6 Signs You’ll Be a Great Doctor


Students often ask me, “should I become a doctor?” That’s a highly personal question that I
cannot answer for you. But what I can tell you are the traits that
make for great doctors. If you can identify with these 6 signs, chances
are you’ll be a phenomenal physician. Dr. Jubbal, MedSchoolInsiders.com. For those who are new here, my name is Dr.
Kevin Jubbal. I earned my M.D. from UC San Diego and matched
into plastic surgery. If you’d like to know more about my story,
the realities of being a doctor, and what it was like to do plastic surgery, visit my
vlog channel. Link in the description below. The first trait is a keystone of sorts. Without resilience, you probably won’t get
to the point of being able to call yourself a doctor. That’s because the path to becoming a fully
licensed and board certified physician is arduous. During the four years in undergrad, you’re
competing with other brilliant college pre-meds to earn your seat at medical school, and your
medical school pre-requisite courses and the the MCAT are no joke. Next up, just when you thought you knew how
to study and be efficient, medical school comes in like a wrecking ball. You’ll spend the first two years learning
more knowledge than you thought possible, culminating in the most challenging and high
stakes test of your life – USMLE Step 1. Next, you’ll spend two years in your clinical rotations, or clerkships, followed by Step 2CK and then you’ll do
the application process all over again, this time applying to residency. Once in residency, it’s a marathon
to finish with anywhere from 3-7 additional years, plus time for further sub-specialization in
fellowship. The path to becoming a doctor is long and
challenging, but that’s not why you need to be resilient. Everyone faces unforeseen obstacles along
the way – that’s just life. Facing and overcoming those obstacles while
still completing the most challenging professional professional training in the world requires great resilience
– the ability to bounce back. For me, that was overcoming Crohn’s colitis,
family emergencies, and financial hardship all concurrently during my college career. For others it’s losing a loved one, or becoming
injured in a freak accident, and for others it’s overcoming deeply ingrained bad study
habits that result in subpar grades and MCAT scores. If you need help getting better marks, check
out our website. It’s what we’re here for. While resilience is important, it’s only
half of the equation. When things aren’t working, the answer isn’t
to get up and keep doing the same things over and over expecting a different result – that’s
just insanity. Rather, it’s to get up and adapt. If you’re adaptable, this will be your
superpower in the journey to becoming a doctor. As a pre-med, being adaptable means navigating
the highly competitive and cutthroat landscape in university. It means trying new things and failing, but
more importantly learning from your mistakes and continuously improving. It means figuring out why you’re not getting
straight A’s, then going to Med School Insiders to learn how to study more effectively, and
adapting your study strategies until you’re getting stellar grades. Hit the like button if any of my videos have
helped you improve your grades. As a medical student, being adaptable is taking
everything up a notch. It means looking at why you’re not getting
a good night’s rest and adapting your morning and nightly rituals to improve your sleep,
which increases your effectiveness during the day time. And yes, you should be getting adequate sleep
even when you’re waking up at 3:30 AM every day when you’re on surgery. It means totally overhauling your study habits
once more because what worked in college isn’t is not going to cut it in medical school. It means figuring out how to be useful in
not only the operating room, but also the delivery room, or the psych ward, or the pediatric
ICU. It means adapting to the different personalities
of your different attending physicians who are in different specialties, because what
gets you an Honors in surgery is not necessarily what gets you an Honors in pediatrics. As a resident, being adaptable means becoming
even more self-reliant on your own systems than you were as a medical student. External structure, pressure, and deadlines
are reduced in residency, but now a failure to be at the top of your game translates to lesser care
for your patients. Adaptability as a resident means taking responsibility
and ownership of your patients, and it means adapting to the highly variable demands on
each rotation. And as an attending physician, you will still have
to adapt. Now you will be adapting to the constantly changing practice of medicine. Confidence is necessary to be an effective
physician, but it should not be confused with arrogance. No matter how smart or hard working you are,
you’ll never know all there is to know in medicine. The amount of information is too vast, and
it expands every day with newly published research articles. You will face many days where you don’t
know the answer, or when new research contradicts your prior understandings. For that reason, a willingness to admit gaps
in your knowledge is necessary. At the same time, don’t let the expanse
of medical information scare you into thinking that you’ll never be good enough. Imposter syndrome is surprisingly common,
and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Feigned confidence acts as a thin veil that
can easily be disturbed, but real confidence is earned through diligent work and experience. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. It’s all about your systems. You start off not getting the results you
want. You assess, adapt, and implement new systems. You get a small win. From there you repeat, again and again, assess,
adapt, and implement. Each win gives you a little more confidence, allowing
you to take on bigger risks. At that point, you’ll have the confidence
to walk into the operating room without second guessing yourself. And trust me, the last thing your patient
or healthcare team wants to see is a surgeon that isn’t confident in themself. But remember, be humble, and never let it
get to your head. Being book smart is important, no doubt about
that, but what separates good from great physicians is bedside manner. Developing emotional intelligence to be a
great listener, an astute observer, and empathetic to one’s patients is key in establishing
trust. And trust is one of the foundational components
of an effective doctor-patient relationship. Often times, listening to your patients carefully
about their symptoms and medical history will be just as important as the physical exam. Clues that point towards the right diagnosis
may be hidden in the patient’s complaint, and you need to sort what’s relevant from
what is not. Patients may also be hesitant to share certain
details, particularly when it comes to insecurities or situations of abuse. Again, establishing trust is key to allow
open communication and an avenue to provide the care that they need. Contrary to what many people think, being
a doctor is not about diagnosing diseases and prescribing medications. Telling a patient what to do, how to eat,
and how often to exercise is not an effective way to help. Great physicians empower their patients to
take ownership of their health and wellbeing. In medical school, we focused on motivational
interviewing as a vital tool in our repertoire. This method of interaction focuses on listening
to a patient’s concerns and using a stepwise approach to find what sort of interventions
are actually realistic. A good plan that someone can stick to is better
than the perfect plan that has zero adherence. Compassion is showing kindness, care, and
a willingness to help another. Some people are born more compassionate than
others, but as with all the traits we’ve listed, this is something that can definitely
be developed. The ever increasing bureaucratic sludge of
healthcare is making medicine less about medicine, and more about billing, charting, and regulations. Compassion, and remembering that being a physician
is a tremendous privilege, will go a long way in keeping you sane. Those lacking emotional intelligence or compassion
are prone to treating patients as diseases rather than as people. The patient is not just a list of medical
problems and medications. Your patients won’t value how many publications
you have, but rather whether or not you actually care about them. And as we already discussed, this is foundational
in trust and mutual respect, which is necessary to be an effective physician. Despite what people have told you, being a
doctor isn’t about being smart. It’s about having the right work ethic. You don’t have to be brilliant to pass the
MCAT, the USMLE, or your board exams. In fact, if you were a neuroscience major,
like I was, or studied another conceptually challenging major like mathematics, physics,
or bioengineering, chances are that your college major was more conceptually challenging than
what you’ll learn in medical school. For more conceptually challenging classes,
you can walk in on test day and figure out many of the difficult problems. In medicine, you’re hosed if you didn’t
adequately memorize the information. Where medical school is tremendously challenging
is less in concepts and critical thinking, and more in the vast amount of information
you must memorize. If you need help on how to memorize more effectively,
I’ve made several videos just for you. Links are in the description below. No matter how smart you are, you’ve got
to put in the time in order to learn and memorize the vast quantities of information. Only once you have a solid foundation of knowledge
can you begin to develop more advanced clinical judgement and be the best physician you can
be. If you enjoyed this video, you’ll love my
weekly newsletter. It gets sent out once a week and is super
short. In it, I share weekly insights, tools, tips,
and resources available only if you sign up via email. I don’t publish it anywhere else. When new projects come up, small in-person
meetups, special deals, or anything else that is very limited, I share it first with Med
School Insiders newsletter subscribers. Check it out at medschoolinsiders.com/newsletter. If you ever change your mind, it’s one-click
to unsubscribe, and I promise I’ll never spam you. This list was by no means exhaustive. Let me know in the comments what other qualities
make for great physicians. If you liked the video, let me know with a
thumbs up, and if you weren’t a fan, I don’t mind if you leave a thumbs down. Much love to you all, and I will see you guys
in that next one.

