Looking for love in all the right places.

Single and loving it or single and hating it? It’s safe to assume most of us who are single would fall into either category. I would say it all depends on your priorities and what you want to accomplish with your time on this planet. Some of you may be jaded with the idea of finding that one true love while others are relishing the opportunities to meet so many different people and simply enjoying their company.

There are so many ways one can look at the single scene. I won’t input any of my own personal experiences, (we’ll save that for my memoirs!) but I can tell you that living in the same city your whole life can really limit you to exposure of what else is certainly out there. Not that it’s a bad thing, but there are 6,809,383,757 people in the world as of today and 307,946,234 people in the United States alone. Surely one of them is meant to be, right? So what’s this got to do with being a traveling therapist? Well, for one, being a traveler means just that. You can leave your homebase for 3 months at a time and travel to all these different cities you may have never had the chance to see before, all thanks to your short-term contract work in travel therapy.

Working in rehab and therapy usually entails pretty normal working hours, like 9 to 5. This would allow you to take advantage of the nightlife and culture of whatever city you’ll be dwelling in for the next few months. So there’s no excuse that you’re working crazy hours and that the only people you meet are street sweepers and various other night owls. You’ll have as good a chance as the next person to get out there and meet all kinds of folks. In July, Forbes magazine released an article and Top 40 list of the best cities for singles in the United States. There are of course your usual suspects like New York City, Boston and Chicago, but there are also some “sleeper” cities in there that really surprised me, like Milwaukee! Milwaukee, really? I guess so. Find out for yourself and see if there’s any cities that made the list that you’d like to visit. Think of it as your “Little Black Book” for dating by city.

Here’s the link to the Best Cities for Singles 2009 article in Forbes. Maybe your city made the list and you’re just having bad luck? Or maybe there’s a city listed that you’ve always wanted to visit and now you’ll have all the more reason to go. If by chance you do meet your soulmate because you read this article or post, please share. I’d like to think I was a part of that! Now get out there and get to work, on your traveling assignment as well as your love life.

Your one chance to make a good impression.

Life of a traveling therapist is a bit different than that of a traveling nurse. The hours, the workload and even the workplace all differ from one another, but there is one aspect of the traveling career that both share. Obviously you’re changing locations rather frequently and you’re meeting all kinds of new people and you have to able to adapt rather quickly. So what do you think these new faces think of you when you first walk in the door?

Your appearance, demeanor, the sound of your voice and ability to empathize all play a major role in your professional image. If the way you carry yourself becomes an issue shortly after your arrival to your new travel therapy job, well expect a long and arduous assignment. In order to ensure that your transition into these new assignments goes swimmingly, might I suggest some areas to work on to improve your professional image.

  • Professional work atmosphere and interactions
  • General appearance
  • Cooperation and team mentality
  • Professional responsibility

Being the new kid on the block is never the easiest thing. All you want is the respect of your peers and there are a few things to keep in mind while on assignment. If a situation arises in which you have an opinion about a work situation or even personal issues, be sure and remove yourself from those who may be within earshot. Also, make sure to you don’t exhibit any questionable behavior in front of them. Besides respecting peers and their space, you must also show your respect towards the facility and its contents. You are a healthcare professional and your care doesn’t always have to be aimed at the patients, you can apply this to your surroundings as well.

So what’s the first thing people notice when you walk into a room? If you guessed what you’re wearing or how you look, you’re probably right. Your appearance greatly affects the way your skills are perceived, undoubtedly. You have a respectable profession, so act and dress like it. Wear what you think would be appropriate to any age

Don’t fall for the same thing.

August is here and autumn is close behind. The days filled with sunshine begin to shorten and the lush pastures of green slowly begin to fade to hues of  gold and brown. Shoes start to become the norm and the  flip-flops are thrown into the dark corners of our closets (this may be true for some, but for me I try and wear my flippy-floppies for as long as humanly possible – without getting frostbite).

Just like the seasons are beginning to change – so should you. If you’ve never given much thought to becoming a traveling therapist or rehab specialist, I strongly suggest you do. In no other industry are you given the chance to visit so many different places, all the while learning new methods of practice from your peers. You may live in a part of the country that is either this or that when it comes to temperature and weather. Do you not know what it’s like to rake your yard? Whatever you are lacking in seasonal experiences, traveling therapy and rehab jobs will give you the opportunity to be exposed to it all and what better season to start with than Fall?

Take a position anywhere in the Mountain, Central and Eastern time zones and you will surely see the beauty of the autumnal season. The leaves on the trees begin to turn colors from gold to vivacious reds and the air has a fresh, crispness about it. And football. (Go Big Red!)  Oh yes… it is right around the corner! I’m not sure about you, but for me, sitting amongst 84,000+ people in 40 degrees temperatures, screaming and cheering  is what the fall season is all about. So now’s the time to start thinking about where you’d like to spend your time working before the Christmas season is here. OMG-Christmas. I’m writing about Christmas in August. Oy! Besides the football, there are the beautiful vista views that will surely take your breath away and all the other seasonal activities that come along with it.

