There are many reasons GPs might have fallen out of love with their job in recent times.
For some, what was once a calling has morphed into a burden.
There’s the burnout factor after a relentless three years of the pandemic.
There’s dealing with the red tape and administration.
There’s the challenge of rapidly changing and sometimes costly technologies.
And there’s a growing feeling the profession is taken for granted and even disrespected by some of our politicians. This is evidenced by the shrinking Medicare rebates and a general lack of regard on so many levels.
Even lawmakers have dipped their heads with Associate Professor Louise Stone recently noting: “We’re not even included in the Crimes Legislation Amendment (Assaults on Frontline Emergency and Health Workers) Bill 2022 … apparently it’s not okay to assault pharmacists and nurses, but it is okay to assault GPs.”
But while times may have been tough, we believe there are ways to rekindle your passion again. Here’s just a few of our thoughts.
Identify intrinsic motivations
Intrinsic motivations are ones which rise from your own natural instincts to do something because it gives you satisfaction.
That is as opposed to extrinsic motivations which are either for reward (money) or to avoid a consequence (punishment).
Your intrinsic motivation may be a genuine love to talk or connect with people, to help them or maybe even to feed your own thirst for knowledge in the medical sphere.
Ask yourself, what do you value most and what motivates you?
Think about ways you can align your values with your work to help you gain more gratification from your job.
Once you’ve isolated exactly what you love (or loved) about your job, consider ways to involve more of it in your working week to help you rediscover your passion for general practice.
Stay in the present
Now you’ve identified what you enjoy about being a GP, try to push everything else aside while you are working and take it in for what it is.
Push the past and the future to one side and stay in the present.
It’s known as “mindfulness” and research has shown that people who spend more time immersing themselves in what they are doing rather than thinking about what’s been or what’s ahead tend to have much more rewarding experiences.
Learn to say ‘no’
It’s human nature to take on more when asked, whether at the workplace or even among family and social circles.
But there comes a time when everyone should say ‘no’ – at least some of the time.
Know your physical and mental limits.
Working an unsustainable amount of hours will only end up being counter-productive as well as potentially dangerous.
Never take work home – that is your sanctuary.
And when you do have time off, do whatever you can to maximise it, whether that be through activity, rest, reflection or a combination of all three.
Know your triggers and adjust your responses
Be aware of what causes you to melt down and try to set up practices to guard against it from happening.
When it can’t be avoided, learn from your past reactions and actively try to improve them.
Consider breathing techniques or take a short walk.
Anything that can keep you calm and reduce or eliminate the negatives in your day is beneficial.
Keep fit and healthy
Keeping fit, eating well and getting enough sleep and exercise is vital to your ongoing health and wellbeing.
A good work-life balance is essential to get the best out of yourself and guard against burnout.
If you are a young doctor starting your journey in the medical profession, there is no better time to begin practicing this.
How can any of your patients have faith in you if you don’t practice what you preach?
Is it time for change?
If you have done everything you can to rediscover your joy for general practice but still find yourself at odds, perhaps it is time to seek change.
Depending on your situation, your might want to consider opportunities with more flexible working hours, a bright and modern work environment and an engaged team.
Explore opportunities at AHA
AHA Clinics take great pride in our fantastic culture that supports and inspires doctors of all ages both professionally and personally.
Sometimes, a change of scenery is all it takes to rekindle the fire and find that passion for general practice again.
If you’ve been looking for the right environment for that fresh start, you need look no further.
You will love our beach-side, purpose built, state-of-the-art facilities that utilise natural light and make coming to work an absolute joy. Come down and take a look!
We also place a high priority on work-life balance and offer flexible hours to suit your lifestyle needs.
You could enjoy your lunch break at one of Seaford’s vibrant cafes, and be swimming at the beach a few minutes after finishing work.
Our dedicated support team is on hand to assist with the health and wellbeing of our doctors and strives to ensure all of our staff thrive at our workplaces.
There are some outstanding opportunities for doctors at our two clinics at Seaford and Seaford Meadows.
If that sounds attractive to you, we’d love to hear from you.
Our AHA leadership team will contact you soon to arrange an interview.