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How Radiologists Can Find Balance and Avoid Burnout


VIDEO: Peter Moskowitz, MD, of the Center for Professional and Personal Renewal, offers radiologists suggestions for finding balance and avoiding burnout.


How can radiologists protect themselves from burnout? 

Peter Moskowitz, MD, executive director for the Center for Professional and Personal Renewal and a diagnostic radiologist at Stanford University offered a few suggestions for bringing balance to a stressful life. He directed a workshop at RSNA last fall focused on career renewal for radiologists.

“In this day and age we have learned the rewards are no longer in proportion to effort,” Moskowitz said in an interview. “Many of us feel we are working harder and harder for less and less, and that’s stressful.”

Moskowitz identified six domains in a radiologist’s life that need attention, and provided a few suggestions for each area:

1. Physical - Radiologists should follow a personal wellness program directed by a physician that includes physical activity at least five days a week. And don’t neglect that annual physical exam.

2. Emotional - Spend some time each day meditating or sitting in silence, which will bring suprising benefits for emotional balance.

3. Spiritual - Consider enlisting the help of a spiritual advisor who can guide you, either a religious figure or a mentor. Spend time each week in a spiritual activity (not necessarily religious) that brings you fulfillment.

4. Relationships - Spend some time considering how well you are devoting attention to the relationships in your life. Are you really listening effectively to the people in your life?

5. Community - Surround yourself with people who share your interests and values.

6. Work and career - Challenge yourself at work to do something new or volunteer for a new activity or service. This will help make work more exciting. Finally, take a close look at your financial vision for you and your family. Does this align with your work goals?

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