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Episode 48. Your future begins with a thought

We all have thoughts about what we want our future to look like. 

From childhood, we have had dreams of what we want to be and an ideal future that we hope to bring to reality. Maybe it was getting into a given specialty, a particular job, or getting into dating. It could be anything, but it required taking action to move forward. 

It is all about pursuing the desired future feeling. Our future starts with a thought of where we’re and where we want to be. 

Going out there and putting on our future identity will help us to make progress and ultimately get there. Be who you say you are, what you want to be, and it will help you pursue actions that lead you to the results that you are looking for.

Join the conversation with your host Dr. Ryan Stegink as he shares more about how your future and changing the future of medicine starts with a thought.

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#thoughtwork #thoughtscreatefuture #intentionality #wellness #physicianwellness #residentwellness #physician #doctor #medicine #mededwell #mededwellpodcast 

Tune in!

During this episode, you will learn about;

[00:00] Introduction to the show 

[02:55] Today’s focus: How Your Future Begins With A Thought

[04:05] Pursuing the desired future feeling 

[04:23] Working through the uncomfortable feeling of ‘I don’t know.’

[06:32] Going out and acting your future dream and identity

[07:21] Setting goals and putting yourself into the future that you want

[09:23] Pursuing actions that lead us to the results that we are looking for

[11:48] Embracing the challenges in your journey to grow 

[12:44] You have a choice, and it starts with what you are thinking

[14:06] Be a part of helping change medicine; it starts with a thought

[15:09] Ending the show and call to action 

Notable Quotes 

  • Our future starts with a thought of where we’re and where we want to go
  • Going out and acting on your future identity will help you to make progress and ultimately get there. 
  • Put yourself into the future state that you desire 
  • Wherever you want to go, you can choose your next thought to help you move forward

Do you want to get home sooner from the clinic or hospital? With all your notes and charting done, too? Get your FREE PDF guide with 10 tips to maximize your clinical efficiency!

Let’s Connect 

Dr. Ryan Stegink 


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Above are the episode show notes and below is the transcript via Some episode transcripts have been edited more than others, but they are up in the meantime to help those who would rather read and for searchability on the web. Extensive editing has not been prioritized as I seek to both produce regular content and maintain my own wellness. See the website disclaimer if you have questions, since this is all for your education and entertainment only. Enjoy!


Dr. Ryan Stegink (00:01):
Does charting in medicine seem overwhelming the queue of messages, labs, patient calls that never seems to get smaller. The pile of preauthorizations awaiting your input, the tens or hundreds of charts that you still have to finish and sign it’s exhausting, right? And still all you want is to be able to go home with your work done, to be able to spend time with family, hang out with friends, practice, self care. I want to invite you to join me for a six week long coaching program, charting mastery, where you will get equipped with the skills and approach that you need to get home sooner and leave that work at work, to check out more info and to join the wait list, head over to charting You will be among the first to hear when the door is open so that you can join me on this journey.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (01:12):
There will be opportunities to reflect and earn CME after the different sessions as well. And now onto today’s show. Welcome to the MedEd well podcast, empowering physicians to get work done at work, then be able to reflect and choose what is important for both their life and medical practice. I’m your host, Dr. Ryan Stegen general pediatrician and life coach for physicians. Hello, welcome to another episode of the MedEd well podcast, where physicians come to be encouraged and equipped to take the next step in their own wellness journey. Thank you so much for subscribing for sharing these episodes and for engaging with these concepts, I’ve been really excited to get to share with you so many different stories from other physicians to hear and to learn from them as well, and to learn about the different variety of ways that we each have to share. Yeah, just how we are wired differently and have such an impact on the world, around us as physicians, and as people in a very back and forth alternate between having guests and solo shows.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (02:39):
If you have ideas of topics you’d like to hear covered, or maybe you’d like to be a guest and share on a particular topic that you think would really serve the other physicians, listening, reach out, you can find the link in the show notes. So today we’re gonna be talking about how your future begins with your thoughts. So in thinking about this episode, I had thoughts about what I wanted it to look like, and really we all have thoughts, maybe dreams of what we want our future to look like. Maybe as a child, it was wanting to be a doctor or maybe that was more an undergrad or later, but it was an ideal future that you were looking forward to, that you were hoping would be a reality. Maybe it was deciding on what specialty you wanted to go into. Maybe it was a particular job that you wanted to get. Maybe it was for me, I wanna spend the rest of my life with this woman I’m dating. And so I’m gonna propose, could be any number of things that we think about. And then we start to take action. Really? It’s about pursuing a desired future feeling.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (04:08):
And so then we take certain actions looking for those results, but really it starts with the thoughts where we are and where we want to go the before and the after. So I’ve previously talked about how I thought that my family was going to rent a house. We were previously in an apartment. And then, yeah, I didn’t know what I didn’t know about renting versus owning. And then I talked to realtor and some friends, we had some offers that weren’t accepted eventually did get one accepted, but it was, it was coming from the thought of, we need somewhere to live, whether we’re renting or buying. And then moving towards that, knowing that the feelings of feeling cramped, feeling sometimes irritable with other family members, we were able to make it work. It was something that we wanted. And from the thought, the feeling to the action we moved forward, I didn’t know what I didn’t know about looking at houses.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (05:27):
And I had to work through those uncomfortable feelings of, Hmm, I don’t know. And maybe I feel felt a little bit overwhelmed at first, but then walking through that process, I was able to get more clarity maybe for you. It was thinking about going through med school to become a physician. You think, how is anybody going to get there? Where on rounds you’re coming up with different diagnoses for your differential. And you wonder, how do you do that? How do you go through a whole clinic’s worth of patients going to see 10 patients, 15 patients, 20 patients, whether it’s in a half day or a full day, if you had told me that I was gonna see sometimes 10, 12 patients in a half day and be able to get most or all of their notes done, I would’ve thought you were crazy. But then going back to the beginning of med school, where there’s your first year, you learn to take a history, you learn to ask, what would a doctor think?

