I am Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits.

In the world of physiatry, your expertise isn’t just in what you know, but in how you present yourself. Imagine this: You’re entering a consultation room, and within seconds, your patient has formed an opinion about you. This snap judgment isn’t based on your credentials or your years of experience—it’s based on your body language. This unspoken yet powerful form of communication can either propel your practice to success or leave you struggling to connect with your patients.
As physiatrists, we often feel the weight of our patients’ expectations and the pressure to convey confidence and competence. Yet, many of us struggle with projecting the authority necessary to build trust and command respect. The fear of not being perceived as knowledgeable or capable enough can be paralyzing. But what if I told you that by mastering a few key strategies, you could transform your practice and your patient relationships?
Elevate Your Physical Position
One of the most straightforward ways to project confidence and authority is by elevating your physical position. This isn’t just about standing taller—it’s about positioning yourself in a way that naturally commands attention. Think about politicians or public speakers—they often stand on a stage, a few inches above their audience. In your practice, this might translate to standing while discussing a diagnosis or treatment plan, ensuring you’re on eye level or slightly above your patients. This subtle change can make a significant difference in how you’re perceived.
Have a Pep Talk with Yourself
Confidence begins in the mind. Before stepping into any patient interaction, take a moment to have a pep talk with yourself. Look in the mirror, visualize a positive outcome, and remind yourself of your expertise. This mental preparation will reflect in your body language—your gestures, posture, and facial expressions will all exude confidence. This isn’t just about feeling good—it’s about projecting that confidence to those around you, reassuring your patients that they are in capable hands.
Dictate the Venue
Whenever possible, choose a venue where you feel most comfortable and confident. Your environment significantly influences your interactions. If you’re able to control where patient consultations take place, select spaces that make you feel at ease. A familiar and comfortable setting can enhance your ability to project confidence and authority.
Practice Power Poses
Body posture plays a crucial role in how others perceive us. Simple power poses can make a world of difference. For instance, placing your arms behind your head when sitting or standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and hands on your hips can make you appear larger and more dominant. These poses convey that you are confident and in control.
Face the Speaker
Respect and authority go hand in hand. Always face the person you are speaking to directly. This shows that you value their input and are comfortable enough in your own authority to engage with them openly. It’s a subtle yet powerful way to build trust and respect.
Adopt a Confident Facial Expression
Your face is a powerful tool in nonverbal communication. Keep your chin up, maintain eye contact, and wear a genuine, slight smile. These simple actions can project confidence and put your patients at ease. Practicing these expressions in front of a mirror can help you perfect the look of authority and assurance.
Conclusion: Your Path to a Profitable Practice
By mastering these body language strategies, you can transform not only your patient interactions but also your entire practice. The confidence you project will inspire trust and respect, essential components in building a successful and profitable physiatry practice. Overcome the fear of not knowing enough and harness the power of nonverbal communication. Your journey to commanding your practice starts with a confident step forward—quite literally.

Once you’ve decided that you want to leave your current job to start your practice, you need an exit plan. Check out our blog post here for tips on developing an exit plan and starting your new independent practice.

I’m Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits. Please go to businessofrehab.com/contractnegotiations to pick up the free guide to help you negotiate the contract of your dreams.

Attention, Physiatrists! Stop leaving money on the table. Sign up for the free video series: How To Build A Profitable Practice in 90 Days or Less: http://www.sixtytosuccess.com