Friendship and Fun

What Matters Most

How do we choose the healthy lifestyle steps that are right for each of us?

How can these actions become long term ways of life that truly enhance our health and happiness?

Focus on What Matters Most!

Discovering what matters most to us all, and always keeping that as our focus, will help us stay on the right path.

Earlier I mentioned that if our Actions are full of Friendship and Fun, we will experience Success. Let’s look a bit deeper at these two words.

When I say Friendship what I’m really talking about are the things that give our lives Meaning. And by Fun I really mean what gives us Motivation.

Healthy Relationships are a great source of meaning for most of us. We also can find great meaning in Being Creative, working to Solve Problems, enjoying Material Things, being open to our Spirituality, and simply being Open to Fully Experience Every Moment of each day.

Simple Rewards like Pay or Praise are a good start for motivation, but only get us so far, mostly for simple tasks. To really get us to achieve great things for the long term, we need to first tap into what gives each of us a great sense of Meaning. Then add a sense of Autonomy (“This is my thing”) and Mastery (“I got this”). Soon our Motivation begins to build on itself.

By connecting Friendship and Fun to our new healthy lifestyle goals, as well as other things that give us a great sense of Meaning and Motivation, our success, rooted in true Joy, is bound to grow strong. We will more often find Long Term Solutions to our problems rather than reaching for the Quick Fixes that too often bring us more stress down the road. Soon our Stress will begin to fade away.

We know our lives are full of Joy when we feel Connected, Secure, Excited, Happy, Proud and Thankful. We should nurture the relationships and experiences that bring us these emotions.

Stress is taking it’s toll on us when we are feeling Lonely, Afraid, Bored (or Overwhelmed), Sad, Ashamed or Jealous. We will always have things that make us feel these emotions. That’s part of life. It’s important, however, to work through them in honest and realistic ways.

So let’s pursue what fills our lives with meaning and motivation, and allow our emotions to guide us through stress and into deeper joy. Soon our lives will be full of What Matters Most.

Take a few minutes to read this page another time or two. And as you do, pause for a moment on each word that is highlighted. Notice what comes to mind, especially in terms of making Healthy Lifestyle Steps.

Which words stood out the most? Is there a specific reason why?

Which words seem to reflect your life at this time? Would your friends agree?

Where do you feel you need to dedicate more effort? Should you ask for some help?

If this has been helpful, I encourage you to return to this page in a few days, and perhaps every few weeks. And as you do, first review the ways your recent days have been filled with Joy. Then remember where Stress has been felt. How can Joy be nurtured? What are realistic and honest ways to work through the Stress?

Have you been able to appreciate What Matters Most?

To begin exploring the idea of what gives our lives meaning and purpose, please enjoy this TED Talk How to Ikigai by Tim Tamashiro. (You might remember hearing about Ikigai and the people of Okinawa from Dan Beuttner’s talks about the Blue Zones).

Thanks for spending some time considering what a healthy lifestyle means for you. I hope LifestyleSteps.org has been helpful to get you started on a successful journey to better health and greater happiness.

In Health and Happiness, Ted Nyquist, MD.

*****

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