Paging Dr. Strange…

3 08 2009

flatlineI like to pride myself on being a man full of ideas.  In one of my classes this past semester I was even asked what I could bring to the class , and I responded with “I’m the idea guy” – whatever that means.

Ask anyone who knows me and they will quickly tell you I am not one to bite my tongue and refrain from offering any suggestions, no matter how good or bad they may be.  

Over the course of my summer internship, however, I learned a very valuable lesson about these “ideas” of mine: treat them like your patients.

Put yourself in the role of an ER doctor.  Everyday you have patients come in with all types of illnesses and afflictions and you are the first to treat them.  You have finally made your grand diagnosis and begin to operate by doing a procedure no one else had thought to do.

1. Don’t get too emotionally involved greys

No one wants an Izzy/Denny situation.  Yea you had a great idea that no one thought of, but that doesn’t make you special. You should take pride in the intellectual property you create, but if you are becoming far too protective and get irritated when other people make suggestions, something’s  wrong.

2. Let another Dr. take a look

If you’re patient is having an irregular heart beat, wouldn’t it make more sense for a cardiologist to take a look?  You can’t get offended/upset if you have to hand over your “patients” to someone else.  Don’t think for one second that because it was your idea, you should be the only one thinking about it.  Ask around, and see what other people think. It can only strengthen what you already have.

3. You have to let them go…

Sometimes, there are circumstances beyond our control and patients flatline whether you like it or not. Don’t take it personally- it happens.  Not every idea, whether you think it will be or not, is going to be a homerun.

From now on, think like a doctor and treat your ideas like they are your patients.  Treat them all equally, and give them all  the care and help they deserve.  If they flatline, fight like hell to save them, but realize there are sometimes when, even you can’t do a thing about it.

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