We already know physical activity is good for us. But what if literal perspiration could help our businesses succeed?
In high school, I dreaded gym class because I was a total klutz… still am! But I’ve learned to love daily exercise as a way to clear my head and connect with what matters.
Here are three reasons we don’t exercise, and three new ways to embrace physical activity as part of a successful business plan.
1. I don’t need to exercise every day … or every month.
Let’s start with a warm-up. If you’re not feeling well, you won’t think well, and you won’t interact well with your team and clients.
But the real question is, even when you’re not sick, are you operating at your highest capacity? Our brain is connected to our biceps! Our brains are physical organs, connected to other organs, tissues, and muscles. When you take care of your body, all these moving parts play better together.
Let’s face it, more blood-flow to the noggin couldn’t hurt.
Exercise is a wonderful way to off-load stress. But you already knew that, right? Let’s get to the root causes of why we don’t take action on this knowledge.
2. Time is money, and I need more of both!
Many entrepreneurs think of exercise as a sixty-minute jail sentence. Stumbling around a mirrored cell, or waiting for the countdown timer on the hamster wheel to reach zero — all while being email-deprived!
If you’re new to exercise, walking is simple and beneficial. Instead of trying to check email along the path, invite a colleague along and have a walking meeting. Improve your health, and your communications with coworkers.
Management guru, Tom Peters coined the term, Management By Walking Around, (MBWA). And HR consultant, and client, Morag Barrett advises her executives to “get off your butt and talk to someone!” to cultivate better understanding in the workplace.
Eating lunch at your desk? Besides decorating your keyboard with salsa, does anything good really come of this experiment in multitasking? When possible, walk to a nearby lunch spot.
Un-glue your bottom from the chair, and schedule a walk-around break at the bottom of every hour. Bring a coworker, or bring a nagging question along. New environments spark fresh, creative ideas.
3. My family time is too scarce as it is.
If the word exercise makes you want to take a nap, maybe you just haven’t found the right kind of activity. The issue isn’t activity, it’s finding the type of activity you enjoy. The best exercise is often with your spouse or kids. Not only can you enjoy quality time, you’re both benefiting from an exercise accountability partner!
If your personal relationships aren’t healthy, your business will suffer.
Walking, playing catch, biking, and golf are exercise. Heck, ping pong is better exercise than some jogging I’ve seen! (And, by the way, skip the golf cart on your next round, OK?)
What if we transplanted gardening and lawn-care from the “chore” category into the exercise category?
Physical activity is more than gym-prescribed movement. The trick is to find what works, with people you care about, to engage in every day.
What does success feel like?
Five years from now, when you imagine your future success, what do you see?
Who do you see?
Don’t join the ranks of over-stressed leaders who are on a first-name basis with a cardiologist.
When we picture success, it always includes a sense of health and overall well-being.
Exercise helps your bottom — and your bottom line!
[This post first appeared at Entrepreneur.com]
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