Work/Life Balance Begins in Residency
At the Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED) we’re concerned with the total person. Yes, we offer resources to help improve the success of your practice, but we also are committed to sharing experiences and opportunities for our members to cultivate a full and balanced life that’s rich and fulfilling on all levels—not just the professional one.
While the term “work/life” balance is often applied to the particular “culture” of a work environment, we know that it is also part of the mindset of the practitioner. And, the best time to start developing a healthy attitude toward work/life balance is during your student and residency years. Although residency may only be for three years, getting in the habit of seeking out that balance between professional and personal life now will make for a much more rewarding life, that’s healthier both physically and mentally, during the next 35+ years of practice.
Some strategies to try to create a better balance during your residency include:
- Make a schedule and stick to it. Start with study time, journal clubs and academics. Once you see on paper how all your “required” work will get accomplished, you should also see spaces where you can plug in relationship time with family and friends and “me” time activities.
- Find your “out.” Everyone needs something they enjoy doing that is completely unrelated to work. From church league baseball to pottery, video games, yoga or photography, take time to develop a hobby or activity you like and make time to enjoy it. This will prove to be a huge stress reliever and ready break when needed.
- Give to others. Not only is this good in and of itself, focusing on the needs of others takes your mind off yourself.
- Get some sleep and some exercise. Your brain and your body cannot function long-term on caffeine! Regular exercise is a stress buster and health builder.
- Make the most of relationships. Your loved ones, family members, friends and colleagues and the impact and support of the life you share is something invaluable and precious beyond all else.
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