Posted by & filed under Wellbeing.

How about a little holiday pop quiz? I’m thinking of a gift that has these qualities: It doesn’t have to cost a dime, yet is priceless; you may not recognize that you already possess it until you, or someone close to you, loses it.

What is it? Drum roll, please. It’s your health.

Good health is something that we can’t live comfortably without. Once it’s lost, many would be willing to pay millions if they could only have it back. Nurture it, and it will be a constant source of fulfillment, peace of mind, and the confidence to move forward in your life. How’s that for continually generating rewards for you to enjoy?

What happens when you let the gift of good health start slipping away? For many people, the first sign of a health problem is a plummeting energy level. Like the right fuel and lubrication on an engine, good overall health keeps your body going. With it, you progress through your day feeling sharp, focused, and on task. You can work to achieve your goals, both on the job and at home. Without it… Have you ever waded through a long day, exhausted and unable to stay focused or be productive? This is like the engine warning light on your car’s dashboard, and it shouldn’t be ignored. Lack of energy is a sign that some part of your health picture—sleep, nutrition, lifestyle—is less than optimal.

If you recognize something is amiss, commit to fixing it. There’s a right way and a wrong way of going about that, though.

Here are two “don’ts” for reclaiming your health.

DON’T gamble by assuming your health will take care of itself.

This is the time for some action. When you turn your attention to yourself and your own wellbeing, you’re making an investment in a priceless quality that you can’t afford to sacrifice. This is NOT selfish; this is a necessary step.

If you aren’t paying attention to your health, unfortunately, odds are that it will catch up with you later. Just like your car, your body needs care, regularly scheduled maintenance, the right fuel, and a tune-up from time to time. And you need to make a commitment to finding resources to give yourself the proper guidance.

DON’T seek self-care direction from questionable or unreliable sources.

Up late at night surfing the Web for information on a particular health condition? Depending on the individual behind the health food store counter to help you find solutions? If so, then you’re not respecting yourself as you should be. You have a right—and a duty to yourself—to enlist professional assistance. What’s more, there’s a lot of confusion out there. Complicating your thinking with information overload doesn’t lead to answers, it only makes the situation more puzzling. Avoid well-meaning but misguided advice by turning to qualified support for help.

Keep your eye on the gift that keeps on giving, your good health. This is the best way for you to move forward in your life with vitality, enjoyment, and longevity. Start with a simple, small step: Pay attention. That means you shouldn’t let warning signs slip under the radar. And you should get to know your body to understand what you’re feeling. Doing so will allow you to reap countless rewards now, and in the future.

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