It used to be a problem hidden in the shadows of the deepest corners of hospitals, clinics and physicians’ minds.
Few ever spoke about it, even though nearly everyone knew it existed.
But that all changed in December 2015 when the Mayo Clinic released a study that shined a light so bright directly into the eyes of the issue that the healthcare industry finally had to admit that physician burnout was an insidious and serious problem that could no longer be ignored.
The mainstream and industry media covered the story by sharing personal stories of physician burnout that were as gut-wrenching as they were concerning. Tips and tricks for avoiding burnout became ubiquitous on the internet and at professional conferences. Government agencies addressed the issue.
Then the tech industry got involved.
As with most things in modern life, the big brains in Silicon Valley brought fresh perspectives to a pervasive problem–and delivered solutions that are as practical as they are wise.
And yes, the solutions came in the form of apps.
Some of the best apps for physicians facing burnout aim to lower stress. Others try to help you achieve better work-life balance. A few exist to focus your attention on your practice. Some are just silly fun.
All can be effective if you give them a chance.
Here’s a look at the three best apps for physicians who want to avoid burnout:
By now, most physicians have heard about meditation as medicine, and most probably agree that it can play an important role in helping relieve stress.
But accepting meditation’s efficacy and finding the time to meditate are two entirely different things.
That’s why Insight Timer exists.
With the swipe of your smartphone, the app provides you with instant access to guided meditation sessions of any length. It allows you to connect with other physicians from around the world who appreciate the power of meditation. And Insight Timer lets you write record notes after every session so the thoughts and ideas that come from the clarity that meditation delivers will never be forgotten.
Work-life balance isn’t something that is easily achieved, especially for physicians who are constantly pulled in different directions all day long.
In the tug-of-war between what must be done and what you want to be done, the mandatory almost always overpowers the optional.
But Lift is an app that helps you identify and make time for those life activities which you would like to do but often get pushed aside to make room for work–things such as exercising, yoga, writing, meditating, spending time with your family and spending time alone.
You enter the activities and your schedule, Lift provides you with gentle reminders and positive reinforcement to encourage you to carve out time for yourself. It also tracks your progress, so you’ll always be able to see how balanced your life truly is.
If you are struggling with burnout, an app created by people who run a website called “The Happy MD” might seem like salt in the wound.
But take a little time to explore the Burnout Proof mobile app and you’re likely to find something useful.
It includes more than a dozen videos, tons of tips, plenty of proven tools and guided audio designed to help you relax, focus and find that work-life balance that is often hiding somewhere in the shadows of your mind.
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