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Diary of a Future Psychologist: 8 Hours of School, Thrift Haul, + “self-care”?

My friend, D, picked me up at 7:20 am today. I was grateful to have pre packed my lunch because there was no time for anything that early in the morning, even for breakfast. It was an hour drive. We talked about our lives and about comp exams, which are the 70 page exam that we have to take to determine if we pass or fail third year. When we got to school, I looked in the mirror and discovered a giant stain on my green cardigan. I attempted to wash it out, but that only worsened my predicament. So I walked around holding my water bottle slightly aloft, in an attempt to hide the stain.

We (read: me, D, and her very nice friends) arrived to class and realized that our professor was absent, which meant that we would be reassigned to other classrooms. We were smart enough to request a study hall so we could work on said comp exams, rather than sitting in someone else’s classroom.

One of D’s friends offered me some of the Halloween candy that she bought for her child patients. I took a twix. I have a habit of eating all unhealthy things in halves, but this time I only left a third of the small twix behind, which in my mind is a victory. I say as I type this entry from the stairmaster.

Clearly my best social decision was to have practicum with D last year, because being best friends with D means you have like 5 other friends by extension. During the study hall, I wrote several new sections of my comp, which was also a success.

One of the guys said, “Tell me where self-care is built into this program. We are always told to do self-care, but where? With what time?”. I get where he’s coming from. With school, practicum, our jobs outside of school, and dissertation/comp exams, there’s hardly time to breathe. Some of the students have it worse than others. One of the people is working a night shift at a restaurant. Another person is a TA in addition to all of his other responsibilities. I think I got lucky with my practicum site and that’s the only reason I’m still sane. We registered for our new classes next semester. I chose a family/child concentration, but there was also the option to choose neuro or health psych as a concentration. It’s like the doctoral version of a minor degree, I guess.

Ok, I’m still on the stairmaster, so to pass the time, I’ll write about yesterday.
Yesterday was Halloween. I got to practicum right at 8 am. I had a therapy patient at 9 am. I finally got to do a guided imagery with this patient. My rule of thumb is that whenever I have a patient with anxiety, I like to teach them how to do a guided imagery. First, because it will teach them to use deep breathing to calm themselves down, and also because it will enable them to come up with a “safe place” (beach, a room in their house, etc.) to mentally retreat to in a stressful moment. Okay, I gotta stop writing these entries as if I’m still writing the comp.

After my session, all I did was work on reports. I got a few done. I answered some calls from patients as well. My supervisor’s patient cancelled, so he left early, and told me I could leave too. That was a true surprise.

Since I was dismissed early, I figured I may as well have a little fun outside of work. I went to a nearby thrift store. I found possibly the coolest vintage top I’ve ever seen. My heart started racing when I picked it up. I also bought a black velvet maxi skirt (I officially own 3x as many skirts as the average person, which I justify by saying that I don’t wear pants). I bought a Hawaiian print skirt as well. My total was $9.

I mean, can you even imagine? This blog is called “Adventures of a Grad Girl”, not “Adventures of a Fashionista” but in case you want to see, I’ve also done a thrift haul here and here.

Ok, I’ve been on this stairmaster for a whopping 26 mins. Time to reluctantly do some weight lifting. I saw a video that explains my gym routine. It was a lady saying that people commend her for going to the gym even though she’s been maintaining the same mediocre body for 8 years.

And um. That’s exactly me. I don’t think my body is mediocre– I like my body, but I haven’t switched up my gym routine. I just stick to the same 20ish minutes of cardio on the stairmaster and then weight lifting, or an organized class at the gym (Zumba, cycling, boot camp, etc). At least I’m exercising, right? I have to make time or I won’t stay awake throughout the day.

The day is now over, at least school wise. D and I drove home. My room is a mess but it’s 6:41 pm and I just got home. Good news of the day: I WAS able to wash off my green cardigan!
Victorious picture for proof:


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Hi everyone! I started my doctorate in clinical psychology in fall 2020. A google search revealed that there are no current grad school blogs for psychology students. Anyway, I happen to know a girl who wants to document her journey to getting a doctorate (spoiler: it's me). Welcome. Hope you stay awhile!

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