How to Act Like Dr. Gregory House
Dr. Gregory House is the grouchy yet brilliant diagnostician doctor on the award winning medical show House, which aired on FOX from 2004-2012. Dr. House’s complex and dynamic character is what separates the show from most hospital shows on television. Once you get hooked on the show, you may start wanting to channel Dr. House in your daily life. Start adopting Dr. House’s dry wit and sarcastic sense of humor without adopting some of his darker qualities!
Honing Your Personality Traits
Be sarcastic.One of Dr. House’s most defining characteristics is his sarcastic sense of humor. Instead of telling side-splitting jokes, be humorous in a way that is understated and subtle. Respond to situations that you are in with ironic comments and intelligent quips.
- For instance, at one point when another character is trying to have a serious conversation with Dr. House about his emotions, Dr. House says, "Did you come for my feelings? Because I left 'em in my other pants."
- Dr. House often verges on rudeness when he makes sarcastic comments about other people. This is something you may want to avoid in your own life, as he often rubs people the wrong way.
Look at life realistically.Dr. House is a long way from an optimist. He sees the dark in the world as well as the light. Though being a realist is a difficult thing to teach yourself, try not to be naïve about other people and the world at large.
- One quote that illustrates Dr. House's life philosophy is: "Welcome to the world. Everyone's different, everyone gets treated different. You try fighting that, you end up dying of TB."
- Learn more about psychology to understand the underlining motivations behind people and society in general.
- If you ever start feeling too pessimistic, stop and remember that there are other aspects of Dr. House’s personality that you channel.
Be eccentric.Dr. House isn’t afraid of other people noticing him or thinking that he’s strange. He often does odd and outlandish things, not caring how others see him and sometimes even relishing their confusion. If you ever get the urge to do or say something eccentric, don’t hold yourself back!
- For instance, if you are standing in a very long line at the DMV, you could say loudly, “Do you think Santa will let me sit on his lap?” Smile exaggeratedly at anyone who looks around at you.
Act confident.No matter what situation you’re in, be confident and outspoken. Dr. House is tremendously confident in himself, even though he does acknowledge his flaws. He is assured of his intelligence and the fact that he often is the most learned person in the room.
- Try to be quietly confident as opposed to being openly boastful. Bragging about your skills and intelligence or acting like certain situations are below you can alienate others.
Hide your compassion behind a gruff exterior.As prickly as Dr. House can sometimes be, he does genuinely want his patients to get better. In your daily life, even if you are sarcastic with those around you, try your best to help others, even if your help is behind the scenes rather than out in the open.
Acting Like Dr. House at Work
Dress like House.At work, Dr. House usually dresses in blazer over a collared shirt with dark jeans. Occasionally he wears a white lab coat over a collared shirt. Start dressing like Dr. House when you are in the public eye to give off a sense of authority.
- At home he usually wears a T-shirt and jeans.
Be the best at what you do.Dr. House is the best in his field. He is the ultimate authority figure at the hospital and everyone looks to him for help and advice. In your work place, do your best to master all aspects of your field and be the one that people consult if they are faced with a tough problem.
Bend the rules every now and then.One thing that comes with being the boss is the ability to bend rules. Even though he works in a hospital with rigidly structured regulations, Dr. House often goes around established procedures and runs things his way. Ultimately, skirting the rules helps Dr. House figure out his medical problems faster, often saving his patient. His rule-breaking therefore improves the quality of his care and is not only for personal gain.
- It’s not worth getting in trouble just to emulate Dr. House. Carefully analyze the way your workplace is run before you break the rules, and only do so if it helps your company or business run better.
Accept every challenge.Dr. House never shrinks away from a challenge. In fact, he relishes a difficult problem and is bored by easy fixes. Dr. House’s enthusiasm for intellectual challenge is what contributes to his expertise as a doctor.
- At your own workplace, take on difficult or challenging projects that others don’t want to do. These projects will help you grow professionally and will cement your status as an expert in your field.
Don’t let emotions cloud your judgment.Even though Dr. House is often presented with emotional situations, such as terminal illness in his patients, he doesn’t let his emotions get in the way of his judgment when trying to find a solution for their problems.
- In your own workplace, show empathy towards customers or clients, but don’t let your feelings affect your analysis of the situation.
Have a trusted second in command.Dr. Wilson is Dr. House’s sidekick and second in command at the hospital. Dr. House approaches Dr. Wilson when he needs support and help with moral issues. At your own workplace, start friendship with someone who you like and is professionally competent. Turn to them if you are in need of help or guidance.
Solving Problems like Dr. House
Assemble a team.Though he is a brilliant doctor, Dr. House needs his team around him to help him solve tough problems. Even if he eventually solves the problem himself, he often arrives to his conclusion only after having a problem-solving session with his team of doctors, in which they talk about possible diagnoses of the patient and what could be done to improve their condition.
- Even if your work environment isn’t naturally structured with departments or teams, still try to get the input of your coworkers when working to solve a problem.
- Assemble a group of people with different skills and expertise so that everyone has something useful to contribute.
Brainstorm before taking action.Dr. House has a whiteboard he uses in many episodes to write out all the suggestions and ideas of himself and his team. He uses the whiteboard to make connections between different ideas and come up with creative solutions. Start planning out projects or plans on a whiteboard to help you make connections and visualize your solution.
- List out all aspects of a project or a problem on one side, and all solutions on the other. Then try to branch out or connect both sides.
Try the simplest solution first.Dr. House approaches problem solving using a concept called Occam's Razor, which states that simplest theory is the best starting place for solving a problem. Once you come up with a list of potential solutions, use the one that is most likely to fix the problem. Dr. House always uses a practical approach and acts on the most likely diagnosis.
- Don't forget about human error. As Dr. House said, "Occam's Razor. The simplest explanation is almost always that somebody screwed up."
Stick to your ideas.Dr. House is incredibly stubborn, almost to a fault. If you have a possible solution to a problem that you are sure of, stick to it and don’t let others talk you down. Still be open to the ideas and suggestions of others, but always keep your original idea in mind and don’t compromise without first trying to win others over to your side.
- In season three, Dr. House says to his colleague only somewhat jokingly, "I thought I'd get your theories, mock them, then embrace my own. The usual."
Use trial and error.Move on to a different solution if the first one doesn’t work. Because Dr. House is always given the most difficult cases at the hospital, he often has to test out several solutions before finding the most successful one. Don’t be afraid to change your approach and try out different ways of tackling a problem.
- Don’t try to change your whole personality in one day. Start slowly and see how it works out for you.
- Watch the show to refresh your memory and to start picking up mannerisms and habits.
- Dr. House is a flawed character. Even if you admire certain qualities about him, remember that he is often quite alienating to those around him, and has difficulty forming close personal relationships. Don’t go overboard in your attempts at imitating him.
Video: House MD - Character Study
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