make a good schedule
I made a timetable for my vacation. I have already spend a good amount of time relaxing. It’s important to make a timetable that you will follow. You need to divide your time well and make sure that you keep to your schedule. You don’t want to retake these exams again next year.
When I had retakes I would study for three days and take one day off. That’s how I stayed positive and kept on studying during my vacation.

3. How to use your notes
Before studying make sure to have all of your notes present. Do not rewrite them because that is just a way to procrastinate the actual study process.
If there are mistakes on your notes write those in red so you don’t make them again.
If you don’t have notes, ask your classmates for help! I miserably failed the easiest class last year and I was lucky enough to borrow someone else’s notes.

4. Too many retake exams
Students with 7-8 retake exams often end up taking all of their exams. In the end they fail with 45/100 which is really sad in my opinion. If you know you won’t be able to pass all of your exams, or you have too many try to prioritize your classes!

5. Don’t get demotivated
It’s important to keep your goals in front of you because they will motivate you for me a simple inspiration board works. When I’m really not feeling it I’ll take a day off (this is usually planned in my schedule). Taking a day off will help you get motivated back again.

Last but not least I hope that you do well on your retake exams! If you have some tips for retake exams leave them in comment section down below because they can help other students ;). If you liked this article press the like button down below.

Lots of love
– A doctor in spe

My Kindle

Today I’m going to tell you everything about my Kindle. I’ve had a Kindle since august last year and though it doesn’t compare to a real book it still has a lot of benefits to it.

Why I bought it
Ever tried taking a Stephen King book on vacation? I have and it was an absolute hassle. I couldn’t fit it in my bag. I couldn’t read it anywhere but inside. I knew that I wouldn’t have that issue anymore.
The second thing is that Kindles are environmental friendly and though I’m not the biggest advocate for saving planet earth (even though I probably should be) I think that buying one kindle and using it for a long period of time will (hopefully) have a somewhat positive effect on the environment.
And last but not least. Buying books on a kindle is cheaper. I can buy more books, books online or in stores and I always find free books online and I can read them all thanks to this little thing!

What I missed
The kindle doesn’t come with a protective case. I know that I should have thought about this but I didn’t. It took me 2 weeks of reading and taking it everywhere with me, to realize that my screen had scratched on two places. I ended up buying a bookcover from Klevercase and I would highly suggest this company. They make some beautiful real-book cases (and loads of other things too). I have the ‘Jane Eyre’ bookcover and you can tell that it was made with lots of love!
I have to admit though that I’m missing the touch and feel of an actual book in my hands that’s why I bought a klevercase book cover. I do miss looking at a book and visually seeing how far I’ve read it but nothing is perfect so I’m fine with it!

My booklist
I wanted to share all of the books I put on my kindle with you. There are a lot of suggestions that I got from you guys and some of my friends abroad. I’m going to try and read every single one of these this summer vacation and hopefully also review them. I’ve already read ‘When breath becomes air’ the autobiography from Paul Kalanithi and ‘How doctors think’ by Jerome Groopman. I’ve started reading ‘The immortal life of Henrietta Lacks’  I was suggested this book by Sesan Miller but I’ve really been procrastinating reading this book. I’m going to do a review on these book (and some others) after the summer! I’m currently on vacation so I planned this article ahead of time.

Do I suggest buying a kindle?
Most definitely. A kindle isn’t like a real book which is why it might not appeal to everyone. Some people like actual books (which I do too!). I would prefer reading a real book over my Kindle but there is no denying that a Kindle is way more practical. It’s lightweight and thin and you can take it everywhere you want to. It has a lot of benefits.

I hope you enjoyed this article! Again you can find the booklist above or at the top of this blog. Let me know what you think about E-readers in the comment section down below.  I hope you are all doing well and enjoying your vacation!

Lots of love
-A doctor in spe

Challenge update

I’ve noticed quite a few things on this challenge. The main one is that I didn’t follow the perfection plan 100%. I get tired and lazy too and sometimes I really need a day off. But while trying to attain these habits I benefitted a lot.

1. I am way behind with studying
I’m not sure how but somehow I got way behind on anatomy. The thing is that I focus a lot on small details and I don’t want to move on if I don’t know everything just yet. As a result I’m way behind on schedule and I’ll try to get on track asap.

I currently make mini to-do lists and cross what I’ve finished. I have a lot of courses that follow quickly during my exams so I need to start cramming – which is something I wish I could’ve avoided.

2. Social media
I still use Facebook, mostly for educational purposes. For example talking to my mentor or planning a session for physics or chemistry. It’s still very hard to leave all the other things alone though! For some reason people reach out to me to answer questions so I end up having about 10 messages about courses in the evening.

