Your residency application is electronic; the applications all look similar in style and content, as the application is entered into ERAS and the format is decided by the computer program. The personal statement is your opportunity to show the program a little bit of your own personality.
Students often agonize over what to write, but in the end, the most effective personal statement is a well-written and grammatically correct statement which highlights your strengths. It should reflect your career goals and reflect your personality and style. It doesn't have to be unique or fancy, just an honest statement of
1) Why you are interested in the specialty
2) Why your interests, values, personality and skills are a good fit for the specialty
3) What kind of program would be a good fit for you
4) Your career plans in that specialty
A good personal statement is short enough to read easily, has no spelling or grammatical errors, provides a story or two that illustrate your interest in the specialty, and is interesting and unique to you.
Always have two or three people review your personal statement - people who know you well and can tell if it reflects your personality, as well as a mentor in the specialty who could comment on the content.
Tips for Writing a Personal Statement