It was summertime 2005 in San Diego. I was single, making lots of money, and living in one of San Diego’s premiere condominium penthouses downtown overlooking the entire city and the bay. My fitness business was thriving, I was traveling a bunch, and I couldn’t seem to keep up with my social calendar. I felt like a rock star living the good life, but something was missing.
I wasn’t feeling the type of happy I wanted to be feeling. Business was good although I wasn’t feeling successful. Between business, traveling, and social events, I was very busy yet, unfulfilled. What was my deal?
After contemplating it for several months, I realized that without knowing it, I had gotten away from the 5 habits that have always balanced me and given me a sense of personal success and fulfillment. I could blame it on a recent break up at he time, the fact that I was very busy, or that I had just moved. The truth is I just dropped the ball, period.
“You either make yourself accountable or you will be made accountable by your circumstances.”
There are 5 Essential Habits that have always given me both a sense of personal success and more importantly, a sense of fulfillment whenever I commit to them and make them part of my daily routine and every day life.
Here are The 5 Essential Habits to establish your own sense of greater personal success and fulfillment regardless of who you are, where you live, or whatever your story may be.
Essential Habit #1 : Exercise
Aside from the obvious health reasons, exercise also helps to improve your mood, your thinking, it decreases stress levels, and increases sex drive (bonus). Examples of exercise includes running, elliptical trainer, biking, swimming, yoga, Pilates, weight training, playing a sport, any activity that gets your heart rate above 120 beats per minute for a majority of the exercise. A minimum of 30 minutes daily.
Essential Habit #2 : Wellness
Wellness is defined as anything you do for the betterment of your body and your overall health. This could include one or a combination of the following: meditating, a hot bath, getting proper sleep, drinking plenty of water, taking your vitamins, eating foods that are both nourishing and healthy, getting a massage, etc.
Essential Habit #3 : Reading
Reading is not only a great way to keep our minds sharp and stimulated, it’s also a great mechanism for learning. Your desire and ability to further your knowledge and skill set will always be fundamental to success. Two quick recommendations (The Four Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris and Start with Why by Simon Sinek).
Essential Habit #4 : Connecting
Human connection is a crucial piece not only for our overall happiness, but our health as well. Make connecting with family, friends, neighbors, colleagues, your community, even complete strangers a daily practice. Make these connections meaningful, genuine, and special. Give a smile, a handshake, a hug; give of yourself and connect with others.
“Copious scientific data proves that loneliness is a greater risk to your health than smoking or lack of exercise, and finding your tribe is better than any vitamin, diet, or exercise regimen.”
– Lissa Rankin, M.D.
Essential Habit #5 : Perfect Your Craft
Whatever your craft may be, make it a point to spend time on it every single day. Even if it’s just for a few minutes. All those minutes add up at the end of the week, month, and year. Whether it’s playing an instrument, learning a new language, writing, photography, or learning a new trade, commit time to perfecting your craft every day.
If you already have your own habits you perform on a daily basis, I’d love to hear about them and ask that you share them with me and the rest of The Wellness Bucket community in the comments below.
“We are what we repeatedly do; Excellence then, is not an act but a habit.”
– Aristotle –