Episode 220: Blending Talent, Passion, and Purpose, with Dr. Rafael Emerick Salas

your next stop Mar 05, 2024

Discover the unexpected journey of Dr. Rafael Emerick Salas, a board-certified plastic surgeon with a unique perspective on life and work. From his fascinating family history to his unwavering commitment to positive thinking, Dr. Salas shares insights that will leave you inspired and motivated. Join us as we uncover the surprising moments and meaningful connections that have shaped his personal and professional growth. Stay tuned to learn more about Dr. Salas' journey and how it could impact your own path.

Check out Miami Medspa, Salas Plastic Surgery Miami, and visit their Website.


Remarkable Quote:


“Your talent is God's gift to you, and what you do with it is your gift back to him.”


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Welcome back to your next stop. This is Juliet Hahn. In this episode, I speak with Dr. Rafael Emmerich Salas. He is the owner and founder of Salas Plastic Surgery.

They are in south Florida. You can find and follow them all over social media. So the love med spa on Instagram. You can also go to solace plastic surgery Miami. And that is also on Instagram.

And then their website is Salas. And that's Salas plasticsurgerymiami.com. This is a fun episode. So first of all, I met Dr. Salas through the fetties for Fettech.

We were doing one of our clinical studies with them, and I really enjoyed having the conversation with Dr. Salas, how he kind of went into plastic surgery. And I figured, you know what? This is one of those kind of episodes that I love that you can kind of start thinking. So one of the things that we talk about is really fun because I was calling him Emmerich, and he's like, well, my first name is actually Rafael.

And I was like, well, wait a second. It's not what my contacts. Where does that come from? So he was telling me a really great story about family history. You could see the love that he has for his family, his extended family, and how important family is and how important family was also in kind of helping him figure out his path.

And it's not what you think because I thought it was kind of like this expectation, and it's actually a beautiful story. So I hope you guys enjoy this episode as much as I did.

Welcome back to your next stop. I am Juliet Hahn, and I am here with another special guest, you guys. You know, I love talking about passion and people that have followed a passion turn it to a business. So I am going to introduce, and it's kind of a funny story, which we will get into, but it's Dr. Rafael Emrick Salas.

How are you? Hey, how are you doing? Great to be here. Thanks for having. Yeah.

So, and the reason why I say it's a funny story is, so I said to Dr. Salas, I was like, it's Emmerich. And he said, well, it's actually Rafael. And I said, ok, well and everything. I keep seeing Emmerich.

So where is this Rafael? So can you explain a little bit what you started, explained to me, and then I kind of shut you down. I was, no, don't talk about it because I want to talk about it on the podcast. Save the good stories for the.

So the funny thing is, in a hispanic family, they tend to kind of want to name the sons with the same name. So my dad's name is also Rafael, and my grandfather's name is also Rafael. And so in that sense, when I was younger, when a family gatherings and stuff, they would say Rafael. And then everybody turned around. So from when I was very little, they were like, you turn around when we say Emmerich.

So your name's Emmerich. And so in my mind, it's just kind of like, hey, what your parents say is what it is, right? So I just kept that and all growing up in school. I grew up in Mexico City, actually born here, but grew up then. So I would just tell them my name is Emmerich.

And then when you came to the, uh, they would always say your first name. Like, they didn't ask you what your name was. They would just go with what it's written there officially in school. So I would never turn around, and the teachers would get mad because I'm not paying attention. And they're like, Mr.

Salas, and then you turn around and say, yes. And they're like, I'm calling you. I was like, I hear my name. And so it was just kind of a comical thing. But then at the end, so my father is actually not retired, but was a cardiothoracic surgeon, heart surgeon, and he was at a hospital where I ended up doing my plastic surgery specialty.

And he had recently, he was, like, at the tail end of his career there. But we were there kind of at the same time for a briefcare acknowledged in my training. And so you would get the pages like, Dr. Salas, and then they would page me for cardiac stuff. I'm like, oh, you got the wrong one.

I'm the plastic, Scott. I'm the plastic. Like, but it says Rafael Salas. I'm like, yes, that's correct, too. So it's just a funny now.

Funny confusion. But, yeah, that kind of stuck with me. No, but I love the name thing, because we do talk about that. Sometimes names are more important than people put on. Know parents when they have their kids, they do put thought into it.

I mean, yours is a tradition, right? I mean, my children, Montgomery, Truman, and know people are like, oh, are those family names? I'm like, no, but we have stories between how we came up with each of the names, and it was really important to us. We loved naming. I mean, I wanted to have more kids because I was like, oh, I just love this naming thing.

You're like, I love the mean. Literally, the second we got pregnant, it was like, okay, let's start talking about the name, because I think names are so important. I grew up, obviously, my name, Juliet. There was no Juliet. So I loved having this unique name where there was no other, literally.

