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114: Chiropractors on Vacation

chiropractic motivation Mar 12, 2023
Kats Consultants
114: Chiropractors on Vacation

Chiropractors on vacation.

Welcome to the KC CHIROpulse Podcast, brought to you by Kats Consultants. I'm Dr. Michael Perusich, and I'm joined by my co-host, Dr. Troy Fox. Troy, I'm gonna dive right into this because I've got everybody's attention because everybody's stopped their thinking. What do you mean chiropractors on vacation?

We never take vacation. You just took one. You just took one. How'd it. That was fantastic. It was absolutely fantastic and you and I were kind of talking a little bit before that though. There's two steps to take into vacation. One, you have to actually schedule a vacation. Yep. It's gotta make the schedule

So here's what you and I recommend and, and I think it works fantastically. You get to the beginning of the year and some of us aren't really good planners, but maybe you need to become a better planner. We recommend that you take several vacations a year, and maybe one of 'em is a staycation. Sure. Or maybe a couple of 'em are staycations…Maybe.

Maybe you don't go anywhere each and every time, or you go somewhere what I call a, a nearby vacation, you know? Sure. Lake of the Ozarks is close by here in the area. I live in far away from home. That it's vacation, but it's close enough that I can drive back and forth, and that's kind of nice. Um, I just went to Mexico, so I went a little bit farther away, but what I did is I got to the beginning of the year and I got together with, with the other doc in my practice, and guess what?

I said, we need to schedule our vacations for the year. and so, yep. We already know who's gonna be out when now you may be a solo practitioner and you're just gonna end up, uh, you're, you're gonna end up closing for a week or whatever and taking your vacations. I think it's very important that you do that for a number of reasons and.

We'll talk a little bit as well about the stages that I went through. This is kind of funny. I don't know if you guys have ever gone through this when you've gone on vacation, but I related to you the stages. Yeah. I went through and I showed you a couple of pictures and some creative things I did. I go through a few stages when I go on vacation, number one, in a lot of cases we're running a hundred miles an hour right before we leave.

Right. You're always trying to, and then. . Yeah. You're trying to take care of those last few patients. You're tying up loose ends, making your staff understand exactly what needs to happen while you're gone. And there's always that acute patient that comes in, usually 24 to 48 hours before you leave, right?

That it, that, that weighs heavily on your mind. So you gotta figure all that out. So you're running 110 miles an hour, making sure you get out of there. Um, luckily for me, I have a wife that lays all my stuff out and ready. almost gets me packed. So I can literally just change gears at 5 30, 6 o'clock in the evening, jump in the car, drive to a hotel, stay all night, and then fly out the next morning.

So of course I'm stressed. Right, right. I'm not where I need to be yet. I'm not relaxed. You're not on vacation yet next morning? No, no. Not even close. So, A couple of days in, all of a sudden I start to relax these little lines in between right here in my brow. They start to go away. It gets down to one.

Actually. I go from two to one , and so when I go from two to one, then the next thing that happens is all of a sudden I start remembering things that I was so busy and so tied up with my practice that I forgot. Maybe they're personal things. Maybe somebody that I regret that I didn't call. That I should have, or maybe it's something I, I was supposed to have done in the practice that was important, but not urgent, but it got swept under the rug.

So I start thinking my way through those. Then the next stage that I go through is the anxiety of that. So that's not so fun. But there's probably some, a little, there's probably some docs listening right now that are getting a little anxiety. Even talking about a vacation. Yeah. Because they worry that they're gonna have anxiety and that they'll, you know, , then you get past that anxiety stage and I get to my favorite stage, which is that freethinking, uh, creative stage.

Yeah. And at that stage you start thinking, you start, you go, Hey, how about I read a book? You know, cuz I can't really think the first couple of days of vacation, but you start reading and you and I related, and I'm not gonna share what we talked about because we may use it in a future podcast, but . I came up with some really fantastic ideas and what I encourage you to do when you do go on vacation, take a little spiral bound notebook with you or well, okay, I'm old school.

