Find stuff to do at Goby.com

goby logo - a good website for travel therapistsOne of the best things about working a travel physical therapy job or short-term contract slp assignment is the chance to do new things in new cities. Whether you are doing something you already love in a new city or stretching your wings and trying a new activity in your off time one of the challenges is finding where those fun things to do are. Well a website I recently came across called Goby.com (pronounced GO-be) is a great tool for this.

It bills iteslf as a “Goby is a search engine focused on exploring fun things to do with your free time, from taking a unique vacation to creating this weekend’s adventure.” And after a few trial runs that is exactly what it does. It is super easy to use. You just type in three simple pieces of information or choose from the preset dropdowns. You enter:

  • What would you like to do?
  • Where?
  • When?

That’s it, your done. Then their search engine then spits out results based on your criteria. Depending on how specific or broad your search is the length of time to get the results can vary, but they are worth the wait.

So next time you are looking for something to do on your assignment check goby.com out. And don’t forget about their iphone app.

Solitude is painful when one is young, but delightful when one is more mature.

Einstein said it best, “I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity.” I’m guessing many of you have done various things on your own and what you experienced could never be the same had others been along. Sometimes it is best to go it alone. Not everyone is comfortable with doing so and that’s what makes being a traveling therapist a unique occupation. To be content with being by yourself doesn’t necessarily mean keeping yourself occupied constantly. No, what you should be thinking is how to make the most of your time and your time alone.

Einstein said it best, “I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity.”  I’m guessing many of you have done various things on your own and what you experienced could never be the same had others been along. Sometimes it is best to go it alone. Not everyone is comfortable with doing so and that’s what makes being a traveling therapist a unique occupation. To be content with being by yourself doesn’t necessarily mean keeping yourself occupied constantly. No, what you should be thinking is how to make the most of your time and your time alone.

It may seem difficult to couple all the things you usually do with at least one other person as something you could do by yourself. If you’ve never done it, you really should, it can be quite refreshing.  While on your next traveling therapy assignment you should try going to a concert or  a movie alone. Buying a single ticket to a show can really pay off. The possibility of finding a seat up close is far greater than trying to get 2 or more in the same vicinity and while at the show you can sing along to your heart’s content and be “that person.” Go ahead, no one knows you!

How about a little self-improvement? Learn a new language, tutor someone, volunteer at a local charity. You’re bound to learn something, we don’t have all the answers and we each see the world in a different light. Why not change your view? Whatever it is you pick, just do it for yourself. Think of this quote, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” Hmmmm? Maybe you want to get in better shape? Join a local gym, strap on those headphones, hop on a treadmill and lose yourself while you lose those pesky pounds. Don’t like to run, go for a dip. If you’re lucky enough to be located in a coastal area with pleasant waters, I would suggest swimming in one of the biggest pools Earth has to offer! Then lay yourself on the beach and soak up the sun… I better stop there. I’ve got cabin fever!

Another great thing to do alone is driving. Get yourself familiar with your new location and hit the road. See what’s available in the surrounding areas and take yourself a little day trip. Pump up the stereo, hit the gas and go! There’s nothing quite like having the windows down, hair blowing, tunes blaring and the unknown straight ahead.

Of course you don’t even have to leave the house to enjoy the company of yourself. Again you can seek out more things for the betterment of you. Take some continuing education classes or take on a subject you’ve always had great interest in. “Yan can cook and you can too!” If you’re not a good cook, get better. Experiment with new dishes. You can obviously read, so grab a cookbook (maybe even a locally published one?) and start following directions. Once you start getting a feel for certain recipes you can begin to tweak them and make them your own. Now you’re cookin’!

It’s your time, it’s your choice. There’s no one else who can tell you what to do, which means there’s no limit to the things you can do! Use your time alone the way you want to. Doing anything alone will never replace that of the company of friends and family but it will give you a better sense of yourself and your (un)limitations. Give it shot, you just might like it.

If you have other ideas and activities to do by yourself, please share them below in our comment section.

Using Social Networking Sites the Right Way.

As we embark on a new year it has become apparent that there is no stopping the new avenues of communication and more specifically, social networking. The most popular social networking sites include Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, with Facebook leading the way with over 350 million users worldwide. You can access your account a few different ways and it will enable you to be in contact with your network no matter where you might be.

As we embark on a new year it has become apparent that there is no stopping the new avenues of communication and more specifically, social networking. The most popular social networking sites include Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, with Facebook leading the way with over 350 million users worldwide. You can access your account a few different ways and it will enable you to be in contact with your network no matter where you might be. Travel Therapists and Rehab specialists on a short-term contract can use such sites to keep up with events back home, post photos of your new job and locations and chat it up with friends and family. The populartity of these social networking sites is astounding and it should come as no surprise as parents  and their children alike are joining in droves.