I mean, it became a little bit more popular, but it's still not a super popular name. And so I think the name I love hearing about. Why? Because it was funny. Because you're like, well, no, it's Rafael.

And I was like, well, wait a second. I know. I looked this up, and I know, where did I get Emmerich? Right? And then it says it there, right?

But it is important. And I love the ending of that. It's like when you're in the hospital and you and your father are there together, and it's like you're getting paid for the opposite. It's like, you know what? Let me just lessen the confusion.

And Emmerich is your middle name, as you shared with. And so. And that's. That's. Again, my story's all over the.

My wife says, make like, a little miniseries out of it because there's so many weird tangent stories. So Emerick's Austrian. My mom's grandparents were austrian, so I'm mexican american via Spain and Austria. So it's like, all over the. They're.

Everybody's like, I thought your parents were Mexican. Why would they name you Emmerich? I was like, well, it's austrian, and it kind of comes to the. Forget it. Just don't worry about it.

It's cool. Right? And then funny story for you. She don't know this, I don't think. But you've met my daughters and my youngest daughter, Michaela.

Her middle name is Juliet, and that's because of my mom's middle name is Juliet. Oh, I didn't know that. And is it spelled the same way as mine is? Okay. Because.

Because there's, like, the Hollywood way, which is Juliet. So whenever people would say it, they would always put my name on that. But of those things as having a unique name, I loved it. But then there was a period of time, and it was really. It's going to date me.

But when I was younger, there was always that. There was where you had your name on the bracelets or they had stickers or whatever. And mine was never on the little thing that you twirled around in the convenience store. Yeah, neither was mine. I was going to say neither was yours.

Exactly. No, I love mean the founder of Salas plastic surgery. You are in Fort Lauderdale now. I know you know, and we can get into the whole story. You're South Florida.

But I would love to get into a little bit of your childhood. You said you grew up in Mexico City. Your father was in the medical world. I'm a cardiologist. So was it one of those things that was like, okay, you're going to be a doctor.

This is what you're going to do? Or was there a choice? I would love to know a little bit about your family history and kind of how that all came about. Okay, so I'll give you the brief run through so that your listeners are like, all right, dude, enough of your. But so I was born in Missouri, actually.

So Springfield, Missouri, which is like, I think every state in America has a Springfield, but I was born in Springfield, Missouri. I think that's where the Simpsons are from. I was just going to say that is where the Simpsons are from. My father had just finished his cardiothoracic training, so he was now an attending, which is like a professor at the university. And so he was there as a professor, and the two places they rotated, there was a hospital in Springfield and a hospital in Columbia.

My older Sister was born in Columbia. I was born in Springfield. So you can figure out what was going on there with mom and us. But I guess he'd finish his training, so why not, right?

But at that time, it was this new field, cardiac surgery, and everything was happening, bowels and bypasses. It was really, like, an amazing time for the field. And so he wanted to take that to Mexico because for a long time, and truthfully, still kind of like they'd lagged behind. And he's like, but this is important. We can save lives.

So I think it would be great if I could go there, teach them how to do it, because I'm a professor officially here, and why don't I just go teach them and then they can carry it on, and then we're good. It was noble. I was like, I think, a year and a half old, and then we moved. My younger sister is actually born in Mexico City, and we lived there for, gosh, almost ten years. And it was great because my family was all there.

So grandparents, uncles, cousins, aunts, everybody. So it's a really nice variation of cultural upbringing, which I think is cool. But then after a while, it's a little bit different down there. It's a little more challenging in terms of getting people to want to piggyback more work, to learn more things with essentially not really a bump in pay, but just kind of like the altruistic do better, do good for the world type of thing, which, I mean, kudos to my dad. It was a noble endeavor.

It's just tough to get people to kind of on board with that because there is no true compensation. It doesn't work the same as in the US. But I think also that comes from his mom, my grandma, my know, she's like the nicest human in the world. And everybody was very religious lady, and rest in peace, she's no longer with us, but she definitely left a mark on everybody with him and then him to me. And I think there is a little bit of that that sort of drove me towards medicine, I think, more so it was me.

This is more like high school now. We're talking about. Fast forward to high school. We would interact, and my dad was big on dinner at the table, everybody together at the family every night. And so we would have stories about, hey, so how'd it go?

How was school? And then we'd be like, well, what happened with you dad? Or he'd show up late or just in time for dinner type of thing, and he's like, well. And then he'd tell you stories. But it's like, as cool as you see, like, in the tv shows where they're like, stuff's flying and this and that.

And I operated for 14 hours overnight, and we saved the life, whatever. So it was always like this in my mind. I've always had this very, I guess we'll say, active imagination, which is. I'll segue to that with my mom's side. But ultimately, I played in my head.

I was like, this is awesome. This is an exciting life to have, right? Like, saving lives. And it's one of those things where you just found it incredibly interesting, fulfilling, that I would say, like, I would love to do that. I would love to be able to do that every day as, like, a thing.

