Coping With Stress: How Physicians Do It

Posted on March 6, 2010 by VITAL WorkLife

Physician Stressed small-1In a recent study of how physicians from diverse medical specialties cope with stress at work, here were the five most frequently used coping strategies:

  • Working through or simply dealing with the stress at work
  • Talking with co-workers
  • Taking a time-out
  • Using humor to lighten the situation
  • Ignoring the stress

Not surprising, the most frequently used coping mechanism, “working through or simply dealing with the stress at work” (which was also described as “getting the job done,” “powering through,” “soldiering on” and “getting on with it”) was also the most highly correlated with feeling emotionally exhausted.
The coping mechanisms least correlated with emotional exhaustion were “using humor to lighten the situation” and “talking with colleagues.”

We Can Help

If you’d like relief from stress you’re experiencing at work or at home, call 877.731.3949 to speak with a VITAL WorkLife senior consultant or peer coach. We’re here 24 hours a day to provide free, confidential coaching and counseling—by phone or in person—whenever and wherever it’s convenient for you.

1 Lemaire and Wallace BMC Health Services Research 2010, 10:208 

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