Taking chances

Well, I have either stepped into it big or I’m going to be a hero.  The outcome remains to be seen.

Why, you ask?  Yesterday afternoon I convened a group of individuals to initiate our process of rediscovering what professionalism means in our perioperative environment- what it means for this delivering care, for those receiving care, and for the process of that care.  In short, I’ve convinced an amazing group of people that we should tilt at the windmill of culture change.

As we all filed out of the meeting, I was filled with gratitude for this group coming together.  I was filled with humility that we have a group of people who are willing to commit time and energy to this project.  And then…well, honestly, I was filled with a little bit of fear because I realized that I’ve just taken on a project that is the equivalent of a balance beam routine with maximum possible points for difficulty.  Big risk, big rewards.  Or big risk, big crash.

Now that I’ve had 24 hours to reflect, I realize that by swinging for the fences with an amazing team that we will be positioned to generate amazing amounts of good.  As I told them, I have no expectations that this will be easy.  I have no expectations that this will be seamless (“My entire life is constantly in beta testing, and this is no exception.”).  What I do expect is that we will have a powerful voice from a group of thoughtful, visionary individuals who can make a real difference.

For our Council, and for anyone else embarking upon a new adventure this week, I offer you some of my favorite wisdom from Teddy Roosevelt:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Courage, friends, and onward.

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