This is my job, people. Now, it's been kind of, I guess, a phrase like, not all heroes wear capes type of thing, but it really felt like that saved somebody else today. And you're just like, cool. Yeah, right? It wasn't something like it was expected of you, which is cool, actually.

It was the opposite. Right, okay. It was the opposite. So when I applied to med school, my dad's like, oh, really? I was like, why do you want to go to med school?

I did all this. The mentality is always like. And obviously they're old school. They're like, we do all this so you can have a better life than us, not so you can work just as hard and suffer like I did. And I was like, well, but I really like it, and I think it's interesting.

And this and the other. And my mom's side is all artists, so my mom's side, the Martina's side, they were, like, professional photographers and in the film industry and have painters with works of art in the Royal Museum of Spain. Everybody's like, in the arts. And my dad's side is all the scientists. So his brother is a general surgeon.

His other brother was, like, an engineer. I'm the middle child, and I got. The brains of the boat, which is. So fascinating, but they thought, this kid's so artistic. I was winning art contests way out of my age range, and they were like, who's this?

And they're like, that's this kid. And they're like, that's not right. Wow. And they're like, that kid didn't do that. And then they're like, yeah, he did.

Obviously, we're talking about elementary school. People are still kind of, like, batting above average on the art side, I guess. And so they were always like, he's going to be an architect or a graphic designer or some artsy style. And when I said medicine, he was like, oh, man. Okay.

So then I did medicine. Anyway, fast forward. I go to medical school now. I'm at Tufts in Boston doing this. And then after second, you have to choose surgery or medicine.

And they said, I want to be a surgeon. And my dad's like, nah, don't do like, you know, you didn't listen to me. For medical school, at least go to medicine. It's a little bit more like, you don't have all the call, like, crazy. Like three in the morning, got to run the surgery type stuff.

And at that time, I'm still young. Like, I'm old now. But you still are very romanticized with the idea. And you're like, no, but I want to get up and do save lives, like you did type of thing. So I did.

I went surgery because you have to pick because they really skew your subsequent classes and courses. So I went surgery, and he's like, jeez, okay. Yeah, but you know what is really cool? And this is why I love doing stories. Like I always say, stories connect us.

And fascinating that you had both sides, the science and the creative, and that you kind of got both. And it was like, okay, let's see where I go. But what you said in the beginning is like, you got the good feels of what your dad was doing someone else. Your dad was like, okay, I'm coming home. And you remember that sitting at that table and listening to him talk.

And so another kid might be like, oh, I know, I don't want to do that. Or another child that their dad didn't make that a priority and they never saw him. Oh, I definitely don't want to go into that because I never saw my dad. He worked all the time. But you got the good feels of it.

And so, of course that's going to stay. And that's one of the things that I love doing on this podcast, because sometimes people don't always think about it is when you have a good feel when you're a kid. A lot of times, if we can really kind of introspectively think back in different times of our life, especially at times that we question, like, am I doing the right thing? Am I on the right path? Am I doing.

And kind of go back and be like, when did I have those good feels and what was around it? Sometimes that helps people really get unstuck. So I love that you have that vivid imagination of, yeah, it was exciting. And then bringing your grandmother in it. So family was really important in kind of shaping where you went.

And then you were like, no, I want to do surgery. This is what I meant to do. And then you open your own practice, which is also another thing that we're going to get into. But to me, like, being an entrepreneur, there is a very creative kind of part of that. And not everyone in the sciences is like, oh, I want to venture out and do things on my own, because that's a whole nother side of people's brains, right?

That's a whole nother kind of way people work. And when you said you had that kind of creative thing, I was like, that's interesting. That makes me think a lot. Okay, you're now in medical school. You decide that you're picking surgery.

So then take us through that a little bit. At that point, he had me rotate with a bunch of people that he's like, I know some docs at this point, you still get, like, a little bit of a break in the summer. He's like, come down. I have you hang out with some friends of mine in medicine in different fields, and see if you like what they're doing. And it was great.

And obviously, every Specialty has their art, but it just didn't really speak to me. And I was like, I don't know, dad. I think it doesn't really work for me. So wet surgery. He's like, oh, jeez.

Okay, fine. So at the end of that, then they're like, well, what specialty are you going to head for? Right? And so for me, I was like, oh, of course. And this is actually a true story.

If I could get you to meet any of my med school people. First day of medical school, huge auditorium, right? Where you meet for most of the classes, and you sit there for 8 hours and they just cycle all the professors, and you sit there and you learn. And like a proper champion college kid, I sit in the last row at the top where it's like nice and dark. I mean, I paid attention, but I just wasn't really like the front row guy because we were cool kids back then.

But the professor and I thought, nothing. We're just hanging out and we're chatting and they're like, hey, welcome. Whatever. It was like, who is your nose? What they're going to be when they finish medical school.

