Dr. Talreja, or Dr. T as she prefers, is an accomplished owner and physician at The Allergy Group in Boise. Her drive, dedication, and practical application as an allergy specialist has led to a successful career as an M.D. and mother. Dr. T answers some fun questions about how she has been able to balance her work and home life as well as what led her to being a successful doctor.
So, first, before we dive into these questions; can you tell us a little bit about The Allergy Group and you do?
We are an allergy, asthma, sinus, and immunology practice and specialists. We make patients' lives better by helping them breathe better and feel better. We consist of three physicians and one physician assistant.
How long have you worked for The Allergy Group?
I started here in 2014. I went to school for medicine for 16 years prior.
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Did you always aspire to be a doctor? What was your motivation to become a physician?
Good question! You know the only memory I have of aspiring to be a doctor as a child was in high school. My dad once told me he felt being a physician was the most noble profession you could do and I thought, “my dad would be so happy”.
From then on, I just took to it. I’ve always been a very tunnel vision person, I look at a goal and I just go for it.
How did you pick your specialty?
Choosing allergy was an easy choice, after my residency in internal medicine, I felt I was missing seeing children. I thought, “What would be a field that would combine children to elderly, where I would be able to help them in their daily life, and make their life better? '' I feel allergy and immunology really combines that.
As a young adult first breaking into your career, what fears did you experience and what did you do to combat those worries?
I am originally from India, I moved here at 23 years old. A single girl from India, figuring out life –– just getting a license, it was a big deal. There were a lot of fears to anchor my career as a doctor in the U.S. It was always positive, people were always helpful. I don’t think if this country didn’t have the perception they do, I wouldn't have done so well in my career. People were helpful at so many points in my life. Learning the culture and accepting how different it was, helped push through those fears.
What would you say was the most important step you had to take to get to the position you're in now?
Making hard decisions. I think the biggest hurdle is you realizing the position you are in involves making hard decisions that can have big consequences –– like giving feedback, results, etc. Learning compassion and how to make those hard decisions is something that I still learn more about everyday.
What's your next big goal? Where would you like to see yourself in the next coming years?
I want to get my MBA. During the pandemic I thought things would slow down a bit, but they didn’t. However, when my daughter enrolls in kindergarten I plan to go back.
Do you have any advice on balancing work and non-work life? How do you keep those things separate? How do you stay sane in both realms?
There are hard, tough days. Sometimes it’s hard not to bring stress from work to home, but the unconditional love a child provides kind of makes you feel like you have to come out of it. I have a four year old daughter, and she’s precious. She is an only child so everytime I look at her I think, “this day will not come again”.
I remind myself, “The days are long but the years are short.”
Who is another Woman in Business (WIB) that you look up to?
St. Alphonsus CEO, Odette Bolano, she’s a good friend. Over the last couple of years, we have connected and I have been able to ask her questions about how she has gotten to such an executive level. She has been someone I have really looked up to in the last couple of years.
Carol Lugar is another friend who is the Executive Officer for Idaho Gastroenterology Associates. She’s a very determined person I look up to and ask questions.
And bringing it back to where we began. If you had to write a letter to your 18-year-old self, what would you tell her?
Be patient, the dots will connect at the end –– hang in there. These dots that don’t make sense, they create a road that eventually leads you to where you are going. And you know, seven years from now, I'm sure I will do the same thing, look back and connect more dots.