Time is fixed and we can’t get more of it. Our 24 hour day is a given framework, and fitting what we want to accomplish into that framework can be a challenge sometimes. Ok, most of the time. Right. All of the time.
This relentless time management challenge coupled with a difficult work schedule can lead doctors toward a feeling of mounting burnout. But thankfully, burnout can be prevented, and burnout can be cured. Every individual’s prevention and cure is unique to them, and involves gaining a new perspective on their own situation. What can be changed? What can be improved?
There are many ways a specialized Physician Coach can empower you to make your desired changes, leading you from baseline to good to better by your own measurements. Working with your Coach can be motivating, helping you to hold yourself accountable to make the changes you desire. Coaching can help physicians overcome job dissatisfaction, navigate career choices, negotiate contracts successfully, improve relationships, build self confidence, and even create a personalized budget and financial plan to pay off debt, stop overspending, gain a new nonclinical skill set to use as a side job (aka side hustle).
STATS ON PHYSICIAN BURNOUT
According to Medscape’s online survey of doctors*, with more than 15,000 doctors responding to their survey, overall 42% of physicians self report burnout. Urologists reported the highest rates of burnout, at 54%. Multiple specialties report burnout rates between 40-50%, including family medicine, internal medicine, critical care, ob-gyn, radiology, cardiology, emergency medicine, neurology, nephrology, endocrinology, rheumatology, physical medicine and rehab, pediatrics, anesthesiology, and rheumatology. Even the specialties reporting the “lowest” rates of burnout have approximately 1 in 3 physicians who report burnout. Women physicians report more burnout than their male colleagues, with 48% of female physicians reporting burnout compared to 37% of male physicians. Among different age groups, Generation X physicians report more burnout (48%) than Millennials (38%) or Boomers (39%). Did you participate in this survey? Where do you stand relative to your peers?
Physician burnout was a national epidemic in the US prior to the COVID pandemic. Now add the stresses of caring for patients, in some cases without adequate PPE, in the face of the pandemic. Many of us have fears of bringing the illness home to vulnerable family members. Stress in the medical profession is now at epic levels. If stress is affecting your life, we hope you will take action to improve the things in your control. Doing this alone is always an option, though embarking on this journey with the help of a trusted Physician Coach can lead to desired results more quickly.
Taking proactive steps to prevent or deal with burnout as a healthcare worker is paramount to keeping your livelihood and improving your life. The solution lies in figuring out what you can control, creating a plan, and taking proactive steps to follow your plan. With an excellent experienced physician coach who empowers you to think positively and create a plan that produces results, your success can come sooner. Your coach walks with you as a trusted friend while you take actionable steps toward achieving your goals.
How many more minutes of your life are you willing to spend wishing for things to get better? We invite you to take an actionable step toward your solutions today. Our Physician Coaches can help.
*Medscape National Physician Burnout & Suicide Report 2020: The Generational Divide