A Creative Thought Exercise for Career Slumps

If you spend Sundays in a bad mood because you’re dreading Monday morning, you’re not alone.

But I want to tell you: there’s a better way to live, and I want to help you find it.

Often, our experience of Sunday dread is closely tied with the experience of feeling stuck.

We feel stuck in a job that we hate, and we have to keep doing that job. Because [we have to pay off our student loans, save for our kids’ college fund, pay the mortgage, support our spouse and family, etc…].

We can’t possibly change jobs because [we have a noncompete clause, we can’t change specialties without going back to residency/school, we don’t want to move, we don’t want to take a pay cut, we don't want to appear a failure…].

So we have locked ourselves into a circumstance that we believe we cannot or will not change.

As doctors, we are always fact collecting. We are obsessed with having the right answer -- because, of course, our patients’ lives often depend on it!

But that obsession with the right answer can backfire when we’re trying to create a fulfilling life. Because there is no right answer. There is only what works for us, and what doesn’t.

Yet so many of us are killing ourselves to fit into a certain mold of what it means to be a doctor, to be a wife, to be a mother, to be a good provider, that we can’t seem to see that the answers the world holds up are simply not working for us.

So let’s do a little creative thinking exercise...da da daaaaa

Imagine that you wake up tomorrow and the type of medicine you practice (family medicine, ER, radiology, surgery, Peds, Ob, whatever) can no longer be done.

The government has outlawed it. Your practice or your specialty is out of business, forever. Your hospital/your organization gone off the face of the Earth. There are no more family medicine offices; there’s no more surgeries; there are no more ERs. No more of what you do currently.

What would you do next?

What kind of medicine would you practice if you couldn’t do what you’re doing now?

In what kind of setting would you practice?

If you absolutely had to move tomorrow, to flee a coming plague, where would you move to and why?

If you were already rethinking everything -- location, specialty, setting -- what else would you change?

If you got to pick all over again, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently?

The point of this exercise is to recognize how much we limit ourselves in our own thinking. How much we lock ourselves into a single course of action.

When truly, there are millions of paths.

Millions of opportunities for you to create the life you’re dreaming of.


If you’d love to take this exercise a little further and want help dreaming up more creative possibilities, I’d love to talk. Schedule with me HERE