https://fora.tv/2010/05/06/Jeremy_Rifkin_The_Empathic_Civilization_Animated
In this short video through the 2:20 mark, Jeremy Rifkin provides some evidence that our thoughts and emotions have a direct effect on the thoughts and emotions of others via “Mirror Neurons”.
From a Therapist’s perspective, what might this mean? How should we relate to our patients and residents – especially those that others may have written off? If we believe in them, will they be more likely to believe in themselves, thus improving the clinical outcome? And how might an overly positive view of a patient’s potential and abilities alter our interventions?
From a manager’s perspective, what might this mean? If we view the therapists we work with as autonomous practitioners rather than “employees” or “my staff”, will they be more likely to behave as autonomous practitioners? What positive effects might this have on the behavior of the therapists? If managers are calm and positive and take responsibility for their outcomes, will the rest of the team be more likely to behave in kind? What positive effects might this have on the operations?
I’m certainly not an expert in this area but like how Rifkin provides some neurobiological evidence for our behaviors. More specifically to our work lives, I like the practical applications this may have for our patient and interpersonal interactions.
Tyler Keeter, PT, DPT, MHA
Area Rehab Director

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