Dr. Ryan Stegink (06:40):
What would they ask? What else would they do you learn? And then act from that. It’s assuming that future identity and then going out and acting like that. And ultimately you make progress until you’re there. This is also a big part of professionalism. So integrity showing up when you’re supposed to acknowledging when actually I didn’t ask that, but I can go back and ask and just being who you say you are and who you wanna be. So from just looking at that identity piece, you then look at, okay, what are some of those intermediate goals of things that you want to achieve? Whether it’s going from being a medical student to matching and becoming a, a resident physician looking at subspecialties or a particular job that you want could be an additional role or something as an attending that you want to take on. Maybe it’s just thinking about what do I want my future practice to look like?

Dr. Ryan Stegink (07:53):
Do I want to go, part-time do I want to have another opportunity to serve on a committee to be a part of planning particular conference or some other opportunity, maybe even outside of medicine. So I want you to try to put yourself in that future state to say, if I knew that I would make it to whatever my goal is, what would I need to be thinking? What would I be feeling? And what thoughts would I need to take to hold onto to have that feeling? Whether it’s a feeling of confidence, feeling self-assured feeling calm, feeling, relaxed, feeling joyful, those are very different thoughts. Then looking at something and ending up fear, feeling anxious, our unintentional thoughts often lead us these places, but realizing how those thoughts lead to our feelings and how that shows up for us in her body can really make a big difference.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (09:04):
Because if we notice some of those perhaps uncomfortable feelings and just allow them, and it gives us an opportunity to reflect and maybe even choose an intentional thought to get us closer to where we want to go, ultimately pursuing those actions out of the desired feelings that lead us to those results that we’re looking for. So yeah, there are struggles and challenges for each of us. I’ve had my share. I’m sure there’ll be more ahead. But when I face those things, I’m learning more and more to really lean in and say, what can I learn from this? I’ve been there with fear and doubt and feeling anxious, but often I’m looking at it from my current perspective, from the perspective of my past and challenges or things that I’ve been unsure about my own insecurities, but I want each of us to think about how could we look at some of these challenges from someone who’s already made it to where we want to go, whether it’s from the perspective of being a resident who’s matched and the med student who’s looking forward to that sometimes it’s easy to be insecure to have that imposter syndrome pop up.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (10:36):
And what if you said, Hey, if I was a resident looking back on my experiences as a med student, how would I view some of those challenges and setbacks would I say, oh yeah, that was just part of my journey to matching because I had some interviews that I didn’t do as well on, or I felt like I was clamming up or not as open with what I was experiencing, how I was coming across, but to give yourself grace in that and to say, yeah, but that was part of my journey to getting to where I wanted to go, looking back from being an attending to say all those times that I practiced taking a history, asking those questions of really leaning in, of observing how my attendings previously would have these hard conversations. How much more are those opportunities shaping who you are as a physician today because of what you went through.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (11:48):
Some of those things that seem like such big mountains in front of us can sometimes when looking back be seen as maybe part of the journey that if you didn’t go through ’em, you wouldn’t have grown in the ways that you did and how much more, how much more confidence would you have going forward. If you knew that you would eventually make it there to that ideal future, there’s no guarantees, but taking those steps, going to hold onto those thoughts that you know, will get you to the feeling that you need to take the actions on the journey, to where you want to go. It allows you to then face whatever circumstances come your way, knowing that you can choose that next thought to help you move forward. So wherever you want to go today, wherever you want to go in the future, I want you to realize that you have a choice that it starts with what you are thinking.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (13:00):
You think about something like charting in medicine, or some people say, I can do this. Or some people they say this is really challenging or really overwhelming or stressful. It’s just a neutral thing. And it’s how we approach it. So we’ll have more on that in a future episode, but I just want you to start thinking about how you can take that next step forward based on your thoughts. Thanks so much for joining me here today on the med ed, well podcast. I can’t wait to hear how you make progress as a result of this episode, how you take steps towards your dreams for the future and what encouragement you are able to provide to others by coming alongside them. Because you said, I want to do this. This is the type of person that I want to be in the future. And it’s gonna take us all coming together as colleagues and teammates in medicine to say, you matter, you matter my fellow physician, you matter, nurse medical, assistant, other staff, our patients, I wanna be a part of helping change medicine, and it starts with you. It starts with a thought about the future.

Dr. Ryan Stegink (14:44):
So please take an opportunity to subscribe. If you haven’t to the podcast, if you haven’t left me a review and you have feedback, please consider leaving a review or reach out with thoughts about these episodes about things you’d like to hear, or if you’d like to be a guest, take that next step in your wellness today. Thanks for all you do, and have a great day. And now for our important disclaimer, Dr. Ryan Stegen is a practicing general pediatrician, but the MedEd well podcast is not reflective views, opinions or belief of his employer nor his affiliated university. Additionally, the MedEd well podcast is for educational and entertainment purposes only, and should not be considered advice regarding financial legal student loan, medical, or any other specific topic. In such a case you should see consultation with certified professional in that particular area. Again, thanks for joining us on the MedEd well podcast and have a great day.