Resilient Threads

Resilient Threads

How do clinicians keep their hearts alive in a health care system where people too often lose heart?

This memoir shines a light on the epidemic of physician burnout, depression and suicide, offering the author’s journey of practicing medicine without losing heart and showing her medical students and residents how to do the same. As a doctor, mother and immigrant, Dr. Mukta Panda models how to thrive by creating community and self-awareness. Hardcover, paperback and ebook available.

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About the Book

Physician burnout, depression, and suicide are tearing at the fabric of our health care system, which Mukta Panda has witnessed firsthand. In a culture that privileges evidence over empathy, technology over touch, and what’s measurable over what’s meaningful, many of us—no matter our profession—feel more fragmented and isolated than ever.

In RESILIENT THREADS: WEAVING JOY AND MEANING INTO WELL-BEING, Dr. Panda gives voice to the exhaustion and gives courage for another way. As a physician and medical educator, she has fought to return human touch to healthcare. As a mother, she has committed—and sometimes failed—to balance the personal with the professional. And as an immigrant, she has clung to the wisdom of her family and faith in the face of discrimination and fear.

By weaving stories of connecting to her patients, students, and colleagues with her own stories of belonging, she models how we can each thrive by creating community and self-awareness.

“Ritual, relationships, and reflection are key threads in how I learned to thrive,” Dr. Panda writes in the introduction. So, too, are they key for the thriving of our world. The well-being of our clinicians and patients, teachers and students, parents and children depends on integrating these threads into a new social fabric, one that honors the whole of who we are with what we do.

It is a story that will be so very important to everyone who reads it—across every dimension of healthcare or patienthood. —Penelope R. Williamson, co-author of Leading Change in Healthcare Associate Professor of Medicine, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine


Genres: Biography & Memoir, Health & Well-Being, Leadership, Lifestyle, Self-Help
Publisher: Creative Courage Press
Publication Year: 2020
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, ebook
ISBN: 9780985566555
This is a must-read for learners, educators, and practicing clinicians as they journey on the path of mastery. There are lives at stake and treasures of joy and wonder to be found. With this book, the path is illuminated.
– Timothy P. Brigham, MDiv, PhD, Chief of Staff and Chief of Education and Organizational Development, Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)
Resilient Threads is a treasure…Mukta Panda has beautifully captured what it means to be a compassionate physician—one who effortlessly dedicates herself to the well-being of not just patients but also colleagues, students and friends alike. Dr. Panda knows what it means to create a psychologically safe workplace—and why it matters for learning, excellence, and full engagement at work. Readers will pick up countless ideas to transform their own workplaces by adopting the author’s generous and curious spirit.
– Amy C. Edmondson, PhD, Professor, Harvard Business School, author of The Fearless Organization and Building the Future
The external aims to provide better health for society cannot happen without tending to the inner imperatives. We need a holistic approach to individual courage and institutional change, and Dr. Mukta Panda shows us how it can be done.
– Donald M. Berwick, MD, President Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Institute for Healthcare Improvement and former Administrator, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
I’m grateful to Mukta for having the courage to share how she keeps her heart open despite heartbreak, and is teaching her medical students and residents to do the same. Internal medicine may be Mukta’s clinical specialty, but she is a healer of the inner life as well.
– Parker J. Palmer, author of On the Brink of Everything, The Courage to Teach, A Hidden Wholeness, and Let Your Life Speak
A powerful, inspiring example of a physician and mother who reveals the empathy, compassion and self-care needed to get through medical training and to revive the good doctor you hoped to be.
– Vineet Arora, MD, MAPP, Associate Chief Medical Officer–Clinical Learning Environment, University of Chicago Medicine
Medical students and residents reading her story will learn some of what to expect in a medical career, and for someone like me, 45-plus years into my medical and surgical career, it was an opportunity to reflect: “Oh yes, I remember feeling like that” and “Yes, this is exactly how it feels to connect to a patient.
– R. Phillip Burns, MD, FACS, Professor and Chairman, Department of Surgery, University of Tennessee College of Medicine, Chattanooga
In a modern world of medicine where workload and the expectations of physicians are as great as they have ever been, a reminder of what makes us tick as doctors is sorely needed. This book provides that and more…I am a better physician for reading it.
– Professor Andrew Goddard, MD, FACP (Hon), President of the Royal College of Physicians of London
The book serves as a lesson for all of us. We need to recognize our strengths and weaknesses, focus on what is important, and make sure that we have meaning in our lives.
– Marc J. Kahn, MD, MBA, MACP, FRCP-London, Tulane University School of Medicine
An intimate example of how to live and work, Resilient Threads offers an inspiring model for others to learn from, resonate with, and be emboldened by. Dr. Mukta Panda has written a powerful and soulful human book that interweaves her experiences and action in the world of healthcare during her years in this sacred, imperfect, beautiful profession. It is a story that will be so very important to everyone who reads it—across every dimension of healthcare or patienthood.
– Penelope R. Williamson, co-author of Leading Change in Healthcare, Associate Professor of Medicine, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
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About the Author
Mukta Panda, MD

Mukta Panda, MD, MACP, FRCP-London, is an award-winning physician, speaker, and facilitator whose work seeks to transform the heart of patient care and medical education. She serves as the Assistant Dean for Well-Being and Medical Student Education and a Professor of Medicine at the University of Tennessee College of Medicine at Chattanooga. To rejuvenate, Mukta likes to take long walks, cook good Indian meals, and plan surprise parties for her loved ones. Visit and follow her on Twitter @MuktaPandaMD.

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the page above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."