How to Relieve Stress to Ensure You Do Your Best

This post is written by Aylia Doomes. Aylia is a 1st year medical student and a member of the leadership team of Walk with a Future Doc at CUNY School of Medicine/City College of New York

It’s the end of the semester and with that comes the unavoidable nightmare of final exams. With the pressures of obtaining good grades and coming out on top, comes overwhelming stress and anxiety for some of us. Which is why I am here to tell you how I learned through walking, final exams can be a little easier to tackle when the going gets tough.

Author Aylia Doomes proudly displays a Walk with a Doc sign on a recent walk.

As a leader for many of the walks, Walk with a Future Doc helped me tackle my exams and the stress and anxiety that come with them, all while enjoying the beautiful neighborhood around my campus. Like many medical students I tend to lock myself away in the library or in my room and study nonstop prior to an exam. However, recently I learned that taking a 30-minute walking break from studying isn’t time wasted when it’s bettering health and improving brain power.

Walk with a Future Doc taught me that walking not only benefits us physically but mentally as well. By walking I believe I have increased my own brain power and memory. Walking has allowed me to return to my studies more alert and ready to tackle the studying tasks at hand. Walking also helped improve my mood for the whole day. Having an entire year’s worth of material to learn (or in my case an entire organ system) was no longer quite so overwhelming.

Walk with a Future Doc has also given me the opportunity to discuss and learn studying tips from other dedicated walkers and upper classmen. I’ve also found taking a break to walk with friends can take your mind off school and exams altogether. It can be fun to discuss future plans and have something to look forward to when exams are over.

For me Walk with a Future Doc enabled me to put things into perspective and made me realize that there is more to my day than just being stuck in a stuffy library for hours. So, I encourage all medical students to incorporate walking into your day and spend some time outside the library during exam season. After all, how can we expect to help future patients if we don’t take care of ourselves first, both mentally and physically?

So, until next time, don’t miss a beat, move your feet and get to walking and enjoying the beautiful spring and summer weather!