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Keeping Health Real

‘Eldorado,’ by Garrett Voight [flickr.com/bloodlessr]. License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/

Being healthy is a process where the goal — hopefully for many of us — is to reach our utmost vigor. For gaining our fullest potential in health would allow us to do more, see more, and ultimately live more.

Yes, achieving optimum health is a worthy goal. But it is not the end game. It’s an opportunity to go further, a shiny red Cadillac to cruise through life smoothly and in style.

Be mindful, though, that “cruising through life” is an ism — an informal doctrine suggesting that life should be easy. While in reality, it really shouldn’t. Even with the best of health, life. is. challenging. And that’s a good thing, because that’s what makes us grow.

So what does it mean to experience optimum health?

It does not mean immunity from stress, or the absence of any symptoms. Rather, optimum health is having a resiliency to inevitable stress, and the ability to quickly respond to symptoms before they become diseases.

For while having symptoms may affect our well-being, it wouldn’t necessarily mean we lack health. Counterintuitive, I know. But I like to think of symptoms as an expression of a valuable personal asset: our internal diagnostic system.

Just think… If we were unable to feel any symptoms, we would easily be blind-sided by disease. For luckily when symptoms first appear, there’s usually time for troubleshooting and repair.

So add this to the definition of optimum health: self-awareness. We must pay attention to the first signs of imbalance within ourselves. Recognizing our own imbalances is actually an expression of our health.

In summary, I view optimum health as the ability to undertake obstacles to our health with equanimity, insight and resolve.

But optimum health won’t necessarily eradicate bad days. In fact, I’m wary of those who pose as shining pillars of vibrant health who never have bad days. Because they just aren’t keeping health real.

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