Dr. Kenney’s Friday 5 Spot
On Fridays I like to share some of the experiences I’ve had during the week with patients and in my personal life that I’ve found significant in some way. I like to share them in hopes that you might find value in them and have something resonate with you in your life.
A good reminder recently. Over the weekend I went on 3 separate runs. During the first two, I had a problem with the front of my shin near my knee that was very painful. I have a big run coming up in the next few weeks and immediately began thinking that I’d be too hurt to complete it, that it could be the start of something serious, etc. I see patients every day that think just like this – their new back pain will need surgery or that their headache is a brain tumor. So, what did I do?
I stopped thinking about worse case scenarios and began thinking about it logically like I would if a patient came to me with a similar issue. I rarely stretch that part of my leg and it did feel very tight. I did some deep tissue massage work on it, iced it, and stretched out. By the time I headed out for my Sunday, run it was 100% better and the “injury” that was about to end my career had been resolved.
This reminded me of two things. First, self-care is super important. It can cause problems when ignored and cure or prevent problems when performed regularly. Second, often when we don’t feel 100%, we immediately assume it’s due to the worst, most serious cause possible. Rather than panic, it is better to start with the simplest causes and treatments for them. If they fix the problem, great. If not, then you know it’s appropriate to move on to the next step – seeing a doctor, getting testing, etc.
A great book I’m reading. Someone I respect greatly put me onto the book “Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones” by James Clear. Just as atoms are a tiny particle that combines with other atoms to form something larger, so too are our habits. This book is eye opening and informative as to how we can create major change by focusing on the small things we do each day. These habits may not be noticed immediately but lead to small 1% differences that when taken cumulatively can manifest major changes: either positively or negatively. Much of this book I was already following but I’ve picked up other tips and tools as well as a greater appreciation for this process. Check it out!
Something I’ve been enjoying and why. Recently rather than watching television at night, I’ve been unwinding with some YouTube videos about old school pro wrestling, cooking, clips from shows I’ve enjoyed and more. You may be asking, what is inspiring or motivating about that? Nothing, and that’s my point here. As someone that is constantly in motion, I can tell you that there are times when it’s good to keep things lighter. Lately, I’ve found it much healthier after my day is done and I’ve completed everything I needed/wanted to that I drift away from heavy news, politics, and anger and into things that make me happy. I am not a fan of ignoring what is around me but all of us need a break at times and even a few minutes of relaxation can make all the difference.
An important health concept. Your overall health is like a bank account into which you can make either deposits or from which you can take withdrawals. Anything and everything that you put into it, do to it or for it will fall into one of these two categories. It is that simple.
Examples of “deposits” would include consistent exercise, nutritious foods, vitamins, preventative treatments, stress management and more. Conversely, poor nutrition, lack of movement, too much stress, etc. will act as withdrawals, taking away power from your body and decreasing your health. More deposits than withdrawals will lead to positive outcomes, more withdrawals than deposits and health will suffer. Keep it simple, think of your health in these terms and it will help you make better decisions.
Some quotes I love.
“Liberty once lost, is lost forever.” – John Adams
“It has been said, most people die at age 25 and don’t get buried until they are 65. Make an effort to live your life to the fullest.” – Les Brown
“Appear weak when you are strong, and strong when you are weak.” – Sun Tzu, The Art of War
“When you tear out the tongues of those who speak against you, you are not proving them liars. Instead, you are proclaiming on the altar of oppression, that you are crippled by fear of what they might say.” – Madison Cawthorn
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