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  • Writer's pictureMegan Filoramo

The cold turkey effect.

Your life can be changed in one minute, with one thought.

I’ll say it again.

One thought can change the whole trajectory of your life.


Isn’t that crazy?

Take the example of someone who struggles with smoking for years and then quits, cold turkey. They believe in some new thought and finally accomplish the thing they thought was impossible.

This is a dramatic example, or course, but the same is true in your life, with things that seem just as insurmountable.

It is a thought that brings on that change, and a thought that can give you the mental fortitude, or even the ease, to follow through.

Nothing else has to actually change.

Just the thought and a decision to believe that thought, no matter what.

Now I’m not just talking about positive thinking here, I’m talking about a shift in perspective that comes from inside.

Let me give you an example of how this worked in my life at work, one that is not driven by life or death, like quitting smoking.

A few years ago, I had a patient added on to my schedule last minute and without anyone checking with me. Because I didn’t know the patient was coming, I spent more time with the previous patient. When I came out of the room and my MA had to break the news to me that I had an unexpected patient waiting and now I would be running behind, I was pretty annoyed.

I HATE running behind.

In an effort to not lose my mind over something so arbitrary, I joked “Well, that’s excellent news. We get to help another person today.”

Yes, I was being sarcastic.

But when I heard myself say those words out loud, they hit me like a ton of bricks.

I DID get to help someone else, someone who was so desperate they made a same day appointment and came to the office right away, someone who couldn’t manage their pain without my help.

It didn’t change the facts of the situation. I was going to run behind. I was not in complete control of my schedule. I could get home late.

None of that changed, but my perspective changed in one instant (and as the result of sarcasm).

I could help one person that really needed me. If I dragged my focus off myself and put it on them, my work had so much meaning.

That one thought was the catalyst for so many other supportive thoughts,

My work is important.

I can manage an inconvenience for the sake of helping someone in need.

My patients need me.

These thoughts were true before, I just wasn’t thinking them. I had gotten caught up in the structure I had built to support my day in and day out routine.

This doesn’t make me bad. I still believe in structure and work protocols. I still hate running behind. But now I look for ways to make it work instead of all the ways it can’t work. I look for solutions instead of holding rigidly to the structure.

All because of one thought, I get to help someone who really needs it.

I still prefer to be consulted before patients are added to my schedule and I don’t always say yes. I still protect the time I have dedicated to the patients who are already coming in. But this is a very different energy than “they should follow the rules” or “there is no way I can do this.”

One thought made me feel better at work, a thought that now, years later I still hold full belief in. A thought that literally, in one second, changed how I think.

A thought that didn’t require me rejecting all my other beliefs to be true.

Yes, I can help one more person.

Yes, the care I give can change someone’s life.

Yes, I can still request that there are no same-day add ons without checking with me first.

Yes, it can still be important for me to try to run on time on a regular basis.

Yes, I can manage when there are glitches in scheduling, especially if the glitch allows me to help people.

Yes, thinking that day about the impact on my patient and not myself, changed my perspective for good.

So what thoughts are you holding onto that may not be creating the feelings you want in your life? Keep in mind, we aren’t judging those thoughts. They may seem 100% true.

They expect too much.

I am too exhausted.

There is nothing that can make this better.

I just have to do this for 5 more years.

These thoughts shut us down to feeling better. What if we could file these thoughts for now and create thoughts that can change our perspective?

  • Even the care I give when I am tired, or headachy, or whatever, can still be meaningful.

  • The care I give IS the most important thing, not schedules or support staff or my coworkers attitude.

  • A patient doesn’t always understand the care that I am giving. I can give good care even if they don’t feel it is the best care.

  • I am doing this because I believe that people deserve care.

These are just some options. Play around with what feels true to you. And then just practice it, practice reminding yourself. Commit to the thought.

Even if your problems seem bigger than just some little change in thought, your big problems will still respond to little solutions.

Let’s not make it harder than it needs to be. Pick a thought- I would love to hear what it is.


If your current thoughts seem set in stone and you need help breaking through, reach out today and schedule an consult call. There is no point in putting off feeling better, imagine the long term effects of that :)

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