And I just stood up. I don't even know why I stood up, because normally they just raise your hand. I don't know. I stood up and I just went like that because I was like, I guess I figured I'm out the way back if they're going to see me, whatever. And then I realized I'm the only one that stood up.

Wow. And I was like, so of course I get called on. Yes. What's your name? I was like, okay, hey, my name is Rafael.

And Rick Salas, he's like, what are you going to be? I was like, I'm going to be a cardiothoracic surgeon. And the guy goes, wow. It's a bold statement, but okay, so for everybody else that isn't 100% decided on day one of medical, just have an open mind and blah, blah. I was like, oh, God.

So I sat down. But in the end, I didn't end up doing that because that was my original drive to get there. And just kind of fast forward to now really choosing what special you want to pursue, because you do have to start investing time with the people that are in that field so you can acquire the skills and the knowledge and really meet the people that are kind of going to make that difference in terms of what you do and if it really is the field for you. And so I was having those conversations with my dad, and he's like, don't do cardiac surgery. It's just a lot.

He's like, I'm x years old because I'm not going to call him out, but he's like, but I still have to get up at 03:00 a.m. To go do a consult. I want to pause you for a second, because this is what I want you to finish the story. So is it like Michael Jordan's kid going into basketball? Is your dad kind of talking to you like, you don't want to always have to be in my shadow?

Or was it because he was like, this is tough, or do you not really know?

Obviously we've had a lot of conversations since, but I feel like he never really says yes or no, but it seems like he just wanted to make sure that that's really what I wanted. Right. Because in retrospect, he's right. I mean, it's a big commitment. You spent a lot of time.

You give up a lot of your life for this. And again, just a little quick aside, but I have. Sometimes I meet some people, and they're like, wow, amazing. You have the best life and all this, and, man, how cool is that? And he's like, how lucky are you?

And I was like, well, lucky, like, how? Right? Because you work. There's no luck on this. But if you want this spot, I'll trade you the entire ten years of your.

Maybe it's kind of. And they're like, oh, I don't know if I do that. I'm like, see, it's not quite just like, hey, you got lucky because you had to work. You had to work. Yeah.

But at the same time, I would say I am lucky. I'm lucky in the sense that my parents came together and gave me this skill.

For them to kind of give me those talents, like I said, kind of mesh together the art and science side of it. I don't know. God sprinkled a little bit of talent in there, and that's just me being lucky, being born with these skills. Right. And finding something that you love.

Right, exactly. To speak to that, if you do love it, then you put in the effort to hone the skills.

My grandma on my dad's side always say, your talent is God's gift to you, and what you do with it is your gift back to him. Did you waste it? Did you use it? And so I always felt like I have all these things that I can do. If I don't do the max that I can do with it, I almost feel like I am letting, I don't want to say somebody down, but it stuck with me.

And that's why I was telling you, my grandma had so much influence on everybody in the nicest possible way. But you're just like, jeez, I don't know. I guess going to try harder, I think so. Let me just try harder. So it's one of those things that just, like, in the back of your mind, she's always kind of there.

I love that. In a good way. No. And so I want to go back. I know I interrupted you there because I was just curious about kind of the path.

So your dad really sat you down and said, I don't think you should go into that. So then how did you kind of get off of that and then decide. It was still him? He said, don't do cardiac. He's like, one more shot.

Let me get you in touch with some of my friends. And again, maybe it is luck that fortuitously my father is in medicine, and he was able to put me in front of, like, I spent time with a urologist, a vascular surgeon, a general surgeon, orthopedics, and then finally plastic surgeon. And that day, I was like, this is it. In the morning, we ended up doing, like, a free flap reconstruction for a cancer defect. And then in the afternoon, we were doing, like, injectables.

And then he did a breast augmentation. And then we did a facelift. And I was just like, we're all over the body. There's all this stuff to do. I'm never going to be bored because that was one of those weird fears for me, that I was like, what if I sort it out and then that's it.

Now I got to do this every day of my life forever, and I'm going to be like, it's a weird. I don't know if you call it fear, but no sort of concern I had that I was like, what if I get bored of it? But in this field, it's almost impossible because there's so much to do. There's such a variety head to toe, and then just all the reconstructive elements of it and all the fields that are within it in terms of, like, cancer, recon, trauma, recon, the cosmetic side of it, craniofacial burns, hand surgery. There's so much of it.

And then the best part, when this doctor, Dr. Halpern, he said, well, you just have to be confident enough in your knowledge to figure it out. Because I was asking, I was like, well, so how do you know how to do this? And he said, because plastic surgery isn't a cookbook. This is how you do this, because you'll never have the same gunshot wound.

You'll never have the same patient asking for the exact same thing. You have to know the principles and then be able to apply those rules that you know of how the body and the tissue behaves, and then use that input, whether it's the whole, unfortunately, of the defect that's there that you have to correct or the patient's opinion and wishes, and you have to go that way and figure it out. And that's where you have to be. There does have to be some sort of artistry in it for you to figure that out. And when he said that, I was like, that's it.

