Today is Dare’s birthday, happy birthday from all of us at Perry’s Tots. 😀
Complements of the season to everyone reading this. I feel so honoured to feature on this year’s episode of 31 days 31 voices. The year 2015 has been a good year for me. Not that I really learnt anything new but more of implementing what I have known in to real life issues which I think is the most important and difficult. It has also been one of the busiest for me. 2015 is the year in which for the first time throughout my stay in medical school I decided to do nothing other than school! School!!
I created no time for extra curricular activities. I just want to put in every time and energy I have got and be done with school. This was because it will be my last shot of really learning medicine because I don’t plan to do clinical practice so I had to dedicate my time to maximise the learning opportunity as much as possible and also the joy of passing exam once and forgetting about it which was my utmost priority.
One thing I felt good about was my relationship in dealing with people. Medicine is in part apprenticeship so I needed to build a good relationship with my colleagues, consultants and senior residents so as to learn as much I can from them and give them enough reason to spend their time to teach me.
In the beginning of the year I had about 3 months free for myself before final year started. So I took time out to lay out plans in achieving my life goals before starting the busy final year and continue when I’m done. Apart from the fact that it was busy for me, the relationship part is where I had most fun and challenge. I happen to be the representative of my group, which is not a responsibility that is new to me. I had a lot of interactions with quite a number of people from consultants, cleaners and different secretaries. Some were very nice, some were not too nice and some just had a preconceived notion, “students are never truthful and serious” and they find delight in punishing or reporting to the highest authority, even with the slightest provocation.
Let me share a story with you all. For everytime a lecture holds, I and my colleagues will take the chairs that is best suited for lecture, which is the one with a writing pad and position it where we can get the best from the lecture. One morning, we notice some chairs with no writing pad was placed in the front row, so we had to replace them, needless to say that it was meant for consultants. The next day, I went to one of the departmental staff for an information. Before I said what I wanted he flared up and said my class is the worst he has dealt with. I was shocked. He said we scatter the class everytime he arranges it. This is someone who never told me anything before about seat arrangement. I apologised to him without defending why I and my class mates moved the chairs and left without telling him why I came to see him. I was so infuriated with the way he accused me without knowing why we did it and he never explained to us earlier why he rearranged the chairs, apparently he did the arrangement like that because he does not want to be arranging the chairs every week when the department holds its academic meeting. He later called me back and asked me what I wanted, so I told him. Before now, I have noticed he seems to be the most junior of those in the office, he is the one sent to do the menial jobs and he was always complaining, needless to say that he appears to me to be the oldest in terms of age. I noticed he was not always happy, that’s why I decided not to argue with him because he was complaining most of the time I saw him, so I knew the reason he flared at me could be from a frustrated angle. In as much I wanted to defend the action of I and my colleagues I decided to keep calm because I see what he goes through everyday. I was very sure if I had tried to defend myself he would not have listened. But at the end of the day he was ready to listen to me and was a win win situation, he flared up which made him calm afterwards to listen to me and I got an opportunity to be heard. We had a good working relationship afterall.
Another thing of importance to me this year was the ability to be proactive and not reactive. Being proactive will make you handle situations better and increase your circle of influence. Let me share another story with you all. In one of my postings, I had an encounter with a lady who was always strict and formal in all my dealings with her. I tried to build a good relationship with her by being a little informal, chipping in some jokes and also speak to her sometimes in our local dialect but she never succumbed. She was always keeping a straight face, always replying in English and always want to follow hierarchy, may be to impress her boss, who knows. I later discover that all my strategies were not working. I never got frustrated. So I decided to dance to her tune. Always formal, greet her and go straight to business. Anytime she wants something done I don’t object and if I have a different opinion I suggest to her but once she discards my opinion I don’t go ahead to defend myself or prove what I think is better. I carry out her wish even sometimes she later realises it was not the best. As time passed by I noticed she became more friendly, being more informal, calling me with my first name and interacting with our local dialect. Then I played on. We now have a good communicating relationship. She now listens to me and sometimes I have my way in some issues I never thought I could before. One thing I saw was important was people love it when they express themselves, people love to when they are heard. From then on, even though she always prove to be strict and takes no nonsense, she is always ready to listen to me. Not that I changed her, but I can always get my message through any time.
One book that’s made me do things like this was a book by late Steven Covey titled Seven habits of highly effective people. Its the best book I have read on self development.
Thank you Pero for giving me this opportunity to share the most important part of my 2015. You’re the best.
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Season’s greetings from Perry’s Tots. 🙂