As a health coach, it is my primary goal to get my clients to take active roles in their own wellness care and treatment, regardless of the type of pain or illness they are suffering from. I always tell clients that they must become leaders in their care team, for if they do not care enough to take charge, then who will? My clients virtually always fall into one of two possible categories:
The first category includes people who already are incredibly involved in their own healthcare and have learned everything about their conditions from months, years or decades of suffering. These people are often experts in their particular health crisis and rival their doctors in the knowledge of what is causing their misery. In these cases, I need not mention this topic at all, since it is literally preaching to the choir. Immersion and understanding may not have brought these people relief, but active involvement has usually kept these patients from suffering the worst fates of iatrogenesis, surgical butchery, pharmaceutical addiction or other catastrophic consequence.
The second category encompasses clients who have been guided through the healthcare sector by others, without ever taking charge of their own treatment options or lives. These people might be lucky and have exemplary doctors on their side, helping them to feel as good as possible, given their specific circumstances. These are ideal case scenarios, but sadly, do not represent the rule. Most of these second category clients are confused by their pain or illness, since their care team has dropped the ball on so many levels, causing these people undue suffering and pain. Many have been manipulated physically and psychoemotionally by care providers of various types. Others have been milked for financial gain, usually over extended periods of symptomatic care. A great number of these people have become pharmaceutical slaves to the very worst possible substances, including schedule 1 narcotics. At least 25% of these people have also endured suspect surgeries that did not provide any benefits and often made matters far worse. These second category clients need special care, because they often have trust issues with doctors and other practitioners within the healthcare sector. They are disillusioned by their treatment results, but have not taken responsibility for their own lack of participation or lack of knowledge. It is my job to encourage them to learn, grow, understand and eventually lead. In essence, I must show them the way towards autonomy, control and success when it comes to making healthcare choices.
Let’s make a few things absolutely clear. First, I am a very outspoken critic of our healthcare system. I see the failures of the system and have addressed them publicly in my patient advocacy work for over 20 years. I am also an enthusiastic supporter of the very same imperfect healthcare system. I see the good that doctors do every day and have witnessed some true miracles of modern science that have spared functionality and saved life in my clients. However, I have also seen, and have been personally victimized, by medical mistakes, care provider greed and the general apathy of some caregivers. In my own life, I have found far more success by becoming the leader of my own care team than I ever enjoyed as a passive participant. In fact, when doctors were making most of the vital choices, without any input from me whatsoever, I was almost led down the path to possible disability, since my condition was grossly misdiagnosed on more than one occasion.
The importance of proactivity in healthcare can not be overstressed. Getting involved will not guarantee a miracle cure, but will certainly minimize the chances of being victimized by decisions that might make someone money, but might not be the best path for you or your health. This is why I make it an immediate priority to gauge each client’s level of involvement in their healthcare plan and work on showing them the techniques that will make even the least proactive foot soldiers into capable generals.
Knowledge certainly is power. In the case of chronically ill and sick people, most are disenfranchised and deprived of the most basic controls in life, such as the power to feel good, to live fully and to pursue their interests without the burden of horrific symptoms. Therefore, I have made it a personal crusade to help each client to reach their full potential as commanders of their own lives, rather than financially-exploited pawns or worse yet, veritable sheep to the slaughter.
This paradigm shift in proactivity is just a tiny part of what coaching can do to improve your life. You can feel, function and live better. You just require the tools to make you capable of commanding respect from your care providers, as well as from yourself. These gifts are inherent parts of my coaching programs. I offer these gifts to you. If I can help you to get a handle on your health and your life, please reach out to me for assistance. I am here to help and can guarantee that you will never be a passive victim ever again.