Being a health care provider can be stressful. Having healthy habits in place can mitigate stress and help you be better at your job! (Part 4 of 4)
Healthy Habit 7: Self Care
If you guessed that the seventh and final most effective habit that medical students need to have is the ability to preserve and enhance themselves, then you guessed correctly. Up to this point, everything has been about focusing on specific attitudes or actions, but in order for you to be able to do that, you have to take care of yourself.
Here at the end, we see that Covey has everything broken down into his seven exercises and four corresponding dimensions that work as follows:
- Physical: good eating, physical exercise, proper rest
- Social/Emotional: making meaningful social connections with others, seeking to deeply understand others, maintaining an abundance mentality
- Mental: enhancing your mind through reading, writing, and learning
- Spiritual: meditation, prayer, being in nature, listening to music,
While you need the time to sharpen your skills as a medical student and aspiring doctor, you similarly need the time to rest and reboot yourself. Downtime is essential to remaining focused. You have to take care of your body to take care of your mind and vise versa. As odd as it sounds, it takes work to rest and lead a balanced lifestyle that lends itself to be being whole, mind and body.
If these dimensions are all correctly exercised, it will stimulate maturity and growth in your life. This will then improve your ability to effectively communicate with others and successfully overcome the challenges that medical school will present. As Covey would say, the more you sharpen your saw, the more the other habits will fall in place due to synergy.