Are you highly independent? Headstrong? Yet you feel helpless to change your life circumstances?
This is a common issue with physicians. It all starts back in medical school. You figure out very quickly that you don’t know enough. This is reinforced by your instructors. You are told how hard it is to learn what you need to learn, how difficult the testing will be. You are told what medicine looks like. What you can do and what you can’t do. And you begin to internalize the message that you are helpless to change the system—helpless to have power over your own life.
Abuse begets abuse. It’s easy to take on the persona of those who have bullied and abused you just to survive! It’s not your fault.
Defensiveness reigns. After being challenged at every turn, your self-confidence is shot. You feel like an imposter.
You fear making a mistake. You must be perfect or at least appear perfect. Perfectionism can be mistaken for arrogance.
Do you have trouble upholding your values at work, at home, within the world—and being true to yourself?
You’ve been perfectly groomed to give all your power away—to administration; to insurance companies; to office staff; and yes, even to inanimate software platforms. You have no power left. You have so deftly internalized the messages of insufficiency that you are helpless. You’re unable to help yourself and have no confidence in your next decision.
So, what do you do to cope with your lack of confidence? You take on a persona. It’s not really “YOU,” but it’s all you’ve got. You’ve been on the receiving end of arrogance and defensiveness at school, in residency, at work. You grab the cloak and wear the mantle. You have no choice at this point.
You join the abusers merely to survive. When asked a question you bark out the answer or grunt. When your opinion is solicited, you shrug. When someone else around you makes a mistake, you ridicule and shame them out of fear that their mistake might be seen as a reflection on you. You are tough as nails on the outside—and a quivering mass of insecurity and fear on the inside. You begin to fantasize your escape, packing up in the dead of the night and just disappearing. Every fantasy gives you momentary relief from the bone-crushing pressure.
Do you suffer from internalized arrogance and defensiveness?
Do you find yourself trapped in unnecessary drama at work?
Do you have trouble speaking truth to power?
If any of this seems familiar, please read this brief ebook: Headstrong & Helpless: a recovery program for hardheaded healers. Learn the 5 simple things you can do now to change your life—NOW. Understand the drama triangle that fuels the behaviors in you and others that keeps you locked into abuse cycles. Learn two simple steps to free yourself from drama so you can lead a confident and empowered life.
Don’t wait for a malpractice suit. Don’t wait for your spouse to leave you. Don’t wait for your anxiety or depression to become so severe that you consider suicide as your only way out.
Sydney Ashland and Pamela Wible, MD, can help you escape your distress to live your dreams in medicine. Join us for our monthly coastal retreats and biannual hot springs retreats for confidential off-the-grid help (no EMR, 100% confidential).