Are you a healthcare provider struggling with burnout. I know exactly how it feels because I’ve been there and I want to share with you a little bit about my story and what I did to recover. Because it is one of the most painful places to be as a healthcare provider. We went into Healthcare to help
people to serve people and when we are burned out that no longer becomes possible. This is not about what’s causing burnout, it’s not even about the symptoms of burnout. There’s so much information out there. In fact there’s so much of it sometimes we just get sick of hearing about it right? But, I want to share with you what I did, some things that helped me get over it because I was in such a dark place that I was ready to walk away completely from medicine. I felt like a total failure because I was in such a dark place with that burnout and right now I know so many of you that are in the healthcare field serving people are struggling with this and thinking about walking away from all of it. In fact sometimes it gets so bad we even think about giving up completely and please please do not do that please. Do not give up. Please reach out for help and I will be there to support you. But, I want to share some of the things that I’ve learned in my own journey through burnout where I got to a point almost where I felt like lost everything and ready to quit to where I am now: loving what I do. I can’t wait to come in every morning.
Tip 1 for Dealing with Burnout – Permission to Rest
So I could do so much on this but I’m going to just share five tips that have helped me and the first one has to do with rest. one of the biggest things about burnout is we just become completely exhausted of course the incredible hours that you guys are working are a big part of that but it’s a deeper kind of rest like a kind of fatigue that you just can’t recover from even when you do rest so I want you to think about how you can get more rest in your life and I mean yes sleep all things sleep prioritize that do everything you can to optimize your sleep. But also how can you just allow yourself to rest can you give yourself permission to when you sit down not feel like you have to be doing something productive or learning something or or taking care of something just for five minutes can you give yourself permission to just simply be for five minutes and learn how to take that rest time because that will start help rejuvenating you physically mentally and spiritually so rest is the first tip that I want to share with you that for me has been really helpful also hard to do because I’ve never been trained to do that but learning how to do that and incorporate it in small ways was really important for me.
Tip 2 for Dealing with Burnout – Micro-dosing Self Care
The next thing that I want to share is what I call Micro dosing micro dosing self-care now we’ve all heard about self-care we get sick of hearing about self-care we want somebody else to take care of us for goodness sakes but nobody else is going to but when you’re extremely taxed and stressed and stretched to the max you don’t have time to sit down and take a full lunch break right you don’t have time to go to the gym for an hour can we micro dose those self-care things instead of taking a full lunch can you simply go outside for five minutes and get a little sun on your face breathe some fresh air and then go back to work yes all the patients will still be there all the charts will still be there but get a little micro dose of self-care in there just take a minute to take a big glass of water and do a little bit of deep breathing and then go back to your rounds or go back to your charting take some micro dosing that’s the second tip.
Tip 3 for Dealing with Burnout – Boundaries
the third tip that I want to share with you has to do with boundaries and you might think what does boundaries have to do with burnout well it has a lot to do with burnout because as a healthcare provider we’re not always taught how to have good boundaries and boundaries is not about what anybody else does it’s about what I do it’s about where my responsibilities end and somebody else’s begin and a lot of times as a provider we take on feeling like we’re responsible for everyone else whether it’s our patients our family our kids our spouse whatever it is we feel responsible boundaries is about learning what is yours and what is not yours and letting go of what’s not yours sometimes that even means letting go of outcomes for our patients doing our job absolutely but letting go of the outcome and having those boundaries that allow us to maintain our integrity and our energy.
Tip 4 for Dealing with Burnout – Standards
So the next one that I want to share with you has to do with standards and a lot of times this is one I struggled with so much myself I have a very high standard in fact I would call myself a recovering perfectionist that created a lot of my burnout because of course I could never even meet my own standard let alone let anyone else help me so what if you simply look at your standards and say are they realistic or not and ask for help when you can the problem with me asking for help was I couldn’t let anyone else help me because they didn’t meet my standards so this might not apply to when you’re taking care of a patient but it might apply at home well my family was willing to help me but I couldn’t let them because they didn’t do it good enough I’d have to reload the dishwasher I’d have to re-wipe the counter down crazy stuff like that hopefully you’re not as bad as me but those things created more stress in my life and contributed to my burnout so that’s a big one.
Tip 5 for Dealing with Burnout – Alignment
The last one that I’m going to share with you is alignment a huge thing for me to recover from my burnout situation and allow me to find the joy of medicine again was becoming getting in alignment with myself and what I mean by that is making sure that what I was doing and saying was in alignment with what I was thinking feeling and believing and unfortunately in medicine these days there’s often a disconnect or a misalignment between what we’re doing and and saying and how we really believe and feel and think inside our own beliefs and values I had to bring those in alignment now for me that meant I had to make some pretty big changes in how I was practicing but it may not mean that for you and a lot of people think well the only hope for Burnout is just to quit medicine no we need you more than ever we need all of us more than ever people are hurting people are struggling we need to figure out a way to stay in medicine to re-light that fire inside to get out of this dark place of burnout and for me a real key was getting back in alignment
Now, there’s so many more things that I’ve learned in my recovery and it was not an overnight process it’s been a long process but I would love to share more with you I would love to support you in any way better tell me what you’re going through I would love to support you in a personal way and if there is something that you feel you’d like to share here we’d love to see those comments and I would love to do more I would love to know would you be interested in some kind of a course would you be interested in a weekend retreat would you be interested in a group if you’re a health care provider struggling know this you are needed more now than ever. You are loved and you are enough right now exactly the way you are and there is hope and recovery from burnout and I hope the tips I shared with you today are helpful and if I can be of service in any other way please reach out to me personally or share your comments share your story because when we know we’re not alone we start to feel hope again and that’s the beginning flicker of recovery from burnout and reigniting your flame You are not alone you are loved and you are worth it.