Last week, I had a routine maintenance appointment with my GP. It was the first visit since my birthday in October so I learned that I am now in a new bucket with additional recommended wellness tests: Women 50-65. I was happy to realize that it had been at least six months since I’d seen a doctor—because in 2014 I went to a GP four times! It started with the rash in March and then a bunch of new annoying or concerning symptoms over the spring and summer.
When my GP talked to me about stress last year, I thought: I’m not supposed to be the patient you ever have to talk to about this. I know all this. I meditate. I handle stress well. But it was obvious to me that STRESS, and its effect on the immune system, probably contributed to at least half the issues.
With my job, I look at a lot of stats called Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Curious about my healthcare stats, this week I looked up my visit history online. In the 6 years previous to 2014, I only went to a GP with a total of 4 complaints. In 2013, I never saw my GP. In a 6 month period in 2014, I had 8 complaints*. No KPI graph necessary. One thing after another was like a wake-up call that could not be silenced: asking if my health was really the priority I said it was.
So all this was a catalyst to the SLSR plan. All this was not going to become my new normal. I don’t want to have to deal with stress-related health issues. I don’t want to spend more $ on things to “manage” stress, like massage, spa treats, expensive vacations. I don’t want to wait for a worse diagnosis. I want more time to focus on What Is Important … and a KPI for that.
*Note: I am not including the incredibly annoying but expected need for Progressive Lenses (AKA bifocals) last year.
- GP = General Practitioner
- wake up call: the rash post
- stats = statistics
- KPI = Key Performance Indicator
- SLSR = simpler living semi-retirement
- AKA = also known as