How to Pack Your Bag Item 4: Fearlessness

April 30, 2012

***I hope you enjoyed and were blessed by the last post! A little about me: I am currently a first year med student at Loma Linda University (raises hands in praise). My journey to medical school has been exciting, difficult, fun, stressful, and character-building all at the same time. Along the way, I mentally picked up and developed tools I knew would help me be successful in medical school. Now as a medical student, I have already used these items packed away in my medical school bag. Each post I would like to share with you one item you need to pack your medical school bag with. Prayerfully, by the time you are accepted, you will already have everything you need to be successful in the next step of your journey. ***


Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?You are a child of God.Your playing small does not serve the world.There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that otherpeople won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
 permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.


~ Marianne Williamson

A few weekends ago, from April 5th– 8th, I was able to attend the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) Annual Medical Education Conference in Atlanta, GA. It was a blessing to say the least. First and foremost, it was free! We received sponsorship through our school, Loma Linda University, to send four representatives. Second, it was incredibly enriching. I was able to attend several workshops about how to be come an excellent physician, student, mentor, and person. Lastly, it was encouraging. The best part was meeting so many students just like myself. Transitioning from a predominantly minority school to becoming the minority at my school has had both its benefits and challenges.  Thus, simply being surrounded by like-minded and dedicated individuals similar to me has been indescribably rewarding.

The theme of the conference was “Champions of Change”. Yet, the recurring theme in my heart was “Overcoming Fear.” As I interacted and conversed with several of the students there, I came across many who had unfortunately seemed to settle for being average. There was little extraordinary about their character, passion, or drive. They seemed unmotivated to grasp all they could from the opportunities that presented them there. But, in the midst of the mediocrity, there were some students who truly shined. Their enlightening passion and drive to become an excellent leader and, ultimately, physician was almost contagious. I saw within them qualities that I possess which yielded to the idea that I, too, could shine. Theses students had unconsciously given me permission to let my light shine and helped me to develop the fourth item in my medical school bag: fearlessness.

Having a mindset of fearlessness does not mean that we will never experience fear. On the contrary, as I ponder how I will handle school and extracurricular activities next year, I immediately experience the physical effects of fear and anxiety. The real test is how we handle the fearful moments, decisions, exams, and situations that we are bound to face in our lives. Marianne Williamson implies in her poem that our fear is precipitated when our thoughts teeter-totter on the line between success and failure – inadequacy and power. However, one important, scale-tipping factor remains evident: we are the children of God. 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us, “For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” As the children of God, we are equipped with the ability to be powerful beyond measure. Thus, it is in those moments when the MCAT score is lacking, when the “right” school must be chosen, when plans for next year must be solidified, and when opportunities arise that challenge our fearful hearts, we should discard fear and ask for the power and sound mind God has promised us. If we hold on to that God-given power, “we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”

As I looked around at the exceptional attendees of the conference, doubts of my powerful abilities arose. Challenged by the reality of failure, I asked myself the question, “Who am I to be fearless and powerful beyond measure?” You may be asking yourself a similar question. Who are you to be a competitive applicant, a leader in your school, a mentor to those under you, an exceptional medical student, and an outstanding physician? With knowledge that you are a child of God, I answer you back, “Who are you not to be?”

May God bless you and keep you as I know He will and may He give you a spirit of fearlessness and of power. If you have any questions, comments, concerns, or topics you would like to talk about- feel free to email me: k.titer@gmail. Also, if you’re new to the blog, take a look at previous posts by clicking on the tabs to the right.


~KeAndrea “Kiki” Titer