The EntreMD Podcast

Overwhelmed No More: Strategies for Physician Entrepreneurs

September 18, 2023 Dr. Una Episode 361
The EntreMD Podcast
Overwhelmed No More: Strategies for Physician Entrepreneurs
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Are you feeling trapped in a whirlwind of tasks, deadlines, and responsibilities? It's time to break free! Today, we're navigating the murky waters of overwhelm that often engulf us as physicians and entrepreneurs. And guess what? It's okay to feel overwhelmed. It only makes us human.

Embark on this enlightening journey as we tackle how to prioritize work, balance rest, and focus on the activities that give us the most bang for our buck. We'll uncover the secret of the 20/80 rule and how to make it work for you, create your ideal work week, and identify those activities that have sparked past success. Together, we'll also weed out the tasks that might be overwhelming you and put together a robust plan of action.

Finally, we'll arm you with seven, yes seven, powerful tips to better manage your time, prioritize tasks like a pro, and conquer overwhelm. From mastering the art of saying 'no' more often to planning your week ahead of time, these strategies are primed to keep you ahead of your tasks and free from overwhelm. Plus, we'll delve into the art of resilience, an essential tool for these challenging times, and how taking time for yourself can help you build this muscle and radiate positive influence. Get ready to rise above the overwhelm and thrive!

When you are ready to work with us, here are three ways.

1. EntreMD Business School Accelerator - If you are looking to make a 180 turnaround in your business in 90 days, this is the program for you.
2. EntreMD Business School Grow - This is our year-long program with a track record of producing physician entrepreneurs who are building 6, 7 and 7+ figure businesses. They do this while building their dream lives!
3. EntreMD Business School Scale - This is our high-level mastermind for physicians who have crossed the seven figure milestone and want to build their businesses to be well oiled machines that can run without them.

To get on a call with my team to determine your next best step, go here

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Speaker 1:

Hi docs, welcome to the EntremD podcast, where it's all about helping amazing physicians just like you embrace entrepreneurship so you can have the freedom to live life and practice medicine on your terms. I'm your host, dr Ibnah. Well, hello. Hello, my friend, welcome back to another episode of the EntremD podcast. I just want to say a big thank you. I have gotten a lot of private messages on Instagram and LinkedIn and Facebook of doctors either sharing wins they've gotten from the podcast or letting me know how it's made such a big difference in their businesses and their families and their hope for medicine and all of that, and it's really been so heartwarming for me, and so I want to say big thank you. And again, especially as we're coming up on our fifth year of EntremD, I really am all in my feelings and grateful and honored and humbled by the opportunity I have to be a gift to the physician community. I don't take it for granted and I know none of this would happen without you. So I want to say thank you for listening, for sharing the podcast, for leaving us reviews, for buying the EntremD Method book A really, really big thank you to every doctor who's in the EntremD business school and thank you, thank you so much. Today. I come from a place of really interacting with a lot of physician entrepreneurs and seeing a lot of overwhelm, a lot of overwhelm, and life can be a lot and business can be a lot, and especially if you're a parent, especially if you're a mother, it's even more challenging. And so I want to come talk about really how to rise above the overwhelm and some of the things I've done and some of the things I've helped my clients do over the years, and this is probably one episode you're going to want to come back to over and over again, but it will be so worth it. This is going to be like a whole masterclass, if you will, and the thing about overwhelm is you'd never really outgrown the feelings of overwhelm, or the temptation to be overwhelmed, as we like to say it in EBS, and the reason for that is you'll figure things out and kind of get a good cadence and a good rhythm and you decide that, okay, I'm going to do what I'm doing on an even bigger scale and the things that used to work will no longer work. You're going to have to learn to do new things and you might find yourself back up against all these feelings of overwhelm, or life may throw you a curveball or whatever it is, and so this is something that is worth it to have it as a skill, like when my life seems overwhelming, I have this framework of things that I do so I can rise above the overwhelm. So this is not going to be completely exhaustive, but it will give you a good way of thinking about it, a good way of navigating it, and it's just a tool you have in your toolbox that you can whip out whenever you feel overwhelmed. And so in the Entry into Business School, we have this saying, like we don't do overwhelm and that's not