100 thoughts on “6 Signs You’ll Be a Great Doctor

  1. 00:36 – Resilience
    02:32 – Adaptability
    04:18 – Confident but Humble
    05:44 – Emotional Intelligence
    07:09 – Compassion
    07:59 – Work Ethic

    As always, time stamps are also in the description. Also, if you'd like to sign up for my weekly newsletter, click here: https://medschoolinsiders.com/newsletter

  2. I really wish there were more doctors that possessed these qualities, esp. emotional intelligence and compassion. They seem to become a rare commodity.

  3. Yet to find one video of yours where I don't rush to hit the thumbs up because it is so well thought and useful. Hahahaha! Thank you for all you do Dr. Kevin. We medical students need some real, effective and sometimes harsh advice to keep us going as well as someone to understand what we go through. You do both of these things and we're grateful for it. 🙂

  4. Great video Dr. Jubbal ☺️
    I’m a non-US medical student in Europe (6 year MD program) and I intend to apply for US residency in a few years time. I would be extremely interested in learning some tips on the application process as a foreign medical graduate. I’m sure that many of your viewers have the same plan as me, it would be great if you could offer us some tips 😌 For example, how realistic would it be to obtain an internal med residency position in NYC with competitive step scores, but only 3 months of US clinical experience and limited resources to travel and attend potential interviews? How many programs should I apply to?

