Do you ever feel like you’re falling apart? Not mentally, but physically? In small ways, but ways that affect how you feel each day?
I’m feeling like that. And I’m also thinking about values.
First, the falling apart part:
*My right foot is hurting. For weeks—actually, months—it’s been hurting on the side of the foot. I don’t remember injuring it. I just noticed it hurting when I was walking at the Y before Christmas.
I figured it would just get better. Then it got a little worse, and I thought I might have a stress fracture, which I’ve had before.
Then a couple of weeks ago, I twisted the foot sideways as I was trying to move fast while wearing clogs, and since then, I’ve been in a lot of pain.
*My allergies have been kicking up lately. My eyes itch, I alternate between being stopped up and having a runny nose. My sinuses get tight. The dry winter air doesn’t help.
*I’ve had some bouts of trouble with irritable bowel syndrome.
*I’ve started with a bad cough.
Nothing life threatening, nothing serious. But enough wrong that I feel run down.
I haven’t been able to walk for exercise because of my foot. I’ve been sleeping more (too much) and lying around too much. I’ve been accomplishing less.
But I have some confessions:
*I still haven’t gone to the doctor about my foot. I keep thinking it will feel better “soon.” But soon has come and gone. It probably needs a doctor’s exam.
*I haven’t been eating the best of diets. I eat foods that know will have a good chance of bothering my digestive system and my energy level.
*I haven’t been diligent about using my long-acting asthma inhaler.
I’ve made vows before to take better care of myself. I have set goals that I never accomplished. But I’m not trying to go on a guilt trip in public by telling you these things. I’m leading up to my point about values.
I’ve been thinking about my values and how I use my time. I even wrote a post about it called “What do happy people do?”
There’s a connection between my feeling of physically falling apart and my values.
When I don’t properly take care of my physical health, I don’t feel like doing the things and giving my full attention to the things that matter the most to me.
Feeling as good as possible physically will help me give myself more fully to that which is most important.
And these are the things that matter the most to me:
*My relationship with God
I don’t need to have reasons to exercise like, “I want to lose weight” or “I want to be fit enough to run a 5K.” Those reasons are great, and it’s helpful to set goals.
But all the reason I really need to exercise is to know that it will help me feel physically (and mentally) better and I’ll be better able to pay attention to what matters the most.
Likewise, I don’t need to have a reason like, “I want to lose weight” to eat better. All the reason I need to eat better is to, again, know that it will help me feel more like paying attention to what matters the most.
And the same for tending to any injuries and illnesses.
I now have my reason—my value—for taking better care of myself physically. All I need to do is follow through.
What are your reasons for taking good care of yourself physically? What’s your method for following through?