Here's to Your Independence
I do not often repeat posts, blog or articles. However I have received several requests for a repost of this blog. One kind reader from Massachusets wrote, "That is the singular most emotional call I have read in a while. Please reprint on July 4th. Do not just refer to it give a link. Please reprint it so when anyone logs on they will see it on the front page of the ADVANCE blogs."
Well, for that kind reader and others, less effusive but still requesting a reprint, here goes:
On July 4, 1776 the United States declared
independence from Britain and a vigorous new democracy was born. This year we
celebrate our 236th birthday and our founding fathers are probably sputtering
in wonderment, “Who knew this experiment in democracy would be so successful?”
When American patriots chose to defy King,
Crown, a powerful power structure, and even history itself, the conventional
wisdom was that the fledgling movement could not survive. There was little more
than a deep desire to be free, a belief in the power of determination and the
shared aspiration to be independent.
Independence is a scary thought. Whether it is a country, a profession, an
organization or an individual, the status quo can be safe because it represents
a known quantity. One learns how to cope with the expected; it is the
unexpected that presents the greatest challenges. Psychologists describe this
as the “better the devil you know” phenomenon and posit that it explains why
even victims of horrendous treatment will opt to remain in what might seem to
everyone to be an obviously untenable situation.
not that our forefathers had all the answers, or were imbued with extraordinary
strength and courage; it is simply that their desire for a better life
superseded their fear. As executives in healthcare, beholden to so many masters
and powerbrokers, we are often tentative about moving beyond our fears.
As a profession, we obsess about how we are
beholden to pathologists, the government, regulatory agencies and other
healthcare professionals. How can we deny the "reality" that we are
negatively impacted and held back by so many?
One consideration often overlooked is the
very preoccupation with the “reality” prevents us from changing it and moving
forward. What would be the result if we chose not to be subservient or subject
to the whims and fancies of others? The strong likelihood is we would be closer
to our dream of a vibrant, independent, proud profession. The worst case
scenario is we would be where we are right now.
Personally and professionally, individually
and as a profession, I wish you a Happy Independence.