No doctor wants to lose money because of disordered finances.
If you own your own practice, you can’t afford money leaks. Instead, you deserve the freedom that comes from a well-run business — the peace of mind and the growth opportunities that come with getting your finances right.
But you know that’s easier said than done. That’s because the biggest obstacle is your mindset.
Sure, opening bank accounts, ordering your books and managing payroll can be a challenge. But your money mindset — mental attitudes, fears and limiting beliefs — is the real enemy.
If you want to get your finances right, you have to overcome the mental obstacles. And to do that, you need to get the obstacles out of your head and into the open. Once they’re mapped out, we can come up with a game plan to beat them.
Let’s take a look at the three biggest mental obstacles to getting your finances right.
1. Waiting for perfect
Every doctor wants to have their finances together. But many of them are waiting for the perfect moment.
They have what I call a “one day attitude.” They say things like, “one day I’ll start investing” or “one day I’ll look into Profit First.” “One day I’ll pay myself what I deserve.”
But the truth is, life rarely gives us that perfect moment.
Your business is dynamic — always moving and always growing. If you’re waiting for the stars to align perfectly, your moment might never come. And so your practice will never reach its potential.
Instead, I counsel doctors to switch their money mindset and start today.
You don’t have to be a financial expert. It isn’t important that you plan out every bit of strategy before you make a move. Steering is easier after you get going. And that way, you don’t miss out on big opportunities in the meantime.
Start by choosing to prioritize profit. Begin just by opening up a separate bank account. And if you can, start investing now. With the ability to buy microshares, you don’t even need to wait until your debt is completely paid off.
It might not look perfect right away, but those little steps are going to pay huge dividends in the years to come. If you keep waiting for just the right moment, you’ll be stuck at square one for a long time.
2. Ignoring your numbers
Many doctors tell themselves that they are no good with finances. It’s not why they got into the business, and it makes them feel a nagging sense of shame.
I understand the weight of that money mindset. I’ve coached many business owners through it.
And I’ll tell you the same thing I tell them: you’ll only get better if you practice.
Your business can’t be healthy if you ignore your bank statements and dodge any conversation about finances.
Instead, you really need to lean into your numbers and start asking questions.
Open up each of those bank statements. Lay them out on the table and ask where your money is going. What do the numbers show? And why are they that way?
You may not know the answers to these questions. That’s alright.
But it’s only through asking questions that your finances can get in order. Finding the answers you need can be as easy as talking to a professional or doing a little research online. To make the money you deserve, you need to fight the fear and get to know your numbers.
3. Not separating personal and business finances
I encourage doctors because I want them to feel free to step into their finances. But as they do that, there’s one wall I insist you maintain.
Often people mix the two together. But that can spell disaster for your business.
Soon your bank statements will be all over the place and you’ll have trouble deciphering what was that new equipment you purchased for the office and what was that birthday gift you bought for your niece. You start borrowing from one account to feed the other and before you know it, both are in the red.
Instead, start habits now that will work for you in the long run.
That means separate bank accounts and separate credit cards. Sometimes it might seem more convenient, but don’t go on a Costco run with your business card. That momentary lapse of judgment will hurt you later. Your company will always be more valuable with fewer expenses associated with it.
Be strict and be consistent. The more firm your wall between personal and business finances, the healthier each will be.
Overcome Your Obstacles
These three money mindsets may seem simple, but they are the biggest mental obstacles to getting your finances right.
I encourage you to take a few moments for self-evaluation. How are these mindsets holding you back?
Be honest about them and then get the help you need to overcome them. I recommend the Profit First system to all of my clients because it’s not just financial literacy, it’s behavior modification. It teaches you to build good habits so that your finances straighten themselves out.