I write stuff down still. You could use your phone, you could take notes on your phone or whatever. . I tend to leave my phone laying, and I tend to use my spiral bound notebook because I may think of a really fantastic idea that I wanna write down, and then maybe put some footnotes below it, because later when I look at it again, what was I thinking?

You know? Right. And so I look at things like that and I write notes down. And so those are my stages of vacation. And then of course there's the, uh, the, the bittersweet end of the vacation when you fly back home and it's, and it's time to head towards, um, Uh, you know, your home state or wherever that may be, and go back to work again.

Right? So that there's probably four stages there, but that free creative stage, and that's why I recommend people take a week to nine days when you take vacation, because I think you have to get to that point of relaxation, which is usually several days in. I've talked to other folks. It's, I think that's a pretty typical numbers about three days into vacation.

I think it is. You know, I'm, I'm the exact same way. And you and I have taken vacation together before. Yeah, we both, we both hit. Point about the same time. Yeah. But this is why short vacations while they're nice. Yeah. And it's great, you know, it's fun to go do something with the family over a long weekend or something.

That's not really a vacation, that's not where your brain gets the opportunity to shut down a little bit and rest. And, and that's what we need is our brain needs some rest. . Yeah. I think when you do the short vacations, you stop the drain, you stop the drain on the battery, but you don't recharge the battery.

You don't recharge. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Absolutely. And you're right, it takes, it takes probably five to nine days and that's why we recommend you really should take four weeks a year off. Now, I, I don't mean in a row, and there's probably a couple of you out there that need C P R right now because I said that, but

Because here's what most doctors think. Well, I can't take that much time off. I'll lose my patients. No, you won't. No you won't. No, not not. If they're coming to you for. a reason that you've helped them understand they're not gonna leave you. If you've helped them understand the value that you provide to them, they're not gonna leave you if you're really helping them enjoy the chiropractic lifestyle, as we call it, of mm-hmm.

of just staying healthy. They're not gonna leave you. , you know, in an emergency they might go get an adjustment somewhere else. That's worst case scenario. Mm-hmm. . But there are ways, and we teach our members this, there are ways to schedule your patients around a vacation so you don't lose 'em. Yeah.

And I think in 2023, 2 things. One, I think that patients are excited. about you taking a vacation. Even if there's someone that hasn't been able to fully realize their potential in their lifetime, and they haven't been able to take as much vacation as they want, they want their doctor to be refreshed and renewed, right?

That's number one. Number two, they think you're nuts if you don't take a vacation. They, honestly are like, what in the world? You haven't taken a vacation in x x number of years. They, they're shocked by it as well because they think you're a doctor. You can afford to take a vacation. Well, they become concerned about, matter is, in most cases you can.

Yeah, yeah. You need that mental health time. But from a standpoint of patients standing by you after you take a vacation, you know what? When I was first in practice, I will tell you that I had that exact same concern when I wanted to take a vacation that I had patients say to me, and this is back in 19 97, 98, I had patients say to me, , I'm not coming back to you if I can't get an appointment next week or whatever.

You know, there were always one or two dissenters, but you know what? They came back, they came back . They were, they were just grouchy and, and people get grouchy sometimes they're in a bad frame of mine and they're thinking, I sure wish I could take a vacation. And every once in a while you get, you're always gonna have a couple of people that, you know.

That's what I always say. It's kinda like, . I always say this about Facebook. If you put vacation pictures on Facebook, you have two schools of thought. They're either gonna be people that are happy for you or jealous of what you just went and did. Right. Bottom line, right? Exactly. Right. Most, most people, most people are not indifferent.

Sometimes they are, but most people, if you're honest about it, you're either a little bit happy for, oh my gosh, they really needed to take a vacation, or I wish I could have what they. Yep, that's exactly right. So, so I see it the same way sometimes with their patients. You may have struck a patient wrong on a day, but they're not gonna quit care with you, and you're absolutely right.

