13 Virtues as per Benjamin Franklin

The 13 Virtues

Benjamin Franklin listed them as follows (from his autobiography):

Temperance– Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation
Silence– Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
Order-Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.
Resolution-Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.
Frugality-Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.
Industry-Loose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.
Sincerity-Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and if you speak, speak accordingly.
Justice-Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.
Moderation-Avoid extremes, forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.
Cleanliness-Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.
Tranquility-Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.
Chastity-Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.
Humility-Imitate Jesus and Socrates

Modified Virtues

I modified his original list for use in the 365 Health Strategies):

Here’s how and why I modified Mr.Franklin’s list…

Temperance-Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation. Eat no processed sugar. Sleep 7 hours. Exercise 30 minutes. Why modified in this way? This virtue seems to be a step to allowing clear thinking and energy for the remaining virtues. Avoiding foods with added sugar, sleeping 7 hours, and exercising 30 minutes per day seems to go far toward improving energy and clarity of thinking.
Silence-no modification
Order-no modification
Resolution-Renamed “Resolution & Courage” Without courage there can be no virtue. Courage allows the implementation of Resolution.
Frugality-No modification
Industry-No modification
Sincerity-No modification
Justice-No modification
Moderation changed to “Thinking & Writing.”
By “Writing” I don’t mean the next great novel. I mean plans, goals, budgets, love letters, letters of apology, notes about books and manuals read. I don’t find Benjamin Franklin to have been one who avoided “extremes” as used to define his original virtue of “Moderation.” He was extreme enough to exercise treason against the King and start a nation. He was very extreme in his work ethic, his creativity, his frugality, in his exercise of the virtues.

Sometimes, maybe, it’s helpful to be both extreme and immoderate. I’m not into being different for difference’s sake, but I don’t see any particular virtue in trying to avoid being extreme. As for “resenting injuries,” if you imitate Jesus you will not resent injuries, so it seems redundant to list that separately.

On the other hand, writing clarifies thinking and thinking is such hard work that I need all the tools I can get. Whether I’m thinking about how to run the next basketball practice for my third grader or how to plan the care of patients who volunteer for my next research project, writing helps.

Of course, Benjamin Franklin was a prolific writer, which I think contributed to his clarity of thinking in science and politics.

So, I dropped moderation from the list and placed at number 9 the following virtue:
Thinking & Writing-Spend daily time reading & observing; then, write your thinking.
Cleanliness-No modification
Tranquility-No modification
Chastity-No modification
Humility– Changed to Humility, Love, & Outreach-(Because love in a vacuum is worthless) Do something good for two people per day. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.
Here’s where to download a clean version of “A Modification of the 13 Virtues as Described by Benjamin Franklin”<—

What to do when your “Euroclydon” blows

What to Do When Euroclydon Blows (with research tips following)

Acts 27:13 And when the south wind blew softly, supposing that they had obtained their purpose, loosing thence, they sailed close by Crete. (14) But, not long after there arose against it a tempestuous wind, called Euroclydon….(20) When neither sun nor stars in many days appeared..all hope that we should be saved was then taken away.


The medieval metaphor of the “wheel of fortune” referred to something similar to a Ferris wheel–where when you are on top, without warning you can be slung to the bottom, and when on the bottom, if you hang on, you will be carried to the top. Another metaphor for the changes in fortune, I think better approaches the way misfortune actually feels: a storm.

So, when Paul, as a prisoner facing possible execution (but who had done nothing worthy of death), was being transported to court; the wind changed from “soft” to “tempestuous.” What Paul did next could be a clue to what healthy people may best do when they meet their own tempest, Euroclydon: he fasted. After many days of a storm where he could see neither sun nor stars, I think he felt the way I have felt when tragedy seems to have found me and my greatest hopes seem dashed.

Those who have not felt a tempest that went so long that “all hope that we should be saved was taken away,” those who have not felt a personal storm like that just haven’t lived long enough. So, since the storm is coming, it may be useful to notice what Paul did: he fasted.

He did not get drunk.

He did not get electric shock therapy.

He did not see a therapist.

He did not go to the drug store.

He quit eating–for 14 days.

Then, an “angel” came to him and told him what to do and that all would be OK. They cut the lifeboats away, and the wind blew them to safety. The same wind that they feared would destroy them, that wind, blew him and his 276 fellow passengers to Melita where they were greeted by a warm fire kindled by the people who lived there.

