Articles and Resources
From Dr. romie

Brain and Mental Health
Dr. Romie Mushtaq

Pause: Stop the Stress-Success Cycle

Are you happy and fulfilled with your career and life at this moment?  You have worked hard to acquire titles, possessions, and achieve goals on your life checklist.  Perhaps something feels as if it is missing from your life, so you reassess or reassign another goal to cross over to the path of contentment.  

I too spent my years checking off the lists to make sure that I became a doctor, got married (and then divorced) in style, and collected designer high heeled shoes.

There was a signature sound of my designer high heels that echoed in the hospital corridors where no stilettos had ever roamed before.  The click-clack of my heels was the signal to my physician colleagues, nurses, and patients that I had arrived.  Female brain doctor, epilepsy specialist, and never-to-recover chocolate addict. The truth of the matter was that I was overwhelmed and sleep-deprived trying to keep up with 80-90 hour work weeks.  Despite professional success, I felt all alone.  My single prayer every morning was that no one would discover my shame and loneliness that was I hiding underneath a starched white lab coat.

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Brain and Mental Health
Dr. Romie Mushtaq

Mindful Medicine to Transform Physician Burnout

FEELING ALONE IN A VALLEY OF BURNOUT

Twelve years ago, I didn’t know that the symptoms I was suffering had a diagnosis of physician burnout.  As a newly appointed faculty member in neurology at that time, no media headlines or studies were in existence to give my symptoms a name.  Instead, I hoped that no one would find out the shame and struggles I was hiding underneath my starched white lab coat.

How do you know if you or a colleague is suffering from burnout?  I always ask physician groups to look for the following:  a feeling that the lights are on and no one is home.  You may be going through the motions, struggling to keep up, and feeling disconnected from your life emotionally.

I just internalized the symptoms of emotional exhaustion and a low sense of personal accomplishment. I thought my problem was that I was a physician failure. I pushed myself to exceed RVU (relative value unit) expectations in the increasingly profit-driven world of medicine. I could never find the time in my 80- to 100-hour work week to catch up on research, medical records, or tend to my personal health.  

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Brain and Mental Health
Dr. Romie Mushtaq

Busy Brain Meditation: 5 Simple Steps to Start a Home Meditation Practice

DO YOU HAVE A BUSY BRAIN?

So let’s start with what I call the ‘busy brain.’  When we are in the busy brain state, we can find ourselves overthinking, and in the situation of, “I can’t shut my thoughts off at night.”

I would like to introduce you to my simple mindful prescription that I have been teaching to corporate clients all over the United States. This practice is based on brain science, psychology, and mindfulness-based stress reduction techniques. I include a simple five-step meditation practice that anyone can start at home. The goal of this practice is to reduce stress levels, improve sleep, and feel more focused during your work day.

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Brain and Mental Health
Dr. Romie Mushtaq

Beat the Brain Marathon: Natural Ways to Shut Down Racing Thoughts

ARE YOUR THOUGHTS RUNNING A MARATHON RACE IN YOUR BRAIN AS YOU TRY TO FALL ASLEEP? 

We’ve all been there from time to time, right? If we’ve had a really busy day at work or an emotionally charged day, we just can’t shut off our thoughts before bedtime. That’s a normal response. However, if this is happening frequently and you’re wondering, “What do I do now? Am I driving myself insane?” Let it be known, help is on the way. My goal today is to help you connect to calm and fall asleep.

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