They may go get an emergency adjustment with someone else, but. If, if you're their guy or gal, they're gonna come back to you. Well, they are, and you've gotta plan ahead for it. This is a big issue that I think a lot of doctors find themselves get, get trapped in, is they get to the point where they're burned out and then they just throw their hands up and tell their staff, right, I'm gonna take a week off.

Two weeks from today, I'm gonna be gone. Well, okay, you probably already have patients scheduled on that week, so now your staff's gotta reschedule them. You know? That's a lot of extra work for them. Patients are inconvenienced by having to reschedule. Mm-hmm. plan ahead when you plan ahead and that those four weeks are already blocked off on your schedule.

Way ahead of. , then guess what? You don't have to move patients. Yeah. Nobody gets upset. Nobody knows the difference, honestly. Yeah. And your staff says, Hey, you know, doctor wants to see you twice a month for the next six months. I'm just making something up. Yeah. And they're looking at the schedule and say, oh, well, Dr.

Fox is gonna be out of town this week, but we'll schedule you the week before and the week after and everything will be fine. Patient says, great, that works for me. And then everybody's. . Yeah. And we have a nifty little thing at our front desk that I thought was kind of archaic and silly when we first did it, but it works really great.

So not only do we have it scheduled out in our computer system, so that way we can't book over the top of a vacation. The other thing that we have, we have one of those calendars that's about. Yay. Tall. Yay wide. Mm-hmm. , you know, that's Kansas talk for about tall, probably 12. 12 inches tall and 24 inches wide or whatever.

It's one of those calendars, it's like a desktop calendar that's at our front desk. And I thought it was goofy when we first did it, but our patients will actually consult that calendar. Mm-hmm. and flip through it. And what's really great when they're looking through it is they see that the girls have marked off that.

Dr. Cody's gonna be gone that week. Dr. Fox is gonna be gone that week. Yep. Oh, doc, Dr. Fox is out that week. Okay. I, you know what? And, and the staff will say, yeah, Dr. Fox is gone that week. You had a four week appointment scheduled. Why don't we get you in right before he leaves? Right. You know, and so we work around it, but the patient visually sees that on the calendar.

I don't know if it's something for you guys, for my practice. It works. Yes. It's very old school to have a paper calendar set. We did the same thing, Troy. We did the don't exact same thing. The big whiteboard calendar. Yep. It showed two months, I think at a time. Yep. And staff would go on there and put all the events and you know, yeah.

Times off. And we're closed this day for a holiday and patients love. They do because they can visually see it really quickly and then they can coordinate it with their schedule really quickly. It also if, if you don't have somebody scheduled out in advance, , it does allow that patient to very quickly verify your schedule with their schedule and go, okay, this matches up on this date.

Right. So it makes for it, it makes your quicker decision making and I think it makes it easier on the staff as well. But it's just a tiny little thing you can do. They still sell paper calendars if you're in, if you're, if you're wondering about that, some of you probably haven't seen one in years because you use your phones or your computers or whatever, but they still make 'em.

Sure. So we still use 'em. Yeah, we still use 'em. So, , a lot of, a lot of docs are probably thinking, okay, well how do I plan out this far? Well, it's actually really simple. Here's how we did it around Thanksgiving every year. We obviously had a little bit of time off. Mm-hmm. , we would just ask everybody on the team, when are you thinking about taking vacation?

There were two weeks a year that I always took off. They were just automatically blocked the week of 4th of July, the week between Christmas and New Year's. And if you look at the calendar, almost equally split between the six month marks. Mm-hmm. . So there's my two. And so staff could take that same week or they could take other weeks didn't, didn't really matter.

We'd make it work and then, right. My wife and I would just plan out, okay, what are the other two weeks we're gonna take off? And since we got two at the six month mark, we came back three months later and put two at the six month mark. One of those was always a staycation. One was, um, uh, just a getaway for her and I, and the other two were family related vacations.

