Wednesday, February 24, 2016

5 Ways Physicians Can Use Social Media to Inform

Often I post about to a non-physician audience but this time I'm going to pull my "Physician Card" to make a public service annoucement for all the physician healers.
One of the biggest ways we can share life giving information with others is through social media sites.  I love reading about natural ways to cleanse my hair or detoxify my body.  We can find all kinds of information on the internet: some good some not so good.  But out of everything i come across on the internet the one thing that gets my undies in a bunch is physicians who don't know how to communicate with the public!!!  Arrrrggggggh!  What I decided to do is list the TOP 5 things physicians can do to help inform people.  
Tip #5: Avoid discounting other methods of healing.
Just because a way of healing is new to you doesn't make it less effective.  Western medicine has a way of brainwashing doctors into believing their way is the ONLY way.  Not so.  They are ancient traditional forms of medicine that patients incorporate in addition to allopathic medicine like massage and bone manipulations, oils and tinctures, supplements and diestary.  One of the most common practices of healing is through spiritual methods like prayer and shamanism.  As a physician healer your role is to help your social media audience and patients find wellness through whatever avenue they chose.        
Tip #4:  Choose Interesting Topics!
You may be the foremost researcher on mitochondiral dysfunction but if that doesn't interest your readers no one is going to read that article.  As a physician healer you must use your social media platform to inform and entertain.  In today's society with all the many platofrms people use to communicate if your topic is not interesting no one will read it.  End of discussion.


Tip #3: Less is More
People will give you a good four sentences before they move on to the next subject on their newsfeed.  I you're not talking about celebrity gossip, who won the last powerball or where to buy the diet pills at wholesale prices most people will tune you out.  Of course there is that dedicated group of followers who love reading your posts but even they deserve quick sound useful information.  The more concise you can make your message the more likely they are to read it and get something out of it.  Keep it short but don't sacrifice quality for a quick read.   Besides, you can always give them a way to contact you for more info on the subject.

Tip #2:  People Love Pictures
I know it sounds elementary but the more pictures you include in your feed the more likely readers will take a look.  One of the best ways to explain difficult concepts is in picture format.  For instance if you're teaching your reader the benefits of exercise instead of talking about lunges and burpies, show your reader a picture or video of someone doing the exercise.  You want to look online for graphics that support your article, blog or postings but be careful if you use a picture without crediting the source it may be considered a copyright infraction.  
Last but definitely NOT least: 
Tip #1: Keep Your Message Simple and Be Personable!
I know...  That's really two points but what can I say?  We all know you're brilliant and went to school more years than you wish to recount.  Your audience gets it.  What they won't get is you talking over their heads.  People love reading articles done by great thinkers but no one will get anything out of your message if it's written in medicalese!  Unless you are educating your readers on a particular subject where you give definitions save the medical terminology and multi syllable words for your colleagues not your blog posts or social media sites.  Lastly above all be personable.  The world already perceives physicians as know-it-all surgeons who run around in scrubs and protective gear all day.  No one wants to take advice from a smart 4 medical doctor who seems distant and aloof.  Let your readers know you care with your words.  Like they taught me in medical school: No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care.    
Hope this helps some of my aspiring physician scribes. 
From the NBC Universal Odyssey Media Book Writer's Retreat~ Happy Writing!!!
 #OdysseyMedia #BookWritersRetreat #NBCUniversal #DrJeriBlogs

Monday, February 15, 2016

Keeping Up Appearances Not Just a British Sitcom

The beginning of 2016 has illuminated a number of things for me.  One is the value I place on authenticity in my relationships with friends.

During my three month hiatus from social media a number of friends reached out to me for emotional support.  Along with the routine feel good updates and sharing I also heard many stories of defeat, great losses, betrayal, deaths, infidelity and more.  We all need spaces free from Instagram selfies, meaningless tweets and Facebook posts.  I welcomed the moments of vulnerability with my friends especially since there are few places where we can set down our masks and be ourselves.  What disgusted me during those moments was the incongruence between their reality and their social media posts!

"What a minute!!! What is she posting about?" was the first thing that came to my mind for a number of them.  Like the next man I believe in declaring "better" over my life but to portray an image of "having it all together" when things are "utterly falling apart" is the epitome of inauthentic.


Stop living for the camera!
No judgement here.  None whatsoever.  I just implore humans to live in their truth versus creating a fairytale filled with unicorns, rainbows, mermaids and pots of gold.  I have been told the fullness of my imagination is right up there with the best fantasy writers but these imaginary lies I mean lives created on social media are a farce!

When I was in full time clinical practice I would say to my patients:
"It's difficult to heal what you conceal."     
I'd like to take credit for this thought but it's not mine to claim.  The very thought of us sharing our true stories leaves most people running for safety.



Our untruths about who we really are and what we are really experiencing remind me of the 90's British sitcom I love watching called "Keeping Up Appearances."  The sitcom follows the life of a pretentious middle class lady, Hyacinth Bucket, who insists on pronouncing her name bouquet. She is from a working class family but pretends she is a member of the aristocracy and belittles anyone who is not of her imagined social status.  (I've met my share of Hyacinths here in The States.)  Hyacinth goes through great lengths to hide her family from the public eye.  Her plans to distance herself from them are often thwarted by their zany antics.  She goes through great lengths to protect her social imagery ~ GREAT LENGTHS!!!  Hyacinth Bucket is a hoooooooot.   Crazy as a bat would be more descript!  But how many "Hyacinths" find themselves on social media talking about trips they have never taken, homes they have never owned or connections they have yet to make?  The pretension is nauseating!



At the root of our pandemic fa├žade is the fear of rejection.  Being rejected for who we really are.  It's so easy to don the appearance of "All is well" as you whither away on the inside.  It takes courage to BE YOU I mean the true you!!!  Allow others to see the true YOU - the good, the bad, the beautiful, the ugly...  They will either connect with you or remain distant but it's their choice.  Keeping up appearances starves the true us from ever living.

As you are forming goals and meeting challenges for 2016 I challenge you to reveal your TRUE SELF.  Stop hiding!      

Meet me on Instagram and Twitter @drjerispeaks.  Let the world know the real you!
Until next time.

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