Self-Care Challenge (Day 148): Self-Directing My Care

white iphone and cup of coffee

On day 148 of my 366-day self-care challenge, I focused on self-directing my medical care. After all, being an informed advocate is how we get quality healthcare.

While there’s still some disagreement about the definition of self-care, it’s clear that it exists on several levels. On one end, there’s exclusive self-care, with no input or guidance from a medical professional. While some have suggested that the majority of health care is self-care, most of us will likely need professional care at some point in our lives. And on the other end of the spectrum, there’s exclusive medical-care. In this scenario, care-related decisions are made only after consulting with a professional, and sometimes the final treatment decision is even left up to the provider.

But somewhere in the middle lies the concept of “shared-care,” often referred to as “patient-centered” care, where individuals seek out professional information and consultation before coming to a decision on their own.

To me, this makes the most sense. Self-care is cheaper, easier to navigate, more convenient, and creates the least burden on the health care system as a whole. (Plus, I don’t like the idea of needlessly booking an appointment when there are others with greater needs waiting.)

But sometimes self-care just isn’t enough.

So, in line with my intention this year to develop a comprehensive self-care practice of my own, my activity for the day was to focus on self-directing my care by consulting with a medical professional.

Having a solid, multidimensional self-care plan involves knowing when to seek the guidance of a professional.

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