At the beginning of this year, I constructed a list of “18 for 2018” (small and large goals to be completed a la Gretchen Rubin, discussed in an earlier post). My completion rate was decent: of the 18 items, I definitively completed 14, initiated/partially did 2, and did not complete 2. The 2 items I didn’t do at all were fitness-related (foiled by a mid-winter back injury and a nagging shoulder injury): to finish the level 2 training schedule of a strength-oriented kettlebell program that I purchased, and to do 5 military pushups. The 2 items I “half-completed” were to increase my posting frequency on this blog to once a week and to go on a weekly “date” with my husband. I started both of these things part-way through the year, and both of them have waxed and waned from their intended frequency.
End of year “balance”: Of the completed 14, the biggest ones (and most relevant to this blog) were to migrate all PracticeBalance content to the WordPress platform and to appear on a podcast. The blog, which has been around since 2011(!), really needed to be refreshed. I still have some formatting and auditing work to do, but this move was a necessary action item. As for podcasts, they’re simply a resource that I love for continued inspiration and learning, and I thought doing an interview on one would be a great challenge (along with a great way to share my refreshed blog with a wider audience). What I didn’t anticipate was what happened while working to achieve these two things: I became entwined with a group of very unique physician writers and speakers who are defying the typical culture of medicine to openly talk about money, burnout, and the quest for alternative ways to find happiness and balance.
Here’s how it went: on a whim, I responded to the White Coat Investor‘s call for panelists for his first ever Physician Wellness and Financial Literacy for Conference. There, I met inspiring bloggers such as Physician on Fire, Passive Income MD, Miss Bonnie MD, and Carrie Reynolds of Hippocratic Hustle. Since finances are entwined with stress management and happiness, I started writing a Money Mattersseries. A bunch of us met up again (with an even bigger group of physician bloggers, including BC Krygowski, Crispy Doc, Wealthy Doc, Millionaire Doc, Physician Philosopher, DiverseFI, and Dr McFrugal) at #FinCon18, forming an ad-hoc group we’ve dubbed the “FinConDocs”. The two podcasts I appeared on (Hippocratic Hustle and Doctors Unbound) are hosted by members of this awesome group. Inspired by the whole scene, I’ve spent the last third of this year working to further expand my blogging. Not only have I written more on my blog, but I’ve appeared in some others bloggers’ interview series (here and here), and I wrote a guest post for Miss Bonnie MD.
Simultaneous to all this positive change, my imposter syndrome still holds strong: “I’m not a financial person! I’m horrible with finance, statistics (etc)!” While change is the only constant, some habits take longer to transform: my worry about what others think (I talkedhere of my trepidation asking for the sabbatical I’ll be taking in 2019), a lack of confidence in my abilities, and the easy tendency to become overwhelmed (and then use communication-killing behaviors to express my emotions). In order to address these habits, I did adopt some daily practices that I wrote about here. While I’ve continued to do them regularly, I must admit that I didn’t always practice them every day. It’s easy to get lazy when things are going well and then suddenly realize that you need to pick up good habits again when things in life get a little crazy. However, I realized this year what I do know: I know myself well, and I’m self-aware enough to know how to prioritize “the big rocks” in life so that they’re aligned with my values. You can bet I’ll be continuing to talk about this kind of thing on the blog in 2019.
Top PB posts of the year: I used to compile a list of the five top posts of each year, as tabulated by the number of pageviews reported in Blogger’s analytics. However, due to switching to the WordPress platform halfway through this year, the analytics on the two platforms are disjointed. From what I can tell, a short list of my most visited posts this year are:
- An introduction to valueism, exemplified by my fully automatic espresso machine
- My description of how I view money, wealth, and “enough”, and how this has changed over my adult life
- An OG post, harkening back to the days when I thought I was merely suffering from burnout but it turned out to be a brain tumor (still popular due to link-backs and my recent interviews)
Happy New Year! Did you have a favorite post of mine in 2018? What was your favorite part of this year?