You Are The CEO
By Stefanie Sacks, MS, CNS, CDN
In the realm of resilience, I've lived the better part of my life with illness, making me intimately acquainted with the patient journey. Navigating the labyrinth of healthcare, constructing robust care teams, and championing overall well-being – I haven't just been through it; I've mastered it. My journey isn't just personal; it's a beacon that guides and informs those I have the honor and pleasure of reaching. Every challenge becomes a lesson, and I wield these experiences to empower others on their journey.
Shifting gears to the corporate landscape. Enter the CEO, the director of a company's destiny, weaving visionary leadership, strategic goals, and the orchestration of overall operations. This individual is the linchpin in decision-making, from hiring to firing, ensuring the company's trajectory towards success, growth, and sustainable health.
Now, let's transpose this narrative onto you – envision yourself as the CEO of you! You're in charge of leading the operations and performance of your own life. Correct? Yet, consider a scenario: a first encounter with someone new who, armed with a mere sliver of information, assumes a position of authority, and astonishingly, you, the CEO of you, allow it. I have made this mistake countless times in my life. Intriguing, isn't it? Thankfully now, my instinct screams, "WTF!?" regardless of their age, wisdom, education, or experience. A mere 15-minute interaction hardly scratches the surface of truly knowing a person.
Let’s spice up the plot. This person is a doctor. Would you blindly follow their directives after a brief meeting? Perhaps, if their reputation came with a trustworthy endorsement. But without that, what compels you to yield to their guidance? Is it the prestigious "MD" after their name?
How about we dismantle the ingrained belief that letters after names equate to inherent wisdom. Newsflash: that assumption often falls flat, and that person certainly doesn't possess a superior understanding of you than you do yourself!
The essence is this: when you engage with any healthcare provider, you're essentially interviewing them for a job – your health, your rules. If they are not a suitable “employee” then don’t hire them!
When you engage with any healthcare provider, you're essentially interviewing them for a job – your health, your rules.
When navigating health, having a caring and competent healthcare team can not only make or break your experience but can also make or break your outcomes. Therefore, a few suggestions as you aim to onboard an effective care team:
Determine, through your insurance company, what providers you have access to. Your options could be affected if you don’t have insurance or if opting out of network is doable
Identify providers to “interview” considering these factors:
Education—where did they go to medical school; where did they do their residency; and if they pursued a fellowship, for what and where
Practice—How long have they been in practice
Hospital—what are their hospital affiliations (important for surgical procedures and emergency care)
Professorship—do they teach in a university or teaching hospital
Research—do they conduct research and are they published authors
Referral—have they been recommended by someone you trust who has first hand experience with them
Schedule appointments (“interviews”) with at least two to three providers
Lookout for the following when meeting with potential new “hires”:
Do they know something about you when the meeting starts (if you take the time to fill out forms, they should take the time to look at them)
Do they make eye contact, listen and ask questions
Do they make you feel comfortable
Do they offer a realistic plan for next steps
When navigating health, having a caring and competent healthcare team can not only make or break your experience but can also make or break your outcomes.
Transform your health by owning your leadership role. You are the CEO! With active involvement and a commitment to advocating for your own well-being, you have the best shot at optimal health.
Explore MoreDiscover All
Understanding Picky Eaters
Around the turn of the millennium, three prominent books emerged as authoritative guides on the subject of nourishing children—Ellyn Satter's "Child of Mine" and "Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family." Satter, a trailblazer in the field, delved into the realms of emotional well-being and fostering positive familial connections in the context of food, eating, and feeding. Furthermore, Walter Wilkoff's "Coping with a Picky Eater" provided a concise and pragmatic handbook, supplying practical solutions for both children and their caregivers in the realm of food.
Repositioning Picky Eating: 5 Ways
Helping families navigate the challenges of picky eating, I've discovered that empathy and compassion are essential ingredients in fostering positive change. It’s not just about coaxing the picky eater to try new foods rather it's about understanding their narrative first and foremost which always offers invaluable insight into the why. Once that’s sorted through, here are five key strategies that I've used personally and use in practice.
Finding Peace with Picky Eaters
Navigating my son Hunter’s picky eating journey hasn't been a smooth road. It began with a labyrinth of medical complexities, sensory sensitivities, and developmental delays. For the first several years of his life, I was on a relentless quest for answers, battling through what felt like an impossible maze of challenges. Tremendous frustration and self-doubt was smothering. I carried the weight of trying to be both a supermom and a nutrition expert.
Pseudo Health Experts: 5 Ways to Avoid Falling Prey
Navigating the intricate web of my love-hate (mostly hate) relationship with social media becomes particularly evident as I delve into Instagram feeds (Tik Tok, not my thing). Dietary directives, casually dispensed by influencers lacking credible expertise, punctuate the feed. The notion that personal experience, genuine or potentially contrived, automatically qualifies one as an expert is a shaky premise.