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Developing Trainee Self-Awareness and Insight

Self-awareness and insight are crucial aspects of a doctor’s performance. They have critical implications for practice and are a necessary pre-requisite for progressing to senior roles. However, this is an area with which many doctors struggle, even late into their career.

The irony is that many doctors who struggle with this will lack awareness of their struggle. For these doctors, feedback given to them by educators and colleagues may seem perplexing, challenging or even ridiculous.

Facilitating trainees to explore their interactions with patients and colleagues, to become aware of their beliefs, and to consider the impact of their behaviours on others, is the focus of a pilot of a new strand of support within the PSU, offered by the Specialist Support Group.  This, it should be emphasised, is not personal therapy, but the development of a doctor’s professionalism.


Metacognition, Insight and Self-Awareness Support

This is intended for trainees who do not have Asperger’s Syndrome, but who would benefit from developing self-awareness and insight in order to make sense of feedback from others. It offers the opportunity to develop metacognitive skills through exploring interactions with patients and colleagues, becoming aware of one’s beliefs, and considering the impact of one’s behaviours on others. The aim is to facilitate the trainee’s desire to understand the feedback that others may give them and change behaviours which could influence this feedback.

This support is proving particularly useful for those who are not currently motivated to engage in other support available to them, including within the PSU.

This is currently a pilot provision. All referrals should be made with prior agreement the PSU lead. Email through

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