What makes you come alive? A physician coach asks herself this important question

We recently visited the Dominican Republic, a beautiful nation with many kind-hearted people.  After we pulled off the road with a flat tire, a man came to our aid and helped us access our spare tire. He then returned with a jug of water so we could wash our hands.  DR.HandiworksSo we understood when we met a young woman here who had left her country to attend Parsons School of Design in New York, only to leave the dynamic, NYC art world to return to this sleepy island she grew up on. While she enjoyed the fast pace and stimulating art climate, her life felt hollow without the strong connections she enjoyed with the people on the island. She loved art, but she loved her people more.  She is now passionately involved in helping Dominican artists teach and market their artwork and uses her skills to disseminate Dominican traditions and allow people to support themselves and improve their standard of living.

Personally, I wrestled with confusion and fear about doing what I was passionate about for many years.  As a venous disease specialist for 30 years, I enjoyed seeing my patients’ bothersome veins disappear or improve and hearing about the positive impact the treatment had on their lives. But what was most satisfying for me were the long conversations we had, during which my patients were able to see truths about themselves that resulted in their recognizing how many possibilities there were, how much choice they actually had, and how powerful they could be in their lives.  It was for this reason that I became a coach. The most exciting and fulfilling thing I can imagine doing with my life is having those kinds of transformative conversations.

As the visionary author, philosopher, theologian, educator and civil rights leader, Howard Thurman, said: “Don’t ask what the world needs.  Ask what makes you come alive, and go do that.”

What makes YOU come alive?

How can you bring more of that into the life you’re leading?

Or is there a change you need to make so you are truly following your passion?


About Helane Fronek

Over the past 28 years I have had a fascinating and fulfilling career in medicine, initially practicing as a general internist and then as a procedural specialist, caring for patients with vein disorders. As Assistant Clinical Professor of Medicine at UC- San Diego School of Medicine, I’m thrilled to be teaching medical students crucial communication skills along with many other aspects involved in the practice of medicine.
This entry was posted in physician burnout, physician coach, physician coaching and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What makes you come alive? A physician coach asks herself this important question

  1. Steven Dooey says:

    Great question, thanks for sharing and all the best!

  2. Thanks for your note.
    A friend likes to say that the quality of our lives is based on the questions we ask ourselves.
    Let 2016 be a year of great questions for all of us!

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