Thursday, 12 November 2015

The gift of health

This week I've been quite contemplative about the important things in life.  A wonderful friend passed away this week after battling leukaemia for two years.  She was my age, and as I've been remembering the times we shared, I have also found myself thinking about my life.

I'm not one for big life goals.  I don't want a big house or fancy car.  I like to travel, but I'm not obsessed with it.  I enjoy time with family and close friends, but I also like time to myself.  I like my job and what I do for work, but it's not the be all and end all.

If I tried to describe the life I want, I think it would be a life full of peace, contentment and respect and appreciation - for myself, for others, and for the world around us.

I think this is exactly why I have reached a point where I have a focus on health in my life.  Although the passing of my friend reminds me that there are things that happen outside of our control,  there are many ways in which a healthy life supports the kind of life I'm seeking:

  1. At the simplest level, exercise for me brings me peace.  A run (whether good or not so good) always clears my head and my heart, and centres me.
  2. This week has reinforced for me that we only get one body, and there are things we can do to give this body of ours the best chance of supporting us through our journey, and giving us the means to do the things that we find fulfilling
  3. Making healthy choices is also a way of showing your respect for yourself, and for the people you love.  I care about my family and friends enough to treat myself well, and do the things I can control to be there for them for the rest of my life - because at some point, I might not be the one in control of my health.
  4. The more I learn about healthy eating, the more I appreciate the amazing gifts we receive from nature.  Real wholesome food is truly wondrous, full of goodness, and generally yummy!  
  5. A healthful life is also quite humbling.  It reminds me that there are things bigger and more meaningful than me all around, and we lucky to be able to be part of the big picture.
It is so easy to forget why health is important - if not the most important gift you can give yourself - when you are trying to meet a deadline at work, or running from day to day.  For most of us, good health is a choice we can make, and appreciating the fact that we have that choice is a gift to be savoured.

What do you do to appreciate the gift of health?

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