From Burn The Fat tips by Tom Venuto
Oprah said something in her O magazine article about why
she gained the weight back:
she said she took herself off her own priority list.
That's a common mistake, not just experienced by in-demand
celebrities and busy executives. I've done it. You've probably
done it. We've all done it.
You have to put yourself first.
Yes, I mean really first. When you set your life's priorities
and put your life values in order, your health MUST be #1.
Everything else in your life depends on you being in good
health and physical condition.
Some people go into a hissy fit when I say that their
training should be prioritized above their business or
their own health and well-being has to come above their
family's. They think it's absurd. They think it's selfish.
You bet it's "selfish" and that's exactly how it should be.
Your intentions may be noble. But how do you take care
of your family without your own health? Taking care of
yourself IS taking care of your family!
You want to know what's truly selfish? Having a preventable
and reversible health problem and doing nothing about it
because you are too busy "nobly" taking care of everyone
Let me remind you of something called the "rock bottom"
phenomenon. I've seen it discussed in the psychology and
behavior research as THE thing that finally triggers a
change, and I've seen it happen in the real world over
and over again.
People will do almost anything to end pain or cure a
disease after they have it, but they usually won't lift
a finger to prevent it. Only when debilitating pain or
illness strikes them down or threatens them does changing
their unhealthy ways even appear on their radar.
Of all diseases or "pains", the most alarming thing about
obesity is that it creeps. There's plenty of advanced
warning, but it's not heeded. Each additional pound is
"no big deal" so it never seems urgent... until it's too
late... until you have a physical or emotional rock bottom
If you think putting yourself first is selfish because
your family needs to come first, then what happens
when you're so out of shape and out of breath just
from walking, that you cant play basketball with
What happens when you're so obese that you can't fit in
the amusement park ride with your daughter? The safety
bar wont close. Humiliated, you slowly get out in front
of everyone and send her off on her own next to a stranger
while you wait.
What happens when you're fired from your job because you're
sick or physically incapable of doing the job?
What happens when you drop dead of a heart attack in your
40's and leave a widow and children with one parent? Who's
The most selfish thing you can do is not to take care of
your own health. The most selfish thing in the world is
not putting yourself first. You have to take care of
yourself first. That means YOU are the priority above
How does this translate into daily action?
You are stressed. I know. I am too. I feel like there are
never enough hours in the day. I have more projects on my
plate and new opportunities flying at me than I will ever
be able to start, let alone finish in my lifetime.
There are fires burning all around you. I know. Kids are
screaming, other kids need a ride to school. Spouses need
attention. Bills must be paid. You're late on your tax return.
Clients need service. Your boss needs you there now. There
are phone calls to return. Information overload is driving
you insane - there are books to read, TV shows to watch,
news to keep up on. And e-mail! You're drowning in it!
Life is moving faster than ever before. How will we ever
get it all done? Where will you find the time?
I know, I know. Almost everyone is feeling the same way too!
Here's what to do
Just STOP! Stop moving. Stop thinking. Take a deep breath.
Take two more deep breaths. Center yourself. Now shift focus
to what's most important in life.
Then tell yourself:
"None of this stuff that's stressing me out matters if I'm
sick, immobilized or dead. I want to look good. I want to
feel good. I come first. I can only take care of my family
and my business, and I can only feel good and look good if
I've taken care of myself first.
Then calmly and quietly go take care of yourself. Go take
a workout. Go take a stress relief break. Go calmly into
the kitchen to eat a healthy meal or prepare your meals
for the entire day, neatly pre-packaged if necessary,
in anticipation of the hectic, fast paced day ahead.
Go shopping and stock your kitchen with healthy foods.
If you can't take immediate action, then do some
immediate planning or goal setting.
While you are still centered and in a quiet mode, pull
out your calendar or a blank sheet of paper and begin
planning and scheduling. It's remarkable how much stress
is relieved when you are organized and you have a written
plan because it redirects your scattered focus.
Make priority lists, not "to do lists." To do lists are
usually filled up with busywork that's not that important.
Priorities are the things that are most important to you that
will provide the greatest happiness and tangible results
Personal life values are important. They are precious.
They include things like your family, humanitarian endeavors
and even your spiritual beliefs. So I'm not going to tell
you what your values should be. That's your personal business.
But I will tell you what ORDER your values should be in...
your health goes first. Above all else.
Is that selfish?
Yes, of course.
But it's appropriately selfish. Being appropriately selfish
is not about bucking your responsibilities. It's not about
ONLY taking care of yourself. It's about putting your
priorities in the right order. And it's one of the keys to
great health, happiness and personal success.
Train hard and expect success,