Find your purpose, find your way
There is no shortage of evidence that veterinarians the world over are struggling with their career. There is also no shortage of people with ideas and reasons why this is the case. Unsuitable university entry criteria, gender bias, and millennial work ethic are three such examples that show up again and again.
There's probably some truth in each but I think it's very likely there's a deeper issue underpinning a great deal of the misery. I believe that one of the core reasons people are struggling is a lack of purpose.
Now before you discount this, think about it for a second. When you were in high school, all you wanted to do was get to Vet School. This clarity of purpose (the what and why) drove you to new heights, allowed you to make and accept many sacrifices. You stood in cow sheds milking at four am. You mucked out horses until your back was breaking, and you stank so badly of pig poop that your family wouldn’t go near you… even after six showers!
Despite these hardships, back then, you were happy. You were magnificent. Then, after getting into vet school, your purpose changed to make sure you got out the other side a fully-fledged vet. Again, you went to work, gave up your holidays to EMS and studied longer and harder than anyone else. And again, you succeeded.
It is down to that effort and determination that we are talking today - because you got the work done. But something changed after graduating and getting your first job. Your focus lost its edge and instead you just tried to survive, to not get sued. To not have a client shout at you. To not get sacked for being useless. And for the first few months and maybe years of your career, you worked to simply not sink without trace. There was no longer the crystal-clear, razor-edged objective. No deadline to work to. Many directions to go. Threats all around. Overwhelm. And what happens next? Now you question whether this is as good as it gets for the next 20, 30 or 40 years. Is the daily grind of client friction worth it? When is the mad dash to get the work done, barely under control, without lunch or breaks going to result in a serious error? And just how long can I go on without feeling appreciated or loved by my boss? These thoughts are unbearable to many. Is this it? Is this what I studied for?
Is this how you feel? A lack of clear purpose does terrible things to the human mind. It weakens your resolve to get the job done. It allows the inner trash talk voice to win. Eventually, inevitably, you run out of steam.... and drift. Floating, without hope. Lost and, possibly, in despair. But there is an answer. And the amazing thing is that it is right before your eyes. You hold the key to your happiness. Not your boss. Not your patients. Not your colleagues, or parents. You. If you can set goals, move outside your professional comfort zone and work towards something more significant, then you’ll move mountains. You will not put up with second best or crappy treatment. You’ll find a way to succeed. You’ll do what needs to be done to get where you want to go. And you’ll thrive in this state of blissful purpose.
So the answer to your problems starts with a question. What is your purpose? To this end, I want you to know about VetX:Thrive.
VetX:Thrive is a class for vets 100% focused on helping you to set your goals, learn the communication kung-fu skills to achieve those goals faster and master the mental judo required to overcome your obstacles. You’ll be training with the best. Armed with a purpose, using the skills to get what you want, mastering the tools to stay positive and held accountable by a supportive community – you simply cannot fail. You’ll be unstoppable. So, whether you are at the start of your career and want to find the way quickly, or you're lost in the doldrums, VetX:Thrive is here to help you plot a course and steer your ship back in the right direction. Find your purpose, find your way. You don’t have any time to waste - join VetX:Thrive today. Go to https://vetx.drdavenicol.com/courses/thrive for full class details. You can try us for 30 days free of charge using the promocode 'thrive'.