Publishing the book, "Direct Primary Care: The Cure for Our Broken Healthcare System", has been a big accomplishment for me.
It was not difficult to write the book, but having the intentionality to move the book from a completed word document on my desktop computer to a physical product that you can buy on Amazon has been challenging, with several small obstacles to overcome week by week and month by month.
I guess it's a good metaphor for being in business—It's not hard to have a great idea, but it is difficult to have the consistency, grit, and intentionality to advance that idea every day and every week towards your stated goals.
Additionally, I'm proud of signing a lease to grow into a larger space. Our practice has grown from zero patients two years ago to over 425 patients today, so we will need a larger office to accommodate the diverse needs of our patients.
The process of signing a lease, designing an office space, and working with several different professionals to get the job done has been challenging.
What do you know now that you wish you’d known then?
Experience is the greatest teacher, and I've made several mistakes along the way.
My biggest mistake by far has been undervaluing my time and talents. I recently finished reading "Entrepreneurial You" by Dorie Clark and it talks about having the courage to charge for your services, including during speaking engagements.
I'm glad to have asked for payments for past speaking gigs, and I need to be better at valuing my time and talents with future consulting gigs and speaking engagements.
What’s your best advice to other small business owners?
If you're waiting for the perfect time to start, that moment when you feel ready, you'll never start.
One quote to reinforce this is from Hugh Laurie, the actor who played “House MD”. His nugget of wisdom is as follows: “It’s a terrible thing, I think, in life to wait until you’re ready. I have this feeling now that actually no one is ever ready to do anything. There is almost no such thing as ready. There is only now. And you may as well do it now. Generally speaking, now is as good a time as any."
Fortunately I had a really compelling reason to start my business, otherwise I may still be dragging my feet about the perfect time to launch. Anyways, a community member signed up online, before I was ready to start. He called me on a Tuesday saying "I just took my last antidepressant, so I need you to be my doctor now." That day, I ordered $100-worth of medications, including the antidepressant that he needed. The next day, I received the medications and made the house call to his rental.
All I had was my doctor's bag, my stethoscope, a blood pressure cuff, oximeter, my laptop, and the medications he needed, but I was able to meet a previously unmet need at an affordable price for this person.
So, my advice is to stop waiting and do the thing. Done is better than perfect.
What’s a typical day like for you?
I typically wake up and go for a run to get my mind and my body ready for the day. Then I make coffee and have breakfast.