Is “Brain Drain” Real?

Dr. Relly Nadler: We are always interested in giving you a few tips and tools that you could use as a leader. Some of it may be as a parent, maybe as a coach. What can you do a little differently? What could you do a little more? Is there something you should do a little less?

Today, with the pandemic, we know that about forty-two percent of people are experiencing anxiety and/or depression. Emotions are all heightened. We’re wanting to give you some input about managing emotions.

Today, we are also going to be talking about what we would call the “brain drain.” Is the “brain drain” real? What do we do to have brain gain? Also, how do we motivate people, how do we motivate ourselves, with this? Are there some key actions?

We are zeroing in on the things you could do differently; often this idea of emotional brilliance is what’s something – if you think about a target – what’s right in the middle, the bull’s eye, that you could do more of, that you could do less of. So that in the moment you could be brilliant.

Let me bring on my brilliant co-host, Dr. Cathy Greenberg.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Thanks, Relly. I’m absolutely thrilled to be here, today. We are going to have a good time with our friend, Zeina Ghossoub. We are going to talk about, obviously, a little more than brain drain; we are going to talk about why the brain is such a delicate organ. We really take our brains for granted, most of the time. Think about all the work – I’m stressing your brain out right now – think about all the work that each of us does every day that the brain and the heart choreograph through connections in the spinal cord to get us just to focus on our day, let alone be functional.

I’m so excited to have our dear friend, Dr. Zeina Ghossoub El-Aswad, with us, today.

I don’t know if you are going to introduce her, or you’d like me to introduce her. I’m just so excited to have her here.

Dr. Relly Nadler: Okay, so, we will jump into it. So, let me introduce Zeina, here.

Both Cathy and I know Zeina very well. Dr. Ghossoub, her husband Dr. El-Aswad, and I have an organization called Vital Signs, Vital Skills, where we have a book together called, Physician Burnout, really working with physicians and healthcare workers to prevent burnout.

Zeina has a Ph.D. in behavior and counseling. She is a wellness and executive coach.

She and her husband were born in Lebanon and educated here in the United States. But, Zeina is the President of the International Coach Federation in Lebanon. She actually started that chapter. She’s the highest-ranking coach in Lebanon. She just won an award for being a women’s leader in the Middle East.

Aside from being a certified coach, she is a professional certified coach, she also is a registered dietician and has a clinic in Lebanon where she has worked with people for years. She has been on TV in Lebanon and was an expert; interviewed weekly there.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: She is like the Oprah of the Middle East.

Dr. Relly Nadler: Yeah. That’s a good way to say it. The Oprah of the Middle East.

She is also the founder and creator of a non-profit organization that helps feed and clothe several families and individuals on a yearly basis. She has many different articles and books along with the Physician Burnout.

So, Zeina, welcome, our good friend.

Dr. Zeina Ghossoub El-Aswad: Hi, hello. It’s so great to be with both of you, here. I’m so excited to be here and thank you for this lengthy introduction.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Well, you know, every word of it is true. I’ll just add to it, Zeina.

For those of you who are listening, Zeina and I are going to have a fantastic announcement for you all. Especially, if you are an executive woman who is looking for a network of other women to support you, to love you, and to bring wellness into your life; financially, from any kind of a unique corporate vantage point. Zeina and I will be announcing something at the end of March. We will leave it at that right now and it will be a surprise.

But, Zeina, we are so happy to have you with us today.

Dr. Zeina Ghossoub El-Aswad: I’m so happy to be here, Cathy. It’s always a pleasure chatting with you, both.

Dr. Relly Nadler: So, Zeina, this is great because I think Cathy and I know you well but also it will allow us to ask some different questions. Typically, we are talking about our families, we are talking about our endeavors. I don’t know this; how did you get involved in wellness, dietetics, and counseling? What were some of the early influences that had you saying, “This is what I want to get into.” Part of this, I know, you have your very talented kids and daughter. I have my daughter, who is 23, who, I think, my wife talked with her yesterday; she’s like, “Yeah, I think she’s leaning towards counseling.” Kind of that unique age of saying, “Okay, what should I do with my life?”

So, tell me how you got into this field. What were some of your influences?

Dr. Zeina Ghossoub El-Aswad: That’s a very interesting question, Relly. I was brought up in war in Lebanon. One of my earliest memories in the war was how can I serve? So, it actually started from that. Needless to say, I was born in Africa. I lived in Europe, in England, in my pre-teen years. In my teen years, I came to Lebanon where there was a lot of war. So, I have been around a lot.

My first instinct was, from what I’ve seen in Ghana, where I was born, and what I’ve seen in Europe and Lebanon was this idea of service. Actually, when I jumped into the field of nutrition and dietetics, it was by the influence of a great woman, that’s a teacher and she’s one of my greatest cheerleaders now. Actually, no one knew about nutrition in the early 90s in Lebanon.

It was like, “What, are you going to become a cook or what?”

So, the importance of just having this food as medicine was so fascinating for me. This is where the journey began. Then, when I started practicing dietetics it turned into, “Okay, most of this is behavior linked. I need to know more.” I bumped into coaching. And then I met you at the College of Executive Coaching. I wanted to know more. From there on, it was an endless learning process of one thing to understand more about human behavior and counseling: the art of coaching actually and the link to wellness. How, as human beings, can we really be well? What does wellness actually mean, to every individual? What do you need to be well?

So, this is the brief interest from where I began. It’s a very beautiful journey. Now, it’s at its peak, I guess, in helping others even more, and thousands and thousands of people doing that. I feel so blessed doing that.

You can listen to the entire interview above by clicking on the play button.

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