Each of these social networking sites is built for different reasons and is intended for specific uses. LinkedIn for instance is for the professional looking to network with others in their industry while sites like MySpace and Facebook are aimed towards those who like to share whatever and is far more impersonal, but can also cross the bounds of too personal! Whichever site you choose to use, remember, this is your ad to the enitre universe. These sites all serve a valid purpose and you could benefit professionally when used the right way, it is the wrong ways you need to leary of.

One of the basic forms of these social networking sites is the ever present “status update.” Here you can tell the world whatever is on your mind, whether it be good news,  an opinion on an important matter like healthcare  reform or just a place to vent your frustrations. On my Facebook profile I tend to be more lighthearted and goofy. I try and make others laugh but mostly it just depends on how I’m feeling that day. In order to keep your friends engaged, you need to stay current, fresh and at least try and write something noteworthy. What you don’t want to do is complain or constantly be negative.  Your “readers” will begin to get bored with you if all you do is moan about how your day sucks, or how you hate life and blah, blah, blah! No one wants to read that. Try and write something that will spark conversation… After all, that’s being social.

These social networking sites are all about sharing; sharing your thoughts, tastes in music, opinions, or whatever you feel the need to express. It’s also a wonderful medium to share all the things that are important to you. Being a travel therapist you may already belong to organizations related to allied health or charities that you may volunteer your knowledge to. Sharing this type of information about yourself is a great way to showcase who you are as there is a potential of future employers looking into your background by examining your social life. It’s difficult keep your professional and social lives separate, so just think first as to what you want to put out there about yourself and your opinions. Most of these sites allow you to protect your content and allow only those you’d like to view your profile.  Use these parameters accordingly if you think you may have questionable content on your site. You’re building yourself as a  brand and search engines such as Google will lead those investigating right to you very easily.  Here’s a fine example of how NOT to use facebook… Doctor and Nurse Suspensions.

For you traveling therapists and rehab specialists, these social networking sites are an easy way to keep in touch with people while away from home and I strongly recommend builiding your online presence now if you haven’t already. Everybody else is, even my grandma! Staying connected is vital and helps keep the lonliness factor to a minimum while on a traveling therapy or rehab job. These sites are also a wonderful way for the allied health professionals to share with future employers the person you really are, from all the philanthropic activities you may be involved with to the great conversations you start and share on others pages. Remember, you are in control of what can be seen. If all you post is meaningless fodder and constantly use the time wasting game apps and whatnot, I don’t think that’s what you want as a first impression. I guess it depends on what you’re trying to attract… A potential new employer or a level 5 warlock to help you get to the next level? The choice is yours, for you are what you post.

Send Your Season’s Greetings the New Fashioned Way!

You better watch out – you better not cry – better not pout – I’m telling you why… There’s a great alternative to writing out the 100’s of Christmas cards, licking envelopes and buying stamps. You’re already busy enough as a traveling therapist and rehab specialist, so hopefully this can save you some precious time while on assignment. No longer do you have to suffer through all the paper cuts and headache that is writing out your season’s greetings thanks to the many wonderful eCard services available to you on the world wide web. Here is a great list of sites to get you started…

1) eCardica has a wide variety of free ecards available, anything from Fruits and Vegetables to Ancient Cities to Famous Quotes. Most of the cards on the site are free; they also have announcement, birthday, special occasion, holiday, love, and many more varieties of ecards. If you’d like to become a member of eCardica, you gain access to a lot more fun tools and services, such as a reminders service, contacts, and calendar.

2) Yahoo Greetings – You can choose to sign up for the more expensive ecards, or you can just do what I do and scan for the little “free” text under most of these ecards. Funny ecards, free birthday ecards, Christmas ecards, and more.

3) Someecards – If you’re looking for an irreverent, hilarious, and sometimes off-color ecard to send to someone, then someecards is your best bet.

4) Postcard.fm – A truly unique site that allows you to customize and send your own free ecards with your own images, music (mp3 files only), and messages.

5) WrongCards – These are not the run of the mill ecards that you’ll find here – WrongCards is full of silly, tongue in cheek messages that you can send to friends and family.

6) Hipster Cards – Lots of vintage, “hip” cards here with great designs and images; includes plenty of humor from high right down to the lowest of the low brow.

7) Smilebox – Smilebox is one of my favorite spots for free ecards on the Web. You can choose from hundreds of interesting designs, add your own photos, videos, music, and messages, and then email it, blog it, or print it.

8) Rattlebox – Rattlebox offers a lot more than the typical ecard you might see on most sites – it’s all video here. Simply select a video you like, personalize it, and send.

