The Watering Hole – October 2019

The Watering Hole is a monthly curation of blog posts and articles from across the internet that I’ve brought together to guide healthcare professionals in their pursuit of a fulfilling career and a financially healthy future.

Not all worthwhile national gatherings for physicians provide CME

The beginning of September brought a slew of messages to my inbox asking if I was attending FinCon 2019 – a financial media conference that is wildly popular among personal finance bloggers. I did not attend, but I sure did enjoy reading several physician blogger’s musings on their FinCon experiences:

Just before FinCon was a gathering of a different type – 2019 Burning Man. I loved reading about Dr. Leslie Greenberg’s experience as a Burning Man physician. What a cool way to practice medicine, serve others, and have some fun simultaneously.

FIRE is not for everyone

Financial independence, retire early (FIRE) is a popular concept among FinCon enthusiasts and many others. But it’s not the right fit for everyone. We all set goals and make plans, but our interests and desires can change over time. And unexpected things arise. So rather than FIRE, consider FUND as an alternative – financial understanding, new directions.

Millionaire Doc describes why he’s chosen work over retiring early.

Working – and earning – in and out of medicine

The Medscape Young Physician Compensation Report 2019 was released, finding that primary care physicians under 40 early an average of $237,000 per year, and specialists earn $341,000 per year. Yes, physicians work hard, but these salaries are nothing to scoff at.

In fact, transitioning to a high-paying nonclinical job doesn’t necessarily mean a better lifestyle. Consultants often work the same long, hard hours of those in banking… which is on par or exceeds the hours of an average clinical physician. We also shouldn’t envy our friends who are working at startups with unlimited vacation time.

One job popular among the highly educated that truly is low-stress (according to surveys) is university professor.

Being in academia as a physician doesn’t mean you need to need to be a clinical professor. You can just teach. On average, ivy league professors make close to $175,000 per year, says The Chronical of Higher Education.

Coaching for physicians and by physicians

Coaching can be a great investment for physicians considering a career change or dealing with burnout symptoms. Dr. Kristi Angevine suggests in a post on KevinMD that our profession would likely benefit from coaching for physicians – including self-coaching – becoming the norm.

Offering coaching services to others can also be a lucrative side hustle or career for physicians. The global health coaching market is growing, increasingly utilizing clinical interventions and evidence-based practices (two things physicians are stars at).

Harvard Business Review provides guidance on pricing your services as a consultant or coach.

Be productive for the rest of 2019

We’ve entered October, which means we’re in the last quarter of 2019. Now is the time to buckle down and accomplish any goals for the year that you haven’t already crossed off your list.

Physician Zen lays out 8 benefits of creating a productivity system for healthcare professionals. One of them is something I need to remind myself of often: that it’s far more important to be productive than busy.

Keep in mind a few things:

If a good book will inspire you to finish up what you set out to do in 2019, consider this one. Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life, by Nir Eyal, provides a framework for gathering traction in order to prevent distraction.

Good luck with reaching your goals!

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