How to Get Work Experience for Medicine

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It's that time of the year where prospective students for medical school are bright eyed and bushy tailed.  Getting into medical school (or any university degree nowadays) is no simple task.  One of the highest hurdles is gaining enough work experience to demonstrate your interest for the healthcare field but this isn't easy to come by.  A huge flaw is having the mindset that work experience shadowing a doctor is the most fruitful way to illustrate your understanding for the field and desire to learn but this is not the case.  Most medical schools are aware that work experience isn't handed out like candy and thus do not expect hours of shadowing written on your personal statement.  In fact, some of the most competitive students are the ones that haven't shadowed a doctor and went about a different path.  Here are a few ways you can gain appropriate work experience for the medicine course.

Ward Assistant.  A ward assistant is an in-patient care volunteering role that I personally carried out at various hospitals.  The main task is coming in during lunch time to feed patients that are unable to feed themselves for various reasons.  This is your atypical caring role which many universities expect to see. Other tasks include assisting the patient to the bathroom and simply accompanying them given that it can get very lonely in the wards.  I enjoyed this because there were times I would see the patient's health develop and, soon enough, they were able to carry out all these tasks themselves without the help of a third person.  As we know, nurses are in very high demand and having an extra pair of hands on the ward is priceless to them.  You gain a huge appreciation for nurses and understanding of their job role which is crucial when working in healthcare.  Most hospitals are always looking for ward assistants and volunteers so it is worth checking your local hospital's website.  Generally, this is not a highly demanding role which requires a couple hours a week max so it will not intrude or affect your a level studies. Furthermore, the direct patient contact will not only aid in gaining skills but nourishes the soul.  Similarly, one can volunteer in a care home, which I did not do so cannot speak much about it.  Nonetheless, it is  equally as rewarding.

GP Surgeries.  Many GP surgeries are looking for volunteers to man the front desk or help sign post patients to where they need to go.  This is experience I carried out every week during my GCSEs.  It is less likely that smaller GP surgeries will have such opportunities available and this role will not have much direct patient contact.  However, the role does not matter but it is what you take from it.   This role can aid in team working and communication skills as you will be working and communicating with other members of staff and the public, all of which are vital when applying for any medical course. 

Healthcare Assistant.  This is a very common paid role that many graduates in particular tend to lean towards but any student over the age of 16 is able to train and gain the qualifications required to become an HCA. Not only does this involve working with patients but you carry out health checks, monitor vitals, take blood, health promotion, feeding, and washing patients for example. The list is endless.  An HCA will provide clearer insight on how life as a junior doctor will fair (to an extent) as well as how one works in a multi-disciplinary team.  You will work closely with doctors, nurses, and other healthcare staff.  You can work part time or on 'bank' so, only when required urgently, you will be needed to work and this ensures it does not interfere too much with your school work.  I recommend carrying out the training and preparation over school holidays when there is less educational commitment.  

Summer Internships.  There are various summer internships that enable students to travel to less fortunate countries to work in hospitals or community centres.   Here is a link to one of many programmes available: Projects Abroad. The pros is that you work in professional clinical environments, shadow doctors and nurses, understand healthcare at a global level, and begin to learn essential medical skills that are similar to what HCAs carry out.  Students are sent out to Nepal, Philippines, and Sri Lanka for example and you can choose your destination and dates.  Another pro is that you can choose the length of the trip from one week so that you do not need to block out a huge amount of your summer holidays. If I had the courage and finances to do this, I would in a heart beat.  As someone who is passionate about global health this would be a God-send.  However, with that being said, a common con is the need to finance this trip yourself which can cost anywhere from £1,350 which can be steep for some.  

Anything else. This is a bullet point that I felt is very significant.  Even if you are unable to attain work experience that you are satisfied with, you can pull the necessary skills required of a doctor from other tasks.  For example, working in McDonalds or the Library can teach you discipline, communication, and team work.  You can learn leadership skills if you are designated manager of a project.  My freelance stylist job has enabled me to improve my communication and listening skills and understanding a client's needs.  This will easily translate to talking to patients.  In many jobs, one must be empathetic and compassionate, especially in client or public facing roles.  One can read and even watch Vlogs about medical students or doctors and improve their perception of the job, the pros and cons, and process of becoming a consultant.  There is a wealth of knowledge and information available nowadays and most importantly, a medical school wants to see your passion and effort to know the field.  Do not be discouraged if you're not able to obtain work experience; being honest in your personal statement and interview is important and discussing how you came out of this road block can demonstrate determination.  This is your dream to fight for.

