Georgia a white women sat in a powered chair in a yellow dress. She is on a field and has a green looking sculpture behind her.
Disability Rights, Newly Qualified Occupational Therapist

How My Ambitions Have Changed Since Qualifying 

Happy Occupational Therapy Month (well it’s more predominant in the US but we’re going to go with it for the sake of the blog). Anyway, let’s get onto it… 

For Occupational Therapy Month I wanted to talk about my views of occupational therapy and how this has changed, not just since qualifying but in recent years. 

I know what you’re thinking of course they’re going to change whilst you’re studying, but I’m talking about how my views have changed around why I am in occupational therapy. 

Of course, we all know the story, and I was drawn into the profession because of my own occupational therapists and that will always be the case.  Yet, I’ve had the honour of hosting an account takeover on DisruptOT, this week and I have got to say if I was going to write that post again it would be very different. 

That post was filled with love for the profession and don’t get me wrong, knowing what I know now I’m even more satisfied that I am in the right place than I was 3-years ago and I adore the profession in that sense. But how I view the profession and how I see my future in the profession and changed dramatically since then and I’m not talking about the area of practice. 

Little did I think that when I entered my studies I’d become an activist within the profession, but somehow I got here and this has altered my views of the profession. I still don’t actually see myself as an activist within the profession I just see myself as a disabled activist, but I don’t want my platform just to be about that. Of course, disability activism within the profession will be the main thing I do. I’ve spent 3-years building up the platform now and all the privileges of being heard that comes with responsibility so I need to utilise it as much as possible (a huge shout-out to Sam Pywell for making me realise that)!!

When I think of occupational therapy now I think of what the profession is and the systemic micro-aggressions and this is because of the recent work I have done. Disrupting practice is almost ingrained into me now and I see everything through a much more critical lens, I didn’t want to be seen as a disrupter and angry at the world. I’m not angry at the world but as we all know the status quo has to be challenged and now I’m proud to say I’m a disrupter. Although my journey within the profession has been quite different to how I imagined it, I wouldn’t change it. I am so glad I have been fortunate enough to use my voice and I have you all to thank for that for continuing to read and engage with my content. I still struggle though… 

Is my activism good enough? Am I actually being productive and utilising my platform and privilege’s correctly?

This very blog took a bit of thought because as I was writing it I was sounding like a broken record and discussing points that I’ve raised multiple times. How do I take this to the next level, how do I put my ‘rambles’ to use? Rest assured a few have been put to use and I do have other content coming following on from blogs I did last year because I have been doing more work behind the scenes.

Yet, how credible is a blog? As I don’t think me sitting here typing is changing the world (not that I was aiming for that). Am I even being listened to by the people who need to hear or do I get missed because I am not credible enough?

In the eyes of a researcher, I am not credible and me writing this in my downtime isn’t going to change how we treat our disabled colleagues in the workplace. On the other hand, my experiences count for something and as a collective, we know we a stronger together. But, how do we ensure that actions are being made from the blogs we write? So yes, my views and ambitions within the profession have changed a lot since qualifying, but here’s my question… 

How do I utilise my views and ambitions to ensure that what I am doing is meaningful and acted upon by myself and others? Answers will be welcomed, let’s make some noise! 

What is the next step for blogging and occupational therapy?

Thank you for reading, 

Georgia x 

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