Monday, June 22, 2009

Lisa Chu, MD

Lisa Chu, MD
Career Coach and Contributing Editor

As a life coach, musician, writer, teacher, and speaker, Lisa Chu, M.D., supports and encourages adults who are seeking to live more creatively and passionately. She completed medical school, but left medicine before doing a residency, in order to follow her dream of creating a life of passion, creativity, and authenticity. She has since been a partner-level investment professional in a venture capital firm, the founder of her own violin school, the creator of music improvisation workshops for personal growth, and the co-creator of an acoustic rock band.

In her individual coaching, group classes, workshops, and retreats, Dr. Chu shares the inspiring, truthful, and healing lessons she has drawn from leaving medicine; playing in the high-stakes game of private equity finance; teaching toddlers and their parents in achievement-driven Silicon Valley; facing her own professional burnout as a violin teacher; transforming from classically trained violinist to improvisational “crossover” musician; learning the tools of life coaching; and her ongoing practice of creating a life of passion and purpose. Dr. Chu is on a journey to define her own success and find peace amid the often conflicting messages of her Chinese parents and the American values of creativity and individualism. On her blog,, she offers stories, insights, and tips on a wide range of topics, including self-care, physician burnout, creativity, adapting to change, mindfulness, music improvisation, sound healing, and yoga.

Born in Libertyville, Illinois, Dr. Chu is the youngest daughter of parents who both emigrated from Taiwan to obtain their PhD degrees. She began studying classical violin and piano at age three. She received an A.B. magna cum laude in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard-Radcliffe College, and an M.D. from the University of Michigan Medical School. After medical school, she started as an unpaid intern and eventually became the youngest partner-track investment professional at Primus, a private equity finance firm based in Cleveland, Ohio. She now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, California.

In addition to her formal education and personal practice, Dr. Chu has completed Martha Beck Life Coach Training, training as a facilitator of Gail Larsen’s Real Speaking, and received the certificate in Sound, Voice, & Music Healing from California Institute of Integral Studies. She also performs and records improvised violin music and is a founding member of the acoustic rock band, Chinese Melodrama.

You can contact Lisa by e-mail at, to set up a free consultation appointment by phone or in person.