My brother’s quest for becoming an orthopedic surgeon (Part II)

As already mentioned in Part I of this story, my brother Steve was unhappily working as an ER surgeon at a hospital outside of Vienna. He felt stuck in all aspects of his professional career: pay was miserable, colleagues were horrible, work environment was highly stressful – I guess you get the picture here. Besides, being in the ER was a dead end for him, as he much, much rather wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon (please read Part I).

Well, now that my brother knew for certain where he wanted to work (becoming clear in Part I), he still could not see any possible way of ending up working at that particular hospital, which also happens to be Europe’s biggest orthopedic surgery hospital.

When my brother’s stress levels had reached unbearable heights, that was in the fall of 2007, we had several conversations over the telephone, one of them brought him clarity bout where he really wanted to work (see Part I) and one of them helped him to simply have faith and overcome his Shadow Hounds:
Steve: You have no idea how sick and tired I am of this job.
Q: Why don’t you quit?
Steve: Quit? Are you out of your mind? Where should the money come from? I have no savings whatsoever, money is extremely tight, I am already barely making ends meet?
Q: I know, I know brother, have faith. I strongly believe that you will end up working as an orthopedic surgeon. But the issue is that by working in this hospital your energies are completely screwed up so that you won’t be able to attract the new and good, even if it already were available to you. You have to change to change your energies and get yourself out of this situation before anything else can happen.
Steve: What can I do? What should I do? I have no money!!
Q: Brother, why don’t you simply go on a vacation? Somewhere you have not yet been? Somewhere warm and exotic maybe?
Steve: What?! This is the craziest thing I have ever heard! Weren’t you listening to me at all? I told you that I have no money!! How on earth can I afford a vacation?!
Q: Hear me out! Didn’t you say that you sent out applications to get into residency programs?
Steve: Aren’t you ever listening to me?! I told you, no hospital wants me! They all put me on their waiting list, which means that I will, if I am lucky, get into the program five years from now! And the chief surgeon of my favorite hospital bluntly told me to not bother him again unless I knew the mayor of the city or had otherwise strong political connections. My chances of getting into any program here in Vienna within a year are very slim; getting into my preferred hospital virtually zero!!
Q: I am hearing what you are saying and I do also understand you that you are stressed out and cannot see the forest for the trees. I am suggesting something groundbreaking here, something that shatters the cast that you are imprisoned in, something that sets free your bound and stuck energies so that they can breath again and do what they do best, connect with other energies and bring about what it is that you really want!
Steve: Hmm?! All I hear is you wanting me to quit my secure job without having another job lined up and spend money that I do not have and go on vacation – that sounds crazy to me!
Q: Brother, have I ever given you bad advice?
Steve: No, you are right.
Q: You know that I work with energies and help folks to lead happier, healthier and wealthier lives than they ever dreamed possible?!
Steve: Yes, I know that. But…
Q: So, then simply trust me and take a leap of faith.
Steve: This is a lot to ask for.
Q: I know brother, I know. Trust me, once you have fended off your Shadow Hounds (fear of not finding a new job and not having enough money to live of), your energies will start flowing again and things will unfold faster and better than you have ever thought possible.
Steve: OK brother, let me think about it…

A few days later I receive a phone call from my brother:
Steve: I have had it. I walked up to my boss and gave him my four weeks notice.
Q: Wow! Congratulations brother.
Steve: Well, I simply couldn’t stand it anymore.
Q: Hmm.
Steve: Well, believe it or not, I also booked a last minute ticket to Thailand. I will be gone for some three weeks.
Q: What?! How come?
Steve: A friend of mine currently lives in Thailand and always wanted me come. So I surfed the web and found this incredible deal and I simply went ahead and booked it.
Q: Holy Moly, I am speechless.
Steve: I will take off next week and will be back before Christmas. So when you come home for the holidays we will be able to catch up and see one another.
Q: Well, all I can say then is: bon voyage.

