“It’s definitely been a matter of mindset and going to war against with doubt, anxiety, and feelings of inadequacy every single time they creep in. Each semester had a point where I let my guard so far down against those thoughts that I felt a little paralyzed by fear. I had to step back and remind myself that if let my mindset continue to spiral into more negativity, I would will myself to fail.

I wouldn’t fail because I was incompetent or unintelligent or incapable, I would fail because I would let myself believe a host of lies to the point of finding my identity in them.

So at each of those points, I would take time to reflect on how far I’ve come since I started this journey. My progress and growth felt more tangible when I reminded myself of how much more I know now than before I started PA school. Instead of questioning the affirmation that my support system gave me, I made myself believe it.

And you know what’s more uncomfortable than unintentional eye contact? Forcing yourself to make eye contact with your reflection and speaking truth over yourself that you don’t really believe at the moment.

It’s a good practice though. Ultimately, I kept coming back to the fact that God gave me this purpose, brought me this far, and is going to see it through.

This necessary change in my mindset always sets off a chain of events. I start to find joy in my work again. I’m reminded that although studying high volumes of dense material is tiresome, this opportunity to learn medicine is a privilege and opportunity that some never get. I owe it to my patients and to myself to pursue it enthusiastically!

That joy fuels me to work even harder, hard work gives me confidence, and all these things allow be to be at peace with whatever the outcome of the present obstacle may be. The harder the fight, the sweeter the victory.”