This is what I want. This is kind of like in the microcosm is what I do, right? It's like I'm thankfully smart enough, hardworking enough to get the knowledge part of it, but fortuitously artistic enough to be able to work it into, hey, miss so and so, or Mr. So and so would like it to look this way because it's not always about, this is the aesthetic idea, which I learned, right. And you sort of base things off of from here, but there's a range, right, of.

And especially now, there's a lot more sort of ethnic awareness where you're like, well, I want to change it a little bit, but I don't want to be completely just vanilla this way, right? Or everybody looks the same type of thing. And that's one of those things that is pervasive in my practice, which is really listening to the patient and really trying to get, like, where do you want to go with this so I can help take you there? Because I don't want to do just what I want to do. The goal is to make you happy, not to do the surgery I want to do, right?

So it's kind of like that. That day was awesome because it is kind of when you see it and you're like, finally. I know. And, I mean, in the end, my dad was like, hooray. I did it.

Right? He made me go somewhere else, but at the same time, I was like, you know what? It's great because he did it was my unlock to be like, that's what I'm going to do. And then I was cavalier enough to be like, okay, I'll just go do plastics. Yeah, no, I love that as purely the naivete of that statement is comical to me now because I didn't know anything about it.

You're so, like, at that point, young and confident and driven and just like, this is where I'm going to go, and I'm going to go. And the match rates for that specialty are just, like, abysmal, right? And I was just like, I'm just going to go do it. And so you almost just don't think about it and you just go. And then in the end, you just make it happen.

As silly and simple as that sounds, I guess I'll say it's simple, not easy. Right. Because you had to work. Yeah. So now you're in med school, you decide what you want to do.

So you take the surgical path. You go through the, what, four years, and then tell us where that led you in your.

So I went to Harvard to general surgery. Then I actually left and went to do a plastic surgery research fellowship, which is how I got into wound research, which is. I'm sure we'll get to that some point, but. And then I did my plastic surgery fellowship at the University of South Florida in know, at which point then I was hired on staff as an assistant professor for a couple of years, but I was still very driven to come home. I grew up in south Florida and my family's down here.

And like I mentioned previously, Hispanics tend to have a big family centric sort of motif. So I just wanted to get back to here. I had gone to University of Miami for undergrad, so I had a lot of friends.

You know, it's just one of those things where I just thought it was the right fit for me. And also, in a way, I knew that Miami, from plastic surgery standpoint, is kind of one of those meccas where everybody expects it to be good. And I wanted it to be good. I wanted to be the best because I'm the best, not the best, because I'm the only game in town. So if we're going to go, we got to go and do it.

And that's also one of those. It sounds a little bit like I wanted plastics because I also know that I could show you that it was the best. I can show you in the photo. The proof is in the pudding. Like they say, right?

This is better than this. And that's it. You can't argue that. And so that's where I wanted to be. I didn't want to just be okay.

So I was like, if we're going to. Oh, we're going to compete with the. Pros right now, did you open up your own practice right away or was that something that happened? And can you take us down that path a little bit? Yeah.

No. At the beginning, I tried joining a couple of people down here, but it's a little bit.

We won't say names, but it was just interesting, the dynamic people very much want the senior junior roles to be the case, but when you're splitting costs and stuff, that's not really the case, right? Because if we're 50 50, we're 50 50. And I started getting a lot more traction based on my results, so people would come in and start asking perhaps a little bit more. I don't even know if it was more, but more than I guess the partner would like for me to be the person. And so there was just a lot of static for me.

It was kind of odd because I'm not that type of person. I'm more of like an abundance mindset. Like, hey, there's plenty to go around. Let's just do this, right? I thought it was a collaborative effort, but they didn't really like it.

And so I said, well, listen, I mean, I'm not here to compete with you. The idea was, we're going to help each other, so if you don't like that, I don't need another. Not any more friction here. And so it just kind of happened by default. But I thought it would make sense.

Because it was early, right? Because early on you're, like, not exactly rolling in it, so it makes sense to part cost and stuff like that. But in the end, I was like, you know what? I, my entire life, have been more than willing to put forth the effort and work at putting whatever work is necessary. We'll do what is required.

That's a famous quote there that you just got to do what's needed. And I've never shied away from that. One of those things is like, I'm not saying necessarily I'm like the smartest kid in the world or anything like that, but I'll outwork you if that's what it's going to take. Right? And so that's one of the things.

My wife laughs. She's like, you can't really. You're not supposed to live on that little sleep. I was like, yeah, but we need to get this done, so this is going to happen, and then I'll catch up later. And it's one of those things that I don't know if it's from my family or the Harvard way or any of that, those things all contribute to your personality and who you become as a person.