  5. Hey! Quick question, so I’m looking into undergrad programs and medical schools, and I had a question. For one of the undergrad programs I like, (Biomedical sciences) is only three years. Is this okay or should I look for something four years long instead?

  6. I'm about to go into my 3rd year of med school and exams are driving me insane, I really needed this video ❤️

  7. Love this! Thank you for your continuous effort in these videos! These are very insightful and help me understand what it means to be a physician.

  8. What you need is a great memory. If you don't have that don't bother.

    After that you need analytical ability. If you don't have that don't bother.

    Everything else is pretty much good to haves but don't need.

  9. I'm considering a change of career from computer science to medicine, and your videos have been helping me a lot to think this thoroughly. Thank you!

  10. Funny… I'm a 3rd year med student and I feel like I have all of these qualities, but I've been questioning if I even want to be a doctor anymore. I guess it's because I've been jaded by the healthcare system that cares more about billing and charts and treats patients like diseases, like mentioned at 7:24. I come home frustrated by the lack of efficiency and humanity… 😓

  11. Great video, just one point I don't agree with.
    How is being a doctor a privilege?? It's an earned right in my opinion

  12. I'm going to be a dentist, please Dr. Jubbal advice me with some great tips!! Ur reply would be valuable. I am following u since last 6 months. Please advice!

  13. I loved it! I'm from Dominican Republic just starting pre-med, and this made me realized how much doctors need to work in their personality for being real down-to-earth superheroes! Keep going, just subscribed 💙

  14. Love the video.
    Motivational Interviewing is a therapeutic model often integrated with CBT in clinical counseling.
    It’s an effective & efficient set of techniques when practiced correctly and appropriately

  15. Sorry, slightly unrelated question…what animation software are you using? This looks like it would be perfect for my videos!

  16. I am the BIGGEST procrastinator, and when involved with depression it is HUGE. my dream is to be a doctor but if I want to do this, I need to get this procrastination under control

  17. Is medicine really more about memorized info than critical thinking? I'm very good at the latter, though I can retain a lot of info as well…

  18. I wanna be a Dr but I don't believe in myself even though some of my friends believe in me. Maybe it's because of my depression

  19. It's so true, compassion is a skill that can be developed over time. Like anything else it's a skill and quality that can be trained, I'm trying to work on it as I go forward in medicine. What a great video Dr. J.

  20. Hey Dr Kevin!
    In your opinion, how good is an MCAT score of 513: 131/124/130/128?
    I am an international student
    Thank you!

  21. Hey Dr Jubbal , just wondering what do you think of pre med professional medical fraternities and did you join at UCSD?

  22. Hi Dr. Jubaal, I’m in high school at the moment and will complete my LNA at sixteen. I’m bridging into a RN program and was wondering if this will make me a better medical school candidate, since I will be applying at nineteen years old.

  23. These videos are mostly useless to me because I live in NZ and med school is very different here but still some good information!

  24. Hey ! I have done my graduation in business management but now I want to get into med school but I don’t want to spend four years for pre-med until and unless it’s not mandatory! So can you please suggest me what should I do now and if I have to opt for pre-med then for which course I should go for which is really help me out in med school? Thankyou

  25. I found my passion for the health industry as my school offered volunteer work i put my name down and fell in love with it i have kept with it for many years I am now third year med student.

  26. Today, I cried outside of our student union because I'm having trouble with the simple concept of "hypotheses" and how to spot them in "if, then" statements. Honestly, I felt really ridiculous about it, so much so that I went thinking that maybe medicine isn't for me over some small piece of the scientific theory. But I've been doing this crazy undergrad journey for ten years – with so many bumps along the way that kept me from finishing.

    I didn't know what I was doing my first year. I lost people my second year. I took a break for years. I went back, then there wasn't any money and two years from that point, I'm almost starting over, but, I know that I can do this. It's been years since high school – of course I'm going to be confused – just have to keep going. I know I'll be a great doctor, this video didn't need to tell me that, but it did reinforce that that was going to be true. So, thank you, Dr. Jubbal. I appreciate it.

  27. I memorize information pretty quickly and easily but I love critical thinking and solving problems a little bit more, will that be a problem? I hate mathematics and only enjoy some topics in physics but I adore biology.I’m confused now, is medicine for me or not? I really really love it and have done tonsss of research about it. Help😂?