9) Pingg – Simple and stylish, with many designs available. You can use Pingg not only for free ecards, but also for online invitations, announcements, and party planning.

10) MushyGushy – Select a card or animated video at MushyGushy, and then you can upload a head shot of you or someone else to complete the ecard. It’s a fun way to personalize your message.

Here’s a couple of other sites that I’ve recently discovered that can really add to your greetings! It’s fast, free and shockingly easy, says the site. All you do is provide the pictures and the site does the rest. Each video is a fully customized orchestration of user-selected images and music. Check out Animoto to learn more and send what is surely to be the most unique holiday greeting anyone has ever received!

The other site is MyFaceLOL – It offers you three different animated cards in which you can place your headshot and others to make a fun and unique Christmas greeting!

Travel Physical Therapy Career Guide: Step 4 – Know who’s going with you.

If you are planning on traveling far from home for your short-term therapy contract job, then a lot of decisions you will need to make in your travel rehab career will depend on who is coming with you if anyone. This is why it is important to evaluate if you are going to be traveling alone or with someone.

If you are planning on traveling far from home for your short-term therapy contract job, then a lot of decisions you will need to make in your travel rehab career will depend on who is coming with you if anyone. This is why it is important to evaluate if you are going to be traveling alone or with someone.

Is your spouse or significant other is coming with you? A lot of this depends on either the stage of life your spouse is in and/or their occupation. If they stay at home, are retired, have a seasonal job, like a teacher, or a mobile job like a freelance graphic designer, it is going to be easy for them to travel with you and can make your travel therapy job a lot more fun to take someone with you. And if it is your first travel therapy assignment it may be nice to have the comfort of a loved one with you as you get used to the change.

What about your kids? Obviously this depends a lot on your situation and their age since childcare and school is always a concern, but if your spouse or another family member is coming with you it is going to be easier to arrange for your kids to come with you, since they will probably be able to watch them and maybe even home school them. And if it your assignment is during the summer months then imagine the learning and fun opportunities waiting for them in a new town for three months.

Don’t forget about pets. Taking them along with you is also a great way to prevent getting lonely during a travel therapy assignment.

You can also try to travel with another travel therapist if you can both find assignments in the same hospital or skilled nursing facility or at least in the same city. This is a great option for first time travelers if it works out, since you can both help each other out with the new challenges that a travel therapy job can present, like being away from home and having to learn fast on the job.

Or you can go alone, which is the norm and offers so many advantages too, like the chance to do what you want to do in your free time, the chance to be by yourself and reflect and of course to take a “workation” and just get away from it all.

Taking Travel Therapy to the Next Level.

Most of the time the point of my articles and posts on Rehab and Therapy Jobs.com are to help educate and provide insights into the world of travel therapy and rehab jobs. But today we are going to take a different approach and direct you to others in the field of therapy and their blogs. While catching up on some OT news via Alltop.com I ran across a story that immediately struck my fancy. It is titled, “From Creighton to Cairo” and what drew me to the story was that Creighton is here in Omaha where we’re based. I’m partial to the local connection. Anyways, it turns out the writer is going to school at Creighton finishing her Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree and I thought I’d share with you her blog. You can read all about it here at Occupational Therapy in Egypt. She’s taken travel therapy to the next level for sure, though it’s not an actual assignment through an agency. She’s on clinical rotation down there and will be coming back in December to graduate. This is what she says as to why she chose Egypt of all places… Why Egypt? Many of you readers know better than I that Egypt needs OT(s)! As OT continues to advance in countries around the world, so also should the profession be developed in Egypt- which I chose for the reality that Egypt occupies only a handful of registered OT(s) and does not currently offer an accredited OT education. To be able to progress in areas of occupation, professional practice and leadership, Egypt must also keep pace by providing both the occasion for learning opportunities and OT employment. Permeating the boundaries to allow access for both practicing therapists and students can create a future of global resources to protect our profession while also addressing the need for therapy in this country.” Check it and out and it just may inspire you to reach out further than you thought you could.

Now in regards to to travel therapy and rehab jobs, it’s nice to find someone who is enjoying the benefits that come along with it all. Over at The Ramblings of a Traveling Speech Therapist it’s described as a blog that details the all the travels this therapist has done, and she does do a good job. It’s like you’re right there with her. She’s currently on contract in the Bay Area and has been documenting a lot of her escapades outside of work. You’re a therapist already, so you know what that’s like, but what you don’t know are all the different and exciting places to visit and the many, many people you will befriend along the way. I wish I could find more people out there who would do this… It’s always a fun read to see what their last adventures were like and you can live vicariously through them.

So these are two that I know you might find interesting. If you know more, please send them my way. I’m sure our readers would love to have as many perspectives on the industry they love. Until next time, have a Happy Halloween!