The Pitfalls of Defensiveness

If there is one thing that my PT professors are trying to hammer into me it is this: don’t be defensive.

That advice is hard to take in when your initial reaction is “What do you mean defensive? I’m open to criticism, no problem.”

Guess what? Everyone is defensive. No one likes to be wrong or likes it when their choices come under scrutiny. I have a high tendency to be defensive instead of listening to what people have to say and taking their words into consideration.

This past weekend, I went to a workshop for Cantors at church. I’ve been cantoring at mass for years and singing for many more alone and with ensembles. The presenter for this workshop told us things we thought we knew but needed a refresher on. Tips like how to stand to get the best air flow and when to move to the ambo to sing the psalm. At the end of the workshop, I was given the chance to work one-on-one with the archdiocesan music director.

Notice how I phrased that. Continue reading

Any PT Guitarists Out There?

Touch is vital to physical therapy. A PT’s ability to palpate the body to determine illness and injury is integral to the profession and to the field of health care. To be able to feel these things, a physical therapist needs to develop their hands.

To do so, we’ve got a long list of tasks to master. One task is to feel 4 different coins in our pocket and pull each out heads side up without looking. This takes sensitive finger pads.

Anyone who has played guitar can tell you that sensitive fingers are not conducive to playing.

Callouses build up over time so that holding down strings is no longer painful. These callouses are immediate signs of a string instrument player. Once I even had someone feel my fingers after they didn’t believe me when I said I played guitar.

Those callouses are not helping me now. Continue reading