10 Ways to Reduce Your Stress Level

As Pink says in her song “Walk Me Home”, “there is so much wrong going on outside.”

There is a lot going on in the world right now as we are reeling in the pandemic and aftermath, and trying to keep everything together and afloat.  The uncertainty of the future adds a whole new element that we’ve never had to face quite this way before because it so far outside our normal control.  And will there be a second wave? And so on.  Enough to stress anyone for sure.

Temporary Solutions

And hey, there are many ways to avoid stress:  Take a very, very long nap; retire (even if you’re not actually financially prepared for this yet); downsize everything in your life; spend all day on Facebook and YouTube or reading books online or off; binge-watch your favourite TV series or movies. Etc.

While these are all enticing alternatives to confronting and facing up to the situation of having to maintain and grow your practice at this time and in this place, following them to the end of their roads never culminates in a pretty picture.

7 Obviously Good Suggestions

  1. Exercise. Working out regularly is one of the best ways to relax your body and mind.
  2. Relax your muscles. When you’re stressed, your muscles get tense.  Hot, relaxing bath or shower.  Massages.
  3. Deep breathing (see online for various methods).
  4. Eat Well.
  5. Take a break every so often.
  6. Make time for hobbies.
  7. Talk about your problems with a family member, friend, trusted clergyman, doctor.

Have you ever noticed that when you have been confronted with a nasty situation and you get right into it and take it on and handle it, you have less stress?  Well there you have it … the solution!

3 Practice-Related Solutions:

1. Delegation

Are you getting overwhelmed with the number of non-doctor related problems and issues floating up onto your plate?  Too many decisions?  Finding it easier to just do things yourself?

The solution:  look around at all your staff and decide who is the hardest worker and most stable.  Delegate tasks to her.  Or, if you are making enough money, hire a personal assistant to handle all the day-to-day activities from your personal and professional life that someone else could do, such as taking your phone calls and handling as many as possible herself; finding the new auto insurance company you have been meaning to research and switch to; running banking errands, and so on.  This has been a very successful action for many business owners to reduce stress.

2. Staff Issues

Work out physically and rev up your engine, and then sit down and seriously take on one issue that is bothering you and work out a solution.  For example, perhaps you have a staff member who is stressing you by not showing up for work regularly.  Is there a truly valid reason?  Have you spoken to her about this and how she is putting her job a risk?  Have you gone over that the reason staff have to be there on time and every day is that your practice is there to service people and if she doesn’t show up, it makes the practice run short-handed and can result in less than perfect service to the patient; and stresses all the other team members?  Have you made some grave penalties to be instituted if she doesn’t show up for work?  Could you require her to have a doctor’s note from now on?

There are probably a lot more solutions but you need to confront the situation and work out one that will work.  And if it doesn’t, then try another one until you have it all handled … she is either there on time (and consistently) or she is not there at all and you hire someone else.  Quit letting her cause you so much stress!   You have a lot of people you need to give your valuable time to who deserve it.

3. Dealing with Difficult Patients

Do you have you patients or clients who, when you see them in the upcoming schedule, cause you to shudder?  They may be abusive to your staff (i.e. hit on the staff, or make inappropriate innuendos) or are finicky beyond beyond, and are never satisfied?  It is not mandatory for you to service every patient, just so you know!.  You politely let them know that you don’t feel that you can provide the service they are wanting and they would be best serviced by referring them to another practice where it might suit them better.

Here’s a fun fact:  Look for the 5 worst patients or clients you have and dismiss them as above and watch your stress level go down.  And watch your enjoyment of your practice go up!  And observed your practice grow as a result!


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