Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia

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Balancing Medical School and Extracurricular Activities

While medical school is rigorous and challenging, that doesn’t mean students can’t juggle their academic requirements with outside interests. Understanding the importance of giving students the opportunity to embrace a balanced lifestyle, Newcastle University Medicine Malaysia (NUMed) offers plenty of extracurricular options that are both related and not related to the medical field. Among others, the university organises community projects where students can volunteer. They can also choose to participate in academic-related societies to enhance their knowledge and competency in their respective fields.

In actual fact, it’s not unheard of – and completely understandable – for medical students to partake in completely unrelated extracurricular activities during medical school. After all, those who wish to unwind and take a break from their medical studies may want to seek ways to hone their skills in crafts, sports, music, and even dance; but do you ever wonder how medical students are able juggle their time to enjoy extracurricular activities as well?

Here are three tips to help you maintain a balance between academics and personal life while in medical school.

1. Choose wisely

Choose the right extracurricular activity for you. The perfect fit is not always the easiest; take time to explore the activities available to you and what you could gain from each one of them. The cost and time required to attend to the activity should also be guiding factors to determining a good fit. Ultimately, choose something you enjoy doing that will also help you on your way to success.

2. Develop a schedule

Plan out what needs to be done and when it needs to be done. Prioritise your activities so you don’t leave anything important for last. When scheduling, be sure to take your classes into account and allocate enough studying time before incorporating your extracurricular activities.

3. Take breaks

Excessively studying for a long time is just as harmful as too little studying. Effective time management comes through an understanding of how to invest your time in the right things. This also means that you should take smart breaks. Work hard, then take needed breaks to let your mind and body recharge. It is also important to set little midday breaks to keep productivity levels from plummeting.

Once you find your balance, you will be able to seize the opportunities to be involved in extracurricular activities during medical school. Plan and prioritise well and you will be able to transform your present-day efforts into future successes.

published on: 6 February 2020