I have been thinking a lot (maybe a bit obsessively) about intersections in the past two months. As you can see by looking at my website tagline, intersections have some special meaning for me. And attending Stanford’s Medicine X conference was what really got me rolling on this thought train.
You see, the letter X is all about the intersection–that point where the lines meet and cross.
Medicine X is about intersections too. Initially, I think that the point of Medicine X was to explore the intersection of health and technology. But this year, the conference really showcased the intersection of patients and the medical community. That got me thinking about what other intersections could be explored:
- The intersection between physical and mental health (come on, that was a given, right?)
- The intersection between patients and caregivers
- The intersection between lifestyle choices and health
- The intersection between research and application
- The intersection between developer and user
- The intersection of our own different levels of identity in healthcare
- The intersection between multiple models of health and health care
- The intersection between traditional and emerging models of education and interaction
Because here is the thing–I think intersections are powerful places. Without intersections, we are each stuck on our own line–and one of the things I remember from high school math is that parallel lines can stretch into infinity and never meet. Without intersections, we are isolated. We’re stuck on the same unchanging path.
Intersections allow people with different perspectives to meet, to share some common ground, to interact with one another. Conversations can happen in intersections, and dreams can grow there. Intersections also present the opportunity to change our direction, to choose a new path, to set our course in the world. Intersections are the space in which all of our growth and opportunity begin.
Intersections can be intimidating–after all, their existence represents a moment of change, of flux, of uncertainty.
But they are also the place where our opportunities appear.
I have built my practice on the idea that intersections are moments of opportunity and chances to grow. My mission is to help people who are facing intersections gain the tools and the support to grow in healthy ways.
I love the possibility of an intersection. And I get so excited about helping people navigate theirs.
How about you?