There are a number of  websites out there that will show you the absolute best places to experience the beauty that fall has to offer. Here are a few I found that may help guide you to new traveling therapy and rehab jobs.

Exploring the Shades of Fall

Top 10 Places for Fall Foliage

Fall Foliage Deals from $100

3 Reasons to Consider Travel Rehab and Therapy Jobs

We’ll make this plain and simple, so here are the few, but most important reasons you should consider a travel rehab or therapy job.

1. Knowledge. As a traveling therapist or rehab specialist there is no question that your skills and knowledge will progress. Where ever your next contract takes you, whether it be a large metropolotain research and teaching center or a small rural community hospital, you will acquire new skills related to your profession… And maybe some that have no relation at all.

Taking a traveling rehab or therapy job can land you in any number of cities and facilities. Each assignment will possess something the other did not and collectively you will gain far more experience than in any permanent position. You may have learned a new stretching technique in Albuquerque, New Mexico and on your next assignment in Toledo, Ohio you could be teaching this to your newfound colleagues.

307156802. Total Control. Is your current permanent position becoming stale and repetitive? Tired of the office gossip and politics? A short-term contract therapy and rehab job may just be the escape you need. When you choose to work as a “traveler” you are afforded the option of where and when you’d like to work. Pick the city, pick the type of care facility you’d like to work at and Presto!

The options are endless when you’re a traveling therapy and rehab specialist. As stated above, you may want to take on a position in low-stress enviornment, say that of a smaller community rehab facility. Or maybe you’d like the hustle and bustle of a major healthcare network? Whatever you choose, it is your choice. Whatever kind of assignment you pick, just remember, you wouldn’t be getting this kind of experience stuck at home in your permanent job. To ensure you get to exactly where you want to be, it is imperative that you form a good working relationship with the recruiter of your chosen staffing agency.

3. Money. I don’t think I need to say any more than that… But I will. Did you know the average pay for a Physical Therapist according to Payscale.com is around $56,000 per year. That’s before taxes and with 1 year of experience or less. Now as a traveler you could make upwards to 6 digits in one year after taxes!. Your housing is paid for, you receive health/dental insurance, per diems and on and on and on… All these surely add up to more than anything a permanent position could offer you. You also have the chance at earning even more by bringing along your friends and peers with referral bonuses.

Just to warm up to the idea, try and find an assignment close to home and from there, spread your wings. There’s Hawaii, California, Florida, New York, Montana, Oregon, Georgia, Michigan, Texas….

Expand your skillset by traveling and doing this.

32383106If you haven’t heard, you can take your profession as a therapist or rehab specialist on the road to locations you’ve only dreamt about. Say you want to work in Hawaii, you can do that. Or maybe you’re more of a nature freak and what better place to explore the great outdoors than say, Colorado or maybe even Montana. You see the choice is yours when it comes to becoming a “traveler” and what’s better than being able to see new places and meet new people? The answer is knowledge.

By moving from town to town and state to state you will undoubtedly come across a variety of people, cultures and more importantly job experiences. It is quite possible that you will take something from each and every assignment or short-term contract. Whether it be a new method of therapy or some rehab technique, heck you might even learn something that doesn’t pertain to your profession at all, like fly fishing! Yes, choosing life as a traveling therapist or traveling rehab specialist can be very rewarding. The benefits of traveling are too long to list as well as the benefits of continuing to educate ones self.

Besides learning from your travels around the country from hospital to skilled nursing facility to an in-home assignment you could also take some classes or attend one of the various seminars and conferences throughout the year.

Here is a list of events dedicated to all things PT as provided by the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA).

Continuing education opportunities from the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA).

Events and continuing education from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA).

The Most Important List of Books for Rehab Specialists

BookShelfWhile out on your next traveling assignment you may find yourself with some downtime and there are so many ways to spend that time. Depending on where you are located you could take in a round of golf or catch some rays at the local beach or perhaps you’d like to do some exploring by hiking around a nearby mountain range. Yes, your options are endless when you take on a traveling rehab or therapy position, but what about the time when you just want to kick back and relax. That’s the time you could kick back and relax on the deck and cozy up to a good book. Over at MikeReinold.com is an “Essential Reading List” aimed at all things rehab. Mike states, “The goal was to include books that I felt were influential in my development and clinical practice.” Maybe you have some of your own books that you’d like to share that were also very significant in your development or perhaps turned you on to the idea of becomming a therapist or rehab specialist.