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Finally Switched To A Part-Time Schedule

I’ve talked about it enough over the past year and finally a few days ago I got the impetus for telling my boss.

I met up with him today over lunch and beers and broke the bad news. Thankfully his verbatim reply was “No worries dude, work is work, life is life, glad you’re still staying in Portland” (after saying ‘wtf man! really? come on now! when? why??)

The main impetus was seeing my colleague and friend being happier after he switched to part-time. He happens to be my work buddy and when he isn’t working in the urgent care with me I get bored out of my mind.

Hey dude what do you think of this lady’s arm, got scratched by a cat, it looks all fucked up. I think she has a separate cellulitis here.

Dude, that’s classic cat-scratch disease, that’s how it looks. Give her a macrolide, don’t treat the cellulitis.

Over the past few months I’ve also been taking on or been assigned to more and more admin work. My previously free mornings, before the urgent care shifts, have been getting filled with emails, phone calls and meetings.

A certain amount of admin work is very rewarding and helps me learn certain skills which I don’t possess. I have discovered that fine line best exemplified by that 5th beer after 2 tequila shots.

Seeing patients is always rewarding when things go smoothly with rooming of the patients and when adequate, competent support staff is available to get the ancillary tasks done in order to preserve a good flow.

Removing a splinter, reducing a dislocation, draining and abscess, repairing a laceration or managing gout, shingles or urolithiasis is as rewarding as it was when I first started. The coughs and colds, the 10-hour back to back shifts and dealing with incompetent staff stings much more than it ever has.

As I’ve described in the past, I no longer have the same need for income now that I’m debt-free. Having free time to sit around and sip coffee, go for a walk in the park, boulder at the gym and hang out with family and friends has become a higher priority in my life.

As my boss said, work is work and life is life. I have been fortunate to get myself to a financially independent stage, now I need to capitalize on this to meet my needs.

Work is work, I don’t care for admin work any longer, it’s time for me to give it up. I don’t care for working 80-hour weeks and I don’t care to think more about work than about leisurely shit.

Life is life, I value my free time and my relationships more than work so I need to start living my life accordingly.

With that I’m transitioning to working part-time, at 50% of a full-time schedule.

I’ll miss the income.
I’ll miss the rush.
I’ll miss being able to blame my lack of free time on my job.
I can’t help but feel like a weakling.

I thought I’d feel elated but I actually feel a bit anxious. Mostly because I know there are responsibilities which my boss will have to tackle by himself.

Secondly, in my life work has always taken up the majority of my time, energy, identity and commitment. Without a full-time+ work commitment I certainly will need some time to adjust to these changes.

Reminds me of the 60+ year old housewives who are coming to me being driven out of their minds by their now-retired husbands who are spending more time at home, nagging and complaining about every single thing.

I don’t want to be that guy. Which means I will need to start building a bit of structure into my life to make sure I remain productive with this increase in free time.

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