Busy? Set health as a priority.

Set health as a priority. “Nobody is too busy. It’s just a matter of priorities.”

If you truly prioritise something, you will make time for it.

When I was younger, not too long ago, I was always busy. Or at least, that was what I thought. My answer to questions of “How are you?” were consistently “I’m so busy!”

Healthcare was the least of my priorities. I burned the midnight oil to get assignments completed, enjoyed fatty food, and significant amounts of alcohol. Exercise? Not on the list (unless you count the occasional window shopping or walking to the bus stop). Healthy food? Does Curry vegetables or Belachan Kang Kong count? Well, definitely not the best choice of vegetables.

Why should we make time for health?

It was a recent event (going for an operation) that the importance of health really hit me. If I haven’t made time to go for a checkup, I would not discovered the cyst. It was benign, thankfully, but finding out about it certainly highlighted how often I take my health for granted.

Why are we too busy to care for our health when having a good health is KEY to help us achieve our goals? Work is important – but only with good health can we give our best performance at work, isn’t it?

Laura Vanderkam, the author of the insightful book “168 Hours“, reminds us that instead of saying “I don’t have time”, say “it’s not a priority” to see if it makes sense.

See how your perspectives change when “I want to eat healthier but I don’t have time to cook” changes to “Eating healthier is not my priority.

“I want to keep my diabetes in check but I don’t have time to measure my blood sugar levels” changes to “Because keeping my diabetes in check is not my priority.

Does that make sense? It certainly doesn’t sound like a good argument to me. If I don’t have time to care for my health, this simply means that I am not putting health as a priority.

How can we make time for health?

I believe in starting small, so I’m not going to start telling you to sign up for a 42km marathon! Here are some ways to kickstart you into making health a priority.

I’m a fan of acronyms, which explains the following tips 🙂

SAT:

Set specific (S), attainable (A), timebound (T) health goals! Click on the link to find more. You’ll find it interesting that the TYPE of goals you set does influence your chances of achieving it.

MOOFI:

Bear these 5 pointers in mind to start clocking in activity and see your mindless unhealthy snackings disappear!

(M) Move it, move it. Move when watching the TV! Move when on the phone.

(O) Out of sight = out of mind! Keep the high-sugar snacks away.

(O) One place & one place only! Eat at the dining table.

(F) Find your buddy! Set a regular exercise date together with your friend.

(I) In sight = in mind! Keep the low-sugar foods in easy reach. Place your exercise attire and shoes where you can see them.

FASS:

On top of all this, remember to ask yourself these 4 questions.:

Am I:

eating 2 servings of fruits and vegetables (F) each day?

getting enough active (A) minutes of physical activity?

managing my emotions and stressors (S) in my life well?

getting sufficient sleep (S)?

How you spend your time emphasizes your priorities. Make time to care for your body and it will do the same to you. Set health as a priority!