By: Julia Behr, CVPM, CVBL, CCFP
Brene Brown said, “Imperfections are not inadequacies, they are reminders that we are all in this together.”
About 6 years ago, I read the book, “Wabi Sabi Love,” by Arielle Ford. The book describes how to use the Wabi Sabi philosophy to transform your personal relationships. Instead of allowing things to irritate you that your partner does, you find beauty in the imperfection. That book really resonated with me and impacted my personal relationships, and it still does.
Our industry is going through so many challenges these days: practices are busier than ever, most are short staffed and unable to fill doctor and technician positions, and our teams are suffering from burnout and compassion fatigue while trying to meet the needs of sometimes demanding clients. It can also be emotionally draining to ignore our feelings just to get through the day.
Adding to that, due to the tumultuous times we find ourselves living in, it is essential for us to support each other through the good days and the bad. We need to not lose sight of our purpose and our why – particularly - why we choose veterinary medicine as our career.
What does Wabi Sabi have to do with this?
In his book, Wabi Sabi, Leonard Koren says, “Wabi Sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is a beauty of things modest and humble. It is a beauty of things unconventional.”
The veterinary industry is an imperfect and unconventional industry! I believe what drew most of us into vet medicine is our love for animals. That is why I started in the industry, but I have remained in it because of the people – all of you! I genuinely appreciate how most of us have given our blood, sweat, and tears to care for animals and help our clients. My concern is however, many in our industry have forgotten our purpose, leading to the loss of the passion that led us to our career path.
How can Wabi Sabi lead us back to our passion?