As health-care professionals, we’re frequently so driven to serve others, we add unnecessary stress to each day. As I’ve noted before, a little stress is a good thing because it helps us respond successfully to life’s many challenges, but chronic stress is truly life-shortening and robs us of the joy of existence.

It goes without saying that solid systems of management are critically important to minimize practice stress. Knowing how long it takes to provide a given service can help the team stay on time. Providing proper training and detailed job descriptions with appropriate delegation also contribute to a successful day.

But there are many simple things we can do for ourselves which can minimize the stress we feel – personally and professionally – while adding joy to our lives. Embracing each day with a sense of gratitude, maintaining a positive attitude, using affirmations, and anticipating success are powerful ways to reduce stress. Wearing a smile on your face will elevate your mood and make folks wonder what you’ve been up to!

Unplug from time to time, turn off the email, take a walk and get some fresh air. Improve your indoor lighting, learn to say “no” when necessary, avoid negative people, and ask for help when you need it. If you have access to a window, take a few minutes to enjoy the sights, rest your brain, and refocus. Just a few moments of quiet meditation will lower your blood pressure and reduce your stress.

Identify a “happy place” where you can pause, reflect, and “take a breath.” A chair on your back porch or patio, a bench in your garden, or a quiet place to read in a nearby park can all serve well. Finally, give yourself permission to do those things that bring you joy! Sometimes, that’s all it takes to free us from destructive stressors and add years to our lives.


Life After Dr. and How to Get There

Only one in five dentists will successfully transition their practice to new ownership. Learn key concepts to facilitate the process, five critical purchase parameters, and important steps to take after the sale. Evaluate a dentist’s typical retirement budget and learn how to calculate your “retirement number.” Examine the importance of retiring TO something, and identify specific ways to love “life after Dr.” This fun and thought-provoking presentation will help you take the steps you need to become “one of the five!”

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Mountaintop Moments(3) resized

“When the week is finally over,
It is wonderful to go
And putter in my garden
Where I watch the flowers grow.
It is pleasant in my garden
As I cultivate my seeds;
I plant and hoe and water
And I clear away the weeds.
Though it’s frantic at the theater,
Here I leave that all behind,
And the calm within my garden
Gives this frog some peace of mind.”

Kermit the Frog
“It’s Not Easy Being Green,” by Jim Henson

Dr. Kerr

Author Dr. Kerr

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