Cures For Burnout

Burnout seems to be growing among all healthcare providers, with physicians from every specialty experiencing it. I don’t know if burnout is on the rise, or we are better at detecting it and more open about discussing it. Perhaps the younger generations haven’t bought into the myth of the infallible physician and are now speaking up. In comparison, the older generations just accepted the pressure and abuse as part of the career. Burnout isn’t something that occurs overnight. Instead, it is insidious and quietly progressive, like hypertension or diabetes.

 Many have suggested having hobbies and interests outside of medicine helps reduce burnout. One of my passions is flying, and I have noticed a few lessons that pertain to dealing with physician burnout. During my training as a pilot, I learned how to recover from unusual attitudes in the airplane. These would be either a nose-high or nose-low attitude, both of which can end very badly for you if action...

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You Can’t Lead When You’re Burned Out

Trying to lead while you are experiencing burn out is like pouring gas on the flames. You will not only hurt yourself but those you lead and your organization. We are social creatures who pick up on social cues. If you’re tired, your team will pick up on your stress and fatigue. It will affect their morale, performance, and quality. As a leader, you have a duty to lead not only others but yourself. Burnout is a slow process, but its symptoms are visible is you know what to look for.

Symptoms of Burnout

If you are feeling tired, exhausted, and have no desire to show up and treat patients, run through the following symptom checker. These symptoms by themselves are not indicative of burnout, but as they pile on, the constellation of burnout begins to reveal itself.

  • You’re just going through the motions. If you haven’t any real enjoyment and just show up, you’re likely just going through the motions of patient care. If you quickly forget your patient’s...
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