Updated: Sep 17
We all have different definitions. We all have different visions. We all have different answers.
Success is unique to the individual. It's something similar we all strive for while at the same time striving for something very different. The feeling of achieving our own version of success is the same. UNBELIEVABLY AMAZING, because so many things had to happen first, and so much hard work went into it.
While success is oh so different, there is some part of achieving that success that is very similar, and that's the way to do it. As I have been listening to different Podcasts, reading different books, and hearing multiple live speeches, there is something that has been consistent throughout when they talk about finding success, successful habits, how to obtain, maintain, and gain success. The number one thing that every person talks about is HEALTH. Taking care of yourself, adopting healthy habits, INVESTING in your own health!
Being healthy is the first factor to becoming successful.
While listening to a podcast called The School of Greatness in an episode titled "How to Win in Business and Life", the first of 8 keys to success is . . . You guessed it, HEALTH. He talks about getting healthy, needing to move your body, needing to move your body at least 5 days a week, needing to push outside your comfort zone and challenge yourself on a regular basis, and needing to fuel your body with the right nutrients to have the energy to move your body.
He talks about needing to invest in your own health. He states "You will NEED to spend money on your health." This is so true, and something that most people just don't want to do. The example used in the podcast was, when you get older and need to go into the hospital because something happens, you will have to spend money then. Why not spend money now and get healthy now and live with a better quality of life, likely avoiding that hospital visit later. I love this! Like it or not, it's the truth!
This past year was especially rough for victims of influenza. The flu had been spreading like wildfire all year and so many people were getting sick and even ending up in the hospital. Even "healthy" people had lost their lives to this virus.
But what does it mean to be healthy? While this isn't a debate over a shot versus no shot, it is a wake-up call to start boosting our immune systems by getting healthier. Healthy doesn't mean your are a gym rat, a size 2, or even an Vegan. I have seen unhealthy versions of all of the above. Healthy means you are taking care of your body the way it was meant to be cared for. Healthy is a quality of life standard. There are several different steps to healthy and any given person may need a different one to either get started or get better. Let's talk about it!
One of my favorite things that I have read recently was in a book called "Grow a New Body" by Alberto Villoldo. He said this:
"In the West, if you are suffering from anxiety, brain fog, or depression, most physicians or psychologists aren't going to pay attention to the balance between beneficial and non-beneficial flora in your gut (aka what you are eating). It's unlikely that your Gastroenterologist (doctors of the digestive system) will ask you about your mental or emotional stress. . .
the first thing they ask is, what medications are you taking? . . .
on the other hand, the first thing your veterinarian will ask is, what do you feed your dog?"
Fitness. Movement. Exercise.
You create energy from your movement. For this reason when you feel short on energy and don't want to move, the answer to more energy is to MOVE. Just start, and slowly your body will create more and more energy and it will be easier to keep going. Basic physics: A body in motion stays in motion.
The trick to getting off the couch is simply finding something you enjoy! You don't need to join a gym. You don't need to follow a Richard Simmons video, run a marathon, or join a local softball league. You find what works for you, what's enjoyable for you. Maybe you have a dog that likes to play at the park, or go for walks. Maybe you really enjoy golf. Maybe you snow shoe or cross country ski. Maybe you swim, surf, or sail. Whatever it is you enjoy, find it, and do it! Your energy will show up as if it was there all along just waiting for you to be ready.
Why exercise works? The two most important points to know.
1. Muscle burns more than Fat.
What does that really mean? It means that while you are sitting on the couch watching your favorite shows, if you have more muscle you are burning more calories just sitting there. How much more?
Fat burns about 1.2 calories per hour at rest.
Muscle burns about 6.5 calories per hour at rest.
2. By exercising you are reducing your bodies response to insulin or increasing your insulin sensitivity.
Huh? That matters why?
When you eat sugar (so pretty much every time you eat for most people) your body releases insulin to team up with the sugar for energy. Because we eat WAY too much sugar, we don't need most of this insulin, but our bodies don't know that, so the insulin gets stored as FAT!
When we exercise we burn a type of sugar that is stored in the muscles, AFTER we exercise we start to burn sugar that is store in the bloodstream as the muscles are replenishing what they just burned. The more we use the sugar in the bloodstream, the lower we keep out blood sugar levels helping to prevent chronic diseases like diabetes, inflammation, Alzheimer's, etc. Also, preventing weight gain and promoting weight loss when necessary.
Nutrition. Food. Fuel.
Think of it this way, in order to create energy, you move. In order to sustain energy, you fuel.
Your car doesn't go 60 to 60, it goes 0 to 60. It has to start moving first. And if your car runs out of fuel, it shuts does.
