Physical, Mental, & Technical Skills: What to Prioritize First?
by Live Better
In order to be successful at any career or endeavor over a long period of time, we must be proficient in three areas:
Although listed in this order, we usually prioritize them just the opposite direction by prioritizing the technical skills of our career, first. Live Better is not in the business of teaching people how to read or write. These “technical” skills are ingrained in early education, alongside math, science, etc. Your employer hones your career-oriented technical skills necessary to be good at your job.
But we work so hard to be better at our career and at these “skills” that we neglect the very foundation that allows us to be good at them in the first place. That foundation is health, made up of the physical and mental capabilities we have.
From athletes to business to art, this trend is normal. “Talent” falls in the spectrum of technical skills for most people (for athletes “talent” may be spread among those three categories); you are not required to run 10.0 seconds 100m dashes to be the best lawyer you can be, or dunk a basketball to be the best entrepreneur you can be. For athletes, what happens after sports are over?
Take away quality movement, nutrition, sleep, and stress-management and you’ve got someone in trouble, no matter their profession. Happy, healthy, and positive “employees” prioritize health first so that they are presenting the best version of themselves at work and at home. More energy, more strength, and a better attitude = more endurance and fortitude to get things done.
Unfortunately “health” education class was not much to write home about. Recess in grade schools and physical education in high schools isn’t mandatory in many cases. Funding has been cut for sports programs, and the concept of “play” has diminished (leading to sport specialization too early in competitive youth sports).
It’s all too often that we sit down with someone and hear, “I’ve been working so hard (and long) at my job for the past few years, aiming for promotions, raises, and recognition, that I’ve completely neglected my health. I’m starting to feel tired, burnt out, and pain after I do (insert activity) on the weekends.”
Many people let this feeling described above last for many years, not just a short period of time. Posture starts to suffer, and back starts to hurt. Sleep starts to suffer, and emotional fuse starts to shorten. Food intake gets worse, weight starts to rise.
Whatever the case, our mission is to change that. That mission is simple:
Meet clients where they’re at. Everyone has unique challenges and life circumstance; understand these challenges, seek to uncover their motivations, and lay down a foundation of discipline to build good habits upon. This works for individuals and corporations, alike.
Create daily (read: micro) routines to build prioritization for physical and mental health goals. We must “unlearn” bad habits, create positive new habits, and produce momentum to make it a lifestyle change (instead of a short-term roller coaster of success and setback).
Create monthly (read: meso) and long-term (read: macro) goals to understand what we’re working towards. (Hint: you do this at work. Do it for your health in the same way; create a review process, check-ins with a “superior” or mentor/coach, create incentives from competition, and be clear on your intentions).
Create a community of like-minded people aiming to change the way they “work” and live. Understand there is no such thing as “work-life balance”; while at work, you are living your life. Make those hours count just as much as the ones when you leave, or you will start to contrast the two and resent your career. You don’t lead two separate lives; your body and mind follow you to work and back home. Create a culture at work and home that supports your health goals.
As our good friend Tim Dixon always says, “Championships are scheduled.” Put yours down on paper, and let’s get to work.
This goal is digestible. There is no subjectivity to it. You either did one mile of “running” or you didn’t. We’re not interested in your excuses for why you couldn’t complete it. We’re DEFINITELY interested to hear how you DID complete it, despite all the crazy things that might happen in a day. Run the mile in an airport terminal? Tell us about it!
Make an excuses to get your mile in, even if you need to jog in circles in your living room.
1 Mile A Day.
We’d love to see you guys participate with us on this Live Better challenge. Join the fun and tag #1MileADay on Instagram and tag us @livebetterco.