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Things to do while on assignment in Charleston this December

Winter is here and the holiday season is upon us. If you’re on a travel therapy assignment in Charleston, South Carolina this month, don’t worry about feeling bored or lonely. There are plenty of thrilling activities you can enjoy in this charming city without dealing with the crowds of people that often flood the place during the summertime.

With an average base salary for physical and occupational therapists in Charleston standing just below $80,000, according to Glassdoor, you’ll have enough funds to save for one – or more – of the following events and attractions in the beloved Chucktown:

Head to the beach

While the weather may not be as warm during this time of year, it’s still comfortable enough to take a walk in the sand down the shore line of one of Charleston’s beaches. Thrillist recommended checking out Folly Beach, Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island Edisto, Kiawah, or Seabrook during your stay. All locations are free of charge.

Check out the aquarium

Another great activity for the sea lovers, the South Carolina Aquarium is a must-visit. Here, you can enjoy thousands of different aquatic animals ranging from otters and sharks to adorable sea turtles. According to Traveler of Charleston, the Zucker Family Sea Turtle Recovery area of the aquarium is an exhibit you can’t miss – you can witness the rehabilitation of injured sea turtles and watch them released back into the ocean via TV monitor!

Invite your family to visit the aquarium during your stay in Charleston.

Walk down Rainbow Row

Known as one of the most iconic sites in all of South Carolina, Rainbow Row is a fresh breath of air. It’s a row of 14 houses painted in bright, pastel hues that can’t be missed. According to Free Tours by Foot, there are various theories behind the meaning of the colorful houses. One is that the houses were used to catch the attention of the drunken sailor to help guide them home. Another is that the merchants used it as an advertising scheme. Others believe that the bright pastels were used to lower the property temperatures during the warm months. No matter the history behind the houses, one thing’s for sure: it’s one of the most beautiful, monumental sites in the world and can’t be passed up.

Visit Battery Park

According to Travel Pulse, a trip to Battery Park is the only way to complete a stay in Charleston. It’s cornered by Copper river on one side, and Ashley river on the other, offering gorgeous sights of the water no matter where you’re standing. Beyond its beauty, visitors can bask in the glory of its history – this site was named after the Civil War coastal defense artillery battery left here.

Don’t miss out on your chance to enjoy wintertime during your assignment in Charleston. Set aside some time to try one of these activities with your coworkers, or invite close family and friends for a quick visit before you embark on your next destination.

November is Native American Heritage Month

During November, most of the population is preparing for the holidays and the start of a new year. But did you know it’s Native American Heritage Month? According to the National Congress of American Indians, November is a time to celebrate the diverse cultures, traditions and historical events of Native Americans.

As a travel therapist, you have the opportunity to meet many unique individuals of various cultures. Understanding the beliefs and values of each cultural group can help you provide the most valuable care while treating each individual with respect. This month, let’s take a closer look at some of the potential challenges – plus solutions – for travel speech and language therapists, physical therapists and occupational therapists working with Native Americans:

Historical insight

Due to the historical oppression of indigenous people, many Native American clients may find it difficult to trust in his or her therapist. When the No. 1 priority of all therapists is to ensure patients are comfortable and can confide in them, it’s important to learn how to build trust and help your patients feel confident in the way you provide care.

“Eye contact is normally avoided as a sign of respect.”

Some of the most common barriers when working with Native American patients revolve around understanding communication values. According to researchers at the Native American Cancer Research Corporation, eye contact is normally avoided. Native Americans tend to gaze at the floor during conversation – understand that it’s a sign of respect. Additionally, patients of Native American descent associate loudness with anger and hostility. They also take long pauses after questions, taking careful consideration into their answers before responding on a whim.

What travel therapists can do

As the Minnesota Psychological Association suggested, working with Native American patients is all about considering the three C’s: Context, Comfort and Communication. This theory revolves around understanding the context of your patients background and story, building a relationship with your client and using the right communicative tools and techniques based on the values and beliefs of Native Americans. Keeping this in mind, here are a few recommendations and tips while working with Native American patients:

  • Patience is key. Give your patients enough time to evaluate your questions thoroughly and speak their truth in regard to how they’re feeling.
  • Approach all patients in a calm demeanor. Avoid an excessive tone or emphasis when speaking while addressing care.
  • Keep Native American spirituality in mind during care. According to research by the Center for Health Disparities Research, clients believe it’s important to incorporate Native American spirituality into therapy, but not to use tribal spiritual or healing methods for care.
  • The CHDR recommended providers meet Native American individuals, find a Native mentor, or spend time in the community to get a better understanding of the culture and background.

