Medical Director at Canyon Ranch Lenox, Cynthia Geyer, MD, understands the importance of finding time to unplug and recharge – and inspires others to do the same in their own lives. Specializing in women’s health issues and dedicated to personal and prioritized service, Dr. Geyer helps to ensure that the Canyon Ranch experience embodies balance, health and restoration.
WHAT MAKES YOU A CANYON RANCH WELLNESS ARCHITECT™?
An architect brings her training and experience to her work, incorporating that into meeting the needs and goals of her client (or patient). For me, that means creating an environment in which people feel recognized, respected and cared for; truly listening to their hopes and concerns and creating a relationship in which I might be a partner, guide and support for them on their wellness journey. The beautiful, immersive environment at Canyon Ranch coupled with the time devoted to consultation makes these meaningful connections and the personalized, prioritized recommendations possible.
WHICH CANYON RANCH PILLAR IS IMPORTANT FOR YOU TO INCORPORATE IN YOUR LIFE?
As much as I love movement outdoors, the most important Canyon Ranch pillar for me is sleep. From night calls during medical school and residency, to having twins and then to having undiagnosed sleep apnea, I realized that without adequate rest, it was harder to have the energy and motivation to engage in exercise and eating well. Disconnecting from electronics in the evening, creating a dark quiet sanctuary for sleep and allowing myself enough time in bed helps me recharge, come to work excited and energized, and be present for my patients, friends and family.
HOW DO YOU MAINTAIN A FOUNDATION OF WELLNESS IN A HIGH-STRESS CAREER?
For people in high-stress careers, the demands of our dedication to work can come at the expense of exercise, sleep, nutrition and play. We may have learned to ignore (or medicate) the subtle clues that our bodies and minds are out of balance and that stress is having a negative impact: the nagging headache, irritability, heartburn, insomnia and fatigue. If we recognize these symptoms as reminders to check in with a friend, take a walk outside, or even close our eyes and take a few deep breaths, we come back to our work more refreshed and focused. In my own life, one of the quickest antidotes for stress is to look out the window or walk outside and open my senses to the sights, sounds and smells of nature. From a proactive standpoint, making time for a walk or hike outside at least three times a week keeps me grounded, happy and more stress resilient.
AT CANYON RANCH, WE VALUE SELF-CARE AND HELP TO CREATE A BLUEPRINT FOR INDIVIDUALS TO LIVE THEIR BEST LIVES. HOW DO YOU TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF?
Hiking is a passion – doing it for a good cause adds to the joy. For five years, I have participated in the Xtreme Hike to raise funds and awareness for those living with cystic fibrosis, traversing 30 miles in one day in the beautiful Berkshires. In addition to time spent in the woods, my weekly djembe drumming class has become a great way to unplug. Learning and playing traditional African rhythms with a diverse group of people challenges my right brain and is just plain fun. It’s hard to hold onto stress or worry when you are creating music with your friends!