I have an unnerving fear of a four letter word. In fact, it’s not even considered a word in the truest sense by people not in the medical word. It keeps me up at night. It plagues my worries during the day. It stresses me incessantly without respite. That four letter word is ERAS, otherwise known as the Electronic Residency Application Service.
It’s crazy that one single application will be determining the trajectory of my entire life. Perhaps I shouldn’t be thinking of it in this light and that will take the edge off? In a way, it’s nice that the application is much more streamlined than the AMCAS application that I’m familiar from my premed days. At the same, ERAS is still giving me the heebie-jeebies. Every time I put something down, I second guess myself. Whether it’s hobbies, experiences, or some other part of the application, I wonder to myself, “Is this right? Am I portraying myself in the most accurate and best light possible? Or am I doing this thing all wrong?” Sometimes, I put so much pressure on myself to be perfect that I think my efforts to fill out the application completely become rather futile.
I need to really change my mindset and see this process as a way for me to find the job that works best for me. ERAS is my weapon of choice and I must use it to fully represent the multi-dimensional person that I am. I want my personality and being to leap off the pages as people read. I want to be more than the numbers and grades and to do that, I will overcome my fear of ERAS.