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10 Tips To Help You Find The Right Doctor

10 Tips To Help You Find The Right Doctor

You might have been raised to believe that doctors are gods and that you shouldn’t question us, but let me tell you the real truth, my loves. We docs are in the service industry - it’s our job to love, nurture, tend, and care for you, and if we’re not doing that the way you deserve, you should fire our sorry asses!

If you weren’t getting what you needed from your massage therapist, hairdresser, or yoga instructor, you would find someone else, right? Why should your doctor be any different? And yet, your doctor is even more important. This is serious stuff we’re talking about here.

Plus, medicine is, after all, a spiritual practice. At least it should be, and if your doctor doesn’t believe that, do you really want to put your body and your life in his or her hands?  If you didn’t like your priest, minister, guru, or shaman, you would go elsewhere, right?

I just got an email from a reader saying she was miserable with her doctor, but she was afraid to see anyone else because she didn’t want to get labeled as a troublesome “doctor shopper.”

Why Not Doctor Shop?

My response to her was “Why not doctor shop? And who cares if someone labels you ‘troublesome?’ It’s your body. Your health. Your life. Your choice.”

10 Tips To Help You Find The Right Doctor

  • Interview your doctor. Let them know when you schedule the appointment that you would like to schedule a consultation to make sure your doctor is the right fit for you. If the doctor won’t submit to being interviewed, you gotta wonder what they’re afraid of. Find someone who has enough confidence in their awesomeness to agree to being interviewed.
  • Be willing to get what you pay for. Insurance may not pay for you to doctor shop or for consultative interviews with doctors. So tell the front desk you’re willing to pay cash when you schedule the appointment. Also, doctors who do not accept insurance tend to offer more time. Find a doctor who will give you a whole hour if you can.
  • Demand what you deserve (in a gentle, loving way, of course).  Understand that your doctor may have 40 patients on her schedule, so be mindful of her time – and ask how long you have allotted for you. Then be clear about what you expect and don’t settle for less.
  • Seek someone who shares your beliefs. If you are a spiritual person counting on your relationship with the Divine to guide you on your self-healing journey, and your doctor is an atheist, it might not be the best fit.
  • Check in with how your body reacts. If you feel tight, clenched, nervous, cold, shivery, or closed off, your body may be telling you something. Look for feelings of openness, warmth, relaxation, and calmness in your body.
  • Listen to your intuition. What does your gut say? Do you trust this doctor? Do you feel safe in her hands? Trust your Inner Pilot Light (that 100% authentic, unapologetically YOU, knowing inner healer who will always steer you in the right direction.)
  • Ask your doctor if they believe you can be healed. If your doctor reads you negative statistics, dismisses your self-healing superpowers, insists that there’s no hope, lacks belief in miracles, and generally considers you a hopeless case, get thee the hell outta dodge!
  • Feel the love. I know I practice love, with a little medicine on the side. Science may cure, but only love heals. Go where the love is. There’s plenty of loving doctors out there. Find one.
  • Ensure that your doctor trusts your intuition. If you believe homeopathy is going to heal you, and your doctor thinks homeopaths are quacks, fire her. You and your inner wisdom know more than anyone else, no matter how long they went to medical school.
  • Know that you deserve the best care possible. Don’t go telling yourself stories about how you’re not good enough/ smart enough/ young enough/ rich enough/ [fill in the blank] enough to get this kind of stellar medical care. If you believe you’ll only get bad care, it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Know you are worth it.

Are You Ready To Go Out And Get The Kind Of Care You Deserve?

This doesn’t just apply to doctors, you know. (I picked on them because my profession is notoriously bad about providing good customer service these days.) But this also goes for alternative health providers, the woman who does your pedicure, and your dentist.

I believe in you. There are so many good doctors and other health care practitioners out there. Find the ones who are right for you.

For more about me and the atypical medical services I offer, read here.

Do you feel comfortable doing these things? Have you already found awesome healers? Do you have other tips for how to find great docs? Tell us what you think!

What if I told you caring for your body was the LEAST important part of your health? Watch my TEDx talk here to learn the MOST important part.

With faith in you and hope for my profession,

****

Lissa Rankin, MD: Founder of OwningPink.comPink Medicine Revolutionarymotivational speaker, and author of What’s Up Down There? Questions You’d Only Ask Your Gynecologist If She Was Your Best Friend and Encaustic Art: The Complete Guide To Creating Fine Art With Wax.

Learn more about Lissa Rankin here.

 

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Lissa Rankin

Lissa Rankin, MD is a mind-body medicine physician, founder of the Whole Health Medicine Institute training program for physicians and other health care providers, and the New York Times bestselling author of Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof That You Can Heal Yourself.  She is on a grassroots mission to heal health care, while empowering you to heal yourself.  Lissa blogs at LissaRankin.com and also created two online communities - HealHealthCareNow.com and OwningPink.com. She is also the author of two other books, a professional artist, an amateur ski bum, and an avid hiker. Lissa lives in the San Francisco Bay area with her husband and daughter.

32 comments

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9:41PM PST on Jan 23, 2012

Thank you.

8:18PM PST on Jan 23, 2012

Thanks.

1:46AM PST on Jan 19, 2012

My family doctor listens to me, but neither of my 2 heart doctors do. My Gynocoligist and Neurologist listen, but my Orthopeadic doctor does not. But, I stopped going to the Orthopedic doctor. He did a spinal fusion on my back and it is just as bad as it was. Now, I do not want another one.

8:07AM PST on Jan 14, 2012

Good article, thank you..

8:53PM PST on Jan 13, 2012

As Mitt Romney would say, " I like to fire people." He was talking about firing incompetent doctors, insurance companies, or any medical workers who didn't do his/her job. I agree. We should be careful in choosing doctors; we know our bodies, and it is our job to give our doctors all the information we have about our symptons, our histories, our medications, and our personal beliefs about what is wrong with us. We should ask for a second or third or even sixth opinion if we have doubts about what our doctor is telling us. I am fortunate; I have a good doctor. In fact, I have three good doctors, but I had one doctor who did his best to kill me. That's when I realized how good my internalist was. He told me that I was in danger and there was no reason for the treatment that I had received. I am also fortunate that I have a daughter who was a doctor at Mayo. When I gave her the information, she agreed with my internalist. She carefully explained to me that I was the one who would suffer the consequences of poor medicine so I should be the one who questioned every diagnosis. Now, I do; I even talk to my daughter sometimes about my health; only sometimes.

4:40PM PST on Jan 12, 2012

thanks for sharing

2:00PM PST on Jan 12, 2012

I would add that if your potential doctor can't say "I don't know" don't go back.

12:08PM PST on Jan 11, 2012

I can't complain. I have a wonderful Dr. She is to me one of the best, care, feelings, talks to you not above you, tkakes time with you. I am very blessed to have her for my Dr. Also she loves doggies she has 9 rescues

2:49AM PST on Jan 11, 2012

Informed consumption of medical care is a good idea regardless of the system, the funding mechanism, or the types of care.

9:36PM PST on Jan 10, 2012

I agree with the need to Dr shop, but what do you do for someone who has issues with all Drs? My mum needs helps but is refusing to get it!

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