Why I Left Medicine… Forever – YouTube

Why I Left Medicine... Forever



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  • Video Views: 708206
  • Published On: 2021-11-30 19:50:12
  • Video Published/Author: Ali Abdaal
  • Video Duration: 00:43:17
  • Source: Watch on YouTube


So I’ve been agonising about this for a few months now, and I think I’m at a point where I can comfortably say that I’m leaving medicine for good. In this video we’re going to have a bit of a chat about the thought process behind this decision, and I’ll share my thoughts around the main fears that I had after investing 8 years of time and money into it. Maybe I’ll change my mind and come back one day…who knows?!

Giving What We Can: https://www.givingwhatwecan.org/
My friend Lucia’s charity – Lead Elimination – http://leadelimination.org
Give Well Against Malaria Foundation: https://www.givewell.org/charities/amf
How many lives does a doctor save?: https://80000hours.org/2012/08/how-many-lives-does-a-doctor-save/
Steven Bartlett on Quitting: https://twitter.com/SteveBartlettSC/status/1220441830350905344?s=20

Playlist where you can see my thinking process on this journey to eventually quitting medicine: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7BImOT2srcG5kHA5cD6KIxRSUIi7KJBI

Timestamps –
00:00 INTRO
01:46 WHY WE WORK – MONEY
03:25 WHY WE WORK – FUN
05:46 WHY WE WORK – HELPING PEOPLE
09:58 WHY WE WORK – PURPOSE/MEANING
12:55 WHY WE WORK – SOCIAL STATUS
14:25 MY STRUGGLES – RISK AVERSION
16:42 MY STRUGGLES – FEAR
18:12 GOING PART-TIME AND WHY IT DIDN’T WORK
21:22 HELPING PEOPLE (THE LONG VERSION)
32:27 ANSWERING TWITTER

MY FREE ONLINE COURSES:
🚀 Productivity Masterclass – Principles and Tools to Boost Your Productivity – https://go.aliabdaal.com/course/productivity
🎬 Video Editing with Final Cut Pro X – From Beginner to YouTuber – https://go.aliabdaal.com/course/video-editing
🎓 How to Study for Exams – An Evidence-Based Masterclass – https://go.aliabdaal.com/course/studying

PART-TIME YOUTUBER ACADEMY:
🍿 My 6-week live online course – https://academy.aliabdaal.com

MY FAVOURITE GEAR:
🎥 My YouTube Camera Gear – https://kit.co/AliAbdaal
⌨️ My Keyboard – Wireless Coral mechanical keyboard (Cherry Blue) – https://go.aliabdaal.com/keyboard
📝 My favourite iPad Screen Protector – Paperlike – https://go.aliabdaal.com/paperlike
🎒 My Desk Accessories + Todo List – Ugmonk – https://go.aliabdaal.com/ugmonk

MY FAVOURITE SOFTWARE:
✍️ The best summaries of books (Shortform) – https://go.aliabdaal.com/shortform
📚 How I remember what I read (Readwise) – https://go.aliabdaal.com/readwise
🎵 Where I get my Music (amazing for YouTubers) – https://go.aliabdaal.com/epidemicsound
👻 Where I get my Website Themes from – https://go.aliabdaal.com/ghost-themes
👻 My personal Ghost Website Theme – https://go.aliabdaal.com/ghost-theme-ali

🎙 My weekly podcast – https://www.notoverthinking.com
My brother and I host a weekly podcast where we discuss happiness, creativity and the human condition. You can find it by searching “Not Overthinking” on any podcast app (eg: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts etc).

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💌 Sign up to my weekly email newsletter – https://aliabdaal.com/newsletter/
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🐦 Twitter – https://twitter.com/aliabdaal
🎮 Twitch – https://twitch.tv/aliabdaal

WHO AM I:
I’m Ali, a YouTuber, podcaster, soon-to-be author and ex-Doctor working in London, UK. I make videos that explore the strategies and tools that help us live happier, healthier and more productive lives. I also have a weekly podcast called Deep Dive (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChfo46ZNOV-vtehDc25A1Ug), and I write a weekly email newsletter that contains some quick thoughts + links to interesting things (https://aliabdaal.com/newsletter/).