to say we don't feel feelings of overwhelm or that life doesn't show up in an overwhelming way is that when that comes, it's an invitation to do something else, so I can rise above the overwhelm, right? So there will be those feelings, but we can choose. We can choose what we want our state to be. And I mean, think about how magical it would be if we recognize those feelings of overwhelm, the way we recognize symptoms in our patients. And so when somebody comes in and says I have a fever, we don't just say, oh my goodness, you have a fever. Now you're feverish, and this is just the way it has to be. No, we take a history, we do an exam, we come up with what could be triggering this and we come up with a plan of attack. Right, that's literally what we do with our patients, and when we have these feelings of overwhelm this what we're going to talk about in this episode becomes like a tool in your toolkit, like a soap process and where you're like okay, this is how I am going to run the diagnostics on this and come up with the plan. So that's what we're going to be looking at for today. So I'm going to give you seven things and you can work through it, and I'm all about doing things in community. So, if you're in the on-chamd business school, of course this is something you can work in with your classmates. And if you're not, we've talked about the on-chamd podcast accountability pods, where you can just grab a group of friends and you guys can go to a Starbucks somewhere and they'll work through this, right, okay? So let's look at seven things. So the first thing here is and this is really important is to acknowledge that there's nothing wrong with you. Okay, I have had the gift of being in some rooms is some of the most powerful people, right, we're talking people who are running seven figure, multiple seven figure businesses, nine figure businesses. Right, people are running billion dollar businesses, like things like that, and in each one of those rooms is very fascinating to see how similar we are. And so you think at that, at that stage, they've mastered team, they have the money to hire the right teams, they have all the stuff so they don't deal with overwhelm, and nothing could be further than the truth, from the truth, and so there's nothing wrong with you. This is the path of an entrepreneur. I mean, truthfully, it's the path of a human being, and so feeling overwhelmed does not make you this unique individual who has these deep problems. That there's no solution to. This is what everybody goes through, right? So there's nothing wrong with you. I almost wanna say there's nothing wrong, right, like when there's nothing wrong with you. They will work through it, right, and coming from that standpoint is really freeing and it really it just normalizes it. I'm not uniquely messed up. This is just. This is life, life is life-ing, and so there's nothing wrong with you. That's really critical, that you get that, okay. So that's the first thing I want us to acknowledge. The second thing is time. Your project and I call it a project. Same thing. If a patient was gonna come to you, you have a timeline, right. You come in, you have the time with the patient, you come up with your diagnosis, you come up with your plan and you may tell them okay, did all of this. Johnny has an ear infection. I'm sending you a prescription for homoxicillin and he's probably still gonna have fevers for another three or four days, and that's okay. Give him, like you, give him, tylenol, and we'll take this long for it to go away. And then follow up with me in another 10 to 14 days. Now, if you think about that, you're not saying everything's gonna be fixed in two minutes. So when you start working on this overwhelm thing, it's not gonna be fixed in two seconds, right. And you can say you know what I'm gonna work for the next 30 days, to put myself in a position where these things that make me feel overwhelmed, they don't overwhelm me anymore. Or you may say this is what I'm gonna work on for the next quarter, right, so for 90 days or whatever, but kind of time it. It takes away this pressure of I was like this yesterday. I'm still like this today and we have patients who do that to us, right, where you're like, and you're like, wait a minute, this is gonna take a minute, right? So just give yourself the space so you can relax, so you can do this, and you understand that I'm doing something that is a gift I'll keep giving. It'll put me in a much better space. Now are you going to start seeing wins much sooner than the 30 days or whatever? Yes, of course. It's just like the mom with Johnny who has an ear infection, right, like, maybe after 48 hours, johnny no longer has fevers and she stopped the antibiotic then, absolutely not because we're not done, but she started seeing results, right. And so think of it that way you wanna time it right. Give yourself two weeks, give yourself a week, give yourself 30 days, 90 days, whatever, and you're like I'm gonna work through this stuff, okay, and so you can decide on the time after we're done with the seven things. But it's important that you treat it that way. And so, day to day, you're not frustrated because everything did self-correct in 24 