BY DR. ANDREA PURCELL
Summer can be a time of change. Schedules shift, tight routines loosen up, the structure of school disappears, vacations abound. We humans tend to do better with structure and routine. The freedom of summer can often feel uncomfortable and catches us unawares.
These days, lives are busy and we can easily fill them up with many things to do from our lists. You know, busy things (kid’s activities, oil changes, social media, career, TV shows) and before we know it we use up all our time with busy stuff.
Then comes the mom guilt, “Oh yeah, I promised my son we would do this together… and what about my spouse? We haven’t had a date in ages…and I really wanted to get to the gym this week…” and suddenly nothing fits and life is a mess.
When we find ourselves distracted, and overwhelmed, we forget that life is precious.
Most of the people I work with are over 40. We get to a point in our lives where we start to understand the consequences of not having good health. We find ourselves wondering if we should have spent more time on living and our quality of life instead of making a living.
As you move through the next stage of your life do you want to end up fat, sick, overweight and generally depressed?
I’m assuming you said No.
Let’s face it, if we end up like that it’s no fun to live that way…And…When we become unwell, we become a burden on others, and I know you don’t want to do that.
I didn’t get married to have my husband take care of me. I’m an older mom, I’ll be close to 60 when my son graduates from high school. It’s not fair to him that he has old parents that can’t be active with him.
When we start to think about “getting healthy” or making changes our monkey brains start to over think how that may affect us in a negative way. Our minds start saying things like, “Well then I won’t be able to go out to lunch with the girls, or to happy hour with my partner”, we become scared of what we might lose
and before we know it we talk ourselves out of making a change.
I think we can all agree that having good health is important.
How Important though? I am suggesting that it is in the top 5 most important things in your life along with your family, marriage, inner peace and your spiritual connection.
I know that someone is reading this today who’s on the edge of having your life and your relationships being upended because of poor health.
It’s time to start thinking about health differently.
Without health, it’s impossible to do life well, it becomes drudgery and a struggle. And we forget that there is so much more that we could be getting from life.
Here’s the kicker
A lifetime is a short time…
We don’t have as much time as we think we do…
We can’t ever forget how short our lives really are…
A body does not develop disease overnight. There are signs along the highway of health to let us know we are about to drive off the road.
The insurance based system of health care is there for us to handle crisis.
Conventional medicine is not looking at the warning signs, they watch and wait to jump in when your health is in full on crisis. Such as the anxiety attack that sends you to the emergency room. The unrelenting digestive cramping that leaves you doubled up on the floor, or the dreaded chest pain that knocks the breath out of you and life flashes before your very eyes.
Most of the time those events could have been avoided.
The key is to understand and listen to the warning signs.
Here are five signs that you are out of balance with your health…
- Incredible stress – feeling pressured all the time
- Irritability and fluctuating moods
- Sleep disturbances and inability to sleep
- Body changes –rapid weight gain and/or debilitating fatigue
- Relying on external substances to “manage” life.
If you are feeling distracted and rushed, it’s time to re-orient life around the bigger things, the really important things…things like health, marriage, self-care, and family.
When you put these things first, as in the top three slots, and you will find that all the other stuff, somehow gets done.
Step 1: Reprioritize what’s really important- Until you prioritize your life it will continue to fall apart.
Step 2: Recognize that you need help and ask for it- There is no embarrassment in asking for help. Behind every athlete is a coach. Behind every musician is a teacher.
Once you prioritize you will find that there is plenty of room to fit it all in. Especially when you move the most valuable things in your life to the top of the list.
Wishing You Well,