When I attended the WomenHeart Science & Leadership Symposium for Women With Heart Disease at Mayo Clinic, cardiologist Dr. Sharonne Hayes (founder of the Mayo Women’s Heart Clinic) told us about a 2000 study on women’s life priorities called “Hierarchy of Female Concerns” that asked its female participants this one question:
“What is most important to you?”
Now, when I do presentations about women’s heart health, I like to ask my audiences to guess in advance the correct order of this study’s top six answers, just for fun.
These rankings are surprising, in an amusing-yet-oddly-pathetic way. The order of our reported priorities may also help to explain why, even when women are experiencing deadly heart attack symptoms, they will delay seeking treatment if something ‘more important’ crops up.
‘More important?‘ What could possibly be more important when you’re having a heart attack? Check out the terrific film “Just a Little Heart Attack” for a great example of our treatment-seeking delay behaviour.
And then see if this list of women’s reported priorities matches the answers that you might give, too: keep reading…