I try to track as much of this challenge on Instagram if you want to ‘follow’ me during this period. I don’t always update pictures but there are a few @Doctorinspe. I try to not pay too much attention to making these pictures look nice. I’ve got better things to do with my time than organizing food and taking pretty pictures. Also I use an app called daymine which automatically sets the date and time so I kind of oblige myself to keep up.

Another thing I did was check the news quite often. There are rector elections currently and both parties are a bad choice for our university -in my opinion. I even felt ashamed of the arguments they used. I can’t believe that these people might become our rector.

3. Healthy food
Since I live at home I’m bound to eat whatever my family is eating and I do respect that. I don’t expect my mother to make something different just for me. This however means that if we’re having french fries I need to eat that too. Yesterday it was mothers day and my mom made a cake, two batches of cupcakes and brownies. Needless to say I couldn’t resist (shoutout to my mom who cooked on her own mothersday).

I also craved chocolate a lot! I made sure that the chocolate I ate was pure (and I do check the label to get 70-80% chocolate) but I have to admit that I also ate Kinder Bueno which is very sweet (but soooo gooooood!).

If I don’t have enough time for breakfast I’ll replace it with a smoothie. It takes me under 5 minutes to make one so I know what I’ll be drinking during my exams.

4. Working out
The past week I went bicycling once and went for a run once. Before sleeping I also did some yoga.
I’ve pushed working out to the weekend which was not a good idea at all. I always assumed that working out took a lot of time but when put in perspective it honestly is not that bad! It usually takes me 15-30 minutes per workout session which is completely fine if you ask me.

5. Sleeping habits
Creating good sleep habits felt weird. I used to have a natural clock which woke me up very early. Even as a kid I’d wake up early in the morning but during high school and university my clock shifted and I would sleep through because I didn’t have anything to do. I set my alarm at 6:00 but because of the pressure and stress I always woke up earlier. My natural clock wakes me up before 6:00 a.m. so I’m quite lucky. If I’m really tired, I’ll wake up at around 8:15.

All in all this challenge was obviously a lot of work. Putting in a 100% everyday was very exhausting and I came to class feeling tired. The thing is that it made me realize the importance of hard work. Everyone can achieve everything they want as long as they are willing to put the effort and hard work in it. It’ll be a struggle but it’ll make the end goal worth it even more. I’m going tot keep trying to put this much effort in everything I do. This challenge will be going on until I go on a hopefully well-deserved vacation.
During my vacation I’ll try to upload something but I prefer to enjoy my vacation. Especially after all of the work I’ll be putting in now. I hope you enjoyed this article :).

Lots of love
-A doctor in spe

 

Stressing out!

Medical school is hard work. It takes up your time. It can happen that you get stressed out, worry, and might even get nightmares about failing. That’s how my exams feel to me. The funny part of it is that all of these feelings are unnecessary. Since I have quite a lot of experience with stress and anxiety I wanted to give you my best tips.

1. Don’t worry
Instead of worrying you should relax and keep working on. Worrying will lead to doubt and doubt is the last thing you’ll need. Constant worrying will absorb time and energy and you’ll need these to study and make your exams. All you can do is your best and see how things work out!

2. Work out
I like to workout in the morning. There are a few benefits to this. The first is that going for a run in the morning gives you more energy! You’ll have more energy, feel better and have enough time to study. The second thing is that you’ll probably be more tired in the evening and fall asleep quicker.
Running outside also gives some time to completely de-stress. You’ll be able to shake off some of your feelings and move on.

3. Food is important
Some people don’t eat while studying, others like to stuff themselves. Either way it’s important to have the right nutrients. Go for dried fruits and nuts as snacks, a decent meal and drink some green tea or some coffee during your breaks. Don’t forget to drink enough water!
For me sugar makes me feel more anxious and more on edge. I definitely advise avoiding sugar. If you do want to eat chocolate go for pure chocolate with at least 70% chocolate in it.

4. Talk about it
If you’re genuinely stressed out talk about it with your parents or friends. A listening ear can help more than you think. If you don’t want to talk to your parents or friends about your feelings I advise going to a psychologist. You can trust them 100% and they will be able to provide the help you need. Universities usually provide student psychologists for free so check out your university site for more information.

I hope these tips help you tackle the exam stress. I wish you all good luck with your exams and I’m rooting for each and every single one of you ❤

Lots of love
– A doctor in spe

 

Motivational video

There was a video I really wanted to share with you. As you might know I find Will Smith one of the most motivational people on the world. I’ve found a compilation of some of his quotes on talent, skill and the influence of dedication and I wanted to share it with you!
 

Hoping this will motivate you as much as it motivates me! Lots of love ❤
-A doctor in spe