HouseJob Chronicles: Financial Wisdom 101

Well, this series was supposed to be all fun but this particular post may take on a serious tone.

Let’s talk about that thing called SALARY!

I know my salary is my business and your salary is your business, but when all is said and done, you can be a great doctor and still be broke.

That’s why I’d like to share some of the insight I’ve acquired, mostly by experience with you.

Since I’m no expert, this post is as good for me as it is for any Newbie House Officer.

That said, let’s dig in.

Now that you have a job, it feels like you have finally arrived.

It is not funny when a few months into HouseJob you start going broke left and right, and just as you finish clearing one debt, another one accumulates.

Here are a few tips that have helped me stay financially sane:

1. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND


Sounds cliché, right?

Trust me on this one, your salary can develop invisible wings and fly away overnight.

As a doctor, you should have clear-cut SALARY GOALS.

And the best time to decide that is before you earn your first salary!

What are your immediate Post House-Job plans?

*Port abroad?

*Write Primaries for residency in Nigeria?

*Take a well-deserved trip to Dubai?

*Get married?

*Buy a Car?

Whatever it is, you’ll probably need a substantial amount to follow through.

The average Naija Houseofficer has a “take-home” of 100k (minus taxes and other deductions).

So what will you do with all that money?

Spend it all? Or Save some of it?

What will be your Spending:Saving Ratio?

50:50?

20:80?

10:90?

60:40 is comfortable and works well for me.

So find out what works for you, and make it work.

2. HAVE A BUDGET

Maybe you never had a budget as a medical student because pocket money was not an issue.

Now that you’re earning your own pay, it’s wise for you to have a basic budget.

It’s hard to plan a budget, it’s even harder to follow through.

The goodnews is that a budget should serve as your guide and not your master.

Before that alert hits your phone, get a pen/notepad and write out your budget.

* How much goes for feeding/groceries?

* How much for utilities? transport? rent?

* How about emergencies?

Having a budget may not make sense to you initially, but soon you’ll realize its importance.

3. BE GENEROUS BUT APPLY WISDOM


Here in Nigeria, doctors are a big deal as far as an average family is concerned.

In some families, a doctor is seen as a beacon of hope to alleviate all forms of financial distress.

While there is nothing wrong with meeting some of the financial needs of your loved ones, don’t throw caution to the wind and think you can solve every money related problem that arises.

You’re not the GREAT Provider.

It is even more tricky for guys, when “baes” of different sizes and shapes are involved.

Bros, your name is not Santa Claus. Receive sense in Jesus’ name!

Before you became a doctor, there were needs. Now that you’re a doctor, there are needs.

God forbid that you lose your medical license or fall ill, there will still be needs.

Wisdom, is profitable to direct.

4. BEWARE OF 419

Everyone wants to get richer and doctors are no exception.

Doctors are easy targets to scammers in the name of investors.


If you’re a Nigerian living in Nigeria, you’ll know that Passive Income is the trending thing.

I’m no expert in the world of Multilevel marketing or Cryptocurrency, but I’ve seen people put in a whole lot of money with zero returns.
It can be devastating.

My point is, don’t say YES to every invitation to invest. Double check any idea you’re being offered and do your home work before you launch in.

May you not fall a victim of 419. Amen.

5. DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY.

When all is said and done, your present salary is not enough to fulfill all your future dreams.

It’s very tempting to want to save to the last kobo and live like a peasant during housejob.

That however is unwise.

You’re not in this world to suffer. 

You worked hard for this money (remember the many years you spent studying tirelessly in school), so you deserve to enjoy it.

Flex a little. Shop for some new clothes or shoes. Go on a mini-vacation. Give yourself a treat from time to time.

Don’t WORRY about the future. After all, no one is guaranteed of tomorrow.

Save what you can. Give what you can. Invest what you can.

And spend the rest like a boss.

6. MONEY IS NOT EVERYTHING.

You know this.

I know this.

We all know this.

But for some weird reason(s), we like to think/act the opposite. 

As if everything depends on money.

You worth much more than your pay check. Remember this. 

So even if you don’t earn enough, to save, invest or spend as you like-the value of your life is definitely more important to God than your salary.  

***

For wisdom is a defence, and money is a defence: but the excellency of knowledge is, that wisdom giveth life to them that have it. Ecclesiastes 7:12 KJV

Cheers!

:::requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️

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HouseJob Chronicles: READY-FOR-HOUSEJOB LIST

Hey friends,

HAPPY New Year, again!

The series is back.

To kick off this year, let me just take a moment to encourage those believing God to start their Housejob:

THIS TOO SHALL COME TO PASS!

And it will be SOONER than you think.

It’s a new year of new opportunities, new experiences and new growth.

And it’s only wise to get prepared even as we await the right opportunities.

***

So this post is for (but NOT limited to) doctors who want to do their Housejob in Nigeria.

Before I started Housejob, I drafted a couple of things I thought I’d be needing and since starting, I’ve added a few items to that list.

Please note that the list is not exclusive and can be conveniently adjusted based on the uniqueness of the centre you work in. 

For the sake of simplicity, I’ve divided the list into 6 categories.

Shall we?

