An Unusual Visit


Please read this post in its entirety, to get the full meaning. I’m aware, it’s a bit strange.

Recently I toured a historic museum, with the hope there might be some space available for the nonprofit I run, to utilize as office space. I went to the State Hospital (now known as the Colorado Mental Hospital in Pueblo; CMHIP), and toured the former Superintendent’s House. There was no space available, yet I learned some information, that I actually teach and share about, here at Dentistry It’s Personal (DIP).

I’ve shared with you, that we can find helpful and useful information, in other industries, that will benefit you as a practicing dentist, and in your personal life. Through the more than 100 years of providing care for the mentally ill, the “State Hospital” was basically a city within a city, totally self-contained. Every patient was to spend time daily in nature, and much of that time was spent being useful. There was a dairy, they grew their own fruits and vegetables, flowers and herbs, and there was general maintenance of the grounds.

dentist, dentists, dentistry

We spend so much time, inside, that most of us to exercise, we go inside to a gym. We benefit greatly, spending time in nature. Even, if it’s mowing the lawn or shoveling snow off of the driveway, time outside, grounds us. After spending hours under artificial light, in front of computer screens, surrounded by technology, in the presence of negative energy, like frightened patients, you’ve got to get outside. Okay, maybe that’s a little strong, you don’t HAVE TO, you will greatly benefit if you do.

Health list of benefits to spending time outdoors:

  1. Getting outside makes exercise easier.
  2. It can spur weight loss.
  3. Nature increases brain function. (my personal favorite)
  4. It increases vitamin D intake.
  5. May help us age gracefully.
  6. Nature is great for stress-reduction.
  7. The outdoors make us happy.


Let’s look at the another point I observed. Being useful. Now as a dentist, what you do day in and day out is useful. If we take it one step further, and something we teach here at DIP, is volunteering.  Being of service to others, without being paid. I realize with busy lives it can be difficult to find the time to volunteer, yet the benefits to you, your community, and even your family, are worth it. Yes, helping others, there is benefit to them, to you, it is measurable too. By volunteering, it can help reduce stress, combat depression, and generally improve your health and happiness.

Benefits of volunteering: 4 ways to feel healthier and happier

  1. Volunteering connects you to others
  2. Volunteering is good for your mind and body
  3. Volunteering can advance your career/vocation
  4. Volunteering brings fun and fulfillment to your life

Even though I was looking for office space to rent, and I didn’t find it, I received so much more from my visit to the “State Hospital”. You never know where you might find inspiration from. This applies to me as a writer, and to you as a dentist.

So now, it’s time to take action. Decide and schedule what you are going to do outside this week, and when you are going to do it. Look for an opportunity to volunteer. Remember, it doesn’t have to be a long term commitment.

Let me know what you decide to do. I’d love to know.

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