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Curbside with Dr. D: The 5 Senses To Being A Happy Doc

by Neel Desai, M.D.

My son was watching a YouTube video and something about the 5 senses came up recently. And it got my mind churning, because hey, when I am not chasing a squirrel with a stick in my head Homer Simpson style, I will occasionally come up with something deeply profound and clever. Or so I think – I’ll let you be the judge. So the 5 senses – sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch. It got me thinking about what we are doing with The Happy Doc, and how we can use a 5 senses concept to help us be successful medical professionals in our 21st Century digital health landscape. So here’s what I came up with – the 5 Senses to being a Happy Doc:

5 Senses to Being a Happy Doc

SEE – See what successful physicians are doing. Do this by direct observations, but also through social media posts,  YouTube videos, Blog posts, eBooks, emagazines, and books. Searching MedTwitter and popular hashtags on Instagram can help to see trending health topics of the day, and be part of what the medical community is discussing, while also learning some quick tips for success. 

LISTEN – A great time saver is to pair listening to a medical podcast (pssst, I have a great podcast to listen to – Hint: fill in the blanks: T_E  H__P__Y D__C) about something you are interested in while doing mundane tasks like washing dishes, preparing dinner, doing the laundry, taking the dog for a walk, while on the drive to and from work. Listen to successful physicians’ tips, experiences, insights, and advice through podcasts and audiobooks.

TASTE   Keep tasting new things and platforms – go in with an open mind to find out if it fits you. Try different social media platforms to get your message in medicine out. Diversify: Blog, Vlog, LiveStream, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc..  Create active content of value on these various platforms. Once you find out where you are getting the most engagement, double, triple, and quadruple down on that. 

TOUCH  – Remember the human touch in all your endeavors. Be kind and considerate online and in day to day interactions in real spaces. Help and support your fellow colleagues with no expectations. 

SMELL  – Know if something doesn’t smell right. If it doesn’t smell right, trust that sense, and use it to avoid toxic situations and toxic people.   

Using these 5 senses in a digital context can help us be healthier, happier and more fulfilled docs. Now, if you will excuse me, I have to go. There’s a squirrel that deserves my attention.

Neel Desai is a family physician, active contributor to The Happy Doc, and has a 6th sense for when his wife is mad at him, even though he didn’t do anything. Allegedly. Follow him on Twitter @drneel1973.