Episode 26 | How Do You Measure the Value of Your Life and Vet Med Career?

The Vet Med journey is not predictable.

Despite the shared experiences of those who’ve gone before, the journeys of others are not indicative of our own.

We will forge our own paths.

Left to chance, those paths look very similar.

But, intentionally decided, they look very different.

Vet Med is simply a catalyst.

The ultimate question becomes this:

How do you determine the value of your life?

Are you measuring your life success, and finding satisfaction (or lack thereof) based on variables you decided?

Or have you just adopted the standards of the world?

Did you even realize YOU get to decide?

In this week’s episode, I take a look at the impact of adopting “life success measures” that are not your own.

I also introduce the “when and then” approach many of us take which leaves us chasing an expectation that is neither defined nor attainable.

To learn how you can begin living an intentional life in Vet Med and beyond, check out Vet Life Reboot here.

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Vet Life Reboot



How do you measure the value of your life, that's what we're talking about in Episode 26.

Welcome to the Joyful DVM Podcast. I'm your host, Veterinarian, and Certified Life Coach, Cari Wise. Whether you're dealing with the challenges in Vet Med, struggling with self-confidence, or you're just trying to figure out how to create a life and a and a career that you actually enjoy, you'll find encouragement, education, and empowering concepts you can apply right away. Let's get started.

Hello, my friends. Today, I want to talk about how we measure the value of our lives. Responsibility, logic, financial security - are these how you measure the value of your life? What do you focus on? Is that the measure you want to use? These are the questions we really need to ask ourselves.

See, there is value in our intuition and our gut instinct. There is freedom in letting go of what the world tells us is the right way to live. And there's major freedom in forging your own way. Unnecessary suffering is created in the gap between the stirring of what you want for your life and what the world tells you to create. It shows up as rules about money, credit scores, weight, relationships, marriage before kids, family before career, work-life balance, and so many more. Are these the things that you actually even want?

There are many, many veterinary professionals who embrace the blurred line, whose existence as a veterinarian or vet tech and all that comes with it is the normal fabric of their everyday life. It is integrated and they still have boundaries. They are not right and you're not wrong, and you're not right and they're not wrong.

When we get to the point of extreme suffering, when our thoughts loop on one particular circumstance, like our work and all the things that go with it for many of us, we think the solution is to change something. To change jobs or even change careers. If it's a struggle in a relationship, the solution is to break up or get divorced. If it's money, then the solution is to make more money.

As we chase these new circumstances, two things happen. Number one, we get caught up in believing the "when and then" trap. And number two, we miss the massive opportunity.

"When and then", that's the belief that when you get to a certain level or you find a specific situation, then you'll be happy. Then you'll be content. Then you'll have the life that you want.

It creates a trap. It creates an unattainable goal, and it's ever-changing. This unattainable goal and the ever-changing expectation puts off your peace and happiness to a time in the future only to be achieved through something that you actually can't control. You're always waiting to be peaceful and happy. There is lost opportunity in that type of journey.

See, we don't investigate what's really going on inside. We miss the opportunity to get to know ourselves and to explore our own interests and to tap into our actual intuition. We are passengers in our lives, on our road, defined by the world based on worldly means of measure. We let someone else decide what is important, and we believe they're right. We adopt the beliefs around what is important and what is not, and then we try to mold our lives to fit into those expectations. What if we have it all wrong? I think we do.

No matter your profession, there is a point in every person's life where the status quo becomes intolerable.

For those of us in Vet Med, this often shows up in a very subtle way at first - just job dissatisfaction. We can recite all the worldly reasons why Vet Med is really hard and why we may have been making the worst decision ever when we decided to go into this career field. And the thing of it is, a large percentage of the vet world would agree. When they agree, we think we're onto something there. We believe we found the truth. We talk a lot about the reality of our profession. We throw around statistics to back up our conclusions. It's a dismal picture and one that serves no real useful long-term purpose. It's also totally wrong.

Vet Med is simply a catalyst. That point of intolerance is intentional. It is your opportunity to survey your life, your choices, and your projected path so you can re-decide what you want for your future. For many of us, re-deciding might not even be the right word. We may not even be able to identify the original decision in the first place.

Many of us set on this path to Vet Med very early on, deciding as a child and then continuing to pursue it from a sense of obligation. Obligation serves nobody. You didn't make the wrong choice. I firmly believe that, but you didn't make your last choice either. This wasn't your one shot. This was your first shot. Simply the beginning of your journey. There is so much more to come.

With that, I'll leave you with a question. What's your deepest desire for your life?

Think about it. Compare your current reality to that vision. Consider how you might get there. Keep that dream top of mind and your brain will go to work finding the path to get you there. What we focus on, we create more of. Guard your thoughts, my friend. They literally create your experience.

That's going to wrap it up for this week and I'll see you next time.

Thank you for listening to the Joyful DVM Podcast. If you'd like to learn more about the concept and ideas discussed here, and how to apply them to your own life to create confidence and empowerment for yourself, you'll love Vet Life Academy. To check it out and learn more, visit joyfuldvm.com/vetlifeacademy.  And if you're loving this podcast, I'd appreciate it if you'd share it with your friends and leave us a review on iTunes. 

We can change what's possible in Vet Med together.