December 2020

In today’s VETgirl online veterinary continuing education blog, Dr. Garret Pachtinger, DACVECC reviews some declutting and stress-reducing tips for veterinary professionals. What better way to start the new year with this New Year’s Resolution?

As we continue our COVID-restricted journey, tumbling to the end of 2020 and looking for the positives of 2021, here are 3 decluttering and stress reducing tips to make the start of 2021 that much better!

1) De-Clutter your email inbox!

After a year of stay-at-home online shopping, my inbox is now full of unwanted marketing and solicitation emails.  If I compare my email inbox to my house…I can deal with a pair of socks on the floor for a few days…but if you had 18 pairs of socks, 3 pairs of underwear, 8 pairs of scrubs, and 14 shirts on the floor…that’s a MESS!

Don’t let your email inbox become that type of mess! Take control of your inbox and unsubscribe:

Regardless of your email provider (e.g. GMail, HotMail, Yahoo, etc.), most marketing emails have an unsubscribe link that you can use to unsubscribe. Sometimes they are challenging and “unsubscribe” is not listed, rather “Change email preferences” or something similar is noted. Example:

I prefer GMail!  Gmail now offers an unsubscribe link at the top of most marketing emails and newsletters. Below the subject line and next to the sender information, there should be an unsubscribe link. Example:

2) Avoid Multitasking.

What?  Avoid multitasking?  Many of us Type A+++ veterinary professionals pride ourselves on being able to multitask.  It’s like a badge of honor!  Just yesterday I unblocked a cat, tapped a chest, and simultaneously talked to an owner about the importance of bloodwork…while eating a granola bar and ordering dinner for the family to be delivered with DoorDash.

Unfortunately, while multitasking may seem like an efficient way of getting things done… the reality is that we do better when we focus on one thing. Multitasking hampers productivity.

Make use of to-do lists, stick to them, and stay focused.  You will be more efficient, more productive, and happier!

3) Learn to Say NO!

Let 2021 be the year where you so NO.
Politely of course, but NO.

It took me years to learn how to say no.
– Want to pick up an extra shift?  Yes
– Any desire to write a textbook chapter?  Yes.
– Can you edit this article?  Yes.

When in reality…I didn’t want to.

I was afraid to say no.  I was afraid to disappoint a colleague or friend.  I was afraid to appear selfish.

The truth is that we need to take care of ourselves and our time.  We need to prioritize ourselves, our families, and our emotional and mental health.

Saying NO (politely) has allowed me to devote more time, energy, and passion to the important things, which increases productivity and overall mental, emotional, and physical health.

What are you implementing in 2021 to improve YOUR emotional, mental, or physical well being?

  1. This year I hope to spend some time working on my hobbies and not just taking care of everyone else. We will see how successful I am!

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