While large patient volumes and some home life factors may be outside of one’s control, diet, exercise, sleep, and/or lifestyle are malleable. In other words, the things clinicians are frequently telling patients to change, the fundamental components of Functional Medicine, are also key components of clinician self-care. Indeed, one of the core lessons in the practice of Functional Medicine is caring for the “self” while also caring for patients. In the following video, Tricia O’Brien, MD, talks about her approach to patient and clinician self-care:
Something I commonly say to my patients is that I am a broken person on one side of the desk, and you’re a broken person on the other side of the desk; together we walk toward health. I don’t always stand as an example of the best choices, but I certainly stand as an example of hope and possibility. And they offer the same back to me.
What I do on a weekly basis is: Be sure that I get in touch with myself – what choices am I making? Am I making choices that are in line with my values? If not, why not? If we all would do that, and encourage one another to do it, then we walk along this journey toward our best together.
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We all know how time consuming it can be to establish and follow through on a plan to eliminate bad habits and engage in better nutrition and exercise—let alone manage condition-specific symptoms. Patients require education, encouragement, and accountability in order to stay well. That’s where health coaching comes in.Read More