Jackson Therapy Partners seeks to educate travel therapists on embracing all cultural values and beliefs when providing care. This month, take the time to pay close attention to the needs of Native American patients with respect to their values.

4 crucial budgeting tips for traveling therapists

These four tips can help you manage your money smarter.

Money matters: These days, it seems everybody has them. Not least of which travel therapists, who often find that saving and spending smart can be a little more difficult when you’re trying to make a life in a new place while dealing with a busy schedule.

Here are four crucial budgeting tips for travel therapists:

1. Get a view of your spending

The first step to improving your budgeting is getting a sense of how and what you’re spending each month. So often people can think that they’re not dedicating that much money to their regular lattes from the local coffee shop, only to find that this spending habit adds up to nearly $100 out of their pockets each month.

Tracking your spending in a journal is one way to do this, but a better – and easier – method is to enlist the help of technology. Budgeting apps can be a godsend in managing your money. Here are some apps to try:

Mint
Considered a major player in the budget apps space, Mint makes seeing how you spend your money each month super simple. Colorful pie charts show you how much you spend on groceries, coffees, social events and work-related activities, which can help you make some surprising discoveries about where your money is going.

Mvelopes
Mvelopes slogan is “Don’t just track your spending. Fix it,” and the app lives up to its motto by pairing a spending tracker with a learning center rich with financial resources and the option to work with a personal finance trainer.

Albert
Consider Albert your finance concierge, offering tips and tricks on how you can more effectively spend and save. It not only analyzes your spending with alarming accuracy but compares your current habits to what you should be doing to meet your goals.

“Be aware of your credit and improve it when necessary.”

2. Be empowered about your credit

You can pay cash for a fancy new apartment, but if your credit is bad, you might get turned down. Being aware of your credit and improving it when necessary is an important part of managing your money well. Unfortunately, however, misconceptions about credit abound – for example, many people erroneously think that it costs money to check your credit score, when it’s actually free and you can check your score as many times as you want.

Credit Karma is a great site to join that’s free and breaks down your credit report in an easy-to-understand way.

3. Identify ways to save

Once you have a clearer understanding of where your money is going each month, you can look for ways to save. Where you save depends on your budget needs and what you personally feel is most worth spending your money on.

Little hacks can help you save. For example, if regular coffee runs are eating up too much of your budget, invest in a French press and make your coffee at home more often. Meal prepping is another area where you can often cut costs – scan the weekly flyers before you head to the grocery store and buy ingredients in bulk – they last longer and the price point is often lower. A little planning can help you save more, too. You can make a big batch of lunches and dinners on Sunday evening and then bring individual portions to work throughout the week to save on the costs of take-out or hitting up the drive-thru.

4. Have a goal

Make a goal if you’re dreaming of a vacation, a new car or to pay off your student loans by X percent. Coming up with a goal – and writing it down – significantly increases the chance that you’ll actually achieve your objective. Create a specific timeframe for your goal, and the tangible steps that will need to be taken each month or week to stay on track.

Saving money as a travel therapist can be tough, but it is possible The tips above can help you get a better handle on your budget to achieve your financial goals and reduce stress.

3 tools travelers need when they hit the road

All-five-of-these-blogs-can-help-inspire-you-and-guide-you-in-your-career-_2351_40163623_0_14135992_500.jpgIf you’re hitting the road soon to travel to a new assignment, you should take a little time before you leave to gather some helpful tools for the journey. This way, you can travel smart and feel less stressed knowing you’re prepared!

Here are three tools you should have when you hit the road:

1. Maps & apps 

Today’s traveler should take advantage of both old-school navigational aids and new, innovative tools.

First, keep a physical road atlas in the car at all times – it comes in handy in places where GPS isn’t working or you have no internet connectivity. It doesn’t need to charge, either, making it a lifesaver when your devices run out of battery. 

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The importance of having a mentor as a new grad

bigstock-People-And-Lifestyle-Pretty-G-159775514.jpgBeginning your career is a big step, and it helps to have guiding figures show you the ropes. Though you’ve learned much in school about working as a therapist, so much lies ahead of you. Mentors are a valuable resource that can support you in your journey and provide real-life insight on what it’s like to work as a traveling therapist. 

Who can be a mentor?

Mentors are people who have extensive experience that relates to your current career position as well as a work ethic or accomplishments that you admire. They can be within your field, for example, therapists with years of experience that work in your clinic or outpatient center. They can also be therapy professionals with experience in an area of specialization that you are interested in. 

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