Doctor or Physician – How To Choose

We live most of our lives relatively healthy.

That in and of itself is a miracle considering the complexity of processes going on in our bodies at any given moment.  When we become ill, whether it’s with ‘a cold’ or a more serious condition like cancer, we suddenly find ourselves in the uncharted territory of the medical system.

It is of vital importance for each of us to realize the healing capacity of our power to choose WHO will provide information, care and support during the evolutionary process of the illness.

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Doctor or Physician: How to Choose

Definition of Physician

Definition of Doctor of Medicine

When a doctor is acting as a physician it is reflective of their state of mind and their attitude toward their patients. There are many doctors who are exemplary physicians.

And, in the world of institutionalized Health Care, it is easy to become a disease with a human attached to it rather than a person in the midst of an illness.

Having the wisdom to choose between a Doctor or someone who practices the art of being a Physician can sometimes make the difference between life and death.

How can you tell the difference?

It comes down to some pretty simple things.

With A True Physician:

1. You will feel seen.

2. You will feel heard.

3. You won’t be interrupted as you describe your concerns and symptoms.

4. You’ll feel that you’re not on the clock. In fact you’ll feel that you’re in sacred time.

5. Even though you may want an immediate answer to comfort you, the physician will take the time to do the necessary inquiries so that a whole picture of you will emerge. What’s comforting is not having someone jump to a conclusion about the wondrously complex life that you are.

6. You won’t feel as if you’ve become an ‘object’ (a bunch of symptoms with a name.) You’ll feel respected and maybe even loved.

We’ve all heard stories of women or men like this. They practice the art of medicine mixed with the extraordinary benefits that contemporary science offers.

One of the gifts the world of scientific analysis gives us today is that we can see, measure and cross-reference processes in the body as never before. A physician knows how to use that tool set to develop in concert with their patient what will sustain the most dignified approach to healing.

And most of all don’t forget that your Inner Physician comes first.

Your inner physician is that place of clear knowing and understanding that is always there but at times we choose to ignore. It’s the part of us that says “maybe eating that third piece of cake isn’t the best idea right now.”

Remember you have the authority and ability to know what’s right for you. In partnership with your physician you can choose your best course of action and not lose yourself, your inner physician, in the process.

In our role of helping people turn on their inner physician and choose their health care team, we have seen that when an individual’s inner physician is present informing their choices and providing kindness to their body, they always recover more quickly from what has been ailing them.


Abraham Verghese: A Doctor’s Touch
Recently, we came across a TED talk in which Abraham Verghese eloquently makes the case for the restoration of touch as a critical aspect of functional medicine. David met him several years ago and he is a remarkable man. Spend the 17 minutes to watch this, it might save your life.

One comment on “Doctor or Physician – How To Choose

  1. wendy on

    well as i was scrolling down, reading your essay, i thought: i’ve got to forward them the verguesse talk that esalen just blasted to all their members. i scrolled a bit farther and found, delightfully, that i was one step behind you, again. (that thrills me!) loved breakfast in arizona……


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