I have felt that too! The same wind that seems to be about to destroy me, takes me to a place of kindness and warmth–a better place than where I started.

Throughout the Bible, the prophets quit eating when facing troubles. When asked why his disciples did not fast, Christ answered that they did not fast because He was with them and all was good; but, the day would come when they would fast.

Fasting stills both mind and body and brings focus. Here are a few notes from the research…

Anxious depression creates a higher chance of suicide and is more difficult to treat [Choi2020]. So, if you find yourself in a Euroclydon, relieving anxiety is a good thing, even if you still feel sad.

Just fasting from meat can decrease depression and anxiety [Spanaki2021].

And, in one study in mice, just a 24-hour complete fast caused a decrease in anxiety and an increase in memory: so 24-hour fast resulted in the mice being less anxious and smarter–not a bad thing when caught in a storm.

So even if an angel does not show up (but one may), still, fasting could be a good thing to do when caught in your next emotional storm. Of course, fasting could be dangerous if you suffer from diabetes, anorexia nervosa, or some other conditions; so, talk with your doctor. But, if you are able, fasting could offer you the help of both angels and your best physiology as you pass through your next tempest.

References

1.TowersAE, Oelschlager ML, Patel J, Gainey SJ, McCusker R, Freund GG. Acute fasting inhibits central caspase-1 activity reducing anxiety-like behavior and increasing novel object and object location recognition. Metabolism. 2017;71:70-82. doi:10.1016/j.metabol.2017.03.0052.Choi KW, Kim YK, Jeon HJ. Comorbid Anxiety and Depression: Clinical and Conceptual Consideration and Transdiagnostic Treatment. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2020;1191:219-235. doi:10.1007/978-981-32-9705-0_143.Spanaki C, Rodopaios NE, Koulouri A, et al. The Christian Orthodox Church Fasting Diet Is Associated with Lower Levels of Depression and Anxiety and a Better Cognitive Performance in Middle Life. Nutrients. 2021;13(2):627. doi:10.3390/nu13020627

Health Strategy:

When you find yourself in a storm, eat less and pray more.


The 1-3-5 Plan:

Print this lesson to carry; printed stays in your eye, what lives on your device goes dark. Then mark the following as you complete each part of the 1-3-5 plan.

For the virtue, simply do your best to live according to the maxim. Think only of this day (not yesterday or tomorrow). If you live today to the highest truth you know (in a most sincere but always imperfect way), tomorrow will be better because of it:

Read: Acts 25-28 (  )

Virtue: Chastity–Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.

Walk 3 miles (  )

Eat 5 fruits or vegetables (  )

Sincerely,

Charles

Charles Runels, MD

Books by Dr. Runels<—

More about these 365 Health strategies<—

3-Day Fat Burn<—

How to Get a “Whole Body Full of Light”

Get a “Whole Body Full of Light”

Luke 11:34 The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body is full of light: but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness.

34: Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.

36: If thy whole body, therefore, be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.


I think it may be good to have a “whole body full of light.” So, let’s go through the steps given by Christ…

  1. The eye is the light of the body.
  2. Keep the eye single on “light” and not on “evil” or dark.
  3. Then the whole body fills with light.
  4. When the body fills with light, the “whole” fills with light (verse 36).

IMPORTANT: The word “whole” is used twice: there’s a whole body, then there’s just the “whole” of your being. Fill the eye with light (and no dark), then the whole body fills with light, then your whole being fills with light, then as an “enlightened” person, you BECOME a light to fill the eye of others! Amazing promise and the easiest and the hardest thing to do.

What will you fill your eye with today?

What will you get an “eye-full” of today?

Will you fill your eye with the sight of foods or drugs that will make you sick? The sight of poison people who will lead you to pain? The vision of movies that delight in heavy and oppressive sights that glorify practices or attitudes that lead to disease and despair?

Or will you get an eye-full of healthy foods, uplifting stories, wisdom literature, and people full of peace, strength, and holiness?

Notice that to have a body full of light so that the whole becomes light—with you experiencing “enlightenment” and therefore become a light to the world—there must be “no part dark.”

Just beware of the surprise of which Christ warns you in Luke 12:52: when you remove all the dark, your family and friends will become angry.

If you throw out the food that makes you sick, so that it no longer fills your eye when you open the refrigerator; you will anger those in your house who like that food.

When you turn off the TV (or throw it out), so that it no longer fills your eye with discouraging, numbing, scenes, those who still enjoy those movies will be angry.

