Stop looking for the fix
I stopped searching for a diagnosis and my skill as a Physiotherapist sky-rocketed!
It wasn’t that long ago that I was considering bailing out as a Physiotherapist completely. Each interaction with a patient left me feeling like there needed to be more. I felt like I was letting my patients down because I couldn’t fix their problems. Even when the tools I had available to me could decrease people’s pain, increase their function, and fix their tennis elbow or sprained ankle or lumbar disc derangement, I still felt like I was missing something. Like there was so much more possibility for them to heal and for me to grow, and I just couldn’t figure it out!
Then I found Yoga Therapy and started to work integrating yoga into my physiotherapy practice. My Yoga Therapy teacher helped me see that my clients don’t need to be fixed.
People don’t need to be fixed, they need to be seen!
Suddenly it all made sense. My frustration with physiotherapy came from the tunnel vision that searching for a diagnosis and trying to fix the impairments that go along with that diagnosis gave me. I wasn’t seeing the person, I was desperately looking for the physical problem in the person so I could try to fix it by stretching, strengthening, mobilizing, exercising, and applying therapeutic modalities like ultrasound, TENS and laser.
Then I took off the diagnosis blinders and saw each client. Now I see the awesome ways in which people move and appreciate that a diagnosis is simply a thread in the tapestry of their movement. Instead of teasing out that single thread and focusing there, I have softened, expanded my vision to include the entire work of art that each human being is. With this expanded view of each person’s movement, I appreciate how sometimes the shoulders need the attention when the wrists are sore. I appreciate how truly listening to a client boosts their ability to heal. I see that it is not my job to fix anyone. My job is to be with each person, see the whole tapestry, guide and suggest movements to promote feeling. My job is to support each person see themselves as clearly as possible so they can make choices to heal themselves.