I Didn’t Get My Sabbatical But I Found More Clarity
In this previous post I mentioned that I wanted to take a break from medicine in order to prevent myself from burning out. It has now been 3 weeks since I wrote that post and I have come to terms with a few things I’d like to mention.
Work Wasn’t The Problem
I was under the impression that my work was the problem and that I needed to stop practicing medicine for a while in order to recover mentally. I would somewhat dread going into work, each shift seemed to drag on, I wasn’t challenged by patient care and every pain med junky or antibiotics seeker would drain all my energy.
Saved By Listening To A Book On Audible
I was listening to an audio book and realized something really important. I must first come to terms with my current situation before fleeing it. I am not trying to say that I instantly transformed my thinking and everything was just dandy. But I was biking into work and was listening to this one particular excerpt about ‘accepting the circumstance without judging it’. I then decided that from then on I would just accept the things that drive me crazy about my job without judging them, basically being a silent observer of those things on the inside.
There Is A Difference Between Internal Acceptance And External Change
What’s important to mention here and what I understood from this excerpt is that I could still make changes externally to my situation but I had to first accept it. Otherwise I think I would be just running away from a situation and would eventually encounter another similar situation that I would have to run away from yet again.
I now go to work and I feel that it’s easier. The situations that arise are much more acceptable and I have stopped trying to change them. This has drastically decreased my anxiety level. I feel a bit more clear-headed. I would like to perhaps cut back my hours some to get the extra ‘space’ that I need but I no longer feel the need to have 3-6 months off to ‘recover’.
Have you encountered such a situation and if so, how did you deal with it?
What do you do to keep yourself from burning out?