Sunday, September 30, 2007

Don't worry, be happy

We're probably all familiar with those lists of stressful life events. Most are based on the Social Readjustment Rating Scale developed by psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe, commonly known as the Holmes-Rahe Scale. The scale is composed of 40-45 life events that are each given a numerical value or weight. The death of a spouse carries the highest value (100). Interestingly, marriage carries the 7th highest value (50) and is considered more stressful than being fired (47) or the death of a close friend (37).

The results are generally categorized into three ranges:
Score of 300+: At risk of illness
Score of 150-299+: Risk of illness is moderate (reduced by 30% from the above risk)
Score 149-: Only have a slight risk of illness

Given the past few years of my life - and my inability to resist completing surveys & questionnaires - I was curious to see how I would fare according to the good Drs. Holmes & Rahe. I scored 431.

A pop-up box pronounced with alarm: This score indicates a major life crisis and is highly predictive (80%) of serious physical illness within the next 2 years. Great - like I don't have enough to be stressed about, now I have to worry about not getting sick!

Look at what time it is! I'd better get 8 hours of restful sleep before eating a balanced & nutritious breakfast and going to yoga. {:-@

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