Even Therapists Can Use a Little Therapy

Each start to a new year can be beneficial to your psyche. It can provide a cleansing sensation that wipes away all that was in the previous year and give you a new outlook and a feeling of refreshment. If only for a short period of time, the new year is a great time to assess your current goals, whether it relates to your well being, career or life in general. Now’s the time to revise or at least start thinking about the things you’d like to. Don’t just accept what is going on… And in the words of the late, great Michael Jackson. Make that change.

Each start to a new year can be beneficial to your psyche. It can provide a cleansing sensation that wipes away all that was in the previous year and give you a new outlook and a feeling of refreshment. If only for a short period of time, the new year is a great time to assess your current goals, whether it relates to your well being, career or life in general. Now’s the time to revise or at least start thinking about the things you’d like to. Don’t just accept what is going on… And in the words of the late, great Michael Jackson. Make that change.

If you feel as though your career is stuck in a rut, perhaps it’s time to move on and switch gears. Maybe you should consider a travel therapy or rehab job this year to give your career that much needed boost. It’s a great way to revitalize your skills and knowledge, all the while visiting such great locations as wherever comes to mind. However, if a traveling therapy or rehab job isn’t exactly what you need, maybe the 22 tips on improving your attitude and flourish in your career is just what you’re after. Read about it at AdvanceWeb.com, a great site for therapists looking for news, tips and other resources pertaining to their industry.

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.

Travel Physical Therapy Career Guide: Step 3 – Know how long you want to work.

Short-term travel rehab and therapy jobs normally last 13 weeks, but many hospitals and skilled nursing facilities prefer to have longer contracts for their travelers. But overall the length of the time can vary, but what is most important is that you as a travel therapist know what you want. Are you looking for a series of short-term travel assignments all across the country that let you see and experience a bunch of new places or are you looking for a travel therapy job that is more stable and lets you stay close to your family and home.

Short-term travel rehab and therapy jobs normally last 13 weeks, but some hospitals and skilled nursing facilities prefer to have longer contracts for their travelers like 26 weeks. But overall the length of the time can vary, but what is most important is that you as a travel therapist know what you want. 

Are you looking for a series of short-term travel assignments all across the country that let you see and experience a bunch of new places or are you looking for a travel therapy job that is more stable and lets you stay close to your family and home. 

If it is your first travel therapy assignment you may want to keep it short with an option to extend, especially if you are going to be working away from home. On the other hand if you are working close to home there is nothing stopping you from working a longer contract or extending multiple times. Whatever you decide is going to be best for your travel rehab career, make sure you let your recruiter know up front so they can work to find you the assignment that is the best fit for you.

Avoid the Noid!

You know who they are, you’ve been annoyed with them at every job you’ve ever had. The boss who doesn’t know up from down, the guy who always gives you a punch in the arm as his way of saying hello, Mr. B O, the gossip queen, the clock watcher, the manipulator and the one who always seems to bring something for lunch that stinks up the whole joint. Yes we’ve all seen some derivative of these and if you’re honest with yourself, you may admit that at one point in time you may have been one of those people. There are certain signs like constant whining or sucking up that will lead you to believe that this person will be irritating to no end. Sure we all experience the occasional bad day and it can bring down those around you as well, but when these behaviors are more common than not, you have a problem. So what can you do to prevent this having a negative affect on your next travel therapy or rehab job?

Entering a new position is already a feat in itself, but now you add all the different and new personalities, some you know you’ll get along with while others you know will be a task to get deal with. When starting a new job you want to be on your best behavior and you have a lot to prove, not only to yourself but your peers and you definitely don’t want to ruffle any feathers being the “outsider.” So what can you do?

I’d guess most people would do everything in their power to avoid those who irritate them. Sounds good in theroy but the reality is you’ll see this person day in and day out and eventually might be paired up with them in dealing with certain patients or situations. When the time comes to working alongside say a negative Nancy, give yourself a few minutes prior to the rendezvous and take a few deep breaths. When you are ready for “battle” come in being cheery, under control and use a pleasant tone of voice. Do the work that is expected of you and then step away as if nothing bothered you. If you let the negativity get to you it will only make matters worse.

In some cases you may be perceived as the annoying one and for no good reason. Maybe it’s the way you dress or carry yourself, but the reason is never clear. Here’s what you can do… Ask to meet this person one-on-one and have a heart to heart. No one else around, just the two of you. Give them the benefit of the doubt, swallow your pride and inquire about how you can at least have a working relationship if nothing else. If the problems continue, maybe seek out a superior or if you dont’ think it’s worth it. Move on. Your self-esteem is far more valuable than the job, there will always be more work. That too is a great big benefit of travel therapy and rehab jobs. Just move on to the next.

Hopefully you’ll never have to resort to any of these actions while on your traveling assignment, but if you do, you now have a plan on how to react and deal with these situations. To learn more about ways in which you can deal with the annoying co-worker, visit these sites I’ve listed below. There is a wealth of information you can use not only in the workplace but through life in general.

