Run Towards Positive! - Life improvement strategies for the surgeon who wants more ... in 10 minutes - Episode 36

Pump the brakes on your week and take 10 minutes to make your life as a surgeon just a little better…

Jeff welcomes to the podcast physician (and physician coach) Dr. Michelle Mudge-Riley. Michelle is the founder of Physicians Helping Physicians and Scout A Career. The topic of our discussion in this episode is Run Towards Positive!

Michelle joined Jeff on the mini-podcast to talk about physician side-gigs - a passion of hers and the focus of a company she founded, Scout A Career. Michelle tells us that when she first transitioned to a non-clinical career, she found it incredibly challenging. Through her early personal efforts and the outreach of others in a similar position, she realized there was a big need for this type of assistance.

Now Michelle helps physicians feel hope and make changes when they’re angry or burned out. One helpful strategy Michelle champions is finding a side-gig to provide a positive alternative from the potential drudgery of routine life.

If one already has so much “to do,” how and why would one add a side gig? The benefits are numerous, and Michelle highlights strategies to have your side gig allow you to do both.

  • Suggestion 1 - Choose a side-gig that will compliment your daily routine or weekly schedule. What might those be?

  • Suggestion 2 - Choose a side-gig that leverages your background and training. What additional steps can you add now to bring you closer to your side-gig?

  • Suggestion 3 - When you ignore the negative and run towards the positive, the process works much better.

Most importantly, when you run towards the positive you prevent burnout and improve or maintain your well-being!


Michelle Mudge-Riley, DO, MHA, RDN, Founder of Physicians Helping Physicians and Scout A Career, is a peer coach for other physicians. She has spent the past 15 years assisting physicians with career strategy. Her coaching specialty is long-term career strategy, exploring a non-clinical career, and optimizing physicians' skills and passions to rediscover meaning and purpose in their work.

She has conducted seminars and spoken on topics related to change management, career transition, motivation, physician burnout mitigation, wellness and health education. Dr. Mudge-Riley has also been published in a variety of books and journals including Physicians Practice magazine, ConsultantLive, The Physician Executive Journal and The DO.