"Change is the essence of life. It is the goal of all psychotherapeutic conversation. In order for the process to proceed, however, it must move beyond simple complaint." ~Gordon Livingston, M.D.~
If you're a regular reader of this blog, you may be wondering where I've been for the last two months. I've been dating. It's been fun so far. Change has been thrust upon me and I've decided to go through the door that opened when the other one closed and it's going to be an interesting journey into a new life, but I have high hopes. I've met some really nice people and some that were not so nice, learned a lot about myself, had my heart bruised again, gotten confused now and then, cried, laughed, felt doubtful, and felt proud of myself, and there's more to come. We can't always choose the circumstances we're presented with, but we can sure choose how to react and respond to them. That choice makes all the difference in how your life will be.
Let's take this into your work life. Is it what you want it to be? Are you happy? Do you enjoy your day and leave work without unfinished issues, stress or unpleasantness and go home and enjoy your personal life? If the answer is yes; you're doing it right. If the answer is no; why are you choosing to let whatever is happening rob you of your happiness?
Many times we tell ourselves that there is nothing we can do. It's the economy, our staff is hopeless, our boss is crazy, the patients drive us nuts, etc. Spare me. It's you. You are choosing to keep doing the same thing that you always do and you're getting the same result you always get. And you're complaining and hating every minute of it.
Yes, the economy is tough, but are you changing anything about the way you run your practice to help yourself survive? You can only survive if you help your patients find ways to understand the treatment they need, so they can want it. Once they understand and want it, you have to help them see how they can afford it in your office. Make it possible and they will accept the treatment they want.
So, your staff is hopeless? Why? Yes, it's hard to find great team members. It's up to you to identify quality staff members, train them, make corrections where needed, praise, reward and reinforce when warranted and make them feel like they are an essential part of the success of the practice.
Oh, it's your boss that's the problem? Did you ever ask her what's wrong? Did you ever show interest in the state of the practice or you like a kid in the backseat of the car asking "Are we there yet?" Do you come up with ideas to improve processes, save resources, and improve patient service? Do you take initiative and help other staff members succeed? If you do all that and your boss is still an ogre, why are you still there? It's not worth being miserable. I'd urge you to actively seek something better for yourself.
Patients drive you nuts? Sometimes they will. As much as possible, try to find something good about them. Try to see it as a challenge to make the grouchy ones smile, the nervous ones calm down, and the ones with horrible home care do a little better. That's why they call it work.
I could go on all day, but I'm hoping you can see for yourself that you have a choice, maybe you just never noticed that you do. Here's my challenge to you: tomorrow, instead of dreading the things you usually dread; look at them as opportunities to change your attitude, your way of thinking, your way of behaving, and ultimately your level of happiness and your life in general.
Happiness is not acheived with chemicals, medications, a lifetime of therapy, or by winning the lottery. It's acheived by changing the way you think and react. You had the power all along. Use it.