Feel free to check out my LinkedIn here to gain a better understanding of work experience I did throughout the years. 

Thank you for reading and I wish you best of luck for your applications! 

Autumn Winter 2019/2020 Fashion Trends

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It's my favourite fashion season! The colder seasons never fail to welcome cozy chic which is my motto.  Besides the obvious trends: darker shades, suits, checkered garments, tweed, corduroy, and neutral clothing, I wanted to pick out my favourite trends that I am excited to try to implement.  I am a firm believer in not fixing what isn't broken; however, change can be an exciting concept with regards to your wardrobe! 

Parisian Prep. I've always adored preppy outfits though never managed to find pieces that complimented existing items I owned.  This includes looking put together but not being afraid of layers.  For example, trench coats with a belt tie, berets, lace, pearls, and houndstooth patterns in stunning neutrals.  You don't need to be afraid of colour!  Feel free to go for your favourite shades such as classic reds, baby blues, and soft pinks.  

How can you embrace this trend? Primark! My recent Primark haul featured a lot of atypical Parisian prints and styles that that perfectly emulate Parisian streetwear.  Other shops on the high street include Dorothy Perkins and TopShop.  You don't have to break the bank to look like you stepped out of Champs Elysees. 

Brands: Marc Jacobs, Stella McCartney,  Celine, Dior, Valentino 

Bright colours.  I am not one for neon but there is a first for everything.  Easy ways to integrate neon into your wardrobe is through accessories: headbands, handbags, or even as simple as nail polish!  This is the method I would use to have more bright colours in my wardrobe.  Nonetheless, bold is beautiful so do not be afraid to go big or go home.  You will certainly turn heads and have people wishing they had your confidence.  Some other ways of wearing neon is through coats, shoes, or one piece dresses.  

Brands: Balenciaga, Saint Laurent, Versace, Nina Ricci

Florals.  Traditionally a spring trend, but it is evidently popping up on the runway.  This is an easier fashion statement to transition from the runway to the street.  I personally love floral dresses as it is a simple and easy way to wear heavy patterns without worrying about finding complimenting pieces.  A twist on this casual movement is dark florals.  Meaning, flowers that have an edge or gothic vibe.  Although may be intimidating at first, it can be a very Victorian-esque appearance that still screams elegance and royalty. For example, Coach do many subtle floral accessories and bags which are more timeless and less youthful than flower dresses you can find on BooHoo.   I noticed that Dorothy Perkins have many floral trousers that I am more than just tempted to purchase, alongside ASOS having a fresh stock of garments to welcome the season.  

Brands: Marc Jacobs, Givenchy, Miu Miu, Coach

Office minimalist.  This is my style to a T.  I love wearing outfits that satisfy a working environment but also as everyday 'casual' wear.  I believe it is time I begin to invest more in workwear chic given that I will be finding myself in professional settings more as I get older.  Therefore, this is the trend I am most looking forward to adapting.  The office minimalist is shown through shades of beige, big suits, oversized coats, and lots of collared shirts.  

Brands: Chanel, Marc Jacobs, Tibi, Prada, Hermes


Fearing Love

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I am filled with pride -one of the infamous seven deadly sins.  Unfortunately, with this, ego usually follows.  Despite being an individual who loves happiness, peace and positivity, I suffer with these two character-killing traits.  These qualities are heightened when afraid to get hurt.  It acts as a guard or wall; built automatically when emotions of adoration or love begin to overwhelm me.  Some argue this occurs because of past pain being emulated in current situations or simply due to insecurities. 

To me, it’s both.

When one experiences circumstances where they’re feeling belittled or second best, it harms their ego.  Like a crack in a cup, no matter how much glue is used, the piece never quite fits like it did before.  The scar of the break is still evident.  Glue can be in the form of compliments, self-help, or keeping busy, but the sensation can relapse.

Growing up, my mother fed me with an analogy to explain the human mind:

Holding up a blank piece of A4, she asks, ‘What do you see?
Nothing- just white paper.
She then puts the tiniest of a dot in the middle of the page, no bigger than the size of a period.  She’ll ask me again, ‘Now, what do you see?’
A black dot.’
See- you’ve forgotten all the whiteness already.  Your attention was on the mere darkness which takes up far less than 0.01% of the whole page.  That’s how humans process negativity – it becomes their prime focus and all the good is overlooked.’ 

