We can learn a lot about ourselves by looking at, and thinking about, perceptual illusions and our biases. Look at the image above. The classic, Muller-Lyer illusion. We know that the two lines are the same size. But no matter how much we intuitively "know" this to be true, we see the top line as bigger. We can't unsee it — even if we ...

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"The music is not in the notes, but in the silence between them." - Achilles Charles Debussy Silence is an important part of our everyday lives. Yet, we often don’t consider its critical importance in helping us to reflect on what we’re doing. This is especially important in medicine where we’re so busy sometimes that we forget that what we say and do actually has huge implications on people’s lives. This is even ...

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Recently, I had dinner with an old colleague that I trained in residency with. It’s been a while since we’ve graduated, but the topic turned to how our lives have changed since those early days. Over drinks, my friend said something that stuck with me and inspired this post. “You know, things aren’t perfect. But we’ve got really good problems.” He’s right. I think we sometimes lose sight of the fact that ...

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The emergency room is an interesting place to work. It’s controlled chaos. Walk through the hallways, and you’ll hear people screaming, see others crying, and others wincing in pain. Over time, you get a unique perspective on the human condition. In my years of training and practice, I’ve seen so much. People experiencing their worst days. Others receiving news that will change everything. Some lives ending. Others returning from the brink. Certainly, ...

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