But it's one of the things that I did sort of find out about myself during the residency and during my training that my dad had kind of instilled within me from very early on, which was like, respect the value of money. You can't just have everything for free. Because he was a doctor, it's not like we just weren't like doing all the rich things. He was like, I don't want that for you because it's going to skew you the wrong way. And he had seen it, I guess, happen.

So he's like, I need you to realize, understand the value of money, so they understand this stuff doesn't just happen. You have to work for it, for whatever it is that you want. And I think in a way I thank him for that because I do see some folks that have had it all since the beginning. And it's cool. I'm not saying I wouldn't have wanted some of that cool stuff, but at the same time, and I'll quote, I'm sure you know, this guy, Alex Ramosi, who had this thought of, he said, well, if you wanted to have a person that's strong and resilient and capable, what would you do to make them that way?

Right? And it wouldn't be having an easy life. No, you have to be having to. Go through struggles and having to face things and overcome, and that's what builds you and makes you the person you are. And I think it's very true, and I think we all kind of know that inside.

But when he said it, I was like, yeah, it really is true the case. Right. But in a nice way for me, it reframes, like now you're thankful for all those hardships and stuff you went through, because now you're the person you are because of it. And I think it does prepare you for the future. And it has given me some lessons for me to be able to instill in my daughters as well.

I mean, my daughters are four and six, so maybe it's a little early for that. No, it's a framework of things, of. How to get them there. And I think I'm going to be kind of the same way. Yeah.

No private jet, right? We're a long way from that. I'm joking. Yeah, no, but I mean, that's the thing. You have to work for it.

Especially when nothing in life comes easy. And when we learn, we usually learn in the hard times. You don't really learn a lot when things are flowing and going easy and life is peachy. It's kind of when things are tough and you're down is when you learn. And it sucks, especially when you raise kids and as they get older.

I mean, I have three teenagers, and there's times where I'm like, oh, I wish sometimes it didn't have to be hard if someone's going through something. But I always have to remind myself, you know, what the hard times are, what builds character. The hard times are what makes someone a better person. If they can get out right. If you can teach them in it, this is going to be hard right now, but if you learn the lesson in there, you're going to come on the other.

I mean, one of the reasons we, we met, we got to meet in person and we can't go too much in it because, know, the clinical study, but with Danielle Fetty and Fettech, that's obviously the wounds, how you and Danielle got connected. And then the things that we're doing, which is so amazing, what the fetties are doing and that the fact that she already had a relationship, it was like, okay, this makes, you know, talk to Dr. Salas about the clinical study, which we just finished up, which is awesome. And we're excited as that continues to go through all the processes that it has to go. There's, again, when you have that respect and that friendship with someone that, you know, Danielle had, it was kind of one of those things that it's like, this just makes sense when there's so many different avenues, so many different places that we know Fettech is going to go.

And the fact that we were able to kind of all come down to South Florida, get to meet you, the relationship that you and, you know, previous, it's just kind of awesome. We got to meet Steph and got to see her work. We got to meet your wife and your kids and see the atmosphere that you have, that's another kind of awesome thing. When you work with people and you build the relationships. I mean, relationships are really a lot of time is how things go.

And we've talked about this on the podcast. When there's young kids, when I talk about kids in their 20s listening to the podcast and they'll ask, what advice can you give me? And that's one of the things that I like when I talk to people, it's about opportunities, when people say, it's not what you know, it's who you know. And sometimes, as much as that's unfortunate, sometimes it is. But it teaches people to, okay, I need to put myself out there.

If I have a dream and a goal, I need to not just wait and see how things come. I mean, this talks about the worth work, and you're in school, you need to work hard. You're on the sports field, you need to work hard because cutting corners and doing things, it could bite you in the ass later. And so, no, it's not being that person, because then you could talk to someone that's like a perfectionist and is constantly doing it. You have to live life, but you also have to remain curious, remain respectful, think about what other people are going through as you're connecting.

But also, you don't know where your path is going to take you. So put yourself out there. If you have dreams, put yourself in situations where I'm a little uncomfortable. I don't love this. I don't know what I'm doing.

But if you can get that confidence because you're putting yourself out there, there's going to be things that happen. As you said, yes, your dad had relationships, but if you were kind of like a shitty, sucky kid, those relationships are not going anywhere. Right? Yeah. I think that's part of the investment of your part and to speak with, to what you're saying, I agree.

I think a lot of it has to do with just relationships that happen in life, and putting yourself out there is essential. And also, I know you said, you mentioned it's kind of unfortunate. That's the way it is. But I don't know if necessarily it's unfortunate. It is the way of the world.

It's not to say, like, yes, some people are fortunately already placed in that scenario, but it doesn't mean that you cannot be in that scenario. Right. It's just you have to figure out how you bring value to the equation or how you can contribute to the situation, and then that puts you in a situation to meet those people and to make those relationships.

