Let yourself in on your own secrets

I respect secrets. When my grandmother died at age 96 and a half, her final words were: “Erase my email.” Why? I don’t need to know. And she is not someone you want to cross (present tense — her spirit is still here with me, urging me to live a big life.)

But I am also a voyeur. So I visit PostSecret and greedily drink each one, like I’m doing shots of other people’s truth.

The only difference between our secrets is whether we allow them to evolve into tales of heroism or fear.

PostSecret’s creator, Frank Warren, opened a door for people to creatively reveal themselves to, essentially, themselves. And, when everyone rushed in to share, he let us all in on the biggest secret: we are all imperfect, we are all human. Continue reading

Let’s fix the culture of stress

The Unmentionables panel at Health 2.0 addressed issues we don’t talk about in public but which deeply affect our health and well-being. I posted the first set of videos last week — here is the second batch.

Michael Painter, of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, talked about his personal perspective on stress and building a culture of health:

“You cannot get stronger without stress…but the more you stress your body, the more you have to pay attention to rest and recovery. Or you will burn out, get injured, or get sick. It’s time to fix the culture of stress.” – Mike Painter

Mike also wrote about the connection between stress and health on the RWJF blog. Continue reading

“We must redefine health to include life.” – Alexandra Drane

The first videos from the Unmentionables panel at Health 2.0 are up:

Note that this video contains both the opening and closing segments — tons of wonderful research and insight courtesy of Alexandra Drane. Look out for our two surprise guests who share some fascinating data and very quotable quotes:

“In health care we move in ‘study step.’ We don’t take a step without a study.” – Jonathan Bush

“Fear is not compatible with creativity. Doubt cannot give birth to innovation.” – Fred Trotter

Continue reading

Five years on: The Unmentionables of Health 2.0

Five years ago, Matthew Holt and Indu Subaiya bravely turned over their main stage to Alexandra Drane and a posse of thinkers, doers, and builders working on removing the real barriers to good health — all the stuff that nobody wants to talk about but which we know is at the center of people’s lives. Continue reading

The unmentionables of health care

I plan to write more about my field trip to the future California, but for now here is the Storify I created about one incredible panel: Unmentionables 2013 at Health 2.0 Santa Clara.
Arrows connect Give and Take; a bracket shows that Care encompasses both.

By Jessica Hagy of thisisindexed.com

Taking care (what I’m reading)

The following articles stopped me in my tracks this week, not least because they relate to my last report, “Family Caregivers are Wired for Health.” Please share what you’re reading — or your thoughts about these articles — in the comments.

1. Dementiaville: How an experimental new town is taking the elderly back to their happier and healthier pasts with astonishing results, by Edna Fernandes (shared by Nick Dawson — so #whatifhc) Continue reading

Keeping it real

Two high-tech health events were held last week — an East Coast-West Coast data-driven smackdown. I chose East, but my eyes kept straying West, and I am very thankful that the organizers for both are archiving the videos online.

Here are a couple of stand-outs, first from Living By Numbers in New York City:

Jennifer Kurkoski and Brian Welle talked about how Google engages in behavioral design to help people avoid gaining weight even as they are surrounded by delicious food. Obvious tip: use smaller plates and you’ll eat less. Non-obvious tip: don’t trick people, tell them what you’re doing and bring them into the game you’re playing.

Meantime, in San Francisco, Alexandra Drane of Eliza Corp. regaled Strata Rx with her insights about how caregiving and stress might be even more serious health threats than diabetes and high blood pressure:

I loved how both of these presentations focused on the reality of people’s lives. That’s where I focus my energy and time. As I said at Medicine X (and plan to say at Connected Health): the best way to anticipate the future is to understand – and respect – what people are doing today.

For further inspiration, please see:

7 Key Take-aways from Wired Health, by Carol Torgan

Wired Health: Living by Numbers – a public health perspective, by Jodi Sperber

Wired health: living by numbers – a review of the event, by Jane Sarasohn-Kahn

WIRED healthcare conference shows data at work, by Mike Miliard

The Data Explosion, by Brian Quinn

Better Data=Better Health: A Conversation with RWJF’s Steve Downs

Data from health care reviews could power “Yelp for health care” startups, by Alex Howard

“Patient Engagement is the Blockbuster Drug of the Century” – a quote from Leonard Kish and the title of an article by Dave Chase

If you see other summaries of these events — or the other excellent meetings which took place last week — please post them in the comments (or let me know on Twitter).