Pump the brakes on your week and take 10 minutes to make your life as a surgeon just a little better…
Jeff welcomes to the podcast board-certified orthopedic spine surgeon and patient advocate, David Hanscom, MD.
For the first part of his career, David was absolutely fearless. Then one day at age 37, he began experiencing crippling anxiety. How did that happen?
David says it’s key to remember that anxiety is the result of a threat – not the cause of a threat. We also know that mental threats and physical threats are processed in a similar manner. On top of that, suppressed emotions are even worse for your body than expressed emotions. Surgeons are masters at suppressing stress – it’s what we do and it’s often how we get ahead.
If you spend your life trying to run from or “fix” your anxiety, you’ll just end up getting burned out. Anxiety isn’t something to be solved or controlled. However, you can move away from it and start pursuing the life that you want.
What steps does David suggest we do to mitigate anxiety?
- Step 1 – Imagine the life you want to live.
- Step 2 – Remember that anxiety is a threat, not a problem to be solved.
- Step 2 – Develop a working relationship with anxiety.
Most importantly, practicing working with anxiety!
David Hanscom, MD
David Hanscom is an orthopedic spine surgeon whose practice focused on patients with failed back surgeries. He quit his practice in Seattle, WA to present his insights into solving chronic pain, which evolved from with his own battle with it. The second edition of his book is, Back in Control: A Surgeon’s Roadmap Out of Chronic Pain.
His website, www.backincontrol.com presents an action plan and his most recent program, “The DOC Journey” guides patients more clearly through the complexities of solving chronic pain. It can be accessed at www.thedocjourney.com. It includes weekly group sessions that have been a powerful addition to the healing process.
His latest book is, Do You Really Spine Surgery? – Take Control with a Surgeon’s Advice. It is intended for health care providers and patients alike to make a clear and informed decision about undergoing spinal surgery.