This elucidates why past incidents can haunt and affect the present.  It takes that one moment of pessimism to oversee happiness.  I admit that previous feelings towards myself hover in my daily life; thus, resulting in my ego.  I do not have this facade because of superiority.  Rather, it is a defense mechanism.  It’s the anticipation for history to repeat itself.  Hence, I attempt to seem strong when truly undergoing the opposite.  I try to appear resilient but deep down, I want you.  I want to send the first text or ask to meet for coffee. I want to spend time with you in any shape or form. 

But I’m too afraid. 

Or maybe…

I’m too in love. 

It’s a constant tennis game in the head; wondering what will eventually win: the yearning to talk or the fear of eventual rejection. 
There are very few people I can freely speak to first without trepidation of coming across needy, clingy, or like a burden.  Sadly, one of the two categories encompasses family (Neethi didi!) with the other being my best friend (shout out: hey T heyyyy). 

One of the biggest reasons that people fall apart is because one or both parties are too troubled at the idea of being the one that loves more.  It is satisfying to know that someone else has an unfathomable amount of adoration for the other.  Nevertheless, affection should be limitless.  It is easier said than done.  I am a preacher not a follower on this topic.

I always told myself to be a hurricane and not a leaky faucet when it comes to expressing your feelings towards someone.  It could be a best friend, family member or whomever you have a distinct relationship with.  I do try to give every fibre of my being, however, I reach a point where I hit a wall.  Beyond this imaginary fence is a lot more to be felt and evoked.  Nonetheless, my guard is up.  I start to alarm myself at the amount of love I have; causing me to take a step back.  I begin to wait.  The questions sing-song in my head: Am I worthy for a call? Do you want to text me?  Are you thinking about me like I’m thinking about you? 

Every time my phone vibrates; I jolt at the thought that it could be you.  When it begins to light up, I hope you’re ringing.  When I open the door, I want you to be on the other side. 

And when it’s not you, I’m disappointed. 

I miss you more than you think.  But my ego prevents me from expressing it.

I now realize how exhausting it is to have this frontage.  This deprivation of regard stirs more problems than the wall is worth.  It plays out that I do not care, they’re no longer significant, or I’ve forgotten.  Conversely, my intentions are the opposite.  I care too much, you’re too significant, and I can never forget.  Yet I still cannot bring myself to tear down this barrier despite knowing how tiresome it is.  One shouldn’t have this petrified ambiance. 

Do not let the person, who will go through tremendous lengths, ever feel less than their value.  That is a punishment and they’re the last person deserving of it.  Hold on to them.  Remind them of their worth.   Tell them you love them.  Because one day you may not be able to.  They’ll be so drained by trying.  They may give up.  It can come to the conclusion that, ‘I’ve done everything I could, and yet still I can’t get through to her.’  And that is the most painful sensation- for them and for you.  

If you are reading this, I am so sorry I’m so afraid but trust me when I say I love you.  So much so that I surprise myself at the thought that I probably love way more than you think. 

Primark Haul July 2019

After doing a closet clean out, I've been wearing the same outfits quite frequently.  Despite loving each piece, I've been keeping my eyes peeled for new garments to add to my wardrobe.  My mom was on the hunt for a denim jacket and we resorted to Primark.  Whilst I was there, I spotted a gorgeous Parisian-chic inspired collection of beiges and browns which complimented my current style to a T.  I am so excited to share these finds with you all!

This is such a staple and basic.  The neutral colour means it can be paired up with various styles. I tend to always lean towards black basics so having tan is a nice mix-up.  It is difficult to find thin and soft jumpers that are not tight fitting or too chunky nowadays.  Therefore, this was a must.  I am very tempted to go back and buy more of these in other colours!

Given my obsession with boucle and tweed, this skirt was going straight into my bag.  Not only is the neutral camel and stone shades perfect for both the office and everyday, the fit was loose enough to not be figure hugging but tight enough to demonstrate it is not a pleated or flare skirt.  Although, it is thinner than my other boucle skirts, I find that with proper care it can last a long time in your wardrobe.  It is lined on the inside so it will not rub against your skin or leggings. 

This may seem dull in the picture but the reason I gravitated towards this was due to the very simple neck line and gorgeous muted pink colour.  A majority of my pink jumpers are barbie or baby pink, thus, having something that was subtle yet still versatile made this garment attractive to me.  

