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Fitness for Body, Mind and Spirit

GreenNote Life

Fitness for the body, mind & spirit

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Reflections on Body, Mind & Spirit: Best Version of You, Mental Training, Resilience

Can it be?  We are already three months into the new year!  How has the first quarter been for you?  This past month has been an interest and focus on the mental aspect of improvements in body, mind, and spirit. We see it so much in sports - the mental aspect.  As we know, mindset matters.  Let’s take a look at that.

BODY - Best version of yourself

Bryan Johnson is known as the most quantified human being on the planet.  He spends over two million dollars a year to live longer and healthier.  He has achieved metabolic health equal to the top 1.5% of 18-year olds, inflammation 66% lower than the average 10-year old, and reduced his speed of aging by the equivalent of 31 years.  While his approach would not be sustainable for the average person, there are things to learn from him. Simply, the importance of getting high-quality sleep.  

As Johnson explained on the podcast Five Habits for Living Longer: The most important thing you can do on any given day is to get high-quality sleep.  When you have bad sleep, you have substantially less willpower. I break myself out into different persons and I decide which versions of me have authorization and when. Because who’s in charge? 10:00 PM You who sets the alarm for 6:00 AM, or 6:00 AM You who wants a few more minutes with the snooze button? And so you need to make those decisions on who’s in charge because if you just let it roll out, the present you is always going to win and always get what they want at the expense of other versions of you that have your better interests at heart. 

That’s worth repeating.  The present you is always going to win and always get what they want at the expense of the other versions of you that have your better interests at heart.

Challenge for you:

In your life, in the choices you are presented with, who’s in charge?  Who decides when you train?  Who decides what you eat?  Who decides what time you go to bed?  Spend some time reflecting on where you can be the best version of yourself.

MIND - Mental training

The book, Mind Gym, has donned my bookshelf for some time.  Finally opening the pages,  I’m enjoying some time-tested wisdom from the late sports psychologist, Gary Mack.  This book was published in 2002 and reflects anecdotes from professional athletes popular at the time and in their prime.

Mind Gym book

We need to go to the gym to get our bodies strong. Similarly, we need to go to the mind gym to make our minds strong. This is one of the top books on mental training.  Some of the key takeaways that are just as relevant now as they were 20 years ago:

A.C.T. Backwards 

  • Accept where we are at.  Have a good sense of what we are good at and not so good at.

  • Create your desired state.  What's your dream?  What's everything going perfectly look like?  Get that clear.

  • Take action to get there.  Massive action.  Consistent action.  Baby steps.  Baby steps.  Action. Action. Action.

Breath and Focus

  • The pattern of your breathing affects the pattern of your performance.

  • When you are under stress, deep breathing brings your mind and body back into the present.

Confidence: it's the bottom line

  • What do you think is the most important part of the mental game?  It's confidence.

  • How do we get it?  Confidence is the emotional knowing that you are prepared, mind, body, and spirit, for anything.

These takeaways may not be surprising to you.  They weren't for me but rather, they stand as a reminder of the fundamentals and the importance of consistent practicing of these principles.

Challenge for you:

Where would you like to be?  What does your future self look like?  Get clear on that and A.C.TBackwards.

SPIRIT - Resilience

Iowa State playing Brigham Young University was being thrown around, seemingly off their game plan by the tough defense and well executed offense.  Down 38 to 27 at halftime, I had little faith that they could come back from an 11-point deficit given how aggressive BYU was.  You know what happened?  Iowa State never gave up.  They stayed calm, even when calls weren't going their way (and there were some pretty questionable bias here...).  After some nail-biting moments down to the last seconds, they pulled off the come-from-behind win on Senior Night in front of a sold-out crowd.  They finished the season undefeated at home, the first time in 23 years.  It all came down to one word - RESILIENCE.

I was struck and reminded how calmness, focusing, and never giving up can make all the difference.  It's in each one of us.

Challenge for you:

Remind yourself that you have what it takes.  It's inside you.  Reach for it.

Words I'm pondering...

"Every day is a new season. Every day is spring, whatever hemisphere you’re in. Every day is a chance for a new beginning. That every day we awake, we can choose a new life, a new way, to rededicate ourselves to becoming the best versions of ourselves." ~ Daily Stoic 

To your reflection and health,

Lisa Schaffer

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See my last newsletter Body, Mind & Spirit…


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