Dealing with Difficult Coworkers: From Sales and Marketing to Finance and Planning

Dealing with the Jerk at Work

Here are a few other sites that poke fun at the annoying types. I wouldn’t recommend using any of these techniques but they are worth a laugh!

My Bad Boss

Annoying Coworker

Get Out of Burnout.

Perhaps you’ve heard the term “burnout” and no we are not talking about that certain group of kids you’d see everyday in high school hanging out underneath the football bleachers. No, we are talking about something far more serious and can affect just about anyone and their job. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary it is defined as, “an exhaustion of physical or emotional strength or motivation usually as a result of prolonged stress or frustration.” In health professions, burnout is defined as the experience of emotional and physical exhaustion together with strong feelings of frustration and failure. These individuals demonstrate negative attitudes by a loss of concern for the patient and a withdrawal from work.

Burnout does not just magically appear one day and all of the sudden you’re down and out. No, there are usually 4 stages to this detachment and it is very important to recognize them before it becomes full blown burnout.

The first stage, physical and emotional exhaustion is very common and can happen to most. I’m pretty sure you have a life outside of work and there are a number of reasons outside of work coupled with those at the workplace that can lead to this.

The second stage to burnout is shame and doubt. As you become more and more overwhelmed, your sense of competence decreases and your feeling of shame increases. You may start to discount past accomplishments, even in the face of objective evidence. At this stage of burnout, you may find yourself sighing heavily, breathing deeply, and experiencing a profound sense of loss, uncertainty, and vulnerability.

The third stage of burnout is cynicism and callousness. As a defense against feelings of vulnerability and inadequacy, many individuals decide there is only one thing to do: protect themselves. This may work for a bit but ultimately it just prolongs the inevitable. As a healthcare provider you are there to help and by putting your guard up means alienating those (the patients) who may not deserve such treatment. The hostility can turn into mistrust and then you become cynical and callous. Not good.

The fourth and final stage to burnout is the feeling of vulnerabiltiy, collapse and crisis. This is it, you begin to feel like there is no hope for you, you’re worn to the bone and exhausted. All your defenses have dried up and there seems like there’s no where else to go but down… This you do not want to happen. So what can you do to protect yourself from burnout?

“Burnout: Coping with Stress” is a great article that goes into greater detail on the causes and symptoms of burnout among therapists.

Here’s another fine article on burnout, “Burnout of Therapists. Inevitable or Preventable?”

If you find yourself experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above, start taking self-inventory and try and figure out where this stress is coming from. Once you have pinpointed the cause of your agitation, talk with your superiors and peers about how you can improve this situation and prevent it from escalating any further. If anything, maybe you just need a bit of a break from the job, so take some much needed PTO and try and re-charge before it gets worse. There are hundreds of ways in which you can prevent burnout from happening to you or any of your co-workers and if you suspect someone you know is suffering from such, share with them what you’ve learned and you’ll all be happy for it.

Want to move? Try it out first.

I don’t know about you, but I have a list of cities I’ve always wanted to live in. With so many friends of mine spread throughtout the country I have seen a lot of what these United States has to offer and so should you. If you’ve ever given thought to picking up and starting anew, a travel therapy or rehab job can be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Deciding to take on a traveling career is enough of  a big decision, but thinking of it as a scouting trip can make it seem less stressful.  In a lot of cases, your contract can range anywhere from 13 weeks to a year, which gives you ample time to discover if the city is where you could see yourself planting roots.  If you’re like me, you have family, friends and the connection to community. So when it comes to deciding to leave that all behind, you want to make for certain that wherever you choose is the right place for you and whomever else you have in tow.

Lucky for you, working a travel therapy or rehab job affords you the “regular” hours and your freetime in which to discover all that your new assignment city has to offer. There will be plenty of time to make new connections and network. You can get leads on neighborhoods right for you and your family, schools for your children. If you’re single your choices are even greater and you can really pinpoint what it is you’re looking for since you’re doing it for yourself. There are so many variables to consider when moving so the best way to ensure you lock down an assignment in the cities you’d like to live in would be to work with a number of agencies. But don’t get too carried away, keep to your list and something is bound to come up. The need for therapists and rehab specialists is constantly growing, so your chances are very good that you’ll land where you want.

With all things considered, a traveling therapy and rehab job is the great way to audition the cities you’d like to live in one day. Who knows, you may not ever move and keep your home base, but that doesn’t mean you can’t come back to those other cities on another assignment or just come back for vacation.

I’ve written a similar post earlier in regards to finding the city right for you. Check it out here.

Here are a couple other articles in which you can gauge what city would be right for you and your interests.

Forbes magazines Top Cities for Singles

BusinessWeek magazines Best Places to Raise Your Kids