This looks darker in the picture than in person.  The tan/brown patches are actually beige (similar shade to the jumper).  I wanted to pair this up with the jumper or a plain white t shirt for a chic yet still formal appearance.  I don't own enough trousers so felt it necessary to invest in some as they are more practical for the work place.  In addition, ten pounds is cheaper for work pants in comparison to other outlets and stores!  

This looks quite boxy but in real life it synchs at the waist wonderfully.  The belt, in fact, is used for decoration only.  The material is similar to that of boucle and the high neck definitely emphasises on the clean and put-together vibe this gives off.  It's easy to wear on its own or with tights if that is your personal preference.  I can see myself wearing this to formal events such as interviews or work experience, alongside to university or on a day-to-day basis.  

I've been overwearing my black monsoon purse which is significantly smaller than this camera bag.  I love it's simplicity but I regularly find myself struggling to fit anything bar the essentials (keys, card and phone) inside of it.  Given that there is a clear theme of beiges and browns in this haul, I wanted to invest in a slightly bigger day bag.  This will jell perfectly with the rest of the garments and add variation whilst breaking up an otherwise monotone outfit.  It is a camera bag so its slightly chunkier than other purses but it means I can fit my wallet, keys, phone and more without worrying about it looking stuffed! 

And that is everything I purchased!  I know you cannot purchase items from Primark through their website but you can check if your local store carries these items on stock through the links under each picture.  I hope you enjoyed this post and it gave you some summer inspiration! 

Thank you for reading.  


Beauty Haul 2019

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Recently, I've been reading research papers and blogs by dermatologists to get a better idea about skin care products and their efficacy.   I learnt plenty about the many scams and shams present in the skincare and beauty industry.  To my dismay, my skin has been itchy with bumps after using my atypical skincare products.  This is what sparked my wanting to do read into my products further, and other ones I could potentially try.  In fairness, I've not changed my skincare regime for what feels like over a year.  I can't promise that the products purchased in this haul are perfect for everyone.  In addition, there very well may be ingredients inside them that are not beneficial topically.  I will post an updated skincare routine and thorough review of these items if they prove to do well on me.  Nonetheless, let us get into the haul!

Disclaimer: I am not a dermatologist or a doctor, I am simply imparting the knowledge I have gained through researching skincare ingredients and products.  On top of that, I do not want to influence your decisions.  If you want proper advice, seek a professional such as a dermatologist or your GP before changing your skincare regime or including new products into it.  

Superdrug Classic Care Antidandruff Shampoo 500mL- £2.49

I am someone that suffers with flaky dandruff, especially near my forehead.  I do believe it is due to excessive fungal growth and found that using ketoconazole in Nizoral Anti-dandruff shampoo really helped.  Ketoconazole is an antifungal or fungicide (meaning it kills the fungus or yeast in this case).   However, Nizoral tends to be quite expensive so I decided to purchase this shampoo given that it contains zinc pyrithione which is a common anti-fungal ingredient.  Unfortunately, to be equally as effective as ketoconazole, it requires more frequent and regular use but it is gentle enough for everyday and long-term which is a benefit.  

Pantene Pro-V Superfood Full and Strong Conditioner 400mL - £1.98

Frankly, I purchased this because it is a 400ml bottle for less than £2.  This does contain parfume/fragrance which is frustrating but given that it is a product you wash out, it is less likely, in my opinion to cause harm in the long run.   I plan on posting an in-dept post about the science and anatomy of hair.  However, conditioner works by reducing the appearance (not actually improving hair health) of dead, dry, frizzy, and split ends for example. 

No fragrance! On top of that, the ingredients are very limited in this product so it is less likely to cause irritation or sensitisation of the skin.  I was tempted to try out a new face wash as I've been using the same one by Garnier for some time.  I will continue to use that product as it is a face mask, wash, and scrub in one.  On top of this, I suffer with spots on my forehead which hopefully both the anti-dandruff shampoo and this face wash can work in conjunction to reduce.  Interestingly, this also contains niacinamide which is a common component of many skin brightening creams.  Therefore, it may aid in dark circles and brightening the face in the process. 

