One morning, not long ago, I stopped to fill my gas tank.
I was in one of the nicer neighborhoods of Springfield, surrounded by men and women in nice cars and very nice clothes also fueling up on their way to their offices.
While I didn’t know any of them personally, it wasn’t hard to guess that they were headed to professional office places. They certainly weren’t dressed for a day of digging ditches or flipping burgers. They were prepared for a day that required people to trust in them and be confident in their abilities to market, to heal or to manage the books.
These are smart people, I thought to myself, who are at the top of their game. They are successful professionals who know how to manage their business and, for some, the business of others.
One other thing also stood out to me as I watched them that morning.
They were all over weight.
As one of them came out of the convenience store with soda and doughnut in hand, I couldn’t help but wonder how someone so successful and educated could not understand what they were doing to their bodies. Or how being overweight might be a detriment to how people perceived their abilities in the their chosen profession. After all, would you really listen to an obese doctor who told you to lose weight?
Oprah confuses me in the same way. She has every resource, every expert at her command. She has the ability to go anywhere and do anything. Yet she can’t stay at a healthy weight.
Oprah and my fellow morning commuters don’t lack the ability to commit to something and follow through. They have resources at their disposal to help them on a fitness journey that many do not.
So why do so many successful professionals and entrepreneurs continue to put their health and wealth at risk by being unfit and unhealthy?
Again, I don’t know any of these people (although Oprah I would like to know for sure) but I can venture a guess. It’s the inability to put themselves first. They are so focused on a goal, so committed to those they serve, that they neglect to use their resources and knowledge to do what’s best for their bodies.
So they cancel gym appointments for lunch meetings and grab a late dinner from the drive up after closing up shop after a 12 hour day. Little do they know that by neglecting their bodies they are ignoring their most precious capital-themselves.
No matter what you do, no matter how busy you get, you must make time for you. Success means nothing if you don’t have the ability to enjoy it.