I received my COVID vaccination yesterday (March 11, 2021), almost one year to the day since I came to the realization that I was going to have to shut my physiotherapy clinics down due to a developing world pandemic. I closed down the primary source of revenue that was supporting my family of five and moved to our family cabin in a small town in central British Columbia for two months where I proceeded to watch the bottom fall out of the world. We lived in a little oasis detached from the realities of the world with literally nothing we could do but be with each other and play outside for two full months; it proved to be exactly what my brain and my body needed, a forced rest. As stressful as the situation was, I found the tension that I was holding in my body and the headaches that I was experiencing started to fade away after weeks of having nowhere to go, nowhere to be and nothing to do. My over-scheduled life was the source of a lot of my daily discomfort.
In late May of 2020 after two months of hiding from other humans, we moved back to Vancouver and I started the process of relaunching a business that required me and most of my employees to be in small rooms physically touching relative strangers all day. I was charged with creating the set of rules that our clinics were going to function under and proceeded to watch people tip toe back out of isolation and into our offices looking for help. We were the first outing for many people after the lock down, so it was very interesting to see and hear how the experience was affecting a broad cross section of others; it is always humbling to learn about other people’s struggles. Read More
Anxiety is a very powerful driving force seeded in your subconscious that helps create the filter that you see the world through. Everyone has a certain level of anxiety, but it tends to manifest in different ways in relation to different people and different circumstances. It is the mental construct that tends to guide the rules that you progressively make for yourself throughout life in order to calm your own worries. Everyone is going to have a different set of worries based partly on their childhood experiences, their genetics, their history of trauma and their current living situation.
Worry can creep into all facets of your life whether you realize it or not. It is an uncomfortable feeling that you will try to avoid if you can, but that process can very easily become a viscous cycle leading to more stress and discomfort for you and those around you. I have found that the more anxious a person is, the more rigid their rules become for themselves and by extension, for those around them. Creating rules, verbalized or not, is a means for a person to control their environment in order to calm their own worry and/or prevent the uncomfortable feeling of anxiety. Perceived lack of control in any situation is a source of stress for many people and can create both mental and physical tension in a person’s body.
There is a difference between reality and perception, they are both important, but accepting that they are different is both challenging and vital for overly anxious people. By reality I mean the objective truth in any given situation and by perception I mean one person’s subjective interpretation of that situation. Everyone develops their own triggers and filters that will impact how they perceive a certain event or discussion; some people just have way more triggers than others which can make their perception of a situation deviate radically from the objective reality and/or the other person’s perception. Read More
My name is Brent Stevenson, I am the founder and co-owner of Envision Physiotherapy in Vancouver, Canada. I, like everyone else in the world right now, am hiding out at home watching society shut down around me while we all try to endure the impacts of a novel virus on an overly connected world. Some of my friends are front line workers in the hospitals, others are simply working from home on their laptops until further notice, but I am in the complicated position of running a small business that functions as the umbrella for over seven other health related small businesses in Vancouver. People in Canada don’t naturally think of healthcare and business in the same framework, but most of our allied health services are private businesses with leases and employees to pay.
The business owner in me is worried about our bottom line, the healthcare professional in me just wants to help, the entrepreneur in me twirls with the current strange opportunity of time, and the father in me just wants to protect my family. It is a strange time, but I am determined to make the most out of it and hopefully help as many people as I can by providing something interesting to read or watch other than COVID-19 related news stories. I will start with the story of Envision Physiotherapy, but I will transition to Why Things Hurt, mental health, posture and the stories that have filled my days as a physiotherapist for the past twenty years. My goal is to post a new story or video each day and start an active conversation in the comments below to give readers the opportunity to Ask Me Anything.
The Story of Envision Physiotherapy:
March 1st, 2020 was a big day for Envision Physiotherapy, we had officially acquired Dayan Physiotherapy & Pelvic Floor Clinic and initiated the process of merging the business and its five physiotherapists into our existing clinics. Read More