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Subject: Your Health and Academic Success


Dear Brother,

It’s been one week. The semester has just begun, and you should be off to a good start. I am writing you this letter because you stopped by the office for an appointment. You are developing study routines, and need some advice.

I am here to help you with time management, positive self-awareness, and developing the other essential skills that will help you in future leadership roles.

I hear you. You want to go all-in for your dream of becoming a medical doctor. I want to support you in this process. You understand that earning an MD is not easy, and you are up for the challenge.

I am concerned because you told me that you decided not to go to the gym. You said, “I don’t have time for that on my schedule.” I told you that if you do not make time to take care of yourself, please be prepared to lose time in response to illnesses. When you abandon doing the activities that are good for your health, you can invite health challenges that include anxiety into your life.

Medical school is stressful for most students. There are a lot of demands on your schedule. You will need a consistent six hours or more to study every day. Lectures or small group class meetings require anywhere from two to six hours, Monday through Friday. You must find healthy outlets to manage the academic load.

This emphasis on identifying healthy activities brings me to the importance of sleep.

You believe that in getting four hours of sleep, you will be able to function and do well in school. Nothing could be further from the truth. You are twenty-five, which means your body needs a minimum of six hours of sleep each night. More, but not exceeding ten hours is ideal for increasing brain functionality.

Let’s not abandon self-care in an attempt to gain more time to focus on your studies. The additional hours you may have will be compromised by inadequate rest and exercise. I have seen multiple students experience burnout and fail at achieving their goals.

I am here because I want to see you excel. This advice I am giving you will only help you along your unique journey to becoming a physician. Listen and take heed to align yourself with the success you desire for your life.

Before I let you go, I want to remind you about the importance of finding someone to serve as your accountability partner. Don't get me wrong; you must hold yourself accountable first. It's also vital that you meet with another student consistently to ensure that you are making progress in your studies.

You cannot do well in complete isolation in medical school. Connecting with another student offers you the opportunity to teach the material you are learning. We know that teaching takes your comprehension in any subject matter to a different level. Yes, coordinating a schedule with another student may be difficult, but it is critical to developing academic competence.

Ok, I will let you go and get back to work. I look forward to your next appointment. Remember to take care of yourself and to invest in the relationships that can empower you to achieve this degree.


Dr. Lindsay

If you are not one of my university students, explore this lesson further by enrolling in my self paced online course. I have classes dedicated to health, wellness, and productivity.


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