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Table of Contents
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 35-36

Enhancement of physician wellbeing

Department of Medicine, Pramukhswami Medical College, Karamsad, Gujarat, India

Date of Web Publication26-Feb-2019

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Bhalendu S Vaishnav
Department of Medicine, Pramukhswami Medical College, Karamsad, Gujarat
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JIHS.JIHS_4_19

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How to cite this article:
Vaishnav BS. Enhancement of physician wellbeing. J Integr Health Sci 2018;6:35-6

How to cite this URL:
Vaishnav BS. Enhancement of physician wellbeing. J Integr Health Sci [serial online] 2018 [cited 2021 Dec 3];6:35-6. Available from: https://www.jihs.in/text.asp?2018/6/2/35/252879

Physicians have a deep intrinsic desire to provide optimal care for their patients. Excessive time pressures and prolonged multitasking requirements are associated with burnout, which is reaching epidemic proportions. Physicians experiencing burnout, according to the medical literature, exhibit a wide array of signs, symptoms, and related conditions, including fatigue, loss of empathy, detachment, depression, and suicidal ideation. The three principal components of burnout are widely described in the medical literature as emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and diminished feelings of personal accomplishment.[1] Many of these symptoms are also said to be linked to low levels of career satisfaction.

Because physicians play an integral role in the health-care system, the effects of physician burnout are not limited to the physicians experiencing it. Rather, physician burnout potentially impacts the entire health-care system. There has been growing interest in the relationship between health-care professional wellbeing and quality of patient care. A significant association between burnout and medical errors, patients' satisfaction/quality of care, communication skills, and negative expected outcomes of communication have been reported.

A balanced approach to physician wellbeing, therefore, is the need of the day. Personal self-resilience, the culture of wellness and enhancement of efficiency of practice are three important means to promote wellbeing and minimize burnout.[1] Engaging in mindfulness-based stress reduction, optimal nutrition, exercise, and sleep not are of paramount importance.

Wellbeing – Indian and Western Perspectives: The term wellbeing carries multidimensional and multilevel connotations. In the parlance of positive psychology, it denotes an intangible and unifying concept of hedonic and eudemonic dimensions; the former pertains to emotional dimensions of individual's positive life experiencing, the presence of positive and absence of negative emotions, life satisfaction and social involvement; the hedonic wellbeing pertains to emotional dimensions of individual's positive life experiencing, the presence of positive and absence of negative emotions, life satisfaction and social involvement. Eudemonic wellbeing pertains to harmony among individual's goals, values, and life experiences and are associated with individuals' personal development. In the parlance of ancient Indian psychology, wellbeing refers to awareness and manifestation of a transcendental state of awareness, which human beings are capable of accessing. Yoga is the science, the process, the effort, and action by which man attempts to pass out of the limits of his ordinary mental consciousness into greater spiritual consciousness, from the phenomenal to the real Man.[2]

Yoga nidra is one of the earliest Indian techniques which allows one to develop an experiential state of simultaneous relaxation and detachment, resulting in inner awareness; leading oneself to relax completely and consciously.[3] It is noninvasive, safe, as well as cost-effective. Beneficial effects of yoga nidra have been documented in clinical and educational cohorts. Yoga nidra produces alpha dominance in both hemispheres more consistently and for more duration as compared to other relaxation practices.

A typical session of yoga nidra would be of anywhere between 20 and 60 min duration. Each session comprises a special type of guided meditation performed in a relaxed state in the supine position of “shavasana,” wherein participants follows spoken instructions of the instructor to undergo sequential stages of resolve, rotation of consciousness, breath awareness, and visualization. Elaboration of deeper and esoteric significance of effects of yoga nidra provided in standard ancient scriptures is beyond the scope of this brief note. Briefly, the initial stage of Shavasana helps in physical and mental relaxation. Stage of resolve enhances self-determination. Rotation of consciousness helps in bringing about a state of simultaneous relaxation and awareness, thereby helping in producing a witness state of consciousness. This is an ideal state of mind to plant a thought or willed resolution in oneself. In its totality, the process facilitates the integration of learning that goes from implicit to explicit knowledge (bottom-up knowledge) with learning that goes from explicit to implicit knowledge (top-down knowledge) for improved of self-regulation and self-modulation resulting in an improvement in cognitive, emotional, and behavioral wellbeing. Thus, the practice of yoganidra has been reported to bring about “balance in the being and release of stress on all planes of one's being”.[4] Conceptual difference and practical distinction between yoga nidra and other methods of guided relaxation have been suggested.[5] From of modern psychology perspectives, sustained positive emotion, recovery from negative emotion, empathy, altruism, mindfulness, and emotion captured attention are novel constituents of wellbeing. From the perspective of ancient descriptions of yoga, the four powers and objects of yoga are purity, liberty, beatitude, and perfection, which too can be cultivated and attained through methodical self-development, which ultimately foster attainment of the highest level of wellbeing.[6]

  References Top

Maslach C, Jackson SE. The measurement of experienced burnout. J Organ Behav 1981;2:99-113.  Back to cited text no. 1
Bohman B, Dyrbye L, Sinsky C, Linzer M, Olson K, Babbott S, et al. Physician well-being: The reciprocity of practice efficiency, culture of wellness, and personal resilience. NEJM Catal 2017. Available from: https://catalyst.nejm.org/physician-well-being-efficiency-wellness-resilience/. [Last assessed on 2019 Feb 12].  Back to cited text no. 2
Satyananda SS. Yoga Nidra. India: Bihar Yoga Bharati Yoga Publication Trust; 2006. p. 1.  Back to cited text no. 3
Marti A, Sala J. Awareness Through Body. Auroville: Sri Aurobindo International Institute of Educational Research; 2006. p. 116.  Back to cited text no. 4
Parker S, Bharati SV, Fernandez M. Defining yoga-nidra: Traditional accounts, physiological research, and future directions. Int J Yoga Therap 2013;23:11-6.   Back to cited text no. 5
Aurobindo S. Essays Divine and Human, The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo. Sri Aurobindo Ashram Publication Department; Pondicherry. 1997;12:93.  Back to cited text no. 6


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