I do it all the time, just in random situations. My wife's always like, well, you talk to everybody. What's the deal? I'm like, well, because I just had a question I wanted to ask them, and they looked like they knew what they were doing. I overheard, and I thought it was interesting, so I kind of followed up on it, and I'm not sure where I got that, but it is one of those, like, I guess, old school isms of like, you know, it doesn't hurt you to.

To say something nice to somebody if you have to say it. And I think that that served me well. If I can give anybody a tip of how to start a conversation, just give a compliment and mean it. Don't give an, it was forever ago. But.

Not today, obviously. I'm wearing this scarf because I had surgery today, but I would say I'm fairly style conscious. My wife is like, you were so much like putting together a suit. I was like, yeah, but it matters because people are going to see you, and it reflects how you look and stuff. Tom Ford said it was a form of good manners, right, dressing well.

But in that sense, whenever we were in the elevator, same thing. My grandma would know, you can say something nice, because I would always ask, why is everybody was quiet? Why do we just stare forward? And she's like, well, you can speak if you want. And I was like, okay, yeah, here we go.

As a kid, right? No filter. Here we go. So I was like, hey, why is your dog. Whatever.

You know what I mean? And it kind of stuck with me that there's no rule against that, right? But now what I'd like to do is just compliment somebody on if something looked like if they put the world put together, I see something cool, or they look like they're having a good time, or they look, they just stressed. It's just like a one liner that is no skin off my back, but I can either make you feel amazing or comforted or make you feel you're not alone. And then we part ways when the door opens, but it doesn't matter.

Why not? You know what I mean? It's another human. And you can help them off of those conversations I have started, conversations that are longer lasting, or they'll run to me later. You're like, hey, how's it going?

Now all of a sudden, we're sort of friends, but it just starts that there is no rule that you can't talk to somebody. Now, I know obviously in social norms, and if somebody's an elected official and things like that, I'm not saying you hop the fence. No, but, like, 90% of people are not that conversation. And if they're not receptive, okay, but you lose nothing by trying. No.

Right? And it's one of the things that I've taught my kids since they were little. I mean, my kids were young in New York City. We lived in New York City. And I would always say to know, just be aware of your surroundings.

Watch what's around. Don't just be the person. Especially nowadays, especially with kids, there's a certain generation that you could tell when things changed a little bit and their social norms are a little off. And I think it's when electrodes. I don't love to be that person.

That's like, you can tell. And I'm not going to name the ages, but it's like, jesus, they were not taught, hey, you're going to sit at the dinner table and we're going to have conversations. We're going to go out to a restaurant and we're not going to be sitting there on our electronics. We're going to have conversations as families. And that was something that was always really important to my husband and I.

It was like, I don't care if the kids. Someone's in a bad mood. I'm not shoving an electronic in their face. We're going to work it out like normal people do. Like, hey, we're at dinner.

This is how you're supposed to act when you're at dinner. We are at a restaurant. Sorry you're having a bad day, but let's sit down, have a meal, talk, and then you can have your bad day when you finish outside. You don't have to be peachy, but you don't need to be whatever. So it is one of those things I've always said to them, just be aware of what's your surroundings, because you don't know who's coming in your path.

You don't know who you're going to meet. You don't know who you're supposed to meet. But you also don't know who you can impact that day. We all have stuff. It doesn't matter how we grew up, whether how privileged, non privileged.

We all have trauma at some point in our life. And trauma can be big, it can be little. But when it's your own trauma, it's something you don't know what someone's going through that day. So be the person that maybe someone drops something, just pick it up, hand it. Be the person that is the better person.

Hold the door for someone. Don't be in your phone or be too much into yourself. Look around. And I think sometimes that is lost. When you're in the city, when you're in places that are busy, people are trying to get home after Covid, people are struggling.

It's like if you can be the person that just brightens someone's day by just doing something small, it doesn't go unnoticed. And when you act like that and do that, it just becomes then easier and easier. And you don't have to be extroverted. I have a couple of kids that are extrovert really out there and then others that are a little more introverted. And you don't have to be the big personality.

You can do it in your own way and make it your own way. But the human connection and connections are so important for so many different reasons. A lot that you mentioned 100% but. Like you said, the more you practice it, the more it becomes part of who you are, then you're almost not really trying for it. It happens naturally, in which cases when it becomes genuine, like you had mentioned at the beginning.

And it's interesting because that's a lot of the conversations you have when you first bring somebody on board at my practice, whether it's like Salasbas surgery or the little med spa, all my employees go through that same. I give them all the same talk. I'm like, listen, you will have interactions with people. Not everyone is going to be super happy and bubbly because everybody has their days, right? And you have to think, if that person is acting difficult or testy or whatever, maybe they're having a bad day.

