Faculty Spotlight: Neha Sangwan, MD

September 16, 2023

We’re thrilled to join CMBM Faculty Member Neha Sangwan, MD, in celebrating the publication of Powered by Me: From Burned Out to Fully Charged at Work and In Life! In this Faculty Spotlight, we invite you to get to know Dr. Sangwan, learn about her important work addressing the burnout epidemic, and check out her latest book.

Meet Dr. Sangwan

CEO and founder of Intuitive Intelligence, Dr. Sangwan is an engineer, physician and communications expert who combines medicine and communication techniques to catalyze resilient and healing organizational cultures. She consults with a range of companies, from Silicon Valley startups to Fortune 100 firms, to empower entrepreneurs, corporate leaders, and organizational teams to excel under pressure. Dr. Sangwan is also the co-founder of the Conscious Business Leadership Academy (CBLA), a program to teach and implement principles of conscious capitalism to CEOs. She leads the CBLA C-Suite and supports executive team alignment. Dr. Sangwan also owns and operates a private practice, where she combines her experience in medicine, neuroscience, mindfulness, and executive coaching to focus on root-cause healing. She has presented her work on three TEDx stages. As a CMBM Faculty Member, she actively trains veterans and Ukrainian therapists to heal war trauma. Read more in Dr. Sangwan’s full bio.

About Powered by Me

Burnout is very real, and increasingly prevalent in our world today. Since 2019, the World Health Organization has recognized burnout as an occupational phenomenon. Burnout impacts our mental health and our interpersonal relationships. It can affect our productivity and our financial well-being. And burnout is more common than you might think–especially among healthcare providers. In a survey published in the Journal of Internal Medicine, rates of burnout symptoms for both physicians in training and practicing physicians exceeded 50%. In Powered by Me, Dr. Sangwan targets the root causes of burnout, and provides a roadmap to support healing.

“Neha not only knows the symptoms, she also has risen to the challenge of dealing with one of burnout’s most intimate causes… Step by step, she helps us to become aware of the hallmarks of burnout—physical and emotional exhaustion, depression and anger, cynicism and indifference—and she shows us how to regard these challenges as opportunities to recognize, embrace, and grow through and beyond.”

James S. Gordon, MD, founder and CEO of The Center for Mind-Body Medicine

Dr. Sangwan has her own lived experience with the topic. In her early thirties, while pulling 36 hour shifts caring for caring for 18 critically ill patients per day, Dr. Sangwan experienced severe burnout. During her medical leave, Dr. Sangwan evaluated the many complex factors that had led her to this point. She also studied the intricate and powerful connections between mind, body, and spirit.

When we spoke with Dr. Sangwan about her book, she shared a memory from that time in her life, during which she attended her first Professional Training Program in Mind-Body Medicine.  Every time she got up to speak, she was overcome with emotion–“Niagara Falls,” as she puts it. “The entire room was so patient,” she says, just breathing and allowing her to move through it. When the wave of overwhelm felt like it wold never end, Dr. Sangwan was silently reassured by the calm, accepting presence modeled by the Faculty. Nobody was trying to “fix” anything or hurrying her. They didn’t need to. They had experienced this healing work for themselves and had witnessed it help tens of thousands. Dr. Sangwan credits the feeling of being “seen, valued, and heard, no matter how long it took” as one of the root causes for her healing. It gave her more than just the belief that this would pass. It gave her the lived experience to know that such moments would pass, and that she could get through them.

Dr. Sangwan channeled her study of the mind-body connection and her own healing experience into a holistic “Self-Care in Healthcare” program. And, for the past two decades, Dr. Sangwan has dedicated herself to addressing the burnout epidemic and developing a “comprehensive, customized toolkit to scale healing.”

In Powered by Me, Dr. Sangwan combines scientific data, clinical examples, and personal stories, offering both the inspiration and tools to recognize and address burnout. Through her powerful, practical approach, Dr. Sangwan teaches readers how to:

  • Listen to our bodies’ unique “language.”
  • Move through energy-draining “mind traps.”
  • Move through challenging emotions so that we can “respond” rather than “react.”
  • Establish “healthy, balanced boundaries” that align with our priorities and strengthen relationships.
  • Leverage our “highest values” and find purpose.

Mind-body medicine is integral to Dr. Sangwan’s work–as an internal medicine physician, a speaker, an author, an executive coach, and a corporate communication expert. And it’s all connected, she explains: “This is how you get to explore the invisible connections within you and between us. The experience is universal, but it’s personal.” That’s why mind-body medicine can effectively address stress, trauma, and burnout in so many different scenarios. “It will help you feel whole,” she says, “and go to the next level of your healing.”