February 8th, 2012

Healthy Before Wealthy

The sad passing of Steve Jobs should serve as a heads up for baby boomers of all ages. It doesn’t matter how much money you have and it doesn’t matter how old you are. Life is finite. Sooner or later it will end. We all hope that it will be later, but there’s not much we can do about it when our time is up.

Or is there?

Mr. Jobs had a particularly harsh form of cancer, for which there unfortunately is no cure. A person who finds themselves in that situation can only try to make the best of it. But why does life become more precious when you know your days are numbered? The reality is that all of our days are numbered. We need to focus on making the most of every one of those days. Each one should be special.

At this stage of our lives, a bit of introspection is in order. Many baby boomers are finding themselves increasingly caught up in the stress and pressures of the times in which we live. We are freaking out about money, about our futures, about our lifestyle, and yes, about our health. But perhaps maybe it’s time to stop internalizing all of these external stressors and take a different approach.

First, you need to realize that there are some things that you simply can’t change, so stop trying. We all no longer need to be the self appointed managers of the universe. Instead of focusing on all of the negative things that are going on around us – in the world and at home, doesn’t matter – focus instead on what’s going right. A positive attitude and mindset goes a long way in improving health by creating internal harmony.

Worry is an unproductive activity – in fact it’s counterproductive – so don’t do it. Whatever it is that’s bothering you, acknowledge it, if it’s a real problem take action and deal with it, but don’t keep churning it over and over in your head. That’s a quick route to an early grave.

The other thing is your health itself. Your health should be cherished as much as your life itself. If you’re already healthy, you owe it to yourself to stay that way. And if you’re not healthy, you owe it to yourself to get healthy as soon as possible.

Good health requires discipline, but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Once you get into the habit of healthy living, the discipline required to do this is easily outweighed by all of the benefits you’ll receive. You’ll have more energy, so you’ll be able to do more. The stiffness and throbbing of inactivity will be replaced by the minor aches and pains that you get from working out, but those sensations are enjoyable because you know you’re making progress. And it’s a proven fact that a workout helps to alleviate stress, and stress is a killer.

Physical exercise is an important part of healthy living, but not the only part. You also need to eat right. Because you are what you eat, making the right choices every time you put something into your mouth is one of the easiest ways to lose weight and improve your health.

This isn’t rocket science. If you don’t know anything about diet and exercise, make it your goal to learn about it. Become a student of good health, and make getting healthy a priority. Your life depends on it.

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