Written by: Rob Cook, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
I was excited about the upcoming weeks, seeing each week filled with personal and professional engagements that I couldn't wait to experience. Personally, it was a cross-country trip to witness my youngest daughter graduate from college or university, as my British friends all say. For business, we were booming! I had booked several corporate wellness programs, including speaking and coaching some of the world's brightest and top performers in the financial industry. It would be the busiest business time this year, but it felt right. Right before starting my first program, I'd receive notification of a financial issue with my daughter and two family emergencies, one involving my brother. My excitement over the upcoming weeks became super tense. I panicked. I became worried and a bit scared of what was happening. Everything was foggy, and before you knew it, it seemed I'd abandoned everything I had learned to take care of myself.
And there he was, offering to drive. Who? "My Ego. Usually, his demeanor wasn't so smug, but he knew he had me. Although I knew him, his tone and speech seemed unfamiliar. It was thunderous and aggressive as he said, “Get out of the way. I got this! I know what to do!" Still a bit scared and lost, I caved, and at that moment, I handed Ego the keys, got out of the driver's seat of my life, and watched begrudgingly as he drove me sick. Literally! Fast forward a few weeks, and I needed to take a break badly. I was also so upset at allowing my Ego to convince me to drive that I went to bed exhausted and woke up with a sore throat and congestion. I felt terrible the first few days. That feeling would remain until I realized all my challenges began when I stopped listening to wisdom. Even though my Ego was screaming, I actually could still hear wisdom; I just ignored it. That thought provided much-needed relief because it allowed self-love to return. I couldn't be mad at my Ego since it wasn't personal because all egos drive without regard to wisdom.
I stopped to look at the last few weeks. I could clearly see my issues were compounded because of a lack of practice. Similarly to the infamous Allen Iverson interview, I needed to challenge my practice ethics. Yes, we are talking about practice but not basketball here, self-care. Self-care balances harmony in your spiritual, mental, and physical health, and I was off. It was a no-brainer at this point why I was sick. I hadn't done anything of the sort to take care of myself since the busy weeks started.
At this point, I laughed so hard that I'd cough and slightly choke. I began to feel better immediately. I still had my symptoms, but my smile and joy returned because I'd remembered what I needed to do.
I needed to make self-care a priority. And this means remembering the truth of who I am and be compassionate with myself.
I needed to be present mainly because it's the best place for answers when caught between the past's stress and the future's anxiety.
I needed to eat more balanced since food is fuel for the body. Since it was fast pace days, I ate whatever instead of what was best.
I needed to get some good sleep. Resting is when our bodies heal and recover. Twelve good hours did the trick.
I needed to move and work out. Fitness is the preventative maintenance of the body and I needed a tune-up.
And before I knew it, I was back to health. So remember, the body's job is to deliver your spirit to every experience, and your job is to practice self-care. These five keys are exactly what you need to recalibrate daily behaviors to keep you healthy in life's busiest and most difficult times.
Self-care practices only work if you practice them.
Rob Cook, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Rob is a highly respected coach and consultant who inspires self-care, healing and building meaningful lives. He is the founder of Life After Trauma which focuses on finding the balance between mental, physical, and spiritual health to alleviate the adverse effects of trauma-related events. Rob is a retired combat veteran turned transformative coach using the Three Principles, also known as the inside-out understanding, as his guide to help clients overcome traumatic experiences. Rob is an engaging and passionate speaker and consultant who works with start-ups, non-profits, and Fortune 500 companies.