By Star Noor, Features Editor, Coco Eco Magazine
FIRST PUBLISHED IN COCO ECO MAGAZINE, 2016
Hunky doctors with a great smile, and a lovely disposition is well, the stuff dreams are made of for most of us gals; so, it’s no wonder that when Dr. Mikhail Varshavski D.O. (aka Dr. Mike) started his Instagram account, we paid attention. His social media fame has brought him media attention, but it is his winning spirit and giving nature that has many of us wanting to know more.
He is tall, dark, and handsome – that is already established, but more importantly he is using his new found fame and his skilled mind to do good for the rest of the human community by volunteering his time, and starting a foundation that helps people reach their goals and dreams as well. As the old adage goes, teaching a person to fish is after-all the greatest gift we can give to each other – time, skill, and belief are the ultimate forms of love bestowed upon others and Dr. Mike has no problem offering that to others as is evident both in his social media outreach and in his latest venture, The Limitless Tomorrow Foundation.
Being a doctor for him, was like being in the family business. He explains, “My family and I immigrated to the states when I was just 6 years old. My father was a physician back in Russia but in coming to America he had to start medical training from scratch and in a foreign language to boot. I watched him work his way through medical school and residency, an incredibly difficult feat for someone in their 40’s. Because of this I was exposed to medicine at an early age. I witnessed how he interacted with his patients. They were more than patients. They came to him for health advice, life advice and even love advice at times. I grew enamored with the thought that I can go into a career where I didn’t have clients but Instead had friends, friends who trust me with their lives and the lives of their loved ones.”
This way of thinking is indicative in all that Dr. Mike does. His life philosophy is a simple and noble notion, as he states; “”Know thyself”. In any endeavor that you set out upon the first step will always be to be able to understand who you are. You must know your strengths, your limitations, your likes and your dislikes. I see people in horrible jobs or in horrible relationships all the time and it’s not because they aren’t smart, it’s because they forgot to know who they are as individuals first. There are so many people out there chasing dreams that aren’t their own. You have to step outside your comfort zone, explore the world around you, and only then can you have some sense about who you are and where you should be going. “
In knowing himself, he is a humble man who in regards to his popularity has this to say, “I’m still in awe of the term “Instagram-Fame”. I don’t understand how it came about that I am now recognizable on the street in countries all around the world. I’m so grateful for all the doors it has opened in my career. I’ve always been incredibly passionate about helping others and educating on medical topics. Now instead of teaching one patient in my office I’m able to reach over 2 million people right at home. I am a realist and understand that most follow me because they find me attractive. I don’t shy away from that kind of attention. I think that if I can catch a young girl’s attention with my looks and in the process convince her to come in for her cancer screening or teach her something about her health, my mission as a doctor has been accomplished. Being popular on social media allows an individual great amount of influence and I intend on using mine to make everyone in the world healthier and excited about staying that way. “
Helping the world be healthier is a multi-faceted ordeal as being happy, as many of us have found, is directly correlated to being and staying healthy. As such, Dr. Mike and The Limitless Tomorrow Foundation are in fact helping people realize themselves and live happy healthy lives by making the playing ground a bit more leveled for those who might otherwise fall through the cracks despite their dreams, skills, and tireless efforts. “Ever since I gained my popularity on social media I’ve been trying to find a way to use my influence for the greater good. I looked at my own situation and saw a loophole in our system. I was always one of the top 20 or so students in my classes, I was involved in many extracurricular projects, but it was always the top 5 students who got the scholarships. I thought that was ludicrous. I do not believe that grades are the sole aspect that students should be based on when distributing scholarships. As a physician I treat my patients as a whole, so why wouldn’t I treat students the same? Now my foundation can gift scholarships and funding based on the whole student and not just their grades. The future world leaders will need to be well-rounded and that’s precisely the type of applicants we are looking for. We want to give money to those who have a great vision for the world ahead of them.”
He believes that Education is the greatest obstacle of our time. He explains, “So many of our worldly conflicts are due to misunderstandings and poor communication. Education is lacking throughout the world. Most importantly the education of common sense. Don’t get me wrong, It’s incredibly important to have kids learn the basics in the classic subjects (language, mathematics, sciences, etc.). But we often overlook the importance of teaching children how to think on their own. We give them the knowledge that 2+2=4 but never teach them how to question that 2+2=5.”
The awe-inspiring physician assures that unlike many others, he did not set out to become web-famous, “I started sharing my journey throughout medical school in the hopes of showing all the naysayers out there that it is possible to get a great medical education while having fun at the same time. I always made sure my studies came first, but I never slacked off on my fitness or social activities. This shocked many. People thought I was just a model pretending to be a doctor on social media. I put myself out there to break that stigma that you do NOT have to give up your life to practice medicine.”
When he’s not busy taking care of others, as his Instagram also indicates, he enjoys tennis and competitive training, and he loves to spend time with his dog Roxy. “Roxy, my husky holds a special place in my heart. My father and I had a terrible loss several years ago of my mother and we were in a very negative place. With both of us being physicians it was hard to lose someone so close in our lives, especially so early in her life. My father and I needed a positive outlet. I decided that I would fulfill my father’s childhood dream of getting a husky. I still remember the tears rolling down his face when I brought her home as a puppy. Since Roxy came into our lives we have had something to look forward to every evening coming home from work. She means everything to us and I really do believe she carries my mom’s spirit within her.”
What else can be said after that? Our hats off to you, Mikhail.