Recent surveys show that at least 50% of doctors would leave medicine if they could. The road to becoming a doctor is challenging and loaded with hard work. The road out of clinical medicine is not easy, but it is certainly easier for you to find a great non-clinical job at any stage in your medical career than it was for you to get accepted into medical school and become a licensed physician.
Find out if you should follow up on your itch to get out of patient care. A non-clinical job is the right move for some doctors, but not all. These are the top 10 signs that you need to get serious about finding a non-clinical career.
1.You are more interested in your work activities outside of patient care than you are in your clinic or hospital work. If you are more enthusiastic when listening to a seminar or dabbling in medical technology, research, writing or editing articles, teaching, consulting or serving on committees than you are when seeing patients-then it is about time for you to get paid for doing non-clinical work.
2. You don't look forward to patient care. It may sound like the most emblematic of 'first world problems,' to look for a job you would prefer over being a doctor, but after all of the studying and training and test taking that you have done, you have earned the right to a job that you look forward to. Most importantly, there are jobs that you may like more, so there is no reason to stay in a job you do not want to be in when you can move forward in your career continuum. Find out more about your non-clinical options to see which type of job would be the right fit for you.
3. You keep putting off that project you have been dreaming of. If you want to start your own business, do something innovative or work in medical technology someday, it is worth your while to figure out when that someday is - 5 years, 10 years, after retirement? Decide if and when you want to be ready to take a professional leap that you have been craving.
4. You have already applied to non-clinical jobs and your applications have been ignored or rejected. Most doctors make a few feeble steps at sending job applications or inquiries, only to be rejected. The non-clinical world is different than the clinical world when it comes to looking for a job. You need to learn how to position yourself so that your applications will be effective and land you the position that you want.
5. You are jealous of physicians who have non-clinical jobs or resentful of professionals who are not doctors. You should not remain in a position that leaves you bitter. Jealousy is a sign that you are burning up with complacent dissatisfaction and you need to learn how to make a change now.
6. You are feeling trapped in medicine. Medicine is not an involuntary imprisonment. However, if you are feeling that it is a life sentence - you need to do yourself a favor and find the key to get out- you are the only one holding the key!
7. You have a nagging feeling that you are missing out on something. If you keep looking at the world outside of medicine as a bright, missed opportunity - then by all means grab the opportunity and let it take you wherever you want to go.
8. You hate your work. It is bad enough if you don't look forward to your work. (See #2) You have put in too much time, sweat, money and effort into your career to stay in a job that you hate.
9. You became a doctor for someone else's sake and you are spitefully waiting for payback that you deserve. You will never get enough payback to compensate you for sacrificing your aspirations and dreams for someone else's sake. Sacrificing for someone else is a type of martyrdom, and if you expect extreme payback for being a doctor because it wasn't your choice, then you need to stop expecting disproportionate payback, because it will never come. You have to decide to either continue to live someone else's dream or to live for yourself.
10. You wish that you weren't a doctor. The fact that you became a doctor is nothing short of awesome. But tomorrow is another day and you can use your education, skills, certification and smarts to become whatever you wish you could be.
You can succeed and find a job that gives you personal satisfaction and at least the equivalent of doctor's salary if you learn about your options and how to position yourself to get the job that best suits you. Explore nonclinicaldoctors.com and Careers Beyond Clinical Medicine to learn what you need to do to transition into a non-clinical job.