I’m Jean Beckham, Professor of Psychiatry, and This is How I Work


Dr. Jean Beckham is Professor and Division Director of Behavioral Medicine (with 50 faculty) in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University Medical Center. She also serves as a VA Research Career Scientist and staff clinical psychologist for the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Clinical Team at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina. Her clinical research focuses on the long-term effects, both psychological and physical, of exposure to trauma, particularly as occurs for both women and men during military service. She also focuses on treatment outcome of differential and collective contribution for psychopharmacological and behavioral interventions in PTSD populations; and long term physical health effects of chronic posttraumatic stress disorder. She has had a distinguished research career, with 240 scientific publications, as well as federally funded research grants.

Location: Durham, North Carolina.
Current Gig: Professor, Research Scientist, and Staff Psychologist, Duke University and Durham VA Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina.
One word/phrase that describes your work style: Efficient
Current mobile device: iPhone 6

What apps/tools/software can you not live without?

None – I mostly just use MS Word.

What’s your best time-saving shortcut or life hack?

My best time-saving shortcut is working on a terrific team of people to whom I can delegate.

What’s your workspace set up like?

I have a large corner desk with a large window, and I have plants and music.

How do you keep track of things you need to do (any to-do-list apps)?

I usually keep track of things on my calendar, and through a running list (in my head) and my email.

Besides your phone or computer, what gadget can’t you live without, and why?

I am not very gadget oriented but have learned to really use my phone.

What everyday thing can you do better than most people? What’s your secret?

I seem to be able to motivate others to get work done – I think the secret is finding smart people who work well as a team.

What do you listen to while you work?

A music mix from my iPhone.

What are you currently reading?

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

How do you recharge?

I like people and gardening, and of course my children.

What’s your sleep routine like?

I go to sleep relatively early. If I wake up at night, I either answer email or read until I go back to sleep (usually awake about 30-60 minutes) – and get up about 7 am.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

Remember, most people are doing the very best they can, and doing about 98% “right.” Focus on that and tweaking the other 2%.


Jean Beckham

Website: scholars.duke.edu/display/per9673152


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