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What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

by Mar 1, 2019

Home » Naturopathic Medicine Student Blog » What would you do if you weren’t afraid?

A few years ago, I made a new year’s resolution to not let my fears stop me from doing anything. Literally, on New Year’s Day, I took my niece and nephew to a children’s museum in Baltimore. That day they had some reptiles for the kids to touch. One of the reptiles was a snake. I am terrified of snakes, and don’t even like to look at them in pictures! But, I knew I had made this resolution, and I was determined to TOUCH the snake! I did it! I’m thankful for that opportunity because it ended up setting the pace for my entire year. Anytime I was afraid, I would remind myself that I touched a freaking snake, no amount of fear could keep me from doing anything!

Toward the end of the year, I was trying to make decisions about which career path to pursue. I really wanted to pursue Naturopathic Medicine, but I was afraid of all the biochemistry. I was also afraid of moving to a new location, away from the comporting structure I had in Maryland with all of my friends and family. But this was the year I wouldn’t let fear keep me from doing anything, so I went ahead and applied. I applied to the one school that seemed like it was the best fit for me, National University of Health Sciences. Then I was afraid I wouldn’t get in, should I apply to additional schools? I stuck to my guns and didn’t let fear change my game plan. Obviously, it all worked out, I got in, and am fearlessly pursuing my degree here at NUHS.

I know this seems like a strange blog post, but I imagine there are other people like me who are afraid to take this step. So, let me tell you a bit more about how some of my fears have played out, and become huge blessings. I’ll start with biochemistry. I was petrified of taking biochemistry! I ended up absolutely LOVING biochemistry! It helps that we have an incredible professor. It is so interesting learning about the different pathways and the way our diet can impact it.


Another fear I have had for my entire first year has been the final anatomy course, which we refer to as Viscera Anatomy. It is treated as a ‘Senior Anatomy’ course, and for some reason that terrified me. However, now that I am in this anatomy course, I am loving it! It is fun being challenged at this level. And the most surprising part of all is that I scored the highest on my anatomy practical than I have ever scored on an anatomy practical. It goes to show that you never know how things will turn out, if you don’t let fear stop you from trying something you are afraid of! I am so glad I am here, and thankful for the amazing professors we have that teach at this school. They make challenging material interesting and clinically applicable. Here is a photo of my anatomy lab group right before our midterm practical. We all rocked it!


If you are interested in the book that motivated me to have the initial New Year’s Resolution, it was Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In – Women, Work, and the Will to Lead.”  In her book she asks, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Now go do it.”  I highly recommend this book.

Lean In

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About the Author

Belinda Smith

Belinda Smith

My name is Belinda, but I prefer to go by Lindy. I am in my final year as a Naturopathic Medical student at National University of Health Sciences. I’m originally from Maryland and will always consider it to be my home. I live on campus, in the Bucholz building with my dog, Lily. I love the sport of triathlon and will totally geek out if anyone wants to talk bikes or racing with me! I’m looking forward to blogging about study tips, ways to have fun on campus, and all the details of a full-time medical student. I love talking with people, so if you have any questions please email me at [email protected]


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