hours, okay. So that's number two. Number three. Number three is you wanna create your ideal work week Now in the Uncharted Business School. This is something we work on a lot, okay, so we call it the CEO calendar, and this is kind of the structure of your week, because as you build your business bigger, as you cross the seven figure milestone, the multiple seven figure milestone all of that, you're gonna have more stuff, right. You're gonna have more stuff to do and you're gonna have more life stuff to do and there's always gonna be more things to do than you'll ever be able to do. There will always be more books to read than you can ever read. There will always be more podcasts to listen to than you can listen to. There'll always be more ways of doing your business than ways you can actually do your business. There's always gonna be a lot more. And so your CEO calendar is all about disciplining, like reining in your time and using it for the things that will get you to where you want to go right. And so let me talk about and again, this is a document you will work on forever. You will use it, life will change, it will break. Then you are gonna edit it and then life will change and it will break, and not bad changes. This could be business growth, like, even with business growth, the things that used to be very valuable use of your time. It's gonna change and so you're gonna need to change your calendar. But we can't go into everything about your calendar, but I wanna give you some things Like your ideal calendar. My ideal calendar I'll give you. My method has three critical components to it, right. One is my priorities. So if you've heard me once, you've heard me a thousand times talk about my daily five, okay, and this is me scheduling my priorities, and so what it does is it puts me in a position where, no matter how busy the day is, no matter how bad the day quote unquote bad the day is no matter what happens, I did stuff in the day to move myself towards my most important goals, okay. So for me, yeah, I say daily five, but it's been six, and I actually recently it's been seven, but these are things that I do every day, okay. So, when I think about my life in general, what are the most important things to me? Well, my relationship with God. That's number one, super important to me. My relationship with my family number two, very, very, very important to me my health, right? Well, even before, my health is you know, my legacy, the things that I do to make an impact in the world my health and all of these things, right, okay, so what that means is I pick these little things I can do every day that will move me towards them. So I pray every day, I meditate every day, I exercise every day, I have me tweaks, mtwk, which is meaningful time with kids Every day. I would review my goals every day so that I make sure I'm in line. That's like my GPS, if you will. I read every day and I listen to podcasts every day. Okay, now, these seven things are things that are typically done with in the morning, but they're things that, even if things are overwhelming and a lot of things going on, I can still go through an overwhelming 30 days and my life still got better. My health got better, my relationship with my family got better. My relationship with God was so much better Because I scheduled these things and I prioritized them right. I scheduled my priorities. So the first part, when you look at your ideal work week for every day, the first thing that needs to be there would be your priorities and the second thing would be your focused work, which I say your focus work because day to day may be different. So, for instance, if you work a job, you may work four days a week, so Tuesday through Friday, and then Monday you work on your business, and so your focus work will be different on Monday because it's your business work, and then the other days of the week it may be your job, for instance, right, but your focused work, right. That will be the second thing that will be there, and I'll talk a little bit about what goes in there, and then the third will be your rest, right. So when does your work day end If you do not have an end time? As an entrepreneur, and you will know this, you can work till 1 am, right. So when does your work day end? And it doesn't have to be a specific time. You may be at a state where, like, things are crazy and I am working till 10, and you may say okay, from today I'm going to work till 8. You may not be able to take it to 5. And that's okay. It's your ideal work week, it's nobody else's right, and you can move it back to 8. And then you can move it back to 7. And this is a reason why you give yourself time to do this. Do you see what I mean. But you own that. But this gives you time to rest, this gives you time to relax with your family, this gives you time to eat, sleep, all of those things. But you know, because as you start growing as an entrepreneur, your thinking work becomes some of your most valuable work, and so you want to put yourself in a position where you can think best. Right, Because your mind is sharp, is rested and all of those things. So three things that go in there your priorities, your focus work and your rest. Okay, so every