How Do I Reignite My Passion For The Medical Field?

Brian Murphy

Even before COVID-19 began to wreak havoc on clinical teams throughout the United States, burnout was still a major issue within the medical space. There are many articles that have already been written about burnout as it relates to both doctors and nurses while it is no doubt a pervasive issue without remedy. However, hospitals are still hard at work day-in and day-out as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues unabated in many areas of the country with the third quarter of 2020 rapidly approaching.

In this equally chaotic and stressful environment, how can we reduce burnout and reignite our passion for such a career path? Is it even possible to find our way back to why we entered the medical field in the first place?

What Specific Steps Should I Take To Reignite My Passion?

It is no secret that there is so much in medicine that we can’t change. We can’t fix declining reimbursement and we certainly can’t slow the pace of increasing regulation. Our EHRs are still problematic and the paperwork isn’t improving – just to name a few.

Even so, for most clinicians, it only takes winning one medical battle or a heartfelt thank you from a patient to provide a glimpse back into what originally sparked your interest in this field. However, the trick is to recognize that spark when it flashes before your eyes en route to holding onto it and nurturing it into a true flame.

Although that may be easier said than done at times, you can start by recognizing what parts of this job do continue to satisfy you. Instead of focusing on solely the negatives, which often seems like a much simpler path, try to find at least some reward in the work you are performing each and every day. Regardless of the size of the reward for a given day, even taking 10 minutes at the end of the day as you drive home to reflect on what made you feel good may seem like an exercise that’s beneath you at this point in your career. But if you follow this exercise, you will start to find your way back away from the edge.

In addition to figuring out what brings you satisfaction, consider what really matters. Is it the money? Is it the patients? Do you like being your own boss? What got you here to begin with? Sitting at your desk a few days a week to contemplate these basic issues is a critical first step toward remembering why you took this job. Jotting down some introspective notes is a very good exercise that will help you reflect back on your life when you started the profession to now. Need some suggestions to help get you started?

  • Why did I choose medicine?
  • What part of the job makes me happy?
  • What makes me feel a sense of reward?
  • What matters right now?
  • What can I give up?

Now, consider how you can align your values and your practice with what’s important to you. This exercise is vital because it’s much easier to focus on what you don’t like or what doesn’t make you happy. Instead, figure out if there is anything that you do every day that keeps you motivated and thriving, then see if you can reproduce whatever that might be.

While this may seem like a simplistic exercise, far too often we are busy running to the next task or putting out the next fire instead of dealing with the crisis right in front of us and facing it head-on. Burnout is almost always the end result of this unnecessary yet seemingly inevitable process. It doesn’t have to be that way, though, as you can try to find your way back to the things that mattered to you when you started the profession. The odds are that those things may still matter quite a bit today – you just need to find them again.

How To Partner With Healthcare Staffing Experts

MedSource Consultants is a trusted partner of medical professionals seeking a way to alleviate burnout by taking another career path. Consider placing a confidential call with our team to discuss your options. Sometimes finding happiness is just as easy as finding a new job!