No perfume again! We are on a roll.  CereVe has gained a lot of recognition as a medicated skin care despite being an over the counter product.  It is said to be beneficial for dry to very dry skin due to the inclusion of ceramides.  Ceramides are lipids which helps to restore the skin's natural barrier against pollution, irritants, and aids in retaining moisture or hydration.  There is no point drinking 2 litres of water if you don't have a proper barrier! I am excited to try this given that I was loyal to my Nivea Soft tube cream for over two years - it was about time to move on.  On the whole, I have dry skin - I tend attain dry patches on my cheeks, despite having a relatively oily T zone.   

That is everything I purchased! I know it was only four products but I am very excited to up my skincare game.  Simplicity is key.  You do not need to exfoliate, use masks every day, and tone your skin.  Much of it is a gimmick by the beauty industry and influencers.  Trends do not equate to need.    It's time I use my science degree more often.  Nevertheless, I hope this post inspired you guys to take a closer look at your products.

Thank you for reading!


Tag | Closet Confidential

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This post is certainly different to what I usually discuss but one of my favourite topics, without a doubt, is fashion!  Thus, I couldn't pass up this tag because they're a quick insight to my wardrobe.  Let's dive right in!  

What is the oldest item in your wardrobe/closet?

I recently threw out a majority of my clothes - one of which is a dress I've had for nearly 8 years that I bought at Next during Black Friday.  Hence, up until recently, that was my oldest item which I regularly wore.  Now, the oldest item I own has to be an anarkali my parents gifted me in America when I was sixteen which was seven years ago.  

What is the newest item?

The newest item arrived yesterday! It is another anarkali from Sareeka which took 2 months to arrive.  Given that I have moved to an area that is significantly more diverse, I have been submerging myself in a lot more cultural/south asian events.  Thus, I realised my wardrobe lacked ethnic wear. 

What is the most expensive item?

The anarkali, the oldest item I own, costed $500 USD at the time of purchasing it. 

What was the biggest bargain?

A Ralph Lauren dress!  It was second hand and was only $44.50 despite having the tag.  This is a little over 70% off (original price was $155 USD) which is fantastic for the quality, fit, and colour.  

On top of that, Andaaz for their asian wear given that it is such an amazing deal for the quality in comparison to brick and mortars that charge a much greater amount for tailored garments. 

What was the biggest waste of money?

I use to bulk buy from cheap websites such as SheIn for example.  I got shopping-happy which translates to spending a considerable amount in one go. The biggest lesson I learnt the hard way is to be very critical of what you are buying.  75% of my closet was rendered useless and had to be cleared out due to having so many pieces that couldn't be worn.

What is the most affordable/cheapest item (that you use a lot)?

Any of my shoes from Dorothy Perkins.  Dorothy Perkins frequently holds sales where prices drop considerably from the original price.  A majority of my footwear comes from Dorothy Perkins and were not purchased for more than £15 - this includes heels, my loafers which I wear nearly every day, and ballet flats which are perfect for interviews. 

What are your 3 favorite items right now?

1. Embroidered dress by ASOS

Unfortunately it is sold out now, however, ASOS have a huge collection of similar embroidered dresses I recommend checking out! 

2. My black pleated mini skirt from Dorothy Perkins

3. My denim two-toned jacket from Dorothy Perkins. 

This, too, has sold out on the website but keep your eyes peeled for any similar ones if you are interested!

What is your favorite piece that you’ve gotten as a gift?

I have to pick two things: my masters graduation anarkali which was from Sareeka and my burgundy adidas gazelles which was also an undergraduate graduation present! 

What is the most comfortable item?

Easily my haram pants from Thailand.  Haram pants are the best for working out, dance, pyjamas, etc.  They are so versatile and honestly, I am confident wearing them outside paired with a simple solid colour top. 

What is the most outrageous/colorful item in your closet (that you absolutely love)?

I have a fair share of outrageously colourful Adidas sweatshirts or T-shirts that are considered marmite: love it or hate it.  Pictured below is one of these infamous T shirts in my wardrobe. 

What is the most uncomfortable item (but you would take the pain because you love it)?

This is easy.  My beautiful rose gold heels from New Look that make me look like Cinderella, but feel like her evil step-sister who desperately tries to fit her foot into the glass slipper.  

Where do you shop the most at?

A majority of my high street clothes are TopShop and Dorothy Perkins.  As for high end, my favourites are Ted Baker, Kate Spade, and Ralph Lauren.   

Pick your favorite black item and your favorite white item.

