For Plus’s new video series, “The Talk,” we demystify the early conversations with doctors or nurses that follow an HIV diagnosis. In this installment, we discuss the mental preparation it takes to go into a doctor’s appointment confident and in control. Our group of panelists — all themselves living with HIV — encourage “trusting your gut,” since you know the most about your health. Don’t let worries and hang-ups distract you. Go in with an open mind so you can truly hear what your doctor or health professional is telling you, whether it’s about HIV treatment, diet, or comorbidities. Don’t overthink it, our panelists advise, and remember appointments are simply conversations. If nerves are still an issue, write down some important points you want to make or ask about. Ultimately, our health is our own responsibility, so be an active participant.