Sunday, May 3, 2009

Dreams of a Future Practice…

(note: this article was found after hearing a NECN interview with Dr. Matthew McGonagle of Mount Auburn Hospital whose thoughts echo ours...)

The Mental Health field is truly unique. As providers, we consistently bear witness to the most sensitive, private, and sacred aspects of a person's life. As with other disciplines of Medicine, there is increasing pressure to reduce behavior and mental health to the interaction of biological molecules. The problem with this frame is that we are so much more. Each individual life is loaded with profoundly unique social, psychological, and spiritual meaning that directly influences our physical and mental health.

When thinking of my dream practice, it starts with a few personal assumptions…

  1. Every individual life is sacred and important
  2. We all have a unique path and purpose
  3. There is a universal loving energy that is all around us and within every living thing
  4. Most of the answers we need can be found within

My ideal practice would focus on fostering an environment that enables the individual to tap into the powerful healing forces within. Together, my clients and I would work to cultivate a stronger communication with their inner guidance.

The dream starts with an office environment that facilitates this process. Upon entering, there is a noticeable change in the Energy of the room. The waiting area is serene and restorative. It feels healthy. The receptionist greets the patient with a warm confidence. Beautiful pictures cover the walls. One hears the clean sound of a bubbling fountain. The entire room radiates healing and wellness. Nutritionists, acupuncturists, massage therapists, bodyworkers, and many other practitioners also work there. There is a yoga class going on down the hall… A Qi–Gong class starts in fifteen minutes...

My client enters my office and we begin working together to better understand his patterns of behavior. He gets more in touch with his thoughts and feelings and begins to see the role he plays in his conflicts. As he learns more about himself and processes his difficult experiences, he slowly begins to better appreciate who he is. He begins to accept his unique, messy, beautiful self.

As the client understands herself better, she becomes more aware of a voice within. She realizes it has been there all along. It tells her to treat herself better. She starts to eat a little healthier. Occasionally, she slips back into old patterns but is not too hard on herself when she does. Her chronic health conditions seem much better controlled. A year later, being in much better communication with her inner-guidance, she feels a calling to leave her restricting job and change professions. It takes some more time but eventually she develops the courage to do it. She starts an exciting new business finally doing what she feels she was meant to do. Everything seems so much easier than it did before. She feels more alive and people around her start to take notice. They start to learn from her and get inspired to make some changes in their own lives…

…and then the dream spreads.

by Matthew T. McGonagle, MD


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