Simple, Not Easy
If you accept that a normal life means a default of eating junk, working overtime, shutting your soul off to keep the grind going, letting the people in your life drain you… you’re an idiot.
If you believe that a product, a person, an achievement, will fix what ails you… you’re an idiot.
We are all idiots sometimes. I am an idiot most days.
But we know so much these days. We know a lot about how to get and stay healthy. We know a lot about how to prevent disease and fix ourselves. There is so much proof, so much science, so many studies. And it is all so startlingly simple.
- Eat just enough good food
- Lift heavy
- Drink more water
- Sleep more
- Do cardio
- Practice gratitude
- Practice mindfulness
- Challenge yourself
- Be honest
- Foster a handful of strong relationships
That’s about it. Not that that’s an easy list. On any given day, I manage to get maybe three of these right. On a great day, maybe five. I’ll never bat 1.000. But this is what it comes down to. One simple checklist to be healthy It’s a simple checklist. It’s not complicated. It’s just really hard.
And yet, we latch onto pundits and mindsets that make it so much more complex and obscure. They give us steps and processes that dance around these simple truths and their hard edges.
We do it because those make great excuses, and excuses are awfully nice.
- “I’m disappointed in this thing” is easier to say than “I’m disappointed in myself.”
- “You don’t understand” is easier to say than “I’m afraid.”
- “It’s too hard” is easier to say than “I need help.”
I’ve been having a lot of hard conversations with myself lately along these lines, and reading a lot about it too. I suppose you could see it in a depressing light – that it’s so daunting. Right now, I’m trying to look at it differently. It’s not too complicated to understand, and that’s an important first thing to notice and appreciate.
Here’s some of what I’ve been reading, if you’re curious about this stuff too:
- There’s Nothing Fancy About Getting Fitter
- Why Harvard Is Opening a Happiness Center
- What Makes a Good Life? Lessons From the Longest Study on Happiness
- Stress Is Ruining Your Fitness