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Are you feeling a bit battered by the current Covid situation, and feel your resilience waning? Is the ‘here we go again’ lockdown causing you concern about the welfare of your Private Practice?
I get it.
This year I’ve seen income in my own practice drop like a stone when they shut our Private hospitals, and yet my indemnity bill has somehow mysteriously increased.
The patients who once came into the City of London are camped out in Surrey and Kent, and it seems highly unlikely that things will ever return to the way that they were- and nor probably should they (commuting everyday is mad, right?)
It’s easy to feel isolated, lonely, be missing family and dreading the possibility of an even worse Covid fate for the UK this winter.
Plus, as I’m reflecting on this, the US election is happening, and yep, I’m worried that Trump will be re-elected (just sayin’).
And yet, we’ve all, without doubt, been through tough times in our lives before.
The difference perhaps is, it seems worse because almost everyone is going through a sh*tty time at the same time.
We have a couple of choices:
A. Either, we throw our hands up, and run and hide from the rest of 2020 – (after all we have a totally legitimate reason for saying ‘enough’ and then hibernating)
B. We challenge ourselves to pull on the armour and get out and take action.
How do you keep getting up and getting out, when you feel like saying ‘sod it’?
1️⃣ First, it helps to remember that you’ve overcome obstacles before. Maybe you’ve been bereaved /divorced / dealt with a health crisis / been sacked / had to sack someone/ sat an impossibly difficult exam / stood up to a manager who was a bully?
In other words, you can do hard things. Write those achievements down. Read them each day if you need to be reminded.
2️⃣ Next, it helps to steer your efforts to achieving successes in the very short term, whilst keeping an eye on what you’d really want for your practice in the longer term
What might that look like? For example, in my own Practice I continue to need to get patients in the door, and I need to continue to diversify where they come from e.g. more video consult patients who live all around the UK and not just on my doorstep – that’s my longer term goal.
My short-term goals are to complete my website rebuild, with ridiculously awesome SEO and content that I’ve purposely written to out-perform the competition’s.
3️⃣ Master your diary and your priorities. It is all too easy to become overwhelmed, when there seems so much that needs to be ‘overcome’ or attended to. So to build some momentum, you need to take consistent action steps each day, that are ringfenced from being bulldozed by other issues creeping in.
4️⃣ Grab a diary or journal, and on a Sunday reflect on what has happened in the week, and the key things you need to get done in the next 7days, to move your practice (and life) forwards.
For instance, this week, I am going to get my photography for the website done before lockdown on Thursday (with just one hour of daylight left at the end of the clinical day), and I will write 3 key pages for the website (approx.. 6,000 words) AND get my flu jab done! Finally, I’ll be contacting my patient list and referrers by email to ensure they are aware that the clinic is still open for them or their patients to be seen (regardless of lockdown).
Each and every evening, I’ll plan in my diary what I am doing to next day – so that from the moment I wake up, I know exactly what I’ll be doing that day, and the one thing I must make sure happens by the end of the day. That way, my brain gets to work on it overnight, and it’s so much easier to just get started.
5️⃣ Don’t let other people’s agendas kibosh your own goals. If distractions crop up that aren’t 100% time critical, then write them down in a ‘holding pen’ area in your diary, and do NOT address them until it’s time for you to make them a priority.
6️⃣ At the end of the week, reflect on what you’ve achieved, and give yourself pat on the back. If things didn’t happen, be kind to yourself, and take a dispassionate look at why they didn’t happen. Did you say ‘yes’ to something you could have said ‘no’ to, or were the action steps for tackling your big task poorly defined, so you never really got started?
7️⃣ Ask for support and ask for help. We’re in a very weird old time at the moment, and so don’t let isolation get a hold on your mindset.
Need help from a supportive community? Why not consider joining the Private Practice Ninja Academy. You’ll get all the skills you need to power your practice forwards, plus the support of wonderful fellow clinicians who are working on similar challenges.
Or ping me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s have a natter.
Now it’s time for you to grow ‘your’ Private Practice.