1. MUST HAVES

These items are mandatory. It’s best to have them ready before you start Housejob.

– Ward coats: This is a no brainer right? Look out for a quality easy-to-wash cotton material that requires little to no ironing on most days (because we can’t trust NEPA). You need 3-4 ward coats for your peace of mind unless you prefer to do laundry every other night .

– Stethoscope: Buying a solid and durable steth makes a huge difference. I use a Classic II Littmann and everyday with it is pure bliss. So if you don’t have a good steth yet, why not save towards one?

– Wristwatch (with “seconds” hand or a digital watch): A MUST to monitor the Pulse Rate and Respiratory Rate of your patients.

– Scrubs/Scrub Shoes: Most centers have outdated scrubs/shoes in the theatre and there are days you can’t get what you need cos of logistics, so do yourself a favor and buy yours.

You might add a customized “surgical cap” to your list for special effects.


– Hand Sanitizer: Unfortunately most centers have poor sanitary conditions, with no running water and sometimes no hand washing soap. To avoid stories that touch (like Ebola or Lassa fever) just buy an alcohol based sanitizer and put in your pocket.

– Notepads/Pens: So Housejob requires a lot of multitasking and you need to outline all the tasks coming your way each day. Having a portable notepad gives you that luxury. Depending on the size, you need one notepad per posting.
You need a lot of pens/biros too (maybe upto 50 pieces), no kidding. There’s no end to an intern’s writing, except ofcourse, you work in an ICT compliant facility.
Also prepare to lend to your seniors (Regs/SRs), fellow HOs and even nurses without ever getting them back. You’ve been warned! 

– A Name Tag (Or you have the option of customizing your ward coats and scrubs).

2. SHOULD HAVES

These are items that might be found routinely on the wards but it’s safer to have yours.

– Pen torch (all CNS exams require this)

– Patella hammer (to check for reflexes)

– Tape rule (To measure Occipitofrontal circumference, Abdominal girth etc)

– Sphygmomanometer (Digital or Analog)

-Glucometer/Strips

– Pulse Oximeter

– Thermometer (For days when you need to quickly check a patient’s temperature and there’s no thermometer to use)

A Phone with flash light (for setting lines, catheterization etc) and good camera (for clinical snapshots, and of course selfies😜)

– Medical Books in PDF Versions/Resource sites like MEDSCAPE (because you’ll need all the STUFF you can get on the go): I’m currently in my Surgery posting and BADOE is a must.

3. DISPOSABLES

In the centre where I work, patients buy pretty much EVERYTHING and if it’s an Emergency or your patient has financial constraints, you will get stranded waiting endlessly for these items to come out of thin air. The GOAL is for the patient’s relatives to replace them when they finally come around.

– Non-sterile latex hand gloves: Have a pair or two in your ward coat pocket PRN.

– IV Cannulas (yellow/blue/pink/green/grey)

– Plaster (Recommended: Agary brand)

– Thermometer

– Methylated Spirit

– Cotton Wool

All for reasons previously stated ABOVE.

4. SAMARITAN PURSE

You can go a step further to keep some other collectibles (in addition to those highlighted above) that you can use for indigent patients especially those who have been rendered financially incapacitated by their long stay in the hospital.

– Water for injection

– Needles and syringes (2 mls, 5 mls)

– Crepe bandage

– Urethral catheter/Urine bag (various sizes )

– NG Tube (various sizes)

– KY/Xylocaine gel

5. PHILANTROPIST GOALS:

If donating to a good cause is one of your priorities, you will find several opportunities to do that during your Housejob.

Maybe there is no CT, MRI or Mammogram machine in your Centre, you can start a fundraiser to get one. Generations will remember you.  

Even simple gifts  like donating Hand washing soap to the wards,  or a Microwave to the doctor’s room will make a lot of difference. 

6. PERSONAL ESSENTIALS

These are items highly recommended for your personal convenience. Having them will do you a whole lot of good.

– Power bank (You know why)

– Good shoes (Ladies, flats preferably. We are allowed to put on sandals in my Centre too)

– Absorbable ready-to-wear shirts/blouses/dresses (because you can’t trust NEPA)

– Good Ties (for the guys, every day until 4 pm. Weekends are casual).

– Handkerchiefs, Face towels/wipes (for sweaty faces or wet hands)

– Water bottle/Lunch bag/Snacks (Unless you’re a big boy/girl with a FAT bank account and you don’t mind spending like 1K each day on stomach runs)

– Carry on body spray, (sorry, no air conditioning in the wards), lip gloss, hand cream (there’s such a thing as harmattan, baby) etc

– Ear piece and lots of GOOD music to keep you sane

– Durable BackPacks or Carry-On Bags for everything we have listed above 😉☺️

PS: Be sure to have Games, Comedy or Movies and a LOT of DATA (For days when you’re exhausted and need to crash in between work, TRUST ME, such days will come).
In my case, I read the books on my phone or use my Duolingo app or simply find my way to Whatsapp 😂

PPS: All images were downloaded from the Internet. 

So did I miss anything?😉
Oops! Ladies you NEED to buy Hair Wigs too. You can thank me later.😘

Cheers!
:::requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️