How do you get out of a rut?

Dear Colleagues,

Sometimes the world just seems to churn along… nothing interesting happening, nothing being created or destroyed. Life at work just seems to be. And we feel like we’re in a bit of a rut.If you find yourself feeling this way, I would strongly recommend learning something new. The best cure for apathy and boredom is curiosity.

And the best thing to be curious about is what ever you want.

I bet you wanted me to say a VetPrac workshop, didn’t you?

Of course, I think if you are bored at work then attending a VetPrac workshop will inspire you to offer different and better services to your clients. But my focus is YOU not VetPrac.

VetPrac exists for you, and if you aren’t buzzing about the joy of saving lives and helping animals live and die in good conditions then I want to help.

Here are some things I do to stay curious:

– I admire the variety of colours in things. Our pleasure centre is directly connected to our eyes. By actively looking at colour variations we stimulate ourselves and it feels good. Consider differentiating the different colours of poo that come into your hospital for examination.

Purina has a much coveted poo chart to help with diagnostics. You can see it here.

– I listen for the range of sounds in a vet clinic. Particularly I like to try and work out if the dog barking in the cage is doing so for attention, aggression or anxiety reasons. But counting the number of times the head nurse or vet swears in a day is also a really fun activity for the ears. I give myself double points if I hear something, they are trying to say under their breath… 😀

– I practice feeling for the organs with greater specificity in my clinical exams. Can I catch the end of the spleen or liver in my fingers? Was the last kidney smaller or larger than this one? Is this pulse pressure under my fingers different than my last patients.I hope to have a long and varied career as a general practice veterinary surgeon and I know it’s going to take mastery of a huge number of skills.

Plus I want to stay interested, not just in the super cool weird things like the 1cm proximal oesophageal foreign body, causing my patient to burp and yelp on clinical presentation… but also I want to stay interested in the mundane, so I love every day at work and never regret my decision to spend a lifetime caring for animals.

Have a great week

Ilana

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