The Sunday Best (1/15/2017)
The Sunday Best is a collection of a handful of posts I share with you each week. With so many informative and inspirational writers out there, I have no trouble coming up with a number of worthwhile reads each week.
Every featured post should be of interest to any physician seeking financial independence. Some will be written by your physician colleagues; others will be written by our friends and patients who share common goals and interests.
Presenting, this week’s Sunday Best:
What if I told you The White Coat Investor and Future Proof MD got together for a Q&A? Would you read it? Of course you would. Future Proof Docs: White Coat Investor. Bonus read (Q&A with PoF): Christopher Guest Post: White Coat Investor.
We read about Medicare this week on this site, but that’s a long ways off for an early retiree. Joe Udo @ Retireby40 discusses bridging that gap in Budgeting for Healthcare When You Retire Early.
Podcast fans may find David Denniston’s Doctor Freedom Podcast worth a listen. He’s featured a number of your favorite physician personal finance bloggers, and in a recent show, he featured my story and my writing in How This Doctor Can Retire by 45 (Case Study).
Have you seen the Millionaire series on ESI Money? Learn the secrets of his first four guests in these inquisitive interviews: Millionaire Interview #1 / Millionaire Interview #2 / Millionaire Interview #3 / Millionaire Interview #4
Here’s a little more food for thought from the Wealthy Doc. Aside from the “Don’t even think about giving it all up and “retiring,”” line, I found the post to be a succinct piece of philosophy. Three Boxes of Life.
More than a dozen personal finance bloggers, including Financial Samurai, Justin @ Root of Good, and Michelle @ Making Sense of Cents, and I answered the question. Four Pillar Finance asked Where Were You When You Were 23?
Is Work-Life Balance Possible for Doctors? A good question posed by medical student Steven Zhang of Scope, and hosted by KevinMD. After more than a decade in practice, I’m still trying to find the answer.
Update: Remember this guest post from Dr. Roberson about the High Cost of Being a Good Physician Citizen? Long story short, the $3,000 “CME Fund” failed to cover his basic costs of maintaining memberships and licensure, let alone attending a conference.
Well, as my Dad says, “If you don’t ask, you don’t get.” Dr. Roberson asked for more, and got more. Will I see you at the ASA Annual Meeting in Boston this fall, Dr. R?
One of the more popular threads on the WCI Forum this week was a discussion of career satisfaction. We were asked to grade our satisfaction / enjoyment with practicing medicine on a 1 – 10 scale. Most respondents reported somewhat surprisingly high numbers.
That’s a good thing, but not necessarily reflective of what you hear and read. Perhaps those of us who are actively engaged in the discussion and choose to respond are among the more satisfied doctors. We are likely more financially savvy than most, and many are either early in our careers (and less jaded) or near financial independence (jaded, but less bothered by it).
One theme that emerged was that many of the docs admitted they were fairly happy with their jobs (7 or 8 out of 10), but loved their lives outside of medicine (10 or 11 out of 10). Being a doctor is rewarding in its own right, but also can permit a really good life if you can create a schedule that allows for a life outside of medicine. For some, that’s easier said than done.
How did I answer? Before I was financially independent, I would have called it an 8. I am proud of the work I do, and generally well respected and highly compensated. As I’ve said before, there are things I will miss when I’m no longer a practicing physician.
Now that I’m financially independent and closing in on financial freedom, I’m calling it a 5. Just like the others in the forum, I enjoy my days off more than my workdays. And we’ve got a lot going on away from work!
There’s this site. It takes time. I love doing it, but I can’t deny it is quite time consuming.
We try not to overschedule our boys, but in addition to school, we juggle piano lessons, skiing and swimming lessons, and we’ve recently added choir and guitar. In the spring, there will be soccer, and of course there are playdates, biking, running, Legos, Pokémon, and on and on.
The grown-ups like to play, too. This weekend, we had functions both Friday and Saturday evening. I’ve got weekly curling league, and occasionally double up with a homebrew club meeting on the same night. We’ve got friends in town, friends out of town, a love of travel, and only so much time to do it all.
That’s why an early retirement appeals to me. Steven Zhang asked if work-life balance is possible for doctors. I believe it is, but it’s a lot easier if you minimize or eliminate the work part.
Have a great week!
-Physician on FIRE