By Sharon Gorman, D.C.
“To avoid pain at all costs forces us to reject half the lessons life can teach.” – Jan Pishok
Pain hurts – no kidding. Who would want it? We spend our lives listening to people who are trying to avoid physical pain. I tell patients all the time that pain is there for a reason. It is not God trying to punish you. It is a sign.
We do all kinds of things to avoid physical pain. For most of us it is one of our strongest motivators. I listen to my body when it gives me physical pain as usually an indicator that I have over worked. If I didn’t have pain I would probably keep going to the point of self destruction. If we don’t listen to our body when it is trying to tell us something then it will probably tell us louder and louder until we are forced to listen.
In our society we address symptoms as a disease entity in itself. People address the symptom and try to treat the symptom. It always hits me in a funny way when a patient asks me “How did this happen?” My first thought is usually, well, I haven’t really known you that long.” I don’t usually say it because they would take it the wrong way. When a patient comes in to us they usually want us to fix them. The little voice inside of me is saying, “yea, but we are self healing organisms.” Well they are self healing but they probably wouldn’t have gotten in their car to see you if they didn’t think that you can help them. Help them with what? Their symptom of course. I have learned a few things about being a good doctor. One is empathy and another is patience. I have to quiet myself long enough to listen to them and understand them. We all want to be understood, especially when we have a symptom and we are in a state of fear. Once I listen to them hopefully they will listen to me. The truth is that I don’t have a lot to say to them that first visit because they won’t hear except I understand and I will do my best to help you and here is how I help people. Also I love them. I don’t tell them I love them. I just love them and they feel it. Isn’t it ironic that in this society we aren’t conditioned to listen to our symptoms. We are conditioned to be afraid of them. That’s like teaching people to be afraid of fire alarms going off instead of teaching them to be afraid of fires. What is their body trying to say? “HELP!”
When we live our lives in fear of symptoms we become afraid to live. Now that I’ve touched on physical symptoms, let’s talk about emotional ones. Someone once told me that in relationships we always get boo-boos. It is part of being in a relationship. I know there could be a ton of positive stuff but if we hang out with a person long enough we will get to see the other side too. The stuff about their personality that they hope or at least you hope would become better will be most evident when they are interacting with another person, namely you. I am not only talking about the relationship you have with your spouse or significant other. I am talking about all relationships at all levels. When we allow ourselves to open ourselves up enough to be in a relationship with another person we are opening ourselves up to possible emotional pain. Of course this varies depending on how much we trust this person and how close we allow them in. We open ourselves up a lot when we give love but even more when we accept love. That is why for most of us it is easier to give than to receive.
Let’s take this conversation to the office. When you are in a relationship and a patient does not continue care, it hurts. If your goal is to make Chiropractic part of someone’s lifestyle for their lifetime than when they leave the practice it is a form of rejection of chiropractic and you at some level. There are some valid excuses that we can understand like death or that the patient is moving. We don’t take that personal. Some of us that have been around long enough have come to terms that people are in different places in their lives and some people aren’t going to keep going to the Chiropractor when they no longer are experiencing pain or when their pain has lessened and they think that they can live with that much pain. The more new patients that I start the more vulnerable I become to other people’s choices. I can’t control them nor would I want to. I am here to live God’s will, not mine. They aren’t here to live my will either. I have become incredibly efficient at giving them the opportunity to choose Chiropractic for their lifetime because I have over 20 years experience for making the case. Yet patients still come and go. So what? As long as I can keep my eye on the mission than the pain that life presents itself will be secondary to my goals and vision.
It makes me so sad when I see older people when they retire that have no vision left in life. They sit around and wait for their next symptom. They then become more afraid. They then focus on their symptom and their fear and we all know that we get more of what we focus on. They then feel like they are a victim of their symptom and their life becomes a journey of trying to remove their symptoms by trying to find a Doctor or anyone that can convince them that they can remove their symptom. A re-assuring word goes a long way with these people. You are telling them the truth. If they have a subluxation you can help them. You can help anyone that has a subluxation even if they don’t have a symptom from it. Some people choose lifetime Chiropractic care because they are afraid of pain or afraid of death. Maybe that is a good use for pain. Any reason a person chooses to receive regular Chiropractic care is a good reason to me.
For me my job is to stay open. To keep my heart open and to accept pain as part of life and part of practice. With this understanding I am willing to expose myself to people and to do my job which is to teach people the importance of Chiropractic and to put my hands on them and release interferences to their expression of life.
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PLEASE JOIN US THIS SATURDAY!
Focus Philosophy Night
February 25, 2006 – 7:00pm
Optional dinner at 5:30pm
Tami Hartman and Gary Stewart
Howard Johnson Hotel
Route 611 Bartonsville, PA (exit 302 off I-80)
(570) 424-6100 for Reservations (ask for Focus Rate)
Contact Sharon Gorman at (570) 350-4091 for more info.
Suggested fee is the price of one office visit.
We will be passing the hat to cover expenses.
Future 2006 Dates:
MARCH 18 – Eric Stofman and Gary Horwin
APRIL 8 – Reggie Gold
MAY 13 -Ginger Gracagnolo and Cheryl Langley
JUNE 3 – Corey Rodnick and Joe Lupo
This was the Dr. Sharon Gorman — MONDAY MORNING MESSAGE — for FEBRUARY 20, 2005
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