I often have Doctors say “It’s nice to talk about myself”. I see that as a healthy and productive use of time.

What can be really difficult about this though, is not the desire, but making the time.

Making time for coaching can seem like a huge and daunting commitment. It can also feel self- indulgent and a bit of a luxury which can be challenging for people that have been trained and educated to put others first.

What I see happening when working with Doctors is the realisation that by investing in yourself, you can reinvest back into the healthcare environment. Rather than being a victim of the system, swept along by the current and overwhelming volume of work, people can become more a-tunned to how they can cope with improved resilience and a greater sense of control.

The quote below struck me when I read it recently. All the Doctors I coach have goals and aspirations associated with the non-clinical parts of their work. They typically want to focus on task/time management, leading a new project, developing their skills with colleagues/group dynamics and improving their personal performance. Talking with friends, colleagues and family members can help. But only with a skilled coach can you really focus your thinking, outcomes and plan a course of action.

Studies comparing superb leaders with mediocre ones have found that the competences that distinguish the best from the worst in human services have little or nothing to do with medical knowledge or technical skill, and everything to do with social and emotional intelligence. Of course medical knowledge matters for health care leaders – but it’s a given, a threshold competence that every health professional must have. What distinguishes leaders in medicine gets far beyond that knowledge, into interpersonal skills like empathy, conflict resolution and people development.”

Daniel Goleman – Social Intelligence, 2007.

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Email me on alexishutson@yahoo.com

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