Many years ago, I had to run a few hundred yards to pick up my daughter at school. I was out of breath and realized that I was also sadly out of shape. The next morning, I told my wife that I was going to start training for a triathlon. We laughed hard at the ridiculousness of it … and then the next day, I started training. The time to myself, and the time for myself are some of my best times—a time to step away and do for me.
A fearless philosophy
My three F philosophy is based on the things that hold most people back from enjoying life to the fullest—fear, failure and fun. Fear of trying something new, the risk of failure and the reluctance to let loose and have a little bit of fun. After years of snow skiing, I tried my hand at snowboarding. Once I became comfortable with boarding, I tried the terrain park jumps, rails, boxes and halfpipe. It turns out that maybe the terrain park wasn’t such a great idea for a guy my age, but it sure was fun!
Get busy learning
When we graduated from vet school, we felt accomplished and ready to use everything we’d learned to help pets. It turns out, that’s where our education started. Healthcare advances and experiences are what really shape our careers. You can get busy learning, or get busy dying. After all, life would be boring if we lived it the same way forever.
Nothing to fear
Joining the Fear Free movement revitalized my career. After years of training to be the best vet I could be, I questioned why pets were hiding in the corners of exam rooms, and why pet owners were reluctant to seek veterinary care. I questioned why consumers were spending more money in every sector of the pet care industry except for veterinary medicine. With the help of my mentor, Dr. Marty Becker, I realized there was a whole new level of healthcare that hadn’t been tapped—the pet’s mental health. For me, it’s not just about diabetes and what insulin to use. It’s also about how does that pet feel when you needle it with insulin? Helping create techniques to ensure every pet I touch has a better experience and sharing it with others is rewarding and fun.