Being a dietetics student, or even just a student in general, is the most stressful thing I have yet to encounter. With each major and degree comes even more advanced qualifications and skills that you must acquire.
Dietetics is an ever-growing practice that has an intense workload. Many people cannot tell you what a dietitian is, or does, but the rigor, knowledge and emotional strength to become one is pretty spectacular.
As a current junior dietetics student, I am feeling the pressure. I am expected to not merely finish my classes but to excel in them and jump at the opportunity to volunteer at any given moment. On top of this, any internships presenting themselves to me are unpaid, and yet I’m supposed to be paying my way through college. I feel overwhelmed.
I find myself constantly thinking about other dietetics students and what grades they might be getting. I think to myself; they probably have been volunteering more than me; I bet they’re shadowing for a respected RD. Are they getting more experience than me already? My conclusion: maybe they’re just better than me. So how am I supposed to compete? How do I stack up? Will my knowledge and experience ever be enough?
If you think you’re the only one feeling this type of pressure I am here to say that you are not alone. Comparing yourself to other students will only take away the light that you should be shining on yourself for having come so far. No student is the same, nor has the same experience. There might be some similarities, but having your own background and knowledge is what will make you stand out. Your story is what got you here. Find the value that you can bring to the table based on everything you have gone through.
Remember that the quality of your experience is superior to the quantity. You are doing the best that you can with the tools and opportunities given to you. Let comparison only fuel you to be the best you that you can be by competing with yourself. As author Bob Goff once said, “We won’t be distracted by comparison if we are captivated by purpose”. Prioritize yourself and your own growth and I promise you will get yourself where you need to be.