If not you…then who?

Guy with neck pain

If not me, then who ?

If not now, then when ?

I’m not sure where I first heard these two questions but I always can hear them in the background when I’m considering a change or feeling the need to “step up to the plate” for a new  topic or issue. These questions, whispered quietly inside of the mind, can prime the pumps to “challenge the status quo” which requires that you turn off your “autopilot setting”.

In general, I’ve noticed that the mind will try to figure something out and once done, will turn on the autopilot setting. It seems that the mind loves this setting because it ensures that there is no further disturbance or thought necessary for a given activity. However, a medical career should never be left on autopilot, it requires constant evaluation. In my experience, the mind will generate a lot of resistance to significant change or a change of direction, even when change could be very beneficial. The mind will offer up any excuse or rationalization to distract or delay a change of direction in your life – really anything that requires work to change. 

Autopilot is great for driving a car, but even then it must be turned off now and then in order to avoid catastrophe, and the same is true for your life and career. Autopilot in your car relieves any concern about what to do with your right foot for a period of time when there is nothing else going on while driving, but eventually things change and you have to turn off the autopilot.  

Relationships and career growth can suffer with too much “autopilot”. Your ability to fulfill someone’s needs can be hindered by living only  in the autopilot setting, because you might not recognize beneficial alternatives to your “norm”..   

Most of us working in the Pain World are looking for ways to permanently relieve back or neck pain for our patients. Endoscopic spine surgery is a significant step forward in terms of offering permanent pain relief instead of temporary pain management.

People in pain (your patients) are depending on you to give them options to relieve pain on a permanent basis and avoid a fusion when possible. Your patients are depending on you.

If not you, then who ?

If not now, then when ?