Scott C. Nelson, DPM, FACFAS
“Knock on wood.” It seems so silly, right? Why do we say it? You speak something into existence and then clarify it with a ‘knock on wood’ to avoid bad luck. Some like to pin it on a possible religious origination but its most likely a pagan belief. One that believed trees had spirits in them and by knocking you’re asking them for good luck. We’ve all done it, and it’s just a simple way to recognize there are things beyond our control.
If there is one thing I can now say with more conviction is that obstacles will be placed in front of you and you will have no control over them. We can try to control the circumstances around them, but things will continue to pop up in front of you. It is what makes life beautiful though. Your obstacles MAKE your path. Does a hurdler complain about the hurdles or does a cross country runner complain about the hills? No, because it is their race and they are expected to attack them. They even expect to get better each time they do it. That is the mentality we need to overcome our troubled situations. Unfortunately, our mind has a distinct advantage over us. Fears, insecurities and weaknesses need to be accepted and you need to commit to being uncomfortable to get better. Make your mindset to quit the bad habit of making self-limiting choices. We need as a profession to have the vision of a better future and work over those obstacles to be successful. “Do not be afraid. Do not settle for mediocrity. Put out your nets in the deep and let down your nets for a catch,” as Pope Saint John Paul II said. That is the mentality we deserve and it’s been great watching the College work with this mindset over the past few years, which I expect us to continue in the future.
From my perspective the future of the College is bright. Having been leading the charge this past year, I fully appreciate this is a team effort. Without our hardworking staff of the College and administrative direction by our executive director, we wouldn't be in the great position we are in. The new members of the board of directors had to hit the ground running and their new perspective and ideas have been awesome. Our established board members had to take on new challenges as well and I appreciate their flexibility in managing this and their own professional and personal lives. I want to especially thank Immediate Past President Christopher Reeves, DPM, MS, FACFAS for his ear this year. I will be excited to watch our new President Thanh Dinh, DPM, FACFAS take control and lead our organization for the next year. I am confident she will do a superb job with her great ideas and high morals always keeping the College’s goals first. Our collection of leaders is committed to giving you the best member benefits. As always, we are looking for those motivated to help lead the College. However, motivation is not always the answer because it’s temporary. We need you to convert your motivation to commitment as our current leaders did when they started their journey.
As I reflect on my own personal journey with the College I wish I could say it was all roses, but after this year that is impossible. I could sit and sulk about all the bad things that occurred, but I would rather beam about what we accomplished. Who knew we would be writing to the Senate/Congress/National Governors Association or any of the dozens of other things we tackled as they popped up. There have been so many good things that far outweigh any bad. I am excited to see what develops over the next few years on current items we have been working on and it will be fun to see it from a new perspective. I wish our 70th president the best of luck and know she will have an awesome year, but just in case, ‘knock on wood’.