So, yeah, it's really not hard to schedule it, and you'll be shocked when you schedule it, number one, it makes it easy for scheduling of patients and you don't lose the patient visits and your staff appreciates it because they're not having to backtrack last. and reschedule a bunch of people. Right. And like you said, if you post it in the office, your patients love seeing the fact that you're gonna go on vacation.

Now I'm gonna throw this caveat in there for you golfers and maybe fishermen or what I, I don't know if you guys do like fishing tournaments or whatever, but like I, I play golf, so I've got golf tournaments that I know every year are gonna happen, and I know when they're gonna happen. Yeah, so guess what?

I may not take a week at each vacation, so I'm taking some times more time during the year because I can either take four weeks of vacation and then take a few alternate dates off like a Thursday, Friday, because I'm gonna go to a golf tournament that weekend, right? And I wanna leave earlier. I wanna play a practice round or whatever.

Um, . And so when I do that, I've got two options. I either take three full weeks of vacation and then I piecemeal a couple days here, a couple days there, which are kind of nice. Again, they're not going to recharge your battery, but they're gonna stop the drain and they'll probably give you a little bit of smiles and enjoyment while you're there.

And maybe exactly a little bit, cuz you'll think you'll forget about things, uh, for a couple of days while you're doing your favorite activity. But that's how you have to think about it. It doesn't have to be four one week blocks. . But we do recommend that you take at least a couple one week vacations and I would say three would probably be perfect.

Uh, and then separate your time around, you know, for other events, maybe family events or whatever. But that's how I do it. I know in advance. Mm-hmm. . So I'm blocking it out so that way we don't create scheduling conflicts and more work for the staff. So here's what I want everybody to do right now. Take out this.

Palm pilot thing called a cell phone. And in your calendar, I want you to put around November 1st, 10th, 15th, somewhere in there. Put an alert in your calendar. Just set, set it so that, uh, it pops up on your calendar that day. And it says, real simply, schedule vacations. . Mm-hmm. . And that'll get you set for 2024 if you don't have 'em set for 2023.

Still time. Get with your staff, get with your significant other. Whoever else is involved in planning vacations. and get 'em on the books. You know, you may not have time now at this point to do four, but you certainly have time to do three. So go ahead and get 'em scheduled, get the patients scheduled, rearranged if you need to.

But you know, for example, a lot of you probably don't have anybody much in the way on the books yet for the fall. So, you know, you can get it scheduled then. So go ahead and get those on the schedule. You'll be so thankful that you did. It'll re-energize you. It'll re-energize your practice. Your staff is typically thankful that you took some time off.

Yeah. Well, and we need. , and quite frankly, mentally, as soon as you schedule those vacations, yeah, I can tell you that you will look at the calendar and look forward to those because they're already scheduled now. It's not should I or, or shouldn't I. It's like, Hey, I'm gonna be off on this date and it, and it really sometimes having a prize at the end, at the end of the race, Gives me motivation every day.

Absolutely. Absolutely. Yeah. Every time.

All right, everybody. I love it. Chiropractors on vacation, so, hey, if you haven't already, here's what I want you to do. I want you to go to Kats Consultants.com. You got two things to do today. Mark your calendar for next year for your vacations, but also, go to Kats Consultants.com.

We've got all kinds of great downloads on there and information that you can obtain. You can schedule a breakthrough consultation with us if you'd like to hear more about what we do and how we're helping doctors really create practices that fit into their lifestyle as well as make 'em hugely successful.

And check out our events page as well. So, Troy, anything else to add?

I think we've covered it. I think it's time for you guys to schedule vacation. I'm gonna make sure mine's on the calendar right now. I know what already is, but for sure.

All right everybody. Thanks for listening to the KC CHIROpulse podcast brought to you by Kats Consultants, as always, helping doctors keep their pulse on success.

We'll see you next time. See ya