“Happiness doesn’t depend on any external conditions, it is governed by our mental attitude.” So said author, theologian and self-help guru Norman Vincent Peale in his seminal book, The Power of Positive Thinking.
More simply stated by Zig Ziglar, “Your attitude will determine your altitude.”
I was reminded of these guiding principles during a recent encounter with a patient who I’ll refer to as Mr. O.
Mr. O. is a relatively new patient to my practice. He is 97-years old and in good health – save for what could be activity-limiting ailments such as severe arthritis, a hunched-over gait and poor eyesight.
Yet he is quite active and enjoys all the cultural and gustatorial splendors the city has to offer. Although Mr. O.’s lifestyle has been quite hampered during the pandemic.
But now, with two vaccines onboard and the availability of Access-A-Ride, Mr. O. has been able to broaden the perimeter of his outings.
While examining him during his routine dental visit just a day or two ago, I detected a cavity under one his front crowns. I suggested a conservative approach to the problem by cleaning out the decay and “patching” the residual defect with a filling.
“I don’t want any problems in the future. I prefer to have a new crown made.”
Mr. O.’s sister passed away when she was 107 and he plans to be around for a while. With this positive outlook, I have little doubt that he will.
As Steven Covey said in his book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,
“What the mind can conceive, the body can achieve.” Mr. O. seems to be the embodiment this philosophy.
You Go, Guy!
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