It took a traumatic spinal cord injury in 2008 to transform my life. The experience was a radical awakening.
I was once like you, overworked and overwhelmed.
I was on the verge of burnout and in dire need of change. I felt emotionally and physically exhausted, stuck in my situation, and completely isolated and invisible in my suffering.
How did I get here?
I was told I would never walk again.
In 2008, I was walking to work when I was hit by a car travelling 60 km an hour.
The impact rendered me a paraplegic. I spent 2 years in a wheelchair and was told I’d never be able to walk again.
But I was resilient and never gave up hope. I spent 2 years in Project Walk, San Diego and I did learn to walk again with grit, determination, and the support of my husband, family, and close friends.
I’d learnt what it was like to be a patient on the other side of the healthcare system and when I returned to Melbourne, I threw myself into my new private practice in rehabilitation and pain medicine. I became a mum and continued my studies.
But the combination of living with a spinal cord injury, motherhood, full-time work, and studying for fellowship exams exhausted me. I ignored the warning signs, feeling that burnout was a sign of vulnerability and weakness. I just keep pushing through.
Until eventually, I was burned out.
I have visions of the doctor and mother I want to be.
Deep down I knew there’s got to be a way which I can build my career while growing my family, and become the leader and mother I envision myself to be without the burnout.
I was determined to find the way, and I did.
I’ve been through what you’re now going through and have developed a path to recovery that will help empower you. After working with me, you’ll walk away feeling revitalised, empowered, and visible.
Want to see how I can help? Book a free, zero-obligation joyful transformation call with me!
Helping medical doctors around the world to lead the heart-centred life they truly deserve without the burnout.
In 2020, I wanted to rediscover the passion in my work, restore my mental and emotional wellbeing, and reconnect with my family, my inner self, and my identity beyond the physician.
I discovered self-compassion and creative development tools. They helped me thrive at home and at work. I also learnt how I could take ownership of my thoughts to gain a whole new perspective.
Not only was I not willing to live with fatigue and overwhelm, but I knew that If I could change, so could others.
I’ve seen many of my medical colleagues burn out. Did you know more than 40% of doctors—and almost 50% of female physicians— feel burnt out*?
I realised I could help medical peers like you discover these heart-based tools for yourself so you can rediscover your self-worth and lead the heart-centered life you truly deserve. I want to help you find your spark of joy and creativity outside medicine.
So I became a life and business coach for medical doctors so that I could teach the same tools that changed my life.
We need more heart-centred doctors in medicine.
This is my driving force.
Dr Olivia Ong, MBBS (Melb), BMedSci, FAFRM (RACP), FFPMANZCA.
Dr Olivia Ong, known as the Heart-Centred Doctor, is a Melbourne-based rehabilitation medicine and pain physician with 15 years of clinical experience, and an expert in resilience and burnout.
After being hit by a car in 2008, Olivia was told she would never walk or practice medicine again. She spent years as a patient in hospitals and rehab facilities in Australia and US in an attempt to regain some of the capabilities that were torn away from her. Little did she know she was going to get a whole lot more than she’d bargained for. After an intensive three-year recovery process, she walked again. Today she shares her experience with others.
Emerging from such a dark period in her life inspired Olivia to start a business to address the unspoken toll that doctors bear when they don’t find the support they need. As a high-performance leadership coach and mentor for doctors, she now runs programs helping doctors transform their lives, moving from burnout to balance.
Being able to speak from her own unique life experiences gives her presentations a deeply authentic feel, and her warm approach has made Olivia a sought-after speaker and online educator. She is the author of The Heart-Centred Doctor, which features a foreword from one of her mentors, Jack Canfield, co-author of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and The Success Principles: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. Olivia also collaborated with Jack Canfield on “Soul of Success Vol. 3”, which won her the Best Sellers Quilly ® Award from The National Academy of Best-Selling Authors in Hollywood for recognition of her authorship and thought leadership. She has also co-authored a chapter titled “Lead Your Life with Self-Compassion and Love” in the AusMumpreneurs anthology book Goodbye Busy Hello Happy, Ignite and Women Leading the Way.
As the founder and CEO of The Heart-Centred Method Institute Pty Ltd, Olivia’s vision is for the company to be the leading global personal growth and professional development company for physicians, so that they can be well-rounded, heart-centred doctors.
As a Physician Entrepreneur, Olivia has been awarded the Disabled Business Excellence Silver Award by the founders of AusMumpreneurs, Peace Mitchell and Katy Garner, for demonstrating her leadership, resilience and business skills in establishing her company against all odds.
Olivia has been featured in and written for Thrive Global, Yahoo Finance, International Business Times Singapore, and Australian Business Journal. Her media appearances include Sky News, Studio 10 and Ticker TV, and she regularly gives talks about topics such as physician burnout and how mindfulness and self-compassion can transform chronic pain at industry-leading events including Australasian New Zealand College of Anaesthesia and Faculty of Pain Medicine.
Originally from Singapore, Olivia now resides in Melbourne with her husband John and two young children, Joe and Jacqui. Her forthcoming book Unlock the Physician Freedom Code: From burnout to breakthrough, is due to be released in August 2023
Book Me to Speak:
I’m a professional keynote speaker on preventing doctor burnout and improving the wellbeing of medical doctors through the eyes of self-compassion.
Feel overwhelmed, isolated, and invisible? In my life and business coaching program for doctors, I help you reawaken and reconnect with yourself to lead a heart-centred life without the burnout!
Want to build a resilient team in your organisation? I'm an accredited R@W coach, mentor and trainer. R@W is a method that fosters radical resilience in your workplace for individual and teams.