Mindset is SO important. We all have a choice, and I am working on training my mind to CHOOSE things like Joy, peace, Positivity. We are all responsible for our own triggers, so I work hard to control my reactions. There are so many stories of people who “think” about doing a certain activity (like Michael Phelps) and then when it comes time to do it, your brain actually thinks you already have done it, so it is easier and familiar.
As a part of our series about “How We Can Do To Cultivate Our Mental, Physical, Emotional, & Spiritual Wellbeing”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Tara Scott.
Dr. Scott has been in front of an audience since she was the president of speech team in high school. This evolved in educating the community on hormone therapy, having taught doctors in five continents about an integrative approach. With over 20 years’ experience practicing OB/GYN, and additional training in Integrative and Functional medicine, Dr. Scott shares a wealth of information by lecturing around the community to raise awareness about wellness and preventative health for patients.
Having watched people suffer for years with little to no relief after countless visits to multiple healthcare providers, Dr. Scott knows how exhausting this can be. She has lived it as a patient and seen the benefit of finding answers to the core issues. Speaking helps her reach more people in less time, helping them conquer chronic health issues. Dr. Scott’s humor and analogies make complex health concepts easy for the audience to understand and put into action in order to enjoy optimal health.
In addition to being the Medical Director of Integrative Medicine at Summa Health in Akron, OH, she is also the Chief Medical Officer and founder of Revitalize Medical Group, a wellness practice. She is triple board certified in OB/GYN, Functional Medicine and Integrative Medicine. She is a mother of 3 college age children, enjoys running a half marathon in every state, traveling and being active outside.https://content.thriveglobal.com/media/6e0333345c5d0286d8224d6464e2fde3
Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?
I was born the middle child of foreign parents- my dad was literally off the boat from India and my mom was born and raised in Puerto Rico. I definitely didn’t fit in. My dad was super strict, so I became a perfectionist and overachiever. I graduated valedictorian at age 17, 1 week later started college, 2 years later went to med school and was a doctor by age 23.
What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.
I was just drawn to science and to help people. Since I was so young and awkward, I wasn’t comfortable around men and decided to go into OB/GYN to help women through all the stages of their lives.
None of us can achieve success without some help along the way. Was there a particular person who you feel gave you the most help or encouragement to be who you are today? Can you share a story about that?
The people who have been my biggest supporters were my sisters. When I was 19, my parents moved to India leaving us with no relatives except one cousin several states away. They have been the ones who have had my back and been my biggest encouragers. We all live in different states, but I couldn’t do live without them.
Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does that resonate with you so much?
The struggle you are in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow.
Throughout my life I have had setbacks and challenges. The biggest one, of course, was the plane crash that left my daughter paralyzed. But with each challenge, I found a way to cultivate resilience, which served me well so I could build endurance and perseverance.
What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?
One project I completed this year is launching my online course “Revitalize Your Hormones”. It is an educational tool for patients to start a “DIY improvement” to get their health on track. Many people reach out to me on social media, and due to restrictions with my medical license I can’t help everyone.
OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview. In our work, we talk a lot about cultivating wellness habits in four areas of our lives, Mental wellness, Physical wellness, Emotional wellness, & Spiritual wellness. Let’s dive deeper into these together. Based on your research or experience, can you share with our readers three good habits that can lead to optimum mental wellness? Please share a story or example for each.
There are so many things and mental wellness is something I still struggle with!
- Mindset is SO important. We all have a choice, and I am working on training my mind to CHOOSE things like Joy, peace, Positivity. We are all responsible for our own triggers, so I work hard to control my reactions. There are so many stories of people who “think” about doing a certain activity (like Michael Phelps) and then when it comes time to do it, your brain actually thinks you already have done it, so it is easier and familiar.
- Gratitude! There has been lots of research about starting your day with Gratitude. I love the 5-minute Journal — to list 3 things I am grateful for and at the end of the day 3 amazing things that happened.
- Meditation and mindfulness- we are all too busy in this 24/7 society. I have made meditation a practice of mine for the last 3 years. I am also working on more stillness and less activity!
Do you have a specific type of meditation practice or Yoga practice that you have found helpful? We’d love to hear about it.
