Have you ever have one of those “aha” moments where everything comes together and you make a significant revelation about yourself, a relationship or a problem (known or unknown) that has been hanging over you?
I recently had one while away on a long weekend getaway with my wonderful wife Michele. The image above, is from the midpoint of a hike that looked out over the Fort Lewis Lodge, a Bed and Breakfast in Millboro, VA that we have become attached to over the past few years (rather beautiful, isn’t it?).
What I realized was that I have been losing balance within my own life. Let me explain what I mean.
My Purpose, as I see it, is to help others. Specifically, to help them learn that they play a significant role in their health. Your health is not pre-determined. Your health is not based upon a random spin of a wheel or a flip of the coin.
You have a birthright to be healthy, functionally fit and full of energy and vitality. Modern society is designed to take the realization of that birthright from you.
What I teach is a form of self-care, of lifestyle changes / choices that are designed to enhance, support and assist your body’s innate ability and desire to heal itself and manifest outward the healthy beautiful organism that each of us are.
My Purpose is an integral part of who I am and how I approach and live my life. I strive to be a healthy example of what I coach (as most people who know me can attest, I am still a work in progress).
While in Virginia hiking I recognized that I had begun burning the candle at both ends (again). Yes, I have done this before on numerous occasions. The last time, and most severe example, was when I struck out on my own as Health & Body Performance (I think I actually burned the candle at three ends).
You would think I would learn from repeating the same destructive behavior over again, and again. I didn’t like where my health ended up before and I do not want to go back there. It took too much time, energy and money to dig myself out of that unhealthy hole.
This brings to mind a quote from Pema Chodron “Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know.” (I believe I have learned this time)
Running my own business is challenging. I found myself very pre-occupied with some business projects and opportunities on top of taking care of client obligations. I was always at the computer, checking emails, responding to emails, working on programs, updating documents, etc.
The challenge is that I could not put it away, shut it down, turn it off and leave it alone.
Working with other people is at times challenging. Working with individuals with health issues and concerns magnifies the challenge. To maintain balance and health one has to be very healthy and strong physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. I was falling out of balance.
Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do and do what I love. I just had not been taking the time I needed to relax and work on my health to the degree that I need to.
- I need to play more, as children do so easily (children have so much to teach us “adults” if we would only stop, watch and listen)
- I need to ensure more consistency in performing appropriate exercise
- I recognize the importance of family and need be a more active participant
- Very important is the time spent with Michele that we both find so fulfilling. We have been married for almost 19 years (as of this writing) and I can’t get enough.
The time away in Virginia as with most vacations or trips served as a much-needed break to allow my battery (adrenals) the opportunity to recharge and recoup my sanity.
While we were hiking I realized that on one hand, the trip is a “reward” for working hard. On the other hand it was needed to prevent me from overdoing it and burning out.
In other words, the vacation was an escape from life. A lifestyle that was for all practical purposes unhealthy, otherwise I wouldn’t so badly need the time away from it.
When I say “unhealthy” I am referring to the imbalances, the chronic stress of a life out of balance that slowly erodes at the body’s defenses until unwanted signs / symptoms and health complaints arise. If ignored long enough dis-ease states rear their ugly head and all the baggage that comes with it. That path is not for me, I will make my own path. (Thinking about it, I have been blazing my own trail….good job me!!)
When I made this connection I immediately thought of something that Seth Godin (entrepreneur, blogger and marketer) had said:
“Instead of wondering when our next vacation is, maybe we should set up a life we don’t need to escape from”
He is absolutely right, I have everything I really need. To be honest I probably have more than is actually necessary to be happy and healthy. What I was forgetting or missing is the perspective of what I have every day, right in front of me.
I am not saying I never will or don’t want to go away. I love to explore new areas and see new things and eat new foods. Part of this physical journey of life is exploring the world around you. And there is much to see, even within a day’s drive (maybe day and a half as Michele won’t drive a manual transmission). Nova Scotia is next on the radar….and while there, Newfoundland is just a short ferry ride away.
Life is challenging, know one said it would be easy. I sure won’t say it is easy. Modern society has been designed in such a manner that it permeates all aspects of life and strives to create needs, wants, desires, and conflict that get in the way of living one’s true Purpose.
What I was missing and now have found again is that perspective. Now I have to better execute it.
I am going to live my Purpose and do so until the day I die. Then I will move on to the next great adventure. I just have to find that balance between “helping others,” – Lifestyle Coaching – and taking care of myself.
As I said earlier, It takes a lot of energy to work with others. I have to at times say “no” and “stop” and put myself first. For me it is very easy to always give, and I find that it can be very draining to the body. Sometimes you have to gracefully receive and kindly take for yourself.
My health is too important….to me! Plus, I have important things to accomplish, people to help, places to go, and things to see.
That is about it for today. I am sure I will follow-up again….I have a feeling there is more for me to say.
Until then…go take a walk and commune in nature….you never know what you may find or what may find you.
Love and Chi