Sharon Stephen
5 min readSep 19, 2019


It’s been a couple of days since I officially became a doctor. I’ve been home, having the time of my life doing absolutely nothing.

Well, not exactly.

You see, for the past 6 years of my life, my major concern was to finish medical school. I was occupied with thoughts of exams, books I needed to read, clinical rotations I needed to attend and so on.

Now i’m done and i’m in this completely new and different phase in life. I have new concerns, new worries and new thoughts.

I recently set out on a road to self discovery and self improvement. I encountered some challenges and I have learnt a lot along the way and I want to share them with you. I’m not yet where I want to be however, but part of life is enjoying and appreciating the journey and I’m sure that someone can learn from my story. So listen (or read rather) and be blessed. :)

Picture shot by Sharon Stephen97
  1. Your perception of yourself affects your behaviour.

For the longest time, I have viewed myself as an average individual. A ‘jack of all trades and master of none’. This eventually became my reality and I’ve been unable to excel maximally in just one out of the many aspects of my life because of this mindset. So I have decided to change my mindset and to view myself as someone who is on the road to greatness.

2. Patience young grasshopper

The road to greatness is a long and difficult one and you need to be patient to get to the end of it. There is no one who became truly successful in one day. Success comes with hard work, discipline, consistency, perseverance and patience. Patience isn’t just about waiting but about what you do while you are waiting. You must continue to form good habits, be consistent in your work and eventually, it would pay off. It usually does. Don’t expect your first book to be as successful as someone’s 50th book. Success takes time, be patient.

3. Stay in your lane

Success in life, unlike a 100 m dash isn’t determined by who gets to the finished line first, but by who completes the race successfully and doesn’t give up. Not everyone would get to the finish line at the same time. Don’t compare yourself to other people or their journey. They are not you and you are not them. You do not know the work and challenges that others have gone through to get to where they are. Your story is unique, focus on your lane and the finish line and ignore the other runners. The only competition you have is with yourself.

4. Surround yourself with positivity

I’ve been a self-improvement junkie of late. I’m reading, listening to sermons and motivational messages on ways to be a better person and trust me, it’s been very helpful.

Reading is important but surrounding yourself with the right people is importanter.

Because I’ve been on this self-improvement craze, I’ve been pestering my friends to join in as well and I’m happy to say that I’ve been successful. :) The people around me have also helped me and motivated me to be better. I’ve received a whole lot of encouragement, support and love in this period. There has been little to no negativity around me.

Look at your circle and make sure you’re being influenced positively.

5. Know yourself

You need to know what works for you. Some people say that the best time to be productive is in the early hours of the morning, some say it’s late at night. Everyone has tips and tricks and habits they say work for successful people and the truth is that these things do not work for everyone. I study better at night but wash dishes better in the morning. That is something I have noticed about myself and it’s what works for me. Yes, it’s good to ask for advice, but the most important thing is to understand the kind of person you are and know the approach that would work best for you.

Taken from another medium post.

6. Enjoy the journey

When I was younger anytime I hurt myself, I’d cry and show my mum and there is something she would always say to me:

Pain is not forever

Nothing lasts forever, so enjoy every single moment in life and live it like it’s your last. Failure, sadness, joy and pain, they all last for a moment. I mean, one minute I was complaining about how difficult med school was and the next thing I’m done and I’m missing all my friends. Make the best of every moment.

Ps: This is not an excuse to misbehave, please think about the consequences of your actions as well.

Oh yeah and just because I have learned all of this doesn’t mean I’m a pro yet. I mean, I still struggled greatly with feeling low about this write up and I nearly didn’t post it. With time, I would be better.

Dare I say it, but, this is the most effort I’ve put into writing something on medium. I definitely enjoyed this.



Sharon Stephen

A young Nigerian woman, sharing her thoughts and feelings, while hoping that you find solace or solidarity in her written words. 💜