I’ll never forget my very first day of my psychology degree, feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and completely excited for the next three years ahead. I had a plan, and my plan was to become a clinical psychologist, and still is to this day. But my motives for studying psychology were because I wanted to help people because I loved people.
But reality settled in quick and I realized a few things along the way...
1. You really hate people: Cue the first day of my degree where one of my lecturers told me and the rest of my class, “You’ll finally become a psychologist when you hate everybody”. I genuinely thought she was joking, 4 years later I realized she was in fact telling the truth.
2. You over analyze everything: it’s part of your job to analyze people and figure out why they do the things that they do, so you over analyze everyone and everything in the process, which makes things increasingly difficult.
3. You perform small social experiments just for a giggle: it’s not even a real social experiment, but something you’ve made up in your mind that you’re curious about and just observe.
4. You look out for someone telling a lie: it’s hard not to do this when you’re talking to people, especially when you meet a new person. You have to feel them out and see if they are in fact truthful.
5. You’re empathetic: regardless of hating most people, you actually are really empathetic towards those who deserve it most.
6. You live off of coffee: you are reading journal articles until 3am because it’s set as homework, you need something to keep you awake until then. But then, you also need something to keep you focused in those 8am classes.
7. You like to read, but hate to read journal articles: reading a book brings you the most joy in the world. Reading journal articles makes you want to gouge out your own eyes like Oedipus, but only sometimes…
8. You still want to help people: regardless of it all, it’s one of the main reasons why you joined because you felt pain and didn’t want anyone else to feel that pain too; even though you hate people. We’re a little complex, I know!
9. You did psychology to understand you and your family better: it’s the main reason you got into psychology. You don’t understand why you do things a certain way, or why your mom paces three times before opening the door. It will not only help you self-diagnose, it will help you understand the crazy family members.
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