Below are the episode show notes and transcript. Some episode transcripts have been edited more than others, but they are up in the meantime to help those who would rather read and for searchability on the web. Extensive editing has not been prioritized as I seek to both produce regular content and maintain my own wellness. Enjoy!
What is it?
Financially? Personally? Professionally?
Money, time, achievements…
Listen to episode 30 and see how contentment can make a big difference in your wellness as you take your next step!
Then get your work done faster with 10 tips from my free PDF guide, Maximize Your Clinical Efficiency! Click to get your guide NOW!
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(The WCICON 22 lectures will be packaged as the Continuing Financial Education 2022 course by the end of February as another great option too!)
Do you feel like you are on a treadmill, as though you have been running faster and faster just to keep up, will it ever be enough at work outside of work? If you have ever wondered what enough is and how that applies to life in medicine, please join me for the rest of today’s episode.
Welcome to the MedEdWell podcast, where physicians get empowered to take the next step in their wellness, personally, professionally, and financially. I’m your host, Dr. Ryan Stegink, a practicing general pediatrician and online entrepreneur.
Thank you so much for joining me here on another episode of the MedEdWell podcast, we’re already to episode 30 and I’m so thankful for all of your support for listening, for subscribing and for sharing these episodes. If you’re looking to get home sooner and to help you with your wellness, check out my free PDF guide maximize your clinical efficiency. It’s 10 tips to get things done at work so that you can spend more time at home. I’m still implementing some of these things myself, and I want to encourage you to check it out. You can get your copy at mededwell.com/efficiencyguide.
So today we’re gonna be talking about enough, enough, what is it? Can you achieve that and exploring what that looks like for you personally, professionally and financially.
before we get into the rest of today’s episode, let’s hear from today’s sponsor. The white coat investor has been helping physicians and other high income professionals with their finances since 2011. Last week, as of the time of this episode, there will have been a number of physicians and other high income professionals gathered in person and online or the white coat investor, physician wellness and financial literacy conference. After these conferences, they package the lectures, including some that are eligible for CME. In a course, you can get your access through the link in the show notes. All right now, back to today’s episode.
So what is enough first? We’re gonna take, take a look back at history. JD Rockefeller founded standard oil. He was the first US billionaire in the early 1900s. A reporter reportedly asked him one time, how much money is enough? Rockefeller replied just a little bit more. If a billionaire oil tycoon can’t reach enough, can urgent a private practice owner or an employed primary care pediatrician. Can they expect to reach enough? And yet it is so easy to get caught up in the next thing that never enough mentality, whether it’s more money, more achievements at work, more of any number of things. So today, what does enough look like for you? We’re gonna cover some potential pitfalls in how certain expectations and intentionality can lead to contentment, ultimately supporting wellness. So the first area, what is enough professionally? So the achievement reward cycle starts early. Good job. You can get into medicine, your good student, get lots of positive reinforcement.
It’s easy to then make achievement more central than learning. I work hard and therefore I do well rather than I work hard and am learning or I’m serving others, something along those lines. The first big wake up call here for many is in medical school. Everyone is working hard, but not everyone can get top score on exams or on boards. And yet it’s easy to wonder if your work will be enough, your achievement will be enough. It doesn’t just end in medical school. What specialty did you match into? Did you get a resident teacher award? That job offer that academic promotion that grant sure you need to work hard and get some of these things taken care of to move forward in your career, but wrapping up your identity and being an achiever can be exhausting. I was a good student who failed my first histology test in medical school.
That was hard, but I learned new things about myself, how to learn, how to change things up when something wasn’t working. These were things that I learned that otherwise I would not have learned. At least at that time, it was learning to be content where I was still in medical school with the opportunity to learn about myself and to take that next step forward for you. Maybe you had to repeat a rotation, apply for the match again, re what specialty that you were competitive for, or maybe apply for jobs in other geographic locations, but in reaching out to others for help or encouragement, you can be reminded that you are more than your achievements. You can learn and grow even in challenging times. So first professionally, and then second looking at enough financially Rockefeller said, and enough was a little bit more. It’s easy to fall into this in medicine, because there is so much delayed gratification.
And with many in medicine, with a lot of loans, we can become numb to the debt that we have. Then there’s the transition to residency and the transition to being an attending, or maybe a little bit more at each transition, but that can lead to lifestyle inflation. And some of this is expected reasonable or common, but it’s easy to use the, I deserve this and then inflate spending too much or too quickly. It could be housing, car trips, something else enough. However, allows you to prioritize the future while still taking care of current needs. In some of the wants, by not over inflate, my lifestyle in the transition from residency to attending. I had the flexibility when I faced burnout, go from 1.0, to now 0.85 for my FTE. Maybe you want a different FTE. You want less call something else, or maybe you want the option to be able to decrease it later.
Maybe your thing is wanting to save intentionally towards financial independence or to be able to give to important causes to you. Key thing is intentionality. And by using that intentionality, you have choices and you have options. So in examining, what is enough for you? First? We looked at professionally second financially, but then third, personally, this gets to fundamental priorities. What drives you professional and financial things can play into this, but deeper than that, it’s your core values and your identity. Who are you? What are your priorities? What is enough time slowing down and finding margin? You may be able to say I have enough and can change whatever it may be in order to better align with your priorities. Do you wanna prioritize more time with family picking up a new hobby or resuming an old one? Maybe you want to volunteer somewhere. Maybe you want to start a side gig.
Maybe you want to go part-time or just change your hours. Maybe you’re looking for a job that fits other priorities better, whether family or otherwise many do not have as many options. And these opportunities may be a luxury that others don’t have, but it’s always good to reflect on the choices that you do have in this reflection. It’s also good to look at what do I need? What do I prioritize? Not just, what do I say I prioritize, but how does my time usage reflect that? How can I choose my response in the current situation to pursue my priorities and contentment? So we have talked more generally about what is enough and what do contentment and priorities look like. But now it’s your turn. Imagine if you said I have enough in one of these areas, what would look different? Would you, your clinical time, would you change jobs?
Would you realize that time with friends or family was the experience or thing that you actually want to prioritize, that your achievements and impact at work go beyond the academic tenure track. Maybe it’s more about the people and colleagues. You have to decide what your priorities are and all this could look for you, but I want you to take time this week, take time and consider how contentment could shape your pursuit of enough. Write down a few reflections and then a specific action step. Share that with me or with someone that’s important in your life and take that next step today.
Thank you so much for joining me here on episode 30 of the MedEdWell podcast, please subscribe to this podcast. If you haven’t already share this episode with someone that you think might benefit from listening as well. If you can take a moment and leave a review, it helps others find this podcast.
I also want encourage you to get your free guide to help you get things done at work faster so that you can pursue your next step in wellness. Check out my free efficiency guide at MedEdwell.com/efficiencyguide. Check out a course from white coat investor at the link in the show notes as well. Before we go, I want to thank you for all that you do to care for your patience, for your families, for yourselves, for our communities. I really appreciate all of the investment and sacrifice that you have made and want to urge you in these difficult times, come back and join me for the next episode and have a great day.