I thought maybe I should stop being such a negative Nancy and I also found this post in the drafts on my blog, so I figured I’d hit publish…IDK why I never hit publish before since I usually never leave anything in drafts and it is from some time in October or November…I didn’t proofread past the first couple sentences, so hopefully it is not wildly inappropriate…
(Love Never Fails–Brandon Heath)
So I was looking through the pictures on my phone for one specific picture…that I seem to have deleted (which is probably good because I looked drunk even though I was just tired). Honest confession, I don’t exactly know what drunk looked like…but studies have shown that lacking sleep is equivalent neurologically of being drunk and I know what tired looks and feels like. Funny story, so we are all sitting at a table eating (or in my case not eating because I’m picky). The girl next to me is halfway through her second bottle of beer. The girl next to her has just taken her first sip of beer. The little boy at the end of the table asks that second girl if she is drunk. I think it might have been that same boy who asked another girl if he could go see her hotel room…but I wasn’t there for that one so IDK.
Anyway, so I didn’t find the picture I was looking for, but I did find this one.
I put some answers on the board to practice eye contact…and yep, that is a stick person saying that she is an interviewer…baby steps people, baby steps. See, I was terrified of failing the interview because a certain someone who will remain unnamed told me first year that there was no reason for me to even be at school because I was just going to fail the interview anyway. As it turns out, as long as you show up you pass the interview (and I am awesome at showing up. That is one of my strengths). I didn’t know that at the time though, so I freaked out. I wrote out answers to all the questions and a counselor corrected my work. I didn’t necessarily agree with her corrections but I knew my social skills were not the greatest and figured it was better than nothing, so I memorized those corrected answers to the questions. My way of learning to speak in front of people was to first learn it inside my head, then learn it aloud by myself curled up. Then by myself as if I were talking to someone, then with a stick person, then a picture of a close friend then maybe another friend, eventually a stranger or two, then finally a few people that I care about but didn’t speak with much, and finally the people I would be speaking to, if possible, and if not whatever I could find that was a close approximation. It was definitely a process.
While I certainly do not look forward to interviewing, I am really glad that it is not the process it once was. As it turned out, that list of questions they handed out was not what the interviewers actually asked me…which means that I know that I can survive an interview without knowing the questions and answers in advance. I also have moderately improved social skills now that allow me to more easily come up with words when necessary. I am afraid though that my social communication skills will disqualify me for the position I desire. Sure, my new friend thinks I am doing fine, but every other APPE preceptor has let me know that while my pharmacy skills are great, my social communication skills need some work. I try really hard, but I know my best often isn’t good enough. I pour myself into learning these skills and still feel like I am light-years behind my peers. Someone asked what I wanted for a party next week and I almost said out loud that I’d rather just not have a party. Once in a while I am excited by a party, but for the most part, the party atmosphere tends to be outside of my comfort zone. I drove ten miles to the hotel and ten miles back a few times a week not for the free food–I had all the food I needed without paying for gas in my room–but for the social learning it allowed. The more I observed and practiced in a more challenging environment the easier similar situations in the break room become…plus there was the ability to get a little extra social time in, but non-stressful social time was kind of hit or miss, and I wouldn’t have gone for that alone either.
So yeah. I am nervous about finding a residency for next year, but I am mostly thrilled with the progress I have made since second year. Oh, and to that person “I told you so” lol…everyone needs a good I told you so…(Also, I don’t think that person was being intentionally hurtful. I think she has an abrasive personality and was probably having a rough day before she had to talk to a very quiet first year and just didn’t think about what she was saying before she said it. She probably also didn’t understand that you can’t scare anxiety out of someone. Adding extra fear made me less, not more, likely to use my words.