Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

I am going crazy. Am I crazy?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • I am going crazy. Am I crazy?

    Seeking permission from my random friends on this forum. I’ve posted before about my increasing professional burnout and I’m now at the point where I am considering dropping down to four days/week or just cutting back my schedule during the days I work by 20%. I’m a dental specialist and I’m seeing about 25-28patients per day in my 2-provider private practice. I’m the jr partner but I have the latitude to make my schedule essentially as I see fit. Over the past year and a half, the pressures of keeping referrals happy and the fortunate problem of having tons of patients trying to get in has driven the schedule to getting absolutely overloaded; at least it’s too many patients for me to feel that I am practicing at a high/safe level. I’m running around from room to room without doing any notes all day, trying to find 90sec for a bathroom break most days. I do take a 30min lunch that I usually get at least 20min of. I’m at the point where I’m ready to take one day off per week or keep the patient encounters to the low 20s. Otherwise I’m not going to last another year or two even. Down side would be referrals can’t get all of their patients in and that may harm the practice I guess.

    Im 39 in a few weeks, practicing for 5 years now since residency, married with no kids yet. Hoping to have one on the way soon, probably max of two.
    We have zero debt other than 290k remaining on a mortgage on a house now worth about 500k.
    Started out making about 300k, that has grown to about 900k this year and last including wife’s salary which itself is about 5% of the total income. She is planning to quit her job when the kids come but that income going out the door won’t affect us much financially.

    Have a total of 1.6M: (I don’t count the house toward net worth.)
    300k in various retirement accts
    140k in cash in HYSA
    1.15M at vanguard in 80% indexed equities, 10% reit, 10% muni bond fund

    Am I being dumb in slowing down a bit from my 5 day a week schedule before I even hit 40? Is it a mistake professionally or from a business standpoint? They say the 30s are the time to bust your a** and work like a dog and I have been doing that. I know the patients I don’t see will go somewhere else. But I KNOW without a doubt that at the pace I’m going I will have a mental breakdown. The last few weeks in particular have been miserable. Would really benefit from having more time for family, staying in shape, and getting back in to the hobbies I had before residency. What say ye? Have I reached a financial point where it is reasonable to take a step back?

  • #2
    You know the answer . You are telling you are on the verge of mental breakdown . Take care of yourself , my friend

    Comment


    • #3
      You have reached a mental standpoint where it will do you harm if you don’t cut back.

      Even if your income drops by half, if you continue working 10 more years at a pace you enjoy you will be in a better place financially than if you burn out in a year and can’t stand the thought of being a dentist anymore.

      Your health is priceless. Never sacrifice your health for more income.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Anne View Post
        You have reached a mental standpoint where it will do you harm if you don’t cut back.

        Even if your income drops by half, if you continue working 10 more years at a pace you enjoy you will be in a better place financially than if you burn out in a year and can’t stand the thought of being a dentist anymore.

        Your health is priceless. Never sacrifice your health for more income.
        Ditto . Anne summarized and stated it as best as one can.

        Comment


        • #5
          It doesn't matter what your numbers are. Change something immediately, your health and your marriage are more important than dollars.

          Good luck.

          Comment


          • #6
            Slow down and a third partner to handle the load. You will enjoy the job more, your life more, and still be making plenty.

            Comment


            • #7
              Absolutely you need to slow down. But I'd recommend scheduling fewer patients in the day, not 1 less day with the other 4 still miserable. Or do both. But you seem overwhelmed each day. You'll still dread going to work if you're seeing too many in a day.

              Comment


              • #8
                Answer seems pretty clear to me. Slow down. What’s the point in bringing in a high income if you’re stressed and not able to keep it up much longer? You’ll be much better off in he long run and don’t need our permission to do it. Agree with decreasing patient slots over just taking a day off, your remaining days would be hectic and you would loathe them all the same.

                Comment


                • #9
                  You are not crazy. You are the opposite of crazy for planning to cut back. It would be crazy to keep things as they are now.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Yeah I would focus on making your day better not cutting back days.

                    What is your spending like? If you drop your income will you still be able to save 20%?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by WizardOfGauze View Post
                      900k this year and last
                      And no debt? You're good. "Seeking permission"? Granted.
                      $1 saved = >$1 earned. ✓

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Lordosis View Post
                        Yeah I would focus on making your day better not cutting back days.

                        What is your spending like? If you drop your income will you still be able to save 20%?
                        That’s what’s been nice. We save about 40% right now. We don’t really have expensive tastes, at least not yet.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          It’s simple. Work smarter, not harder. Restructure the practice so you can work at a lower stress pace and continue to make a good income.

                          Why not hire an associate and share the volume?

                          When I cut back my hours and moved to a slower paced practice, the stress melted away.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            What is the schedule of the senior partner?

                            What is the possibility of hiring two more associates?

                            Keep in mind that COVID has caused lots of folks to postpone dental and medical treatments.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Bev View Post
                              What is the schedule of the senior partner?

                              What is the possibility of hiring two more associates?

                              Keep in mind that COVID has caused lots of folks to postpone dental and medical treatments.
                              Sr partner works 4 days/week. His schedule is about the same but maybe slightly lighter. Not planning to retire any time soon.

                              We have been talking about bringing on another associate and will probably try to do that in 2022 if possible.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X