single day, you have these three components and then, in the things you need to do for your work, you put it in your focus work time. Right, but what does this do In the midst of all these overwhelming things? You're like what bucket does it fit in? I didn't just put it in the bucket, you know what I mean. But it still forces you to observe your priorities and your rest, which are the two things that go away when we allow work to eat up all the time. Right, okay, so that is number three. Number four number four becomes really important because we talked about your focus work. Now number four is defining your 20% and your 80%. This is work you will always do because it will change as you change, but understanding this is the thing that would make you get so much more done in a little bit of time. It will make it clear that things overwhelming you may be things that you just need to not do, or things you need to delegate, or things that like, flat out don't matter. If you don't have this 2080 type of filter, you won't know and you may be stressed out about things that just don't matter. Okay, so let's go over this. We've talked about it many times on the podcast, but quick refresher here 20% refers to those 20% of your activities that actually create 80% of your results, and sometimes people are like well, I don't know what that is. Okay, so when I talk with people, let me say I'm talking to a coach and the coach has had 100 clients. They've served 100 clients and they're like I don't know how to attract people. Okay, for the 100 people that have worked with you, what is the number one way people found you? And they're like oh, they find me when I go to speak at events Wonderful, okay, other than events. What is the second way people find you? Or they listen to my podcast and there I tell people to book a call. And they book a call and they come to work with me. Outstanding. What is the other way people find you? Well, I guess coach in other groups and every time I do that, people reach out, they book calls, they work with me. Fantastic, okay. Now, what are you doing now to grow your business? Well, I'm doing ads, I'm doing social media. I just hired somebody for SEO and all this stuff. I'm like, okay. So how about events? I'm not speaking out of events anymore, okay, okay, okay, cool, cool. How about your podcast? I decided I don't want to be sales anymore, so I don't ask people to do discovery calls. I don't invite them from the podcast anymore. Okay, all right. How about guest coaching? I decided I wanted to protect my time, so I don't do that anymore and I'm like okay. So what I hear you say is the three things that have made you super successful over the last year are the three things you are no longer doing. Right, and so if that person is overwhelmed with the SEO, with the ads, with the challenges, with all of that, what do you think I'm going to tell them to do? I'm like squash all of those. Or I mean you can still do them, but put them in their proper place and exalt the 20% Like they should be exalted, because those are the things that got you the hundred patients in the first, the hundred clients in the first place, right, and so, being really clear on the things that are moving the needle, for you are creating the results and doing those things. Those are typically the things we want to procrastinate on Right. Usually, usually they're the things we procrastinate on. So what is the 20% in your business? I just pulled out an example. But what is that? So when you do your focus work, you're not filling it with 80% activities that are only going to give you 20% of the results. You're filling them up with things that will move the needle forward. Now I'm saying don't try new things. Of course, try them, but we never kill cash cows, we never kill the things that are working Right, except we don't want that result anymore if we're done with it, right. So you want to be very clear Define that, define that. And when you start defining your 20%, your 80%, it becomes so much clearer. What is the waste of your time? Become so much clearer. There's something that you need to procrastinate on, become so much clearer. If I want to bring a rapid result, what are the things I need to do? And it makes your life. It makes it so much easier for you to hear the noise, and you know what I mean. All the things around you that are just noise. You can hear them for what they are, as noise, and you're like, yeah, I don't listen to that. And you're able to with the precision of a sniper. You're just like, boom, let's get what we need to get. So define that that way in your focus work time on your calendar, you're filling it with your 20%. Does that mean you don't do any 80% activities? Of course you do, but you do them with only 20% of your time, not more. You spend most of your time doing the things that work Okay. So that's number four. Number five. Number five is leverage your team. Okay, I've done a lot of episodes. I'm not going to go too deep into this, other than tell you this Leverage your team as you go higher in business. One of the fastest ways to live in overwhelm is to take on new things without getting off old things. This is something you want to constantly ask