Water Wine Travel™

Seeking The Best In Leisure, Wine and Travel

Water Wine Travel™ header image 2

My Prescription for Work Life Balance

February 16th, 2011 · 3 Brilliant Opinions · Random Things That Make Me Smile

Sponsored /Paid Post Compensation Level 13

Thanks to Crystal Light for sponsoring this post. To learn more about how Crystal Light can flavor your day with 30 refreshing flavors, visit http://www.facebook.com/crystallight.

National Medical Association Meeting - Philadelphia, PA

This is my life in a nutshell.  I am a 40+ year old physician with a solo medical practice (yes a dinosaur!)   I have two young children, a retired ironworker husband, a cat and a house that is over 100 years old.  In addition to mothering, practicing medicine, and running a small real estate rental business, I am über-active in my kids’ school.

I currently serve as chairperson of our School Leadership Team. In my “spare” time I am studying piano and writing this lifestyle/travel/leisure/wine (are we having fun yet?) blog. Whew! I’m tired just writing this.  On many days, I feel overwhelmed by the amount of things I have to do.  My heart is racing. I’m sick to my stomach. If I’m at work, I feel like I’m neglecting my children. If I’m with my children – well I’m going crazy trying to make them happy.  When I’m at at a school meeting I am quietly calculating the cost of private school tuition – because surely the woman-hours I am devoting to this school can be translated into some serious lost income.  The income, perhaps I can make up for in the future, but once I give up my time… I can’t get it back.

Balance This!

Now I don’t claim to have all the answers. I’ve made a lot of mistakes, cried a river of tears, worked too much and too little but these are five things I do that have given me more work-life balance.

1.  Automate – Although I’m a blogger, I don’t consider myself to be tech savvy.  I kept waiting for the internet to go away.  In 2008, at the urging of a colleague, I computerized my office records, billing system, and medical charts. Now I know you’re thinking, “Uh, hello – we’re not all doctors.”   Trust me, everyone has something that is very labor intensive or time consuming that can be automated.  Instead of dictating letters to referring doctors, the computer generates one.  This alone saves me 2 hours a day and $500/month that I was paying to a transcriptionist.  At a minimum, you can do your banking online and stop running to the bank for transfers, deposits, and bill payments.

2.  Delegate – Don’t let my down to earth, urban girl persona fool you.  I’m serious about my children’s education and extracurricular activities.  But guess what – they can do dance, swimming, tennis, robotics and drama without me having to drive them all over town.  That’s what dad is for. Or babysitters. Or grandparents. Or anyone who is a friend to me and my family.

3.  Just Say No – This is a difficult one for me.  I like being “involved”, “helpful” and “needed.”  It’s an illness.  Civic organizations,  churches and PTAs love people that can’t say no.  If you have a nervous breakdown they will really feel bad, but trust me (and as a former PTA president, I say this with love) – they will have your replacement lined up in 5 minutes flat.

4.  Take a Minute Every Day – When I wake up I read a brief passage of scripture and mediate on it. No fire and brimstone – I’m trying to relax.  Just words of encouragement and peace. I do it every day.  If you’re not religious you can substitute a book of affirmations or poetry.  It only takes a minute but it makes a difference.

5.  A Little Self-Love Goes a Long Way – As a physician, I am always amazed at how many moms will come in elegantly dressed, hair coiffed to perfection, air-brushed nails and yet if you ask them what medications they are on – they are dumbfounded. Junior has an iphone but his diabetic mom can’t tell me when she had her blood sugar checked. Oh and don’t ask mom when she had a mammogram, pap smear or colonoscopy.  You can’t take care of your family or perform at work if you aren’t taking care of your health. I have a line I give my kids when they are shaking me down for toys, games, or want me to run around town looking for some exotic video game. “I’ll take care of you – but you and all these requests are in line after ME.”

Ok, gotta go…I have kids/hubby/piano/school/patients/tenants and a blog to attend to!

Remember, visit http://www.facebook.com/crystallight to learn more about how Crystal Light can flavor your day with 30 refreshing flavors. I was selected and paid for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective, which endorses Blog With Integrity, as I do.


Tags: ····

3 Comments so far ↓

Leave a Comment, beautiful!