Or, Is It Possible to Follow CME Rules/Regulations/Criteria and Still Be Happy?
Often, new clients come to me when they are drastically unhappy. Their organization has received a Progress Report or Interim Report or even a Probation decision, and they don’t know what to do. Or they have had a staff member leave and they have to do the job now. Or they are a physician struggling to apply the CME criteria to their upcoming educational activity.
So a big part of my job is to help these very unhappy people find the fun in the challenges facing them.
“Fun?!” you may say, “Where’s the fun?” I once had an otolaryngologist say to me, “You really love this. I can tell. You love it ….” Implying that HE did not.
Perhaps my love of continuing medical education is a bit over the top, but I have found a few tricks over the years which help on those down days or weeks. You can do this as well. Here’s some ideas to turn the perceived burden of CME into an opportunity to be happy:
1. List your successes. Did you make a change to your evaluation form that helped you collect better data? Did you find an interesting journal article that describes a best practice? Did a physician provide an excellent practice gap on their CME activity request application? Research shows that writing down small positive memories enhances your mood, and this is as true in work life as in personal life.
2. Share your list with others. Incorporate successes into your Medical Education Committee agenda. Solicit successes from your Chairs and highlight them in your newsletter. See this blog post about how one of my clients made Criterion 6 useful.
3. Smile. People react to positively to body language, and I have found this is true even when they cannot see you. Smile when you are talking, even on the phone, and you will be amazed at the change.
4. Remember that you are on a continuum. The ACCME rewards programs for growth and improvement. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Track your successes and set goals for the future.
If you want to hear an amazing talk about Happiness, listen to Nataly Kogan’s TedXBoston talk here. Also, I would recommend Gretchen Rubin’s book, The Happiness Project, and her blog on the same subject.
(Credit to http://terriblycute.com/ for the dog photo!)