  28. The only one i watch the adds for .. because i truely belive in you and love your channel ♡
    So helpfull as i m going throught feiliure in school .. wish me luck

  29. Thank you! I love this very much !!!! I’m Currently attending CSU Fresno and hoping to get into UCSD 👩🏽‍⚕️🧠

  30. For me its losing my loved one, getting cheated on (twice), having sibling diagnosed with crohn's getting shitty grade, being lonely for 6 years, HUGE financial debt and clinically being diagnosed with MDD —> and i am still trying to make it day by day.

  31. 100 percent truth!
    I remember that sinking feeling in medical school thinking to myself did I really sign up for this? What I was referring to was that I was not being intellectually challenged enough and instead was bombarded with information overload and hated and resented sheer memorizing stuff. I thought to myself great , my ability to be a good physician rests solely on my ability to memorize as much info as possible and very little to do with being able to solve a challenging conceptual problem. I thought in what world does that make sense apparently this one!

  32. If I kill the patient Im a great doctor since I freed him from all sickness, damn im so effecient in time and resources saving

  33. Hi! I got interested in med school and I was just wondering: what is it like to be in med school? I really wanna know, since, even though I'm still in high school I wanted to know what is it like when you're inside med school. I hope you can answer my question! Thanks!

  34. I am 14, my ultimate dream is to become a doctor. I’m scared I will not be successful, but your videos really help me. Thank you very much💛

  35. I'm more compassionate than others at my school, even though im only in 8th grade ( i have wanted to help ppl since second grade) i feel insecure about wanting to be a doctor for the purpose of only helping people while the people at my school are doing it for money or something. No one wants to go to harvard like i do so badly that i work too hard to get good grades. My friends/group don't really care even though they're smart. This is my second year at this school and i'm still not used to the way they their system works. They are used to this so when they see me studying they make fun of me. I feel stupid at school. my parents tell me that its good i study and want to go to harvard. but i feel insecure about studying and wanting to get good grades.

  36. I am a nurse assistant and I wish I could be a physician. I love the medical field so much. I am going to nursing school though. May the lord have mercy.

  37. I am only 12 years old and these videos are really giving me a good understanding on what it really means to be a doctor.

  38. I am indian and i get admission in med school govt. in usa what may i do please tell me it was realy healpfull for me

  39. As a physician I enjoy your videos. They are truthful and insightful. Keep up the great work. I just wanted to share something with you and your followers.

    When I first started my practice back in 2004 I covered my walls with all my diplomas and certificates. I soon realized that people really don’t care about what school I went to or where I did my residency training or how many honors I’ve received. What they wanted to know was how compassionate I was about their condition and if I was willing to listen to them. My patients know me as the “joke doctor”. Because I always start every visit by telling them a new joke. It takes away their anxiety and helps them to relax and trust in my ability to help them. Through the years I have created such strong bonds with my patients that I have been invited to hundreds of weddings, birthday, christenings, and other family events of my patients. To them I’m not just their doctor but their friend. It’s the small things that matter. Every patient that I do surgery on I make sure to call them the next day to see how they are doing. It only takes a few minutes of my time but means a great deal to them.

  40. Hi! I'm a high school sophomore right now looking to do my pre-med in neuroscience. I think I want to go to med school afterwards, but if I realize that I don't want to do that, will my neuroscience major be applicable and useful in other fields/professions?

  41. I want to help people. I love science, biology, I love people and I love learning new things, but I'm concerned about being burnt out. I'm prone to depression and I don't want to be so overworked I get stuck in my own head. I'm also very passionate, I have so many things I want to do with my life, but I would also love to be a doctor. I could use some wisdom from anyone currently in or has been through med school. Should I go for it? Does anyone have any advice?

  42. I just wanted to tell you I love your videos. Aside from being directed towards medical students, the message is positive and somewhat universal. I'm an EMT in my late thirties..wishing I did something different.

  43. I am in my final year of medical school and I agree, it's not about how much you can memorize, but about how you interact with people. Working on this everyday

  44. Quick question, I’m a MLT (med lab tech) and I intend to get a bachelors of science from TTU. Does anyone know if this is a good idea ?

  45. I'm curious what the differences are between a doctor and other medical professional like a physician's assistant. When would you recommend becoming a physician's assistant over a doctor?

  46. Please can you add translation into arabic… That i can share these videos with my arabic medical friends? Realy thank you for all information in your videos🌹

  47. I am currently a high school senior and wanting to go into the medical field. This channel has widen my sense of what I am going to face and helped me understand what I would need to do going further in this study. I have Crohns and just seeing someone with similar problem has helped me in the sense of giving me the confidence of I can do this. It’s a long road ahead but I’m slightly more ready after watching many of these channel’s videos.

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