The food that you eat controls the way that you feel, the amount of energy that you can sustain, and the stamina you can obtain. Putting the wrong fuel in your body is like putting diesel in a Prius! Don't know cars? Providing your body with the wrong type of food for proper functioning is like trying to wash your dishes with tire grease. It only makes the situation worse!
I realize there are some of you thinking "oh I don't have that problem, I don't even eat breakfast, and then I have a half a sandwich for lunch, and whatever I can find in the fridge for dinner. Let me tell you, not giving your body enough fuel is just as bad. That's like thinking Fred Flintstone's car would still move if him and Barney were sitting on their feet. It doesn’t work that way people!
Understanding what is happening in your body when you eat (or don't eat) certain foods is so important. Realizing why you are eating, and whether or not it's ACTUALLY hunger that's causing you to eat will do wonders for your nutritional AND your mental health.
If you don't know the answers, find someone who can help you!
Mindset. Attitude. Energy.
Creating a positive, confident mindset is essential to your own health and well-being. You can get your body to a fit state. You can get your nutrition to a well fueled machine status. However, all that said and done, if your mind is not healthy, positive, and pure, then you are not yet healthy. Stress is a major factor when it comes to mental health and physical health for that matter. A wonderful book when talking about success and how to achieve it, is High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard. Here is some interesting information from this book, and only the tip of the iceberg:
"More than one-third of Americans are obese, costing the United States over $147 billion per year in medical expenses. Only about 20% of Americans get even the minimum aerobic and muscle strengthening activity recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Other studies reveal that 42 percent of American adults say they aren't doing enough to manage their stress, 20 percent say they never do any activities to relieve or manage their stress . . .
One in three working Americans is chronically stressed on the job, and fewer than half say their organizations support employee well-being. This even though companies that promote their employees' well-being are more productive, bear lower health-care costs, retain their people longer, and see their people make better decisions."
What is the meaning of the above information? As a country we seem to know in the back of our minds that stress management and control is essential to productivity and mental health, yet we are consistently putting more stress on ourselves thinking that we are just being more productive. We need to open our eyes and correct this mindset if we want to become more successful.
Reward. Energy. Immune System.
The final phase of healthy is where you reap the rewards. One of the most important things you can do for yourself is boost your immune system. Your immune system is quite literally your life line! It keeps you going. It's what allows you to do the one thing you are always trying to do, take care of others. You are trying to keep up at work, you don't have time to get sick, you don’t have capacity to miss a day. Your kids have sports, you don't have the ability to take a night off because you might let them down, and who would make them dinner and drive them places, and wouldn't they be upset if you weren't at the choir concert or the game. Your girlfriends have been trying to get together for a happy hour for months and you refuse to be the deadbeat who doesn't show up because you are sick . . . again. This can all be avoided. All you have to do is take care of you! Continue to build that immune system with SIMPLE healthy habits. It doesn't correct itself overnight, but it will over time. No immune system, no energy, no energy, no anything I just listed because your exhausted on the couch or already in bed. Taking care of yourself increases your productivity to complete other aspects of your life. Being healthy comes with less sick days and more fun days, less coughs and more cuddles, less early to bed and more early to rise, less I feel useless and more holy crap I'm Supermom!
Bottom line: Successful productivity in any aspect of life begins with good health. Happiness begins with good health. Growth begins with good health.
And while you may argue that there are successful people who are not healthy, I would agree with you. I would however also note that these people will not be able to maintain their success without good health mentally and physically.
And while you may argue that there are happy people who are not necessarily in the best health, I would disagree, because while they may appear happy from time to time, poor health is MUCH too taxing to maintain positive energy without it.
Stress is unnecessary, yet always prevalent. Stress is unsettling, yet always lingering. Pure joy is a small change away, and another small change after that, and continued small changes overtime.
Energy is endless, yet we can't seem to find it. Energy is limitless, yet we can't seem to keep it.
Anxiety is a feeling, not a life sentence. Anxious is uncomfortable, not unrecoverable. Don't let the sugar in your brain fool you.
Energy is created by movement, and fueled by nutrition. Attitude, mood, and feeling are controlled by the brain. Dopamine and endorphins are "happy chemicals" that can help control your brain to control your mood to a positive and happy one.
So how do you get these happy chemicals? YOU MOVE! Exercise! That's how. That's the answer. So realistically, if you aren't willing to just start moving, walk, vacuum, go up your stair case a couple times, play with your kids (off your ass), meet up with some friends, bowl, golf, play volleyball, hike, whatever it is; if you are not willing to simply move, then you are not imprisoned by some disorder, you are not a victim of the grocery store sales tactics, you are not suffering from anything but laziness.
Start the process today. Get up. Get moving. Get motivated. GET STARTED.
If you need help getting started, if you need direction, if you need to know where to focus, or if you simply need some accountability, look to a coach. Send me a message and we will schedule your FREE 30 minute success planning session to get you started!