I really enjoy Yoga and wish that I could get there more often. I like to do a guided meditation and I find the app Headspace so helpful. My mind is going a mile a minute and they have great introductory videos to help you understand how to begin a meditation practice.
Thank you for that. Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum physical wellness? Please share a story or example for each.
Three habits that I have maintained in my life for optimum wellness are exercise, diet, and meditation.
I have always liked to exercise, and have played soccer, enjoyed running and also triathlons. For me, running is my Prozac! It gives me community with my running friends and also lets me exercise as well. Currently we are on a mission to run a half marathon in every state.
I wasn’t always a healthy eater- I used to live on heat and eat and have a serious sugar problem. But as I get older, I realize that I feel much better when I eat healthy. I avoid gluten, dairy and most grains. I have plenty of raw veggies every day and usually only eat meat 4–5 x per week. I also like a lot of seafood. I try to eat food in its native form and avoid processed food.
Meditation is only something I have done the last 3 years or so. Most of my life has been stressful as an OB/GYN/ entrepreneur/ mom of 3, but I finally realized that there will ALWAYS be stress. So instead of trying to reduce it, I started concentrating on how to manage it. I like to do a guided meditation every morning with the app Headspace.
Do you have any particular thoughts about healthy eating? We all know that it’s important to eat more vegetables, eat less sugar, etc. But while we know it intellectually, it’s often difficult to put it into practice and make it a part of our daily habits. In your opinion what are the main blockages that prevent us from taking the information that we all know, and integrating it into our lives?
I have a ton of thoughts here as this is what I spend a lot of focus on with patients. Food is so addicting! I think the thing that has helped the most is concentrating more not on what you eat but WHEN you eat. Eating 3 meals and 3 snacks is actually really bad for you! Now, what is important is to have at least 12–14 hours overnight where you DON’T eat. And also, ideally you should go 4 hours between meals. It takes your body that long metabolically to get your sugar levels back in check. I also find that for most the macros are off- we tend to eat a lot of carbs and not enough good fats! Our brains need fat- salmon, avocado, nuts.
Can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum emotional wellness? Please share a story or example for each.
This one isn’t as easy for me. I wasn’t encouraged to have emotions when I was a child. I think realizing that you can’t please everyone all the time was pivotal for me.
One habit that I love is using a gratitude journal — I love the 5 Minute Journal. Every morning you write 3 things you are grateful for a one affirmation. At the end of the day, you write 3 amazing things that happened that day and how you could have made the day better.
The last thing that has been helpful lately is realizing my triggers and taking responsibility for my triggers. If someone does something that triggers me, it is MY responsibility to control my response.
Do you have any particular thoughts about the power of smiling to improve emotional wellness? We’d love to hear it.
Smiling is definitely contagious! I think they actually studied how long it would take someone to smile back- and they always reciprocated. And when you smile, you just can’t feel down.
Finally, can you share three good habits that can lead to optimum spiritual wellness? Please share a story or example for each.
For me, spiritual wellness is tied to my faith. I was not raised as a Christian but found my faith as an adult after I had my children. In 2019 when my family survived a small plane crash and my daughter and husband were critically injured, that was a time that I had to rely heavily on God. That he will work things out for His purpose, not mine. And even though it didn’t change the situation, it did provide me comfort.
Do you have any particular thoughts about how being “in nature” can help us to cultivate spiritual wellness?
Being in nature is so important! The older I get, the more I crave being outside and feel the calming effect. I just look at the mountains and am instantly in a better mood. They have actually done studies of patients who have had surgery. The ones that had a hospital window that let them see outside to nature actually healed quicker!
Ok, we are nearly done. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good for the greatest number of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.
I think the biggest thing I would want women (and really even men) to know is to be proactive about their health. For women, they should have their hormone levels tested so they know what they are at risk for. We live in a world that is very proactive about heart disease, but not breast cancer. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women, and I feel that it is preventable. Our focus right now is on early detection, but I would love to focus on prevention!
We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we both tag them 🙂
There are so many!
My role models in my career are Dr. Sara Gottfried and Dr. Carrie Jones. I would also love to meet Michelle Obama or Princess Kate. I would also love to meet Oprah!! There are too many to choose from.
How can our readers further follow your work online?
YouTube- Tara Scott MD
Online course- https://academy.revitalizemed.com/
Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success.