Dr. Oz: Life Changes That Matter
Want to trade places? is a question that tends to make me smile.
That’s because it reminds me of an extraordinary experience I had many years ago with Dr. Oz.
This was long before everyone knew Dr. Oz from his series of best-selling books and his award-winning television show that’s now at 1,500 episodes and counting.
Back in 2004, when Dr. Oz was principally a heart surgeon, he was at a house party where he met Eric Ripert, the chef at one of the world’s greatest restaurants -- Le Bernardin.
They struck up a conversation that led to some humor.
“When somebody is not good in my profession,” Dr. Oz told Eric, “he’s called a butcher.”
“In mine,” Eric responded, “he’s called a shoemaker.”
The conversation ultimately gave birth to the idea of trading places.
Dr. Oz would observe work in the kitchen of the four-star restaurant and then step into Eric’s shoes.
And Eric would observe heart surgery and then – no, he wouldn’t take a scalpel to anybody. He’d learn to cut and stitch like a surgeon and operate on a pig’s heart.
The idea was for the two of them to study excellence and see where their skills overlapped.
I was invited to join and write about the experience for Esquire Magazine.
As you can hear in the podcast, there are many memories of the experience that stick with me – principally the saving of a man’s life.
But what strikes me now is how practical that question has become: Want to trade places?
Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes is a great way to think about reinventing yourself -- because it can show you that you are capable of much more than you think.
I never imagined myself behind a microphone until I helped Larry King write his autobiography and started to have breakfast with him every day. Now, here I am, hosting a podcast.
Trade places for a short time with somebody you respect, and see what might happen to your life.