My favourite black item is a black corduroy pinafore dress from TopShop.  It was perfect during the colder winter months as a layering piece and adds a touch of sweetness to every look. Unfortunately, it is now sold out.  There are many similar ones in the market.


As for white, it has to be a white turtle neck from Zaful that has scalloped edging.  I've been lusting over a white simple white turtle neck that wasn't knitted or too thick.  They are staples in every wardrobe and it took me 22 years to find the perfect one for me.  It's incredibly soft, comfortable, and feels like high quality so I am thoroughly impressed. 

Something you love but everyone else hates?

This is a toughy because a majority of my wardrobe is monotoned or staple pieces.  I prefer to keep it simple nowadays. One garment that comes to mind, which some individuals may find too over the top, is my Ted Baker Bow Sleeved Jumper.  Personally, it is my favourite jumper that I do over-wear.  Others could find it sickly sweet due to the excessive bows and baby pink shade. 

Something that you’re excited to wear soon?

It has to be my Sareeka anarkali because there is something so regal about dressing in south asian wear.  Can someone hold a ball or get married please?


Summer 2019 Resolutions

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This is a bit different! I thought this would be a fun post to make. Resolutions aren't just for the new year! As I am officially off university for the summer, despite a couple commitments here and there, I decided to make a list of things I wanted to accomplish before the start of the next school year.   It will be fun to update you guys as it seems that blogging tends to motivate me more given that it acts as a form of accountability. 

Get fitter.  I am determined to stick to working out as I write this.  My aim is to exercise at least 1 hour a day doing HIIT (Insanity of course and then move on to Insanity: The Asylum) and 1 hour of dance training (Kathak and hip hop especially).  Since my days are mostly free, I have no excuse.  All I need is more dry shampoo and deodorant.

Work on my styling portfolio.  I haven't put my certificate to as much use so I would like to put more effort into building up a fashion portfolio and posting more outfit of the days on my Instagram. I am hoping to do more freelance work in the coming years.

Learn to do a front flip, backflip, and splits.  I always admired gymnasts but my parents never had the funds growing up to put me in tumbling classes.  Nonetheless, never say never.  This summer I aim to get more flexible and eventually build up strength and technique to do a backflip.  I also feel these elements would add a different flare to dance routines.

Go over this years' university material.  It is important that I relearn this years material as our exams are cumulative. Therefore, everything taught in semester 1 and 2 can be tested in semester 3, 4, etc.  Thus, revisiting the material in a stress free mentality (not for examinations) over summer would prove beneficial.

Release note bundles on my Etsy.  I already have two, but I want to release at least five more note bundles onto my Etsy for other individuals or healthcare professionals to utilise.  The note bundles I aim to release are: cardiovascular system, musculoskeletal system, haematology, metabolism, endocrinology, infection, and pathological processes.

Wake up early.  Prior to my exam results, I was soaking up the peace of just sleeping in and not worrying about revision (despite the re-occurring dream that I missed all my tests).  Now I am determined to wake up early and make it more of a natural habit.

I'll post an update on how my resolutions are going in a months' time, and it would be interesting to see what I've achieved.


Curating your Dream Wardrobe

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Building your dream wardrobe can be an overwhelming task.  Recently, I cleared out 75% of my clothes because I found my closet to be cluttered with pieces I no longer had an affinity for.  It was a refreshing experience to detox and realise what my newfound style is.  Now, I can see all of my garments for various occasions. Through this process, I realised a few important considerations one should make when decluttering and curating their dream wardrobe.  No wardrobe is built over night, it is a procedure that takes time.  It would be unrealistic and financially straining to do a complete makeover in a short span of time. 

Detox. Here is a blogpost I did a few months ago on how to clean and sort your clothes in 3 easy steps: click here for more. Cleaning out your existing closet is a major step in curating your dream wardrobe.  It enables you to visualise what you have, what you do not need/want, and what you need.  This emphasises the importance in shopping with intention (a.k.a knowing what exactly you are looking for) and prevents cluttering in the future.

