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A Letter to my new graduate self

Home » A Letter to my new graduate self

By Tomas Bosna


Words of wisdom for my 2006 self!

Dear Tomas,

You think your pretty clever don’t you?

Ever since your year 10 teachers in high school said you “had potential but lacked drive”, I had completely written you off mate. You proved everyone wrong, well done!

Firstly Tomas, congratulations on completing your Bachelor of Physiotherapy. You really embraced the two years on campus at Menzies college and crammed in the study when required. Hats off to you!

Writing to you today as an 11 year career Physiotherapist and now General Manager of a Workplace Wellness business I have some wise words of advice for you, young pup. Put your SONY discman down and listen here, son.

University was the easy bit, welcome to life. Here are my tips for you Tomas:

Embrace change

In University, you have been conditioned to value ‘passing examinations’ , and ‘right or wrong answers’ in the pursuit of making it to the next grade or year. In some multiple choice exams, you have picked “C” often just because.

In University, your mentors & lecturers have emphasised clinical reasoning in years 3 and 4. They have done this for a very specific reason. That reason is Life and people.

In the day-to-day world of Physiotherapy and health care in general, you will be confronted with real life scenarios and people. If you enter private practice, this will occur every 30 minutes and can be daunting.

With a “fixed mindset” being drilled into you all your schooling life, you think you need to look smart in every situation and prove yourself over and over again. Never failing! This approach is bull-dust and will hold you back from achieving your potential.

Tomas, with a “growth mindset” your clinical skills, interpersonal skills and opportunities will develop over time. To achieve big things, you need to fail fast and often.

Embrace all changes ahead of you in the Physiotherapy profession and life, and see everything as an opportunity to grow and learn. Ask for feedback from your mentors and be patient man!

Trust the process

Tomas, you can be feisty at times with your desire to learn quickly and challenge every idea, and because of this I say to you must ‘trust the process’.

What I mean to say here is that learning to be professional – and delivering excellent client outcomes every day – takes time. You are young man, take your time.

In the first twelve months of clinical practice I would recommend you:

Set SMART goals

Be kind to yourself Tomas. Set small learning targets every quarter and celebrate the achievements along the way. I know you will want to do every CPD course available in the first six months – I suggest you learn slow and absorb everything. If you want to be a career Physiotherapist you have time! Share these goals with your future employer – they will love to be involved in your development

Find a mentor

In 2006, most Physiotherapy practices are small in size and owner-operated. Walk into the local clinics with your CV in hand and ask to shadow them. Physio’s look after each other and love teaching. You may be knocked back a few times, but with your growth mindset established you will be OK.

Smile & have fun

In your first year as a clinician the learning curve is very steep. You will see many of your peers go too hard, too soon! Why so serious?

Make sure you find an employer that values fun and learning combined!

Remember your journey

Tomas, you have worked relatively hard to graduate next month. As time goes by you will need to continue to set new challenges and goals for yourself. Their will be days in this profession where you doubt yourself and wonder ‘How did I end up here’?

My advice is to remember your journey.

Why did you end up in Physiotherapy? Ask yourself this every week.

You will recall your time as a junior sports enthusiast – always visiting the Physio for injuries. You will remember your love of sport, people and recall visiting your Mum often at the hospital where she worked as a Nurse. This is your why. Don’t forget it.


All the best,

Tom Bosna

Veteran Physiotherapist


A few more tips

PS: Stop using myspace. It will crash soon.

PPS: Electrotherapy doesn’t really do anything. Don’t trust a clinic that doesn’t have an employment contract or curtains for walls.

PPPS: Avoid that 48 month interest free Harvey Norman credit card that your thinking about. Your not even earning a wage yet and your already planning that plasma TV purchase. Save and pay by cash bro!

That is all for now #work – That’s a hashtag, you will learn of these in 10 years.


Pinnacle Health Group is launching the ‘Pinnacle First’ new graduate program 2008 on November 15

It is the brain child of our Learning and development team. Based on our experiences on as new graduates and our ambition to create a fun, social, learning experience for all!

Come along and meet our Directors, Managers and Learning and Development team.