Self-care is something very close to my heart. I found out the hard way that you have to take care of yourself first before you can help others. When I started medical school, I felt out of my depth, and struggled to stay afloat. This not only affected my mood, but my eating habits. I became quite disconnected from my food and nutrition, creating a downward spiral until I lost myself.
Student wellbeing can easily be overlooked and can lead to so many negative habits that stop us from looking after ourselves. The stress of medicine and trying to balance normal life can be difficult, and we can end up leaning too much on one side or the other.
I started an Instagram blog back in third year as a way to document my journey through medical school, and it became a form of self-care for me. Every time I wrote a post about something that had happened, it gave me a chance to reflect and check in on my own wellbeing. Another thing I’ve found in the last year, is how wonderful the medical community is on Instagram. I’ve found many friends there I relate to and who hold me up when I’m feeling down; I personally think this has been one of the biggest reasons I continue my page.
Now, in my final year of medical school, I’ve managed to find myself again. Self care isn’t a selfish endeavour, but a vital part of our lives that needs consistent attention. Self care can look different for each person; it could be cooking, journaling, meditation or exercise! Whatever positive things you do for yourself that make you feel good, do so without guilt. Remember you are your first patient and you need care too.
I love everything Nutritank stands for. They give medical students like me and other healthcare professionals the opportunity to learn more about nutrition and lifestyle medicine, which Is vital for better holistic care.