Self(less) and Self(ish)
Physicians have an identity problem. We were directed years ago into a profession in which we plan a central role in helping others. As such, selflessness has become virtuous. The downside to complete selflessness is that we neglect the self. Most physicians are not in an optimal state of health. Many of us are on blood pressure medications, overweight, over-caffeinated, stressed, or pre-diabetic (myself included several years ago). Many physicians’ personal relationships are actively falling apart, and few of us have the luxury of enjoying leisure. Don’t spread yourself too thin: half-assed effort, half-assed relationships, and half-assed success make for broken doctors with broken lives, and, ultimately, it is our patients who suffer the most.