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Stimulus | Helping Doctors overcome burnout, excel in leadership, and unlock their most fulfilling careers

Nov 2, 2020


When things are going well, you may not notice how your mind is working. But sometimes, you are overtaken by events and it can feel like the gears are grinding in the worst possible way in both life and work.  In this episode, physician coach Gail Gazelle, MD,  walks us through the mental processes that happen in those gear grinding moments and how to not only work through them, but also come out the other side with resilience and a better understanding of ourselves.

Guest Bio: Gail Gazelle, MD, MCC is a former hospice physician, part-time Harvard Medical School Assistant Professor, and Master Certified Coach for physicians. One of the leading pioneers in physician coaching, Dr. Gazelle has coached over 500 physicians and physician leaders on leadership development, mindfulness, emotional intelligence, resilience, and moving from burnout to balance. She is the author of Everyday Resilience. A Practical Guide to Build Inner Strength and Weather Life’s Challenges, (Free chapter here). You can contact Gail through her website and, if so inclined, schedule a complimentary coaching consultation.

Today’s episode is sponsored by Wild Health.  Wild Health provides personalized medicine that takes into account DNA, biometrics, microbiome, and lifestyle factors to come up with the perfect diet, supplements, and lifestyle to optimize health and maximize healthspan. They also have a fellowship program to teach physicians, providers, and health coaches how to practice this new paradigm of medicine. Use the code "Stimulus” for  10% off any Wild Health care plan.

We discuss:

  • The fundamentals of mindfulness [02:55];
  • What burnout looked like for Dr. Gazelle before she embarked on a new career path as a physician coach [05:45];
  • The impact COVID-19 has had on her conversations with physician clients [07:15];
  • The response of front-line providers when referred to as a “hero” [10:10];
  • What it’s been like for physicians, trained to be the captain of the ship, when put in the position of managing COVID patients with little guidance from science [12:40];
  • How Gazelle helps physicians manage uncertainty and weather difficulty [17:30];
  • Tips for ensuring that the “daily dose of goodness” becomes a defined habit [21:30];
  • How accepting what is/isn’t in your control can help mitigate stress, frustration, and anger [29:50];
  • Different ways of handling a bad leader [33:00];
  • The importance of regulating your emotional temperature [38:00];
  • The problem with either/or thinking [42:00];
  • The STOP tool for applying mindfulness practice in the heat of an intense moment [45:50];
  • Anticipatory dread and catastrophic thinking in medicine [49:40];
  • The crossroads of imposter syndrome and perfectionism which makes for a cycle of perceived inadequacy [55:30];
  • An affirmation Gazelle created for her clients who struggle with perfectionism:  “I am good. I do my best. I cannot control all the rest.” [59:40];
  • And more.


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