Often there is a transition period between the time we leave one job and start another. There may be a period of time between the end date of one job and the start date of another job. This may be from a few weeks to a few months depending on the situation. Since we physicians are not used to having time off (many of us don’t even take vacation) knowing what to do with this newfound period of time can be unsettling. I have listed 5 things to do during this break between jobs.
- Rest, rest, rest. Catch up on your sleep. Spend days in bed. Rest. We don’t realize that we are chronically sleep deprived and burned out. It is going to take time to undo all of that. It is going to take time to begin to feel like yourself again. Learn to get used to not having to get up at the sound of an alarm clock. Learn what it feels like to not be on call. Learn what it feels like to do errand during a weekday, during business hours. Learn to rest and to enjoy it.
- Make sure you have enough money to take care of your expenses. Decide how much time it will be before your next job. Make sure you have enough money to cover your expenses until then.
- Make sure you have the benefits you need. For health coverage, find out when your employer sponsored coverage ends. See if you are eligible for Cobra. You can also purchase a policy through the ACA exchanges. Also, make sure your prior job does not owe you any money from bonuses, unused vacation, sick leave, PTO, etc. You want to make sure that you get all the money that you are owed.
- Start looking for a new job. If you don’t already have a job lined up, start looking for one. It take about 3-6 months to get a new job. If you are unsure if you want another “permanent” job, or are unsure about what kind of job you want, do locums on a temporary basis until you figure it out. However, take the amount of time you need to get clarity about what you want in terms of a job and in terms of your life.
- Do fun stuff. Do everything you were unable to do while you were working. Travel. Go visit family and friends. Exercise. Go to the spa. Whatever you have wanted to do but could not do b/c you were working. Do it.
Be sure to schedule your one hour Locums Strategy Session with Dr. Stephanie.