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Pharmacist, (amateur) violinist, story teller. Just your regular person fumbling through life

First locum shift? Follow these tips to avoid looking like a lamb in the headlights.

Being a locum pharmacist can be pretty difficult. Not that you’ll get much empathy from your employer (who thinks you are purely there for financial gain), or the patients (who wonder why you constantly look lost).

The first few locum shifts you do can be challenging, stressful and chaotic. This is not to put you off locuming. I pick up the odd locum shift as I enjoy the change of environment from my normal working environment in hospital pharmacy. Plus, the pay is half-decent.

I assume you have at least a vague idea of what a locum does. If not…


Ideas to make your next travel less stressful and more worthwhile.

Before my most recent visit, it had been 10 years since my last one. To say that China has undergone change this decade is a massive understatement.

What has changed most about China is how the people here have completely adapted their way of living. Embracing technology, utilizing transport systems and expanding social networks has left me thinking that I too must adopt this lifestyle if I were to return.

Considered a ‘foreigner’ myself, I would like to share a couple of personal tips dedicated to anyone from the Western world looking to embark into China anytime soon for leisure…


Who would have thought speaking English helps with learning Mandarin?

China has the largest population in the world. Therefore, it is unsurprising that Mandarin is the second most spoken language worldwide after English.

Before we get started, I will assume three things. Firstly, you can speak English. Secondly, you have an interest in learning Mandarin Chinese but have no idea where to start. Thirdly, you’ve probably seen a Chinese character before and recoiled thinking “There’s no way I can learn that’.

Make no mistake — Mandarin is difficult. Writing in Chinese is incredibly complex; it’s an array of intricate strokes that interweave to form a single character. …


How the note sounds is more important than the note itself.

I started learning the violin when I was 8. A decade later, I had completed Grades 1–8. Once I started university at 18, I stopped playing.

I always wanted to continue playing but education, exams and life got in the way (as they do). Now I have a full-time job, I have started practicing again. Although I am incredibly thankful (and reliant) on muscle memory for note intonation and position shifts, my posture, technique and bow control now is sloppy at best.

Violinists (especially beginners) tend to fixate on the left hand which plays the notes and neglect the right…


A quick snapshot of my job role and why it is a rewarding career.

I’ll be honest. At one point, I thought a hospital pharmacist was someone who dispensed tablets in a community pharmacy within a hospital. I’m sure many others have the same assumption — I’ve spoken to someone who didn’t even realize hospitals had a pharmacist.

Seeing as most people are unaware of what we do, I thought I would shed some insight into my working life, especially if you are currently studying pharmacy in the UK and wondering which pharmacist career path to choose.

I have been a hospital pharmacist for almost 2 years (plus 1 year as a hospital pre-registration…


If phenomenal results are not achieved by next week, the task is not worth doing.

What is instant gratification?
Instant gratification is ubiquitous in life
How does it affect us?
Consistency versus intensity
Delayed gratification
The marshmallow test
Applying delayed gratification to your long-term goals

We live in a great world. A world where next day delivery is available without leaving your room, food is delivered to your door without leaving your house, and access to unlimited information is found on the internet without opening a book. The future also looks promising. Tesla have unleashed a line of autonomous vehicles and drone-assisted deliveries could become reality. …


We have a lot of free time in our 20s…and most of us choose not to do anything with it.

Perhaps one of the most overused phrases in CVs or job interviews, I never really appreciated how important time management was until graduating university and starting a job.

On a typical 24-hour weekday, I work 8 hours and sleep another 8 hours. Other time-absorbing but nevertheless essential activities eating away at time include commuting to work, cooking and life admin. This leaves about 4 hours of free time to do anything I want.

The trouble is, when you have too much free time, you don’t really know what to do with it. After I graduated and started my first ‘9–5’…


Thinking of a career as a UK pharmacist? Here’s a starting guide…

Choosing a subject to study for university is probably one of life’s more difficult decisions. It involves worrying whether you’ll like the subject, pass the exams and ultimately, help you land a career in that area. I’ve made this blog as a starting guide to anyone interested in pharmacy as a potential career option in the UK.

Is pharmacy for me?
The basics
Which school of Pharmacy is right for me?
Pre-registration year
Pre-registration exam
Starting as a newly qualified pharmacist

Is pharmacy for me?

Research…

Notations in C

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