Money Meets Medicine Podcast

MMM 90: Hard Decisions on Money Meets Medicine

Have you ever felt like things are getting really heavy? And that you need to make a change? That is what we are going to do today on the show today. We are going to pull back the curtain and talk about things that have been going on in our lives. Often people don’t think about the lives of the people behind the YouTube videos or podcasts like this one, Money Meets Medicine. So today we are going to dive in and talk about hard decisions on this podcast Money Meets Medicine. Join us as we explore why resting in your personal and financial lives is essential for healthy success. 

Larry Keller


What Do You Want?

I have been really thinking about where I want to go and what I want to do. And this is something that I coach people all the time on in the Alpha Coaching Experience (ACE). Often times as doctors wanting to help as many people as we can, we get caught up in letting medicine run us and we forget to stop and think, what do I want. Physicians often forget they have a choice and decisions they are making every day.  

The same thing started to happen with my business. I woke up recently and realized that my business was running me, I wasn’t running my business. I started reading books on rest because it was something I was lacking in my life. 

If you recall, before summer began I was very excited to work my last night shift at the hospital. I was excited to finally practice medicine on my own terms and embrace physician freedom as I teach it. 

But over the summer with my newfound time, I realized that I quickly found ways to fill it with the business, rest and freedom were things I began chasing again. So, all of the reading that I have been doing lately on literally how to rest has brought me to the realization that I don’t rest well or even truly know how to rest. 

I found myself constantly thinking about my long to-do list for the business when I was with Kristen and the kids. This was not what I wanted. I wanted to be present with them, but I was finding this really difficult. 

And I realized things in my life needed to change.

I have been through seasons like this in my life before where I have had to really take stock of what I am doing, pause, reassess where I am and what I want in life. Just as I coach those in ACE, I had to coach myself on the fact that life is about decisions and I can control those decisions. 

Ryan was asking himself this same question recently. As he has found himself since the pandemic at a point in his business where he has a waitlist for clients, he has had to start to balance his business demand and life much more. Ryan has decided for the first time ever to put a waitlist in place for his mental health. He doesn’t want to turn people down, but he knows there is only so much he can do and enjoy his life with his family. 

What Is Enough? 

So the question really is what is enough?

When do you need to press pause and take a break because you have enough? If you are someone like me and you get your worth from producing, there is always something to be doing, creating, or a problem to be solving. 

There are times in life when you have to go, go, go and your schedule is full. But that never has to last forever. And right now in my life, this overwhelm and constant to-do list feels self-inflected. I think to myself, “We have what we need.”

So I recently started asking myself, “then what do I want?” 

Do I want to do group coaching or do I want to do one-on-one coaching? I love one-on-one coaching people! But the big business gurus always say to help more people and scale your business you must do a group coaching program. It makes more business sense. 

But coaching isn’t just about the client. And when I reflected on my group coaching model, I realized that because I am a people pleaser I abandoned one-on-one coaching. But that is what I love and want. 

So, decided I am going to do more one-on-one coaching because that is what I love. I am also going to write a book because I have been really wanting to write one more focused on mindset. But I know that I can’t do these things and continue with the pace of life I have right now – multiple blogs, two weekly podcasts, and coaching and running ACE. 

Now, you are here for personal finance so why do I tell you all of this? 

Because the same questions apply to personal finance. You can get so caught up in your money goals and saving for the future, that you stop living in the now. 

So ask yourself when it comes to your personal finance goals, what is enough? What is enough to pay off your student loans? What is enough to save for retirement? What is enough in your savings account? These are arbitrary numbers that you get to pick. So what is enough?

Strategically Quitting

This question for both Ryan and I has brought us to this next big decision and announcement. We have decided that because of what is going on in our personal and business lives at this time, what we want, and what is enough, that we are going to pause Money Meets Medicine until January 5th, 2022. 

This is so I can work on some things. For Ryan, his schedule changed once the pandemic hit and for 18 months he put his head down and pushed through the craziness. His schedule looked like this: Ryan would wake up with the kids at 7 am, the kids would be home doing online school, and his wife would work until 4 pm every day. Once she got home, Ryan would work until about 1 AM or 2 AM. Only getting five hours a night of sleep was starting to have a negative effect on his health. 

So Ryan also needs to take a break so he can focus on some self-care. Ryan also has a Friday show, Financial Residency, that has been really hard to stop because all he wants to do is help people. 

If you have always been that yes man or woman, it is okay to take a break and say no. Self-care is not selfish. This is the one thing that both science and religion agree on – that humans need rest, restoration, and rejuvenation. 

Our culture has sucked us into this idea that we have to hurry all the time. And that is just not true, sustainable, or healthy. 

What does your mind tell you about rest? Is rest getting in the way? Do you think, “I’ll sleep when I am dead?” You will die if you don’t rest, literally. 

Financial Rest For Doctors 

Rest is something we really want to enough you to do, even in your financial life. It may look like a rest from spending, overworking,  or over saving. But evaluate if you could really use some rest and take it. 

One great example is Ryan’s client that couldn’t stop spending money. It was like a big monster that just needed to keep feeding. So they took a break, a rest, from spending and just stopped spending money, unless it was bills or food, for 30 days. And in that time they were able to reset their mind when it came to spending. 

Another example is when you take on extra shifts to have more income, but then you get used to spending that money and now you need to take those extra shifts. Instead of slowing down and saying, what can I change so I can have a quality of life alongside my financial goals? 

Or maybe you are a doctor that won’t take a vacation because you view it as losing money. You might even send your family on vacation and continue to work. Or go into the spiral of, “what if I invest that $10,000?” Personal finance is 80% behavior and 20% math, that is the way to success. There is an excellent book on this, The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel, on this idea as well. 

Sometimes the benefits do not have a dollar sign, because the value in choosing to rest you can not measure – things like peace of mind, self-care, or avoiding burnout.

Peace of mind is worth something and you know it. Can you measure it? No. But, you know it matters. 

Talk Soon On Money Meets Medicine 

Ryan and I often joke that we are the only ones in the room who will work 80 hours for ourselves to not work 40 for someone else. And we know that we have to rest from this. 

And think about your own rest. I really want to encourage people to take care of themselves. How are you going to take care of yourself through the new year? 

We are honored to be your go-to podcast for physician finance, to help you and be part of your life. We want to be here for you for the long term and don’t want to burn out for the short term. So take listen to the past 90 episodes of Money Meets Medicine over the next few weeks and we will talk to you again (with fresh jokes) on January 5, 2022.

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1 Comment

  1. Dr. Teresa

    Thank you for your time and efforts you’ve put into this podcast. Your educational financial tips and life advice have been beneficial to hear during the past several years. I hope to hear new episodes with fresh jokes and the same feisty banter in a few months. Take care.


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