Why We Need to Trust Ourselves
What do most of us do when we need expert advice? We call an expert. It is important to choose advisors to help us. They have to be knowledgeable about the subject we want advice about, and they should be able to communicate with us in a way that helps us make a decision. After all, we can’t know everything, so we depend on and trust experts. Their specialized capabilities can keep us out of trouble. This is good. No doubt working with specialists helps us to become our best.
To be a real authority on a subject requires more than practical knowledge. To earn the right to be an authority involves the use of creative judgement.
Problem? Many of those who hold positions of authority rely on a well-worn groove of habit. Sometimes we have to recognize when it is time to choose another expert or to rely on our own good sense.
Back In Spring of 2020
In the spring of 2020 while interviewing for a potential business relationship, I met a psychiatrist who refused my outstretched hand and presented her elbow to me in greeting (more on this at the end). Besides being a little surprising, it renewed a few questions that had been bubbling up for me in the early days of COVID. Why the warnings about “touching” others, followed by the insistence of masks, distance, gatherings, etc.
On an individual basis a doctor can make a recommendation to a client/patient and that is a personal relationship that is, well, personal. But in early 2020 we were seeing national and international instructions that blanketed the planet. This was no longer a relationship between a doctor and a client. I had also noticed a rather large gap between what was “medically” conceived or contrived and what was useful. Was a handshake in greeting really a danger to society?
Too often I hear of doctors recommending advice that seems out of proportion to the patient’s condition or ability. Too often physicians dismiss the value of wise teaching and counseling, preferring to pull out a prescription pad.
Not So Long Ago...
In early American 19th century, we are told, many unsophisticated and trusting settlers and pioneers sought help from fast-talking snake oil salesmen.
Those fake “doctors” used hit and run tactics of selling potions that ranged from colored water with bitter tastes to poisonous concoctions that induced a euphoric sensation before the death of organs or entire body failure.
But several uniquely human qualities provided a safety net. Although ignorant to dangers they had never anticipated, these early adventurers were close to the natural world, giving them protection of their instincts. They also displayed the uniquely human talent of creating innovative solutions when things went wrong. There were often family members or neighborly supports. And here we find an essential quality; they could reevaluate old assumptions when new reliable information presented itself. When sophistication was lacking, they had their ability to assess and adjust.
I saw this firsthand in the rural lives of my relatives in Texas. They were strong in beliefs until something proved strongly otherwise. Conviction and suspicion were always being tested. These undercurrents were necessary for health and fulfillment. And they still are!
You can't know everything, but you can often sense danger. We all have the ability to be vigilant.
Fast Forward to Today
Medicine has evolved. We may have access to well-trained doctors and modern facilities, but it has become very hard for us to rely on our own vigilance. Modern medicine has become...
Now, Back to the Elbow
The doctor I met clearly didn't want to touch me. If there was a reason for her disrespect, I could respect that. However, I couldn't help but notice her obvious inconsistencies. She frequently touched and swished her hair, held the doorknob, shared pieces of paper with me, sat in my office chair. And then she suggested we eat at the sketchy Chinese food restaurant downstairs. Huhh?
She was spreading her perceived and potential danger all over my office. I wasn't worried because I take appropriate precautions in my office space. These measures, along with knowledge of effective treatments that protect health, allow me to continue to practice and help my clients, even during an epidemic of COVID. Why was my outstretched hand so scary-dangerous?
It is true the corona virus can be dangerous to marginally healthy people. And I can appreciate certain cautions, but this physician was acting as if she didn't understand basic principles of biology. She was following a hollow narrative.
You Don't Have To Be A Victim
Acting out of fear is a victim’s position. When someone has adopted a victim role, it allows the bully in the room to rule with his personal agenda. It is that old bogus Wizard-of-Oz-façade and many in the world have fallen for it.
The Oz behind the curtain is convincing because his voice booms loudly. But you can’t see him. Have you wondered why he is hidden?
Because if you knew his impotence, you couldn’t be controlled. If you knew, despite the rhetoric, that his interest was strictly his own and not yours!
So, this is my message: PLEASE. Return to your natural and self-protective sanity. If someone has a booming voice and acts as though believing his fanciful narrative makes you a rational person, you might want to go along with it, or not. It's your choice. But understand you have a choice. And if you don’t, you are a prisoner.
Challenge openly or not, but don’t be an instrument that is being played. Protect your freedom to decide your own destiny.
As a health coach, I should add: Use nutrition to be healthier and resilient. Adopt whatever food plan that improves your metabolism and diminishes your baseline inflammation. Create a world you can breathe in for goodness' sake!
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