Categorisation.  Your wardrobe should cater to your lifestyle.  Garments should fall under the following general categories: 
  • Loungewear/Pyjamas
  • Workwear/Office Wear - Regardless of your job or if you are still in school/university, having formal clothes is useful for interviews, conferences, business events, etc. 
  • Everyday - These are pieces you want to wear to university, school, shopping, running errands, etc. 
  • Work out outfits - You only need 3 pairs for the week depending on how often you do laundry
  • Occasion wear - I have occasion wear for formal events such as balls and dances, and also south-asian wear such as anarkalis, salwar kameez, saris, etc.  
When buying garments, ensure that it suits your lifestyle.  For example, there is no need for me to purchase tennis skirts, hiking gear, or gloves for lifting heavy weights because that does not fit my day-to-day life.  But for others, these pieces are necessary and worn daily.  This guarantees that you have clothes various occasions; saving money in the long run.  Purchasing prom dresses the day before the event can break the bank (speaking from experience). 

Buy in Outfits.  In the past, I would buy random pieces that did not go with anything previously present in my wardrobe.  This meant I had to snap up more attire which isn't financially viable or they collect dust in the back of my wardrobe as I'm unable to wear it. Now, when I shop, it's crucial that I have complimenting garments or purchase an outfit instead of random articles of clothing.  Having an outfit ready as soon as you walk out of the store makes sifting through your wardrobe that little bit easier. 

Do not buy in bulk. It is very tempting to go on a shopping spree and admire your new wardrobe.  By all means, if you have the money to do so, you do you! However, most individuals may be apprehensive.  Fashion is fast. It changes every day, let alone every season and year.  There will be new material in stock that may catch your eye. It is preferable to buy a couple garments every few months.  As aforementioned, curating your dream wardrobe takes time and is a journey to be embraced. 

Themes. Having a theme ensures your wardrobe is more cohesive.  Forming outfits will be an easier task. A theme doesn't have to equate to a particular style.  Rather, it involves embracing ideas of a capsule wardrobe where multiple pieces complement and work well together.  We have all suffered with 'I don't have anything to wear Syndrome' where an underlying symptom is a closet full of clothes.  Having a theme will help prevent this issue. The existing themes in my wardrobe are:

  • Colours: pink, beige, stones, neutrals
  • Patterns: florals, printed statement skirts, and embroidery
  • Textures: tweed and boucle
If you are unsure of what themes you may be drawn towards, using resources as simple as Pinterest or fashion bloggers is a great way to decipher your personal style and preferences. 

Quality not quantity. In the past, I would strictly shop at cheaper stores in an effort to have more options in my closet.  Nonetheless, quantity does not mean more options because the pieces could be cheap, rip easily, or simply be bought in bulk and not go with anything you own! 

On the other hand, quality does not mean high-end and designer.  Rather, it is being more vigilant that the products you buy are long-lasting and appear rich.  You do not have to spend more money in an effort to achieve quality.  Many high-street brands such as TopShop, Dorothy Perkins, and even Primark have produced high quality garments that I wear to this day despite buying them many years ago.  Lastly, having higher-quality goods will make you feel and look more put together. Many online outlets allow you to access past-season designer or high-end wear for high-street prices such as MandMDirect and BrandAlley. 

In essence, those are my steps to curating your dream wardrobe.  It does not happen over night.  It is a slow burner. Saying that, it is extremely satisfying to see your closet grow to fit your needs, wants, and taste.  There isn't a day I struggle to find something to wear that makes me feel confident.  Life is too short to not feel like a million dollars! 


How I study Anatomy

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Hello everyone!  The anticipation waiting for my exam results has resulted in my inactivity but, by the grace of God, I have passed my first year of medical school.  Therefore, I felt that it was appropriate that I shared my methods of learning anatomy as it can be an arduous task figuring out what study techniques and resources are the best aid without breaking the bank.  


Google. More than textbooks, my biggest resource was simply google images of pro-sections that were fully labelled.  If your exam includes an element where you will have pro-sections that you need to discuss/label, then this is a very vital way to learn.  Unfortunately, the human body is more mono-toned and muscles/nerves/arteries tend to look like spaghetti.  Thus, getting use to labelling parts in a pro-section will aid your learning far more.  

Netter's Flashcards - £26.94Despite flashcards being the most effective learning method, I can be quite lazy at utilising them.  Making the flashcards itself is what drains a lot of time.  Hence, these anatomy flashcards were perfect for me.  Not only does it have the body parts labelled, it discusses their purpose, insertion/origin, and common clinical conditions associated with that specific part.  These cards permit access to an online flashcard deck with questions and answers to facilitate your studying.  It saves you a lot of time in the long run and you can get stuck right in with learning! This is a fantastic memorisation aid. 