A couple of days later, I receive another phone call:
Steve: Brother, you would not believe who called me and wanted me to come by for an interview.
Q: Well?
Steve: My hospital! The place I always wanted to work at!
Q: What?!
Steve: I know this is crazy. My interview is tomorrow. I am so nervous and do not know what to do.
Q: Man! This is fantastic! No worries, you will make it brother! Simply visualize that you will be offered a job at the end of your interview. Visualize the shaking of hands, smiles and pads on the shoulder as well as a warm welcome to the family. Visualize every detail as precisely as you possibly can. When you go to bed tonight and when you wake up tomorrow morning. Just do it and feel the feeling of being offered a job and picture yourself jumping up and down filled with joy and happiness.
Steve: Whatever you say brother.

The next day I got another call:
Steve: Incredible! I got a job!
Q: Holy smokes! Awesome!
Steve: Well, I only got a job as a surgeon without residency status though.
Q: And?! Who cares?
Steve: Well, I care! I want to become an orthopedic surgeon! Hello! Why can’t you ever listen to me!
Q: I know, I know! But you now have a job for God sake. Not just any job, but a job as a surgeon in your favorite hospital. How cool is that. Everything else will simply unfold!
Steve: No it won’t! The chief surgeon said that all of a sudden they encountered a shortage of staff and since a very reputable colleague had put in a good word for me he was willing to give it a shot. But only as a surgeon and not as a resident. He said that the five year wait list was still in place for the orthopedic surgeon residency.
Q: Who cares?! You are in! Now forget about the rest and enjoy your time in Thailand.

Two months after my brother had started working at the hospital as a regular surgeon without the option of ever entering the residency his boss and chief surgeon of the hospital took him aside and the following conversation unfolded:
Chief surgeon: Well, Dr. Moayad, I have been observing you very closely over the past two months and I must say I am very impressed with what I see. You are doing a great job.
Steve: Thank you, Sir!
Chief surgeon: Well, as a matter of fact, I am so impressed that I have been wondering how I can help you in getting into the orthopedic surgery program.
Steve: What?!
Chief surgeon: I know that I told you that there won’t be any availability for at least another five years, but one can always bend the rules to help out a talented young colleague.
Steve: I am speechless.
Chief surgeon: Here is the deal: every time a resident has to leave to do their non-orthopedic surgery training at a different department, I will have you fill in their spot. And since there is always someone gone to get their training at a different department you in fact will be a resident without actually and officially being in the program. So, what do you say?
Steve: I am still speechless and do not know what to say…
Chief surgeon: Well, then, we have deal as it seems.

You can imagine the telephone call I got from my brother after he left this meeting.

This real life story of my brother is symptomatic for how one can achieve the seemingly unachievable if one only had enough faith and clarity. I can only repeat again and again: EVERYTHING is possible – I NEVER take a NO for an answer. Know what you want and chase those Shadow Hounds away. Take the reigns into your hands and tell your horse where to go.

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5 Responses to “My brother’s quest for becoming an orthopedic surgeon (Part II)”  

  1. 1 Jason

    Hehe, that’s a really nice story :D

    If things would just ALWAYS work like that life would be a lot more fun … but then again they WOULD if we would only believe in them happening? :)

  2. 2 meaghan

    Yes, I believe, that this really is the point! But stories like this one help to believe that really everything is possible! I know this strange effect from bowling! Everytime I was convinced to hit the pins, I did, but as soon, as I thougt of failing them, I failed!
    So I put my energy in visualizing what I really want and wait what will happen!

  3. 3 Caity

    Ha ha, your brother must have been reeaaaallly happy about this – glad for him! :D

    Beautiful story and really motivating – thanks a lot for sharing it.

  4. 4 Dr. Houshang Seradge

    Being a doctor, I like your opinion on this issue. Quite a lot of our customers discuss related matters with me, and it really is exciting that we aren’t the only ones which truly care!

  5. 5 Debbie

    Wow. That reminds me of MY sister. She worked her whole life to be a teacher, yet it seems to make her miserable. You can mention suggestion after suggestion, but she always says no to everything with various excuses. She stays in her comfort zone. I’m glad your brother was open-minded enough to try something different, enabling him happiness with his career.

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