Reactive versus Preventative versus Proactive Health
So-called "preventative" health is still focused on avoiding a negative. We need a new approach based on the pursuit of a positive.
This page is a stub, created on 2020-04-11. Its contents are notes on the issues and angles I want to address about this topic.
Our culture made a huge step forward in our approach to health from moving from a reactive "I'll just get treated when and if I get sick." attitude to a preventative "I will take steps to avoid getting sick in the first place." attitude. I don't want to disparage the progress inherent in that.
At the same time, what I notice about both these approaches is that they amount to avoiding a negative, rather than pursuing a positive.
I think that health and well-being are not merely the absence of sickness. In mind, body, and spirit, there is always room for growth, improvement, and the pursuit of excellence; one needn't merely content oneself to avoid illness, misery, and death.
For want of a better phrase, I think the next phase of our culture's evolution in health will be in the pursuit of "proactive health", where we don't just see doctors in desperation, to address illness or avoid future illness, but as counselors in our pursuit of greater and greater well-being.
- "Achieving life is not the equivalent of avoiding death. Joy is not 'the absence of pain,' intelligence is not 'the absence of stupidity,' light is not 'the absence of darkness,' an entity is not 'the absence of a nonentity.' Building is not done by abstaining from demolition; centuries of sitting and waiting in such abstinence will not raise one single girder for you to abstain from demolishing. . . . Existence is not a negation of negatives." -- Galt's Speech, Atlas Shrugged