Dr. Pooja Lakshmin MD and Real Self-Care


Dr. Pooja Lakshmin, M.D. is a board-certified physician psychiatrist, a Clinical Assistant Professor at George Washington University, a New York Times Contributor and a Peloton Medical Advisor. She is also the founder and CEO of Gemma, the first digital education platform dedicated exclusively to women’s mental health, centering inclusion and impact. In her approachable talks, informed by her clinical practice in women’s mental health, she shares how our broken social systems have failed women and families, especially during the pandemic. Dr. Lakshmin examines the problematic nature of for-profit “self-care” solutions that are largely marketed toward women and focuses on offering tangible psychological tools to manage difficult emotions, set boundaries, make choices aligned with their values, and develop mental health literacy.

Dr. Lakshmin serves on the Board of Directors for the Maternal Mental Health Leadership Alliance –a national non-profit dedicated to further maternal mental health policy – and the Editorial Advisory Board of Clinical Psychiatry News. She is also a frequent contributor to The New York Times, (“How Can I Make the Holidays Less Exhausting“), her writing has appeared in Harper’s Bazaar (“Naomi Osaka and the Cost of Saying No”), and she’s frequently in the media for example WNYC (“The Realities of Postpartum Depression and Anxiety Today“), among other outlets.

Interested in bringing Dr. Pooja Lakshmin, M.D. to speak at your corporation or institution’s next event? Contact us for more information.


Dr. Pooja Lakshmin talks about new book, ‘Real Self-Care’ | GMA

Dr. Pooja Lakshmin challenges readers to reevaluate self-care routines and encourages setting boundaries, developing self-compassion, identifying values and finding balance.

Pooja Lakshmin argues that parents often give too much of themselves to others, while neglecting their own mental health and well-being. The coronavirus quarantine has only exacerbated these issues.


How to Escape ‘Faux Self-Care’

Speaking Topics

The Betrayal of Burnout + Building Psychological Flexibility

In this talk, Dr. Pooja Lakshmin will cover the various ways in which systems of care have abandoned caregivers in our country. Citing her framework of “betrayal, not burnout,” she will focus on tangible and immediately implementable psychological solutions for reconciling common feelings of anger, exhaustion, and demoralization – no matter whether you are in the C suite, or an intern, including tools to bolster psychological flexibility, meaning-centered well-being, and identifying sources of agency and hope. Dr. Pooja Lakshmin’s talks are based on evidence-based psychotherapy interventions such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and informed by her clinical work treating patients suffering from burnout, despair, depression and anxiety.

Dr. Lakshmin can adjust this talk to specifically address women’s mental health, parenting during a pandemic, or how our systems have failed caregivers in general.

Prioritizing Your Mental Health + The Power of No

In this talk, Dr. Pooja Lakshmin will focus on the life-changing power associated with saying no, as well as the various costs that women and minority groups face when saying no. She’ll share her unique concept of “betrayal, not burnout,” and while also focusing on tangible psychological solutions and tools for reconciling the inevitable guilt that comes up when prioritizing your mental health and emphasize strategies to move forward with agency and power.

Interested in bringing Dr. Pooja Lakshmin, M.D. to speak at your corporation or institution’s next event? Contact us for more information.