Top 5 Fridays! 5 Ways to Prevent Professional Burnout | Modern Manual Therapy Blog - Manual Therapy, Videos, Neurodynamics, Podcasts, Research Reviews

Top 5 Fridays! 5 Ways to Prevent Professional Burnout

A reader who works with a chronic pain, military population recently asked if I had any tips to prevent burnout. Here are some of mine and also some I gathered from Social Media.

5 Ways to Prevent Professional Burnout

1) Take Different Con Ed Courses
  • Most of us gravitate toward con-ed courses we are familiar with, have a certain reputation, etc
  • A good way to prevent burnout is to expose yourself to a good seminar on a topic that is novel and challenging
  • To most I would recommend Explain Pain or Therapeutic Neuroscience Education
  • Getting new ways to interact with patients, especially a chronic pain caseload that does not respond rapidly helps
    • Changing your mindset as to how you view these patients prevents the "I feel powerless to help"

2) Hangout and interact with like minded professionals
  • join a group like PT: Practice, Education, and Networking on facebook started by my buddy Rick Daigle of Medical Minds in Motion
  • participate in a forum like Manual Therapists, ask questions and chime in on other people's posts
  • try to start a local Clinician's group where you can practice techniques, assessments and discuss cases semi regularly
  • avoid arguing on the internet or with colleagues who are stuck in a model that disagrees with your practice (to a point)

3) Consider taking part time cases in a different setting
  • if you're in outpatient, try home care
  • even 2 different cases in a different setting once a week really helps prevent burnout
  • prior to all my different endeavors, I worked full time in a private clinic (as a manager), did Clinical Peer Review, and taught at 3 different PT schools, needless to say, I did not get bored!

4) Don't take your work home with you
  • obsessing over a case you think you could have done better often prevents you from relaxing at home
  • if you need help, ask online in a facebook group, twitter, or a forum, but otherwise enjoy your time away from work
  • just like I tell my chronic pain patients, make sure you take time to listen to your favorite music, have a glass of wine, or watch your favorite movie
5) Strive to change and adapt regularly
  • part of stagnation or burnout is a lack of change, we all need variability
  • if you have not changed the way you assess, treat, or the framework at which you make your clinical decisions at least every 2-3 years, it is time for you to rethink things!
  • finding a mentor, whether it's online or in person really helps with this as you watch them in their patient interactions

Here are a few more suggestions from the facebook group I posted about earlier.

  • Kyle CoffeyMax Selisch and 2 others like this.
  • Adam Wolf Don't just work. Study different stuff outside of your current practice.
    5 hrs · Unlike · 6
  • JL Thorp I'm not at the point of burnout but if you continue to learn new things and read research to always improve your services I feel that would help. As a chiro I have shadowed and interned with docs that did the same thing over and over and over... I woul...See More
    5 hrs · Like
  • Erson Religioso III Those are similar points I am covering in my blog, especially about shadowing others who are passionate in their work, as well as learn from others (DCs, strength coaches, MTs, ATCs, etc)
    5 hrs · Like · 2
  • Ashley Witson Find an environment you love to work in, one that continues to allow you to grow instead of fade into the background!
    4 hrs · Like · 1
  • Rick Daigle I've dealt with professional burnout. It's all about finding the work life fun etc balance. Very hard to do but very important to find
    4 hrs · Unlike · 8
  • Shin-Yiing Yeung I presented at this conference at Duke last year. I highly recommend it!
    Before we care about quality, we have to care about...
    4 hrs · Edited · Like
  • Ricky Singh FedEx days. Devote a full day to doing something not related to your job. It's a popular way companies use to deliver innovation overnight. Disconnect yourself from your normal day to day and focus a period of time on something of interest. Ideally you come back to work with a new interesting idea or concept you can implement at work.
    4 hrs · Like · 3
  • Max Selisch Many years ago I experienced burn-out to the point in which my practice nearly went under. One of the first strategies I used was to wear a tie to work for a while. It forced me to adopt a more professional way of behaving instead of the rather cynic...See More
    4 hrs · Unlike · 3
  • Edwin M. Mayo PT Dont carry your credentials 24/7 do something like a hobby that you can enjoy once you clock out of work.
    4 hrs · Like · 2
  • Perry Nickelston Find some nature. Spend some time there away from all the craziness. Lose your phone the entire time. Nature is primal. Relish the silence. And lastly, don't stress over the BS. The secret? knowing it's all BS.
    4 hrs · Unlike · 8
  • Eric Nelson Find your passion. I was there and yet was always looking for some way to do things better. I found it and it opened up a whole new world of possibilities! Now I can't get enough!
    4 hrs · Unlike · 4
  • Dan Schumann You could read an inspirational blog...
    3 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Max Selisch Perry Nickelston and Erson Religioso favorite quote....
    3 hrs · Unlike · 6
  • Dan Schumann My biggest thing was to find someone, or something, that didn't tell me how to do anything, but taught me how to think so I could feel and create something original to me. I've been lucky enough to have access to some very skilled practitioners, many o...See More
    3 hrs · Edited · Like · 1
  • Paula Savol This couldn't have come at a better time. I'm ready to go push groceries down the conveyor belt. 
    3 hrs · Like · 2
  • Edwin M. Mayo PT Every clinician is built differently that is the beauty we have with our practice you can tailor your practice to what you want, not striclty regimented and if you want to acquire another form of skill set or specialize in another type of intervention then its doable. Cant compare yourself to other therapist who have longevity in the PT realm all the time it will lead to frustration and burn out
    2 hrs · Like · 1
  • Erson Religioso III Dan, as you are most likely figuring out, no one can have the same results as another person, unless they are that person. It's all about the patient interaction and not the tools. The tools are an adjunct to clinical reasoning and patient interaction. That's why I teach patterns, and not 100s of techniques.
    2 hrs · Like · 2
  • Erson Religioso III Thanks everyone for your comments, I will cut and paste this into the end of my blog post tomorrow! Great advice!
    2 hrs · Like · 1
  • Mike Kohm Find the creativity/inspiration in your work, hobbies, spiritual pursuits, family etc. As health practitioners we give of ourselves to a large extent. So recharging is paramount. Rediscovered fly fishing this summer, doesn't matter if I am good at it. A bad day fishing is better than a good day at work.
    2 hrs · Unlike · 6
  • Jamie Lowy A good bartender helps.
    2 hrs · Unlike · 2
  • Dan Schumann Mike Kohm brings up another good point...don't take responsibility off the patients shoulders and onto yours. It's too much responsibility and it doesn't help either party. We need to empower/facilitate others rather than heal, cure, and fix.
    2 hrs · Edited · Like · 3
  • Kyle Balzer Play guitar, go to concerts/events, socialize about non-PT things, vacation

What about you? How do you prevent professional burnout?

Keeping it Eclectic....

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