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Navigating Your Health

The start of a New Year is a great time to re-evaluate how you did last year, and what you want to accomplish this year. Call this a resolution, a game plan, a year in review, whatever you like, but it's common practice for many people to reflect and project for a better self. I'm not a stranger to this idea, as I also make aspirational plans for my next year and beyond.

Some resolutions may look similar to ones I've made before.

These are usually based on an exercise or fitness goal. They might be an event I want to complete, a lift I want to improve, or a program I want to be consistent with. These types of goals are possibly the most common ones that people aspire to around the New Year.

These are also the most likely goals that need repeating, reinforcing, and recommitting as they are easy to get off track with.

Some resolutions may be more learning-based.

For me, this will be a certain number of books I want to read, a course I want to take, or a group I want to get involved in. These decisions usually have a financial barrier to entry, so planning ahead for these and planning long term is an important strategy. Having a cost associated with learning works as an incentive for me to get as much value as I can from these goals. I don't want to waste my time and money to get through a book, course, or group. I try to get as much as I can for what I've invested into these goals.

Some resolutions may have a relationship emphasis.

I'll consciously make an effort to make an extra call to a friend, plan a social event with my wife, or spend more time with my family. This doesn't cost much money if any, but it does require time and intention. These relationship goals don't go improving themselves. These relationship goals can easily be neglected, but they are some of the most valuable if you commit to them.

Some resolutions may be focused on career, travel, or finances.

No resolutions are bad ones as they each put you on track to move in the direction you would like. They are goals. They shouldn't be easy, they shouldn't be given to you, and they shouldn't be impossible. They should be well thought out, and you should want to commit to them for the best version of you.

When we make resolutions, we need to be between realistic and barely attainable.

Pick a few easy resolutions you know you can do. Pick the low-hanging fruit and gain momentum to keep going. These are a great way to get started.

Pick a few hard resolutions you know you can commit to.

These are a bit more aspirational, but they aren't impossible. With steady work overtime, you know you can get there. These take consistent effort and the reward is greater than the easy resolutions.

Pick a few that are so challenging that you're not sure you can make it.

Resolutions that will be uphill the whole time, require re-commitment and will need help from others. These are the type of resolutions that change your trajectory and they bring you where you want to get one day, even if that seems very different from your current situation.

When making resolutions, it's important to determine which ones can be done on your own, and which ones will need help. The resolution may be the same for two people, but the strategy to attain it can be very different. One person might commit themselves to a regular running practice and will get the job done on their own, while another person may do best by joining a running group or having an accountability buddy. Same running goal, but different strategies.

You've got to pick what works for you.

A common goal for many is to get healthier in one way or another. That can mean different things depending on what your situation is, but no matter what, health is a wide spectrum, and everything you do influences your health. A health-focused resolution is the type of robust, long-term goal that is most attainable with help along the way. Even for those of us that work in healthcare, we also need help to improve our long-term health. There are so many aspects of health that it's impossible to be an expert on all of them.

Having a partnership with a provider that can help you navigate health is an important ally, not only for New Year resolutions but for long-term health and wellness.

This is the role I serve for many of the clients I work with.

As a physical therapist, I am able to spend time with my clients, hear their concerns and opinions, and help them find the best help for the problem they are working on. Many times, what I am able to do with them is a keep component of their journey. If you've set a health, wellness, or fitness goal, a physical therapist is a great support to make sure you move comfortably, completely, and safely. It's hard to hit those movement-based goals if you're not feeling good while doing the activity.

The other part of support I can offer is helping clients find the best provider for what they are working on.

While physical therapists have vast knowledge across multiple body and mind-related issues, sometimes you need someone that specializes in a particular field. A physical therapist can be a great resource to connect you to the right provider.

One of the great things about working with clients is helping them get where they want to get, even if it's not something I can solve on my own. Collaborating with other providers is an amazing opportunity to connect with other experts and support my clients. At the end of the day, the goal is to do what is best for the person in front of me.

Having a network of providers makes my work even more enjoyable, and it helps my clients on a deeper level than what I can provide on my own.

Over the last few years, I've worked on creating a network of experts that I can consult with or refer to when it's the best fit for my clients. Clients are always surprised that I would send business away to someone else, but the goal is to get that client feeling great, and sometimes you need to call on your friends to get the awesome outcomes clients are expecting and deserve.

I've learned that one of the best services I can provide is to quarterback the healthcare of my clients.

I get to act as the hub of the wheel, and I get to send people out to where they will get the best treatment. This partnership allows me to form deep relationships with my clients, and it helps them build a network of providers that are specific to their needs. I have many providers, some of the same discipline, that I refer to based on the individual needs of the client.

I even have other physical therapists that I'll send clients to knowing that they can get the best care for them, even if it's not with me. This may seem like a poor business practice for me, but

the goal of the business has always been to do what's best for the client.

If I don't do what's best for the client, then I won't have a business. Sending people to the right provider helps them feel confident and supported while they get great outcomes.

Helping clients navigate their health is a great experience for me and is rewarding in many other ways. This allows me to get people feeling their best, keeps me connected with all the clinicians that are way smarter than me, and creates a long-term relationship with clients and providers.

As the quarterback, sometimes you pass the ball, sometimes you hand it off, and sometimes you take it yourself.

Making the best decision is the game plan, and that's something I enjoy doing to help my clients meet their goals and crush their resolutions! #snowbeastperformance

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