yourself. Notice that I didn't say, get a team. Now, you're going to get your team, but leverage your team, okay. So I'm talking about your team at home and I'm talking about your team at your business and I'm talking about your team at your job. If you're working a job All three teams Like I want you to think about as a CEO of your life you have this massive team. Take out like paper, write out all the people who are on your team. I'm talking people who are family members and people who are not, people who are paid and people who are not paid, people at your business, people in your home. Put all of it and ask yourself are there any things on my plate? Are there any things I make it to my to-do list that belong to these people? Right, are they? So you want to pay attention, you want to pay attention and you want to leverage them. One of the habits I do is, after I have my ideal work week, and so on Sunday Sunday is my planning day I plan, I put everything in all the spots they need to be in I start asking myself questions Is there anything on here anybody in my life can do? Forget that. Nobody can do it as good as me. We're not. We're very, very important, but we're not that important. Of course, somebody can do it, and B plus work or B work from a team member is much more viable than A work from me, if that, especially if that's something that's not in my 20% right, okay. So leverage. Look at it, what here? And it's easy as go. No, I have to do all of these because you've always done them. That's your default. But you want to take a look like one by one. Do I need to be doing this? So leverage your team. Leverage your team. Leverage your team. Your team is giving you as an antidote to overwhelm. Leverage your team. Number six say no a lot more often. Say no. There's some opportunities that are good, but the opportunity cost is so high. Say no, somebody invites you to do something you don't really want to do and you're, like me, a recovering people. Pleaser. Say no. You're clear on your vision, you're clear where you're going, you're clear on all of that and you have something that's about to come on your plate. Say no, say no. Say no a lot, a lot more often than you're saying okay. As you become more and more successful, as you build your business, bigger and bigger, one of the words you're going to get. You're going to need to get really good at saying is no, no. So look at it, think about it, the things causing me to be overwhelmed. How many of them, I just don't know. Forget that you said yes before right, but how many of them are just, they're just a no. Now, I am a very principled person. If I give somebody my word, as much as it's humanly possible, I won't back down right. But at least I know next time when something like this presents itself, the answer is no. And if it's something where I can ask, I know I said yes and I am not going to go back on my word. I am just asking in case there is somebody else who could feel this or whatever. Is there any way I can be let off the hook for this? If they say no, I will do it and I'll do it with a great attitude and I'll do it like really out of the goodness of my heart. But I also know like when this kind of thing happens, I just don't say yes. If you're a people, please are. One of the things you can do is when people ask you for stuff you're like I'm not sure. I have to look at my schedule first. Can you send me an email? I'll check it out and if I can, I will, and that gives you the opportunity to then actually go look at your calendar. Do I have the bandwidth? What is the opportunity cost of me saying yes to this right? Okay, so say no a lot more often. And then seven okay, seven is okay. This is what it is. Live in the magic of what your life is right now. Live in the magic of it when we have a lot of things thrown at us and business stuff is going on and maybe a team member left and you did this big launch and didn't play out the way you wanted, and you have to do this new thing you haven't done before and speak on the stage that's so much bigger and at the same time, something happened with your kid and all of that, and life is just throwing curveballs at you. Just stop, stop, stop, stop. It is always not the right thing to do to focus on the challenges and the problems, because your life is magic, like stop to think about it. If you don't stop and train your brain to think that way, you'll miss out on so many things and you'll turn nine years ago, like man, my life was magical the whole time, and I missed it Like I didn't enjoy any of it. So I'll use myself as an example, and you can relate to this, because it's all in how we choose to see things. It's not about the way they are See. Perception is stronger than reality. Things are the way we perceive them to be, not the way they are, and so I can have so many things and please understand this, everybody has a lot of things going on in their businesses. Okay, I told you, I've been in some of the most powerful rooms. It's unbelievable. All right, but at the same time, I wanted to be a doctor, and I am. I wanted to retire at 40, and I have. I set out on a mission to help a hundred thousand physicians learn to build profitable businesses. And, yes, we're not