My mom taught us early in life the Mary Poppinsism: “In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun.” It helped create the mindset that there is an opportunity in everything if you have the mindset to identify it and make it work for you. We have 63 hours of continuing education (CE) coming due next year. This can be seen as a monotonous chore, or an opportunity to do something awesome. Here’s my game plan:

1. The great escape: I have four ADHD kids, and my wife wanted a piano… next to the master bedroom. All of a sudden, putting on some noise canceling headphones and drifting away into some online CE is incredibly appealing. It counts as 30 minutes for every hour, so I enjoy not hearing that piano for a total of 126 hours. I’m betting after a few hours, my wife will join me.

2. Study clubs still create some great local events where getting together is going on. I formed my own with my brother, the docs I work with, and some of the local docs. It’s called “Case Presentation Studies,” or CPS (my dad’s initials, in honor of one of the all-time greats in getting “creative” with the concept of work - the stories are legendary, and usually require the passing of the statute of limitations before they are shared).

                                            Mr. Stevens

We’ve met in offices, backyards during barbecues, on ski slopes, and via Zoom. We do a lot of case presentations, discuss best practices, and learn from each other’s wins and failures. Honestly, it’s the best CE I’ve ever done, and I use what I’ve learned in practice every day.  

3. “Live” CE, even when it’s presented online, counts 1:1. It counts the same as being there. If the presenter is online with live interaction, it is considered live CE.

4. The jurisprudence exam is due. Honestly, the law changes a lot, so it is a pretty good refresher, multiple choice and completely open book. How easy is that?

5. Suicide prevention education and opioid prescribing training is due. I’ve knocked out the opioid CE and I rarely prescribe pain meds anymore. Word gets out with the locals and I’ve really enjoyed not being hit up by those who come into the office chasing narcotics.

All of this is due by your birthday in 2022. It’s plenty of time.

Honestly, CE brings opportunities for fun, education, and making us better at our jobs (which usually makes the job more fun). Find a way to make it great for you.