Find Your Voice, Listen To Theirs

Rain drops trickle down the double-paned, ovoid window as my eyes jump from plane to plane watching for movement on the runway. The rainy weather in my connecting city has brought me back to the familiarity of muggy, hot Spring days that were so common place in my college years and I’m reminded of the excitement I felt of being in a new place, doing new things. As we taxi the runway for what seems like hours I reflect on the whirlwind weekend I’m making my way home from…

New city.

New people.

New ideas.

New Inspiration. 

I spent the weekend surrounded by what I can only describe as the most innovative and creative group of people I have ever encountered. The thirst for knowledge, aptitude for leadership, drive for entrepreneurship and innovation in the room was almost palpable. I found myself repeatedly standing just outside of conversations and listening – not wanting to join in too quickly because I was learning so much as an observer.

Amazed by everyone from medical students to physicians to marketers and computer programmers, I began wondering what I had missed…how I had become so complacent with doing the same things every day rather than innovating and advancing.

Being surrounded by people who harbor a thirst for knowledge and desire for advancement is contagious. The viral enthusiasm was quick to seep into my brain and I now find myself wondering how I spent so long in the dark about all the opportunities available for me…for my husband…for anyone who wants to seek them out.

I feel so blessed to have been a part of the Doximity Leadership Summit and I am so impressed with the ideas and information coming out of the group of physicians, students, supporters, developers and crew. My eyes have  been opened to an entirely different world of medicine that I never knew I was missing.


Doctor Vartabedian of 33 Charts wrote today on the future of Key Opinion Leaders – what does a physician influencer in the age of social media look like?

In my eyes they look like the people I was with this weekend – innovative, intelligent, well-spoken and … most importantly … just plain excited about all the things we will be accomplishing in the next 10, 15, 25 years.


As medical students and young doctors this is exceedingly important – we have this opportunity to use our voices and ideas to further not only our careers, but the entire field of medicine and how it’s practiced. I no longer feel like we have an option to be involved – this is an obligation…to ourselves, to our patients, to our educational experience. If you aren’t interacting with your tech-forward peers and mentors you are robbing yourself of an opportunity for personal advancement and missing out on inspiration and innovation coming from the mouths (and finger-tips) of people just like you.

Life is short, take this opportunity to find your voice and listen to the voices of others.

The digital age cannot be viewed as threatening for medical professionals any more – the longer we shy away due to scare tactics and unfounded concerns, the longer we lag behind in innovation. We can use this platform to change the world.


To be inspired…to create…to have a voice…this is a privilege. 


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9 Comments + Add Comment

  • Powerful stuff, Danielle. I experience the same feelings as well when I’m around amazing people. The more successful people I surround myself with the further I raise my game. And to understand why someone like Jeff Tangney (CEO of Doximity) is so successful look no further than the people he’s surrounded himself with. A valuable lesson among many from the weekend.

    And if I didn’t say so before, it was very cool being on the same stage with you. Let’s do it again soon.

    • That’s so true! Jeff is doing great things and he has great people helping him do it. I’m a little giddy that YOU were excited to be on stage with ME…I was just so completely honored to share the stage with you and Dr. Swanson. Completely inspiring. I would absolutely jump at the chance to sit on a panel or speak with you any time…you just tell me when and where and I will show up. :)

  • Bryan, well said. It was a fun and very exciting weekend. I was pleasantly surprised to find that so many doctors share my passion for technology and a desire to improve medicine with all the modern tools. I think a doctor living in this revolution, has to get involved or will be left behind. It is the time for medicine to evolve exponentially and bring the quality of care to the height of this century. Thank you for helping the revolution and being a leader.

    • Thanks so much for your kind words. So true, also – what you said about being left behind. I truly believe those who choose to forego this revolution will be left in the dust…particularly those in my generation of physicians who have not had time to be grand-fathered into the types of practices that gained their patients simply through word of mouth. It’s not only important for personal development and learning (which I think is the best benefit of social media, by far), it’s important for career advancement! In 10 years if your patient can’t find you online they aren’t going to come to you.

  • Danielle

    This was a fabulous post.

    I am so excited, even as I am living in middle age and in the middle of my career, to see young doctors so invested in making their own way in the world, thinking for themselves and blazing trails that we would have been petrified to even consider in my training days.

    You are a bright, engaged, innovative young lady and you are going to be very successful in whatever you do. Keep spreading your enthusiasm. It’s a contagious disease with no cure that all of us need to catch.


    • Thanks so much for your kind words! I always appreciate your insight and conversation!!

  • Danielle,
    It was a pleasure meeting you this weekend in Napa. I too was struck by all the inspiration oozing out of the atmosphere. Please let me know if you want me to hook you up with someone who recently did the Stanford residency. She’s a good friend of mine and I’m sure she would be happy to answer any questions you might have about the program.
    Hope to cross paths again soon.

    • Yes! Please! I would absolutely love to be put in touch with her. I have so many questions. :) You (or her) can email me at MindOnMed@gmail.com — thank you so much. It was so great to chat with you this weekend as well, definitely hope to run into you again in the future!

  • Such an inspiring post! Not only do you excite me about being in med school next fall, but also of all the innumerable opportunities are out there! It’s always fun to read your blog posts – you’re such a great writer with amazing aspirations and innovation. I’m so glad to have found your blog!

    P.S. I’m very jealous of all the above commentators who had the pleasure of meeting you! I hope our paths cross one day; it’s a goal of mine! =)

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About The Author

I'm an ObGyn. I started this blog as a medical student (some would call that doctor school) and now I'm working as an Ob/Gyn, which is seriously the coolest job ever. I'm a twin mom and recently added a baby brudder to the mix. My life story through November 2010 can be viewed here. The events in the many years following can be summed up as wedding bells, books, exams, babies, and doctoring. I started this blog in hopes of landing a role in a Lifetime movie so I could quit medicine and move to Hollywood, but that hasn't happened...so if you wouldn't take medical advice from Angelina Jolie, you shouldn't take it from me. I may not even be a real person. In fact, I'm probably a spambot. Or possibly a 15 yo boy blogging from a dingy basement. If you're really interested you can read more about me here. If you have any questions or want to guest post contact me.

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