at a hundred thousand, but, my goodness, we have touched tens of thousands of doctors and we have books that have sold thousands of copies. We have a podcast that is over half a million downloads half a million. Our company made it to the Inc 5000 list. I have four wonderful children. I have an amazing husband. I have a home that I love. I live in a state that I love to be in. I get to travel a lot, I have the most dynamic friendships and I'm healthy, and these are things I can choose to focus on in the midst of whatever it is that seems overwhelming. I have clients who are getting crazy wild wins. I have people who listen to the podcast and it's changed not just their businesses and their careers, but their lives and I I'm living life on my terms and, yes, there are challenges, but, oh, my goodness, yes is magical. You know what I mean and you can choose. You can choose because, for everything that is not going according to plan there seven at least that are you know what I mean like you can stop and you can look for them. So, so number seven is really living in that magic, acknowledging those things that are working, celebrating those things that are working. It makes those, it makes going through the challenging times so much easier. It is stopping to think of all the challenges you had in the past and how you overcame them, and this new challenge Is going to be just like that. Right, think about how overwhelmed you are. You you're tempted to feel now, and how overwhelmed you felt, maybe, when you started med school, when you started residency or when you first start your business, or whatever that is. I overcame all of those. This is going to be one of them, right? So live in the magic that your life is right now okay. So I want to invite you don't feel like anything is wrong with you or anything is wrong. This is something you're gonna go through many, many times. You're gonna come to this point where it seems like, oh, my goodness, everything's broken and everything is overwhelming. Are you gonna get over it? Are you gonna get back to that spot? And so I want to invite you to learn to build the muscle your own two kids, your own D stress, but the overwhelm type of toolkit, and then you can always pull it out. It's a muscle you're building. You can always use it whenever you need to use it. So I am sending you virtual hugs. Entrepreneurship is not easy, but it is doable and it is worth it, and the return on investment is a thousand times worth it. And if you're listening to me, you're a mom. This is specifically for you. Sometimes, in addition to all this overwhelm, you have feelings of guilt because you're like this is a time I should spend with my kids, but some kids are gonna need to go to a magazine to get a vision board. You are being a vision board for your kids because you are going the difficult, the more difficult path of saying yes To your dreams and say yes to building a business and say yes. Maybe it's like team members you're struggling with, but you're, you're learning to build a team. You're learning to be a unicorn because, I mean, only two percent of female owned companies hit the seven-figure mark Right and and you're doing all of these things and you are teaching your, your daughters, your, your sons, such valuable lessons just by being and. So, yes, you may have, yes, there may be this thing of mommy guilt compared to some other moms, but please understand, there's so much value to what you're doing. I was talking to a lady earlier today and she said she made a statement. She was like, growing up, I haven't. I, I had never seen a marriage that worked till I came to to this church and I met you, and I met your husband and and your and some of the families in the church and all of those things. Just, I just had no example. So every time I think about marriage, I'm terrified. Well, for your kids, there may be people like oh, business never works. Bad business people are bad people. You can't make money, can't do all that, but you are being an example for your kids. Can you imagine the person I'm talking to? She's in her mid 20s, but you're being an example of your kid, for your kids, of what is possible. So I'm sending you virtual hugs. You're doing it not to hurt them, but you're doing it for them. You really are okay. So I just wanted you to know that. So take these things, apply these things, build this muscle. Please share this episode with another physician entrepreneur because these are some really trying times, but we can. We can thrive through them. Okay, and by sharing this episode, you'll be helping somebody else thrive through them, all right, okay, go share away. Share it on social media hashtag on trim these. I can shout you out and I'll see you on the next episode of the Entry MD podcast. Hey, if you love listening to the Entry MD podcast, I want to invite you to join Entry MD on demand. It is my signature subscription program that gives you access to a library of business courses designed to help you do One thing as a physician entrepreneur, and that is to thrive. Just head out to EntryMDcom For slash on demand and I'd love to have you join us. See you on the inside you.

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