Why don't you, instead of being, like, attitude back, think, let me be the bright spot in this person's day. Let me see how I can take it. Almost like, as a challenge to say, I'm going to make this person smile. I'm going to make them have a good day. I'm going to make them turn their frown upside down, like, to say.

And it's almost like, embrace it as part of your role. Right? And like you said, if we all did that, the world would be so much better if all we were trying to one up each other on how good they can make somebody else feel. That would be awesome. And so I try to instill that in all my team members.

I don't like to call them employees, but team members that come on board because it is, it's one of those, like, you got to buy into the mission of, like, we're here to make you happy.

And what's funny is when they start doing that at work, then they start doing it, like, not at work. And I've had a couple of them later on when they've been for a while, they're like, yeah, it's different. Like how you just look at stuff differently now because you're always searching for what can be the bright spot because I'm going to want to hit on that in case this person isn't happy. But it does. It reframes your brain.

Right? And gosh, I saw this in. Where did I see that? I read this in a book, and I'm failing you now because I can't quote you the book. But there's a gentleman who's very well off, and his kids are grown up, very responsible, very thankful, very grateful for what they have versus the standard sort of cliche of spoiled trust fund kids that are like, oh, they're a mess.

Because all these other internal issues that they've developed. And they say, well, how did you do it? How is that possible with the amount of affluence that you have for them to grow up so grateful and so aware? And I want to share this with you because I have kids and I do it now every night since I've read that. So he said, well, every night I asked them to tell me about their day, but specifically say, tell me one thing that you're thankful for because it makes them think about it.

And they're like, I don't know. This is Michaela. I don't know. I'm like, well, I need you to find something because it doesn't matter if it's like, I got an Oreo cookie today, right? Don't let my wife hear that.

But as long as it trains your brain every day to think, to start finding the positives of the day, right? Which makes you a positive thinker, which makes you a grateful person, which then subconsciously, that's just how you are, right? Because I'm starting this at four and six or whatever. I guess it was like a year ago that I read that. I think it makes perfect sense.

It's just how you look at things. And that's one of those things where I like to attribute to my parents my mom, specifically, she's the most positive person in the world. And my grandma, and they were just like, everything's awesome. People are beautiful. People are nice.

You want to be part of the beauty of this world. That's literally how you were brought up. And so you're always thinking like, everything's positive now. Caveat being that the world isn't all roses and rainbows and unicorns, right. So there are some, as you mentioned earlier, challenging situations that we get into, and there are bad people and mean people and all that stuff.

But if you don't let it corrupt your overall inside and make you jaded, then you can battle through that. Your positivity can literally push through all that. And I've had it. Not for today's episode. There's been some stuff that you're just like, man, some people are just.

But okay, you think they must be having a you can't take it personally type of stuff. Yeah. Right. Their life must be a mess. If they're doing that or working that hard to make your life difficult, then that's just.

I feel bad for them. Exactly. And you move on, right. Because there's so much better things to be into and look into and focus on. Like the buddhists say, the problem is you think you have time.

It's like, enjoy while you're here, man. Don't spend time stressing about all the bad things and pre worrying about whatever. It's like, enjoy your life. There's so much awesomeness around you that it's a much more worthwhile endeavor. Yes, I'm going to leave it at that because that is a beautiful ending.

But let everyone know, and I will do this in the beginning. So they're going to hear it in the beginning as well. But let everyone know where they can find you. If they're like, wait, I'm in South Florida or I would love to check out Dr. Salas when I come into Florida.

Okay, so my name is Rafael Emmerich Salas. I'm a board certified plastic surgeon at Salas plastic surgery and the love med spa. And we are located in Pembroke Pines, Florida, which is, we like to call it Fort Lauderdale west. And yeah, I mean, just look us up. Sbs miami.com is the website or Salasplasticsurgery Miami on Instagram.

You can check me out at Dr. Emerick Salas on TikTok. I don't dance, but I do have lots of educational content. Yeah, Google my name. Full name for Juliet Rafael.

For YouTube, I have YouTube educational channels. Same thing. Started those to help my patients out so that they can be educated and armed with good information to live the dream and get what they want, achieve their happiness. Wonderful. Hopefully we can help them with that.

Well, thank you so much for joining your next stop. You guys know what to do, like rate, review and share. You might be listening to this episode and saying, oh, this is so cool. But you don't know who needs inspiration. You don't know who is thinking, do I want to go to medical school?

Do I want to become a doctor? Do I want to become a surgeon? What is it? And then different paths again. The positive thinking about different things.

Someone in your life needs to hear this, so definitely go and share it. And thank you for joining another episode of your next stop. You. I hope you've liked this episode of your next stop. Please subscribe to my channel, share with your friends, and join in each weekend.

My focus is entirely on helping you follow your passion, even when you feel like you've got stuck in crazy town. There is a way out, its me helping you. You don't have to ditch everything in your life that is making you feel overwhelmed and stuck, you just need some help to navigate it.


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