Are Both Mental and Physical Health Crucial to Success?

Are Both Mental and Physical Health Crucial to Success?

Does success mean merely reaching a goal, or does it including maintaining it? When our lives and work are thriving, that may be a more specific definition to the term “success.” If so, then, certainly, in order to attain and maintain success, both physical and mental health are crucial.

One Without the Other

Here are the real questions: Can we be physically healthy if our mental state is unhealthy? Alternately, can we be mentally healthy if our physical state is unhealthy? Not really.

So, the reality is—in order to be successful, it is crucial that both our bodies and minds get in healthy shape. Mental and physical health support and compliment one another; they work hand-in-hand.

And, unfortunately, your best health and opportunity for success decreases when one or both are lacking.

Paving the Path to Success

Let’s first explore the theory that optimum mental health cannot exist without proper physical health—and vice versa. If we can observe this as a proven hypothesis, then we can better understand that both are necessary for success. Here are some examples:

Lack of proper sleep definitely affects your body. You’re slower moving around, have less coordination, and you’re immune system can become weakened. But losing sleep affects your mental state, too.

Not getting enough rest can create mood swings, anxiety, depression, confusion, and memory lapses. According to Harvard Health Publications, chronic sleep issues may even increase risk for developing particular mental illnesses. This doesn’t sound like a recipe for success.

A poor diet can affect physical health in many ways. It can increase risk of:

  • tooth decay
  • obesity
  • high cholesterol
  • heart disease
  • some cancers
  • and a host of other negative conditions

On the flip side, not eating properly can also affect your mental state. Almost 95% of our serotonin is produced in our gastrointestinal tract. Serotonin is our “feel good” neurotransmitter. It’s constantly sending signals to our brain. We need healthy intake if we expect healthy mind-messengers.

Other mental consequences to malnutrition are: brain fatigue, general cognitive function, hypersensitivity, carelessness, and many other symptoms and behaviors that are not conducive to a status of success.

Lack of physical exercise, as we already know, has adverse effects on the body. Little or no physical activity affects blood sugar levels, muscles, joints, bones, the heart, and other organs. Weight control is deterred when we don’t exercise, which can lead to additional health concerns.

The mind can also be affected by not participating in physical movement. Anxiety, depression, and lack of motivation may be symptoms of not getting any (or enough) exercise. Low self-esteem may also be a side effect. If success is what you’re seeking, ignoring your body and mind’s need for exercise may not be a well thought-out plan.

Taking the Success Path

Now that we’ve established what can hinder your route to success, let’s, instead, take a look at the positive ways to approach your goals. Since both your physical and mental health are crucial (as we’ve also established), practicing skills that will improve both aspects will be to your advantage.

The great news is when you feed and treat your body with good things, your mind reaps the benefits, too. So, perhaps focusing on indulging in factors beneficial to your physical being may be a smart way to improve your mental state and wellbeing. After all, you’ll need both in good shape to experience success.

Exercise as a Priority for Success

If exercise is not part of your routine, the idea of making it a priority may be horrifying. Please trust that it’s not as scary as it sounds. Exercise can be walking, biking, hiking, gardening, having sex, swimming, dancing, and a multitude of other activities that get your body moving.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) published a postgraduate physicians’ academic paper outlining the benefits of exercise (of any kind). Here are some of their entries from a compilation of research and studies:

  • Reduced stress
  • Increased energy and stamina
  • Great self-esteem
  • Improvement in mood
  • Improved sleep
  • Increased interest in sex
  • Increased mental alertness
  • Reduced fatigue
  • Weight Reduction
  • Improved cardiovascular fitness
  • Lower cholesterol

It appears that exercise covers a tremendous part of getting your physical and mental states in success-rendering shape. If you add smart, healthy eating and consistent proper rest to this mixture, it looks as if you’ll have a solid recipe for reaching your goals and maintaining them.

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Sources:

http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/Sleep-and-mental-health

http://www.sahealth.sa.gov.au/wps/wcm/connect/public+content/sa+health+internet/healthy+living/is+your+health+at+risk/the+risks+of+poor+nutrition

http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/nutritional-psychiatry-your-brain-on-food-201511168626

http://www.livestrong.com/article/479663-how-malnutrition-affects-the-brain/

http://www.livestrong.com/article/521837-negative-effects-of-the-lack-of-exercising/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/

 

 


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