exploring health as a form of wealth
You've probably heard of the Wheel of Life where you can self-assess eight areas of life. It's useful tool, and health is one of the eight, but it's a broad brush stroke over a complex topic. Health is created little-by-little with the fundamental habits you do day in and day out. So, a good measure of health is to measure your habits. So, I created the Wheel of Healthy Habits.
This wheel is a work in progress, but the latest version has 17 habits that fall into 8 categories of health. As you can see in the image above, some wheels are flat, some are bumpy, and some are roundish but small.
It's been a good visual for my clients to see their "habit gaps" so they know what to focus on. Here are 3 common habit gaps I see:
1 - Not noticing hunger & fullness cues
Many financial professionals either skip meals and don't pay attention to hunger until they get to the point of hangry and overeat - or they simply eat because the clock says it's time to eat, not necessarily because they feel hungry. Both are a problem because the communication loop between the brain and the body is not working correctly. Without this communication, there are all kinds of mixed signals going on in the body and health begins to go haywire. TIP: Use the Hunger Scale to assess your hunger and fullness throughout the day and take action accordingly. Try to stay between a 3 and 8 most of the time.
2 - Not eating high fiber, complex carbs
Every financial professional I've ever worked with has had low fiber intake (except for one). I don't just mean low, I mean very low - like less than half of the minimum they should be eating. Why is fiber important? It helps clean the gut, feed the friendly gut bugs, and control blood sugar spikes. These are critical in the pursuit of long term health. TIP: Shoot for 30 grams of fiber a day with a carb-to-fiber ratio of 5:1. Here's how to do that. Look at the carbs on a food item. Then find the fiber and divide it into the carbs. That is your ratio. For example, if bread has 20 grams of carbs and 2 grams of fiber, the ratio is 10:1 (too high). Find a bread with more fiber. I like Dave's Killer Bread and Ezekiel Bread.
3 - Not doing purposeful recovery
Professionals in the financial industry tend to run themselves into the ground. Yeah, I'm looking at you guys - go getters, top achievers, goal-oriented action takers. It's hard to know when to turn it off and let your body recover. I've heard my clients say that it feels lazy or unproductive to relax, do nothing, sleep in, or take some personal time to just be. But that is exactly what your body needs to do regularly - especially after age 40. Cellular repair and fat burning don't happen in a state of stress. Tap into the rest and digest nervous system to allow your body to bounce back and stay in the game longer. TIP: Scan your body at the top of every hour and notice how you're feeling. If stressed, chest-breathing, anxious, or if your heart rate is higher for no reason, then stop what you're doing and give yourself some space to recover. That might be a few box breaths, stretching, a walk outside, or 5 minutes with your eyes closed.
I invite you to download my Wheel of Healthy Habits and find your habit gaps. (I normally coach people through it, so there may be some things that are confusing. Just email me and I will be happy to explain.)