GET IN TOUCH:
If you’d like to talk, I’d love to hear from you. Tweeting @AliAbdaal directly will be the quickest way to get a response, but if your question is very long, feel free to email me at hi@aliabdaal.com. I try my best to reply to things but there sadly aren’t enough hours in the day to respond to everyone 😭

PS: Some of the links in this description are affiliate links that I get a kickback from 😜

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34 comments
  1. I applause you for thinking for yourself whilst being in a tough position. You made a bold move, which is to choose what you loved. Also, your viewers most definitely appreciate you. I wholeheartedly believe that you were “meant” to be at your position, and for a great reason. Very few people are able to choose what they’re true passions in life. Thank you for what you do and best wishes to a bright future! ☘️

  2. 🍀I said to myself I am not going to watch 43 mins and here I am……no-one ever wrote on their gravestone ''I wish I had lived my life the way everyone else wanted me to.'' I think you're brave and choosing to be known as a good father and husband before anything else speaks volumes to me. I like Lewis but I think he was a little hard on you…but the best teachers always are! I wish you well in whatever you do.

  3. I might be the only one here to say this and it may sound harsh. But I think this is very selfish. You had a privileged position, very few have the smarts to get into med school and then you’re in an incredible privileged position where are making a real different to peoples lives. I mean it’s a league more important than recommending what switches to have in your mechanical keyboard! You’re giving this up to make YouTube videos? It sounds a moral cop-out to me. Sorry, it’s harsh I know. Maybe this is a millennial thing.

  4. Salam from Islamabad Pakistan ..Going through the same thought process and self questioning regarding the medical profession.I am junior doctor done with the foundation year but non clinical stuff seems more synchronizing for me cause its really hard for me to see emergencies and peoply dieing.Its not easy to just give up here in a desi environment as you family ,relitives all slams you..I worked for a while in Physiology department in a med school as a student co ordinator and it was really cool fun filled experience than bieng a front line clinical doctors…Glad I m not alone..

  5. it's a thought-provoking video and it needs a log of courage to quite medicine , but it's brave to pursue what you really want at this moment, maybe you will change your mind in the future , but at this moment , you are loyalty to your dream

  6. 🍀For me, it's not your job that makes you so enjoyable to watch, it's your personality, honesty and niceness, so long as those things don't change l don't see what you chose to do as a profession should impact on your life Ali. Be yourself, that is your USP!
    Hugs, Su 🙂

  7. 🍀 I am a grade 12 pupil and I received the letter of refusal from my dream university in January. Since then, I have pondered a lot about myself, like 2 months later, the national exam will happen (in Vietnam) and I still don’t even know where I am going to go, whether I am suitable for this major and should I spend time reapplying for this school? Thanks very much for your story and the way you embraced your insecurity which gives me bravery to make choice. Yep, maybe someday you would fail but at least I can see you’re helping many people in your way and I believe this truthfulness and sincerity will gain you more and more other loyal fans.

  8. ☘️Your advices are still so much helpful whatever your decision would be. That's your life and you can do whatever you want to do with it also I'm still going to be a fan cause in my sight you're not just a guy who talks about productivity. You really taught me so many things(which I'm really thankful for) beside the fact that you're a doctor. Even this video helped me for making some changes in my life. Thanks Ali and hope you have a wonderful journey💜

  9. You’ve taught me life skills and how to explore my identity as an individual. This video really summarised your journey to discovering what you are truly passionate about in a systematic methodical rationale manner.

    As a person who decided to pursue medicine at age 32, I can say I will continue to watch your videos for the authentic person that you are. An inspiring, positive and kind individual always looking to self-improve and make a difference. Your supporter always ♥️

  10. Interesting! Regarding effective alturism, how do you know the people/organisations you give to use this money effectively to do what they said they will. After working in NGOs in Sydney and in developing countries, I find there's so much greed and corruption in the world that waste the money so I now struggle to give.

  11. Excellent. Well said. Transparent. Thank you for underlining the importance of ability to live with uncertainty. When you can’t pop out a sound byte-size plan, which people always ask habitually for lack of better small talk skills, you have to be comfortable with their discomfort.

  12. I madly respect you. People saying they arent a fan of you now, was never a fan of you to begin with. They were just here for your doctor tittle. Nothing has changed in you as a person just because you quit medicine. I wish you all the best 💜

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