Complete Anatomy 2019.  I was blessed that my university actually equips medical students with an iPad and discount codes for this application.  However, I am aware that this is a luxury many cannot have.  If you have a smart phone or tablet that can support the app, I do recommend considering complete anatomy.  During the semester, I used this app frequently to consolidate my learning but during revision I mainly focused on the flashcards, pro-section pictures, and lecture notes.  This app is perfect at gaining a better understanding on particular insertion and origin points of tendons, muscles, etc. alongside memorising and visualisation about each part's location.

It must be surprising that I didn't mention any specific textbooks.  Personally, I did not use a textbook for my exam revision because sometimes there can be a surplus of information present that you do not need for your exams, but do require to consolidate understanding.  A textbook that I do refer to is Gray's Anatomy Student Edition which is a simplified version of the original textbook. It is more concise and the language is easier to follow in comparison. 

Revision techniques

Repetition repetition repetition.  I cannot emphasise the importance in revisiting the material you learnt in anatomy.  A majority of it is rote learning and memorisation above everything else.  Most of my revision techniques discuss how you can increase your memorisation power in the context of anatomy.  Thus, for this tip, make sure you try to keep up during the semester or if that fails, give yourself enough time to revise anatomy thoroughly.  

Teach the material.  As everyone says 'your ability to teach others dictates how well you know the material yourself'.  I will either teach my mother, talk out loud to myself, or teach my stuffed animals (who are now very intelligent).  It is a fun and great way to self-assess how much and how well you know the information.  

Use your own body. Online, there is a wealth of resources that demonstrate how we can learn the dermatomes and myotomes for example, through various movements.  In the exam, don't hesitate to move subtle movements with your body (plantar flexion, finger hyperextension, etc.) to jog your memory. Obviously, try to be discrete as you do not want the exam invigilators to get suspicious.  Nonetheless, this is a great movement and tool to use.  Some even suggest drawing the muscles, tendons, nerve fibres, etc on your body (wash off before entering exam hall of course) to fully understand where these parts are present and their size. 

It's in the name! A lot of muscles, tendons, ligaments, etc. are named in such a way that it informs the reader of their role and location.  For example: flexor hallucis longus muscle.  

Flexor = flexes the joint it crosses- muscles only act on the joint that they cross!
Hallucis = big toe, therefore this muscle acts on the big toe
Longus = it is a 'long' muscle which suggests it would insert in the distal (distant) phalanx of the big toe.  

This is a great way to eliminate potential answers, for example in multiple choice questions where you aren't sure if a muscle would aid in a specific movement. Similarly, if you are asked to look at pro-sections, this enables you to determine the accurate muscle movements involved if asked 'which muscle aids in flexion of the big toe?'.   Thus, be sure to take a few deep breaths and look at the information logically if you are unsure.

Clinical conditions.  In my experience, learning the clinical conditions really facilitated my memorisation.  When you study what went wrong in a clinical condition, you can solidify the role of that particular body part.  For example, if the the big toe cannot be flexed, because there is something wrong with flexor hallucis longus muscle, its action on the joint makes more sense. Although it may feel irrelevant when learning about pure anatomy and physiology, it actually highlights the importance, position, and movement of particular body parts.  

Drawing. Unleash your inner artist! Drawing furthers your memorisation as it requires you to actively recall the length and location of the muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, nerves, and arteries.  I would draw on my white board instead of a paper personally but I feel using colour on paper will make the information stick faster and better. Sometimes, its more efficient to review your own drawings than pictures from textbooks. 

Mnemonics. These are your best friend.  The number of mnemonics that have helped me study anatomy is unreal.  In the bones of the hand:  

Start - Scaphoid
Left - Lunate
To - Triquetral 
Pinky - Pisiform
Here - Hamate
Comes - Capitate
The - Trapezoid
Thumb - Trapezium

I have heard positive reviews about Mnemonics for medical students and study tips by Khalid Khan and recommend purchasing this.  My professors even suggested this book and you can purchase it here. 

Those are my main tips!  Anatomy involves finding the most suitable revision technique for you prior to memorising the information.  Afterwards, it is a very steep curve of success.  Do not be discouraged and enjoy the journey.  My tips and resources are simply potential tools that anyone can utilise but if you find they do not work for you, feel free to ask your personal tutor, friends, lecturers, or google other blogs that discuss ideas on how to efficiently study anatomy.  The beauty of anatomy - it never changes!

Thank you for reading.  

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