July 4th, Independence Day -- what a perfect time for us all to stand up and defend our own health and well being. Let's revisit the same spirit that propelled us to grab onto this great nation and make it our own. As individuals and Americans we have plenty to be proud of this weekend. How about awakening that rebellious attitude of our predecessors and start thinking more independently about what tests we let our doctors perform on us, what we are willing to eat or what is happening to our food supply?
There is enough information floating out there and plenty of well-researched studies to convince us that we better start taking responsibility for our own individual wellness. The first step is the search for the right health care professional for you, someone that speaks to your sensibility and that you trust. Figuring out whom to "tie your sail to" is not so easy these days. With so many choices and such a wide variety of options, the process of finding Dr. Right can be very confusing. Get recommendations from friends and colleagues, Google different docs and find out who appears to know the most about your particular needs. Then go meet them in person and you be the judge.
Trust your own instincts. If a doctor gives you advice that does not "feel" right then it probably is not right for you. Ask questions, seek out different opinions, talk to loved ones and then do what YOU want to do -- even if it goes against other people's suggestions and experiences.
Believe in setting some standards for yourself. Where does your food come from and how much are you eating? What ways can you stress less and live more fully? When did you last take a holiday from your cell phone?
Look in the mirror and ask yourself, "Do I like what I see?" If you do, then give yourself a round of applause and keep up the good work. If your reception was more tepid then decide today to make some independent changes to feel better about the person staring back at you in that mirror. Start by getting a new haircut, a facial or a new shirt. Every small move counts towards recapturing that lovable, free-spirited YOU!
Write down two ideas that you want to address this month. Clean out your closet, throw away those bad food choices in your fridge, go to bed earlier, drink less soda, walk for 15 minutes more each day -- the possibilities are endless to jumpstart your own wellness.
Only you can enrich your life and improve your productivity, creativity and happiness. Start this Independence Day by "thinking outside the box" about ways you can develop an unruly attitude and take control of your own health care decisions.
Follow Dr. Sharon Ufberg on Twitter: www.twitter.com/DrUfberg