February 25, 2015

My First 90 Days: Master Self-Care First Before Diving Into a New Job.


When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily.

Before offering any advice, let me recount my first 90 days as a doctor, newly arrived in the U.S. from India. It was 1971 during a severe doctor shortage.

I sat in a New Jersey motel with my new wife, watching the first color TV we’d ever seen. On the evening news they showed a stretcher being wheeled into an emergency room after a gunshot battle in the streets.

“Oh my God,” I said to Rita. “That’s my hospital!”

The next morning I was thrown into complete culture shock. Even though doctors were desperately needed, a young doctor from India wasn’t a welcome presence. My workload was intense. The ER exposed me to severe trauma from gunshots and other kinds of violence on a daily, sometimes hourly basis. The pay was poor, the hours long, the stress sometimes overwhelming.

So how do those 90 days apply to you? The implications are both positive and negative; in other words, here’s what to do and what not to do.

To Do: On the positive side, jump in feet first. Apply yourself to the best of your abilities and then go two steps beyond. Make every day a challenge. Take responsibility for everything you influence, not just the things that fall into your job description.

Don’t Do: On the negative side, don’t let the work overwhelm you. Don’t compare yourself with others to your detriment. Avoid unproductive stress, the kind that has no beneficial outcome. Don’t let your relationships suffer from the job. Don’t bring your work home if you can help it.

You’ll notice that this advice is not only common — it can be found in almost any book about job success — but it’s contradictory. Even though every piece of it makes sense, nobody in real life actually manages to balance do’s and don’ts very well because life comes at us too fast. The moment is usually too demanding to stand back from with considered detachment and wisdom.

So, knowing that I was the survivor of my first 90 days, as well as its victim, its conqueror, its bewildered participant, and the receiver of lessons I didn’t heed quickly enough, what can I say to someone who has just been thrown into the throes of a new job?

One thing: Take your well-being seriously. This is serious medical advice. The factors that cause chronic illness are known to reach back in time by years, and the self-care you apply today will pay off in the future far more than you realize. Stress, for example, isn’t just work pressure that you release by blowing off steam, relaxing at home, or having a cocktail or two. Stress is a state of imbalance that affects every cell in the body, creating subtle situations that will have enormous consequences if imbalance isn’t restored.

Well-being isn’t a high priority among the young, the ambitious, and the successful. You don’t have to give up your personal vision of success to be well. The only requirement is to be mindful in some simple ways:

  • Know our stress limit and walk away when you are getting close to it, not after you cross the line.
  • Avoid people who apply stress.
  • Keep your body moving and active.
  • Set aside down time every day and don’t ignore it.
  • Incorporate play time in your daily routine.
  • Monitor how you feel and attend to signs of discomfort.
  • Don’t add to someone else’s burden, especially by stressing them.
  • Be honest about your emotions and express them to someone you trust.
  • Have at least one person in your life who truly knows who you are and values you for it.

These things, if you take them seriously, will lead you on the path of lifelong well-being. I didn’t catch on until I had been a working doctor for 15 years, because no one in the medical profession knew about well-being back then. The whole focus was on treating disease symptoms after they appeared. Now it is widely acknowledged that self-care plays the major part in avoiding future illness, something only you can do for yourself. It’s further acknowledged that self-care can’t be postponed until trouble appears. The good news is that tending to our well-being is easiest where it’s most effective — in your daily life right this

Originally published by Linkedin

Write Your Comment

  1. annamarie

    thanks for this uplifting article. I realized reading your article that I race through life to get my goals done and rarely rest or relax. I am 68 years old and am nurturing a broken hand and wrist. I just keep busy all the time and don't take time to relax. thanks I will try to slow down and do positive things rather than just thinks that keep my busy during retirement. Its like I am fearful of what will happen if I stop staying busy.I worked as a crisis worker for years and years and had very little time to relax and rest. Now I have all the time in the world but cant stop being busy? thanks, please guide me to myself- somehow I got lost in helping others and now don't help myself. take care, annamarie

  2. dalphane

    This is something very inspiring to read every morning, after prayer to enlighten you daily. ...

  3. Liliana Ferrari

    Muy buenos consejos Gracias

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