The Tao Te Ching says…

Live in a good place.

Keep your mind deep.

To live in a good place, take out the dark.

You can’t be influenced by seeing what you can’t see (because you removed it to keep good your place where you live).

Those who pray and meditate may actually SEE a light. Paul did. Walt Whitman did and afterward never doubted life after life. Mostly, my life feels like muddy waters on many days. But sometimes, the light pokes through enough to see–it’s when, like wiping the spots of a dirty lenses on my glasses, I’ve filled my eyes with light and made it through a day without dark.

Walt Whitman said that he could not argue the existence of life after life, but he knew because he saw it.

To see light, most of the healthy people I know periodically find the courage to have a conversation with those in their house and then remove all the dark; fill your house and workplace with light. Block the phone number of those calls that only bring dark; if needed, change your number and only give it to those who bring light.

Health Strategy:

Live in a good place…full of light. Remove all the dark. Fill your body with light by only allowing the sight of what illuminates your life and nothing from the dark. Then watch the whole of your life become a candle in a world of dark, and enjoy your best health.

Hope this helps.

The 1-3-5 Plan:

Print this lesson to carry; printed stays in your eye, what lives on your device goes dark. Then mark the following as you complete each part of the 1-3-5 plan.

For the virtue, simply do your best to live according to the maxim. Think only of this day (not yesterday or tomorrow). If you live today to the highest truth you know (in a most sincere but always imperfect way), tomorrow will be better because of it:

Read: Luke 10-12 ( )

Virtue: Cleanliness: Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.

Walk 3 miles ( )

Eat 5 fruits or vegetables ( )

Sincerely,

Charles

Charles Runels, MD

Books by Dr. Runels<—

More about these 365 Health strategies<—

3-Day Fat Burn<—

A String Around Your Finger

WK9Day2
A String Around Your Finger

Deut 6:8-9 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and upon thy gates.

Sometimes, when I decide to fast for a day, I’ll catch myself eating lunch and then mid mouth full—I remember, “Oh! I’m supposed to be fasting today.”

Or, I decide in the morning to live with peace and thoughtfulness, and then, in the afternoon, suddenly, I’m looking down from the ceiling wondering at the mad man who is losing his temper over something better overlooked.

So, GOD says, wear things on your body and put messages on the place where you work and live to remind you of your resolution. Sometimes, even in remembering, I’ll still do the thing I know to not be best for me; but, often, just the remembering is enough to slow me down to take the happier and healthier path.

So, now when I decide to fast, I’ll put on a ring, a bracelet, or a necklace to remind me of the resolution to do or not do a certain thing. I’ve even done the proverbial, “tie a string around my finger” except I usually tie it around my wrist or ankle so it’s less noticeable and only cut it off when I break the fast or skip the walk or whatever other resolution I’ve made (since I’m never perfect, but the reminder makes me better).

One purpose of the wedding ring is exactly as described in Deuteronomy–to remind us and others of promises made.

Things like the Ora Ring and the iWatch can serve as a modern version of Deuteronomy 6:8-9.

The thing to do: What’s the resolution or practice you’d like to make? Now, tie a string, or take out an old ring or necklace, make the vow to go the week without the offending food (now throw it out of your house); or, make the vow to walk 3 miles every day; or, whatever the easiest keystone habit you can think of—make that vow.

Now, wear the string or the ring or keep track on the iWatch (the built-in walking tracker works great).

Hope this helps.

The 1-3-5 Plan:

Deuteronomy 6-10

Virtue: Writing–Read, experiment, observe; then, write what you think.

Walk 3 miles

Eat 5 fruits or vegetables

Sincerely,

Charles

Charles Runels, MD

Books by Dr. Runels<—

More about these 365 Health strategies<—

3-Day Fat Burn<—

WK45Day4 Unrecognized Extortion?

When Sam Walton (the richest man in the US at one time) knew he was going to soon die from prostate cancer, he wrote a book (Made in America)–where he directly spoke to his grandchildren and future great-grandchildren.

In that book, he says one of the smartest things he ever did was put on the sign over the front door, “Satisfaction Guaranteed.”

It’s a very simple but hard to follow principle— if someone gives you money for a product, service, or a payday for your time and volition, then if you do not deliver what they bought, you just stole money—extortion.

As a physician, when I first started taking money for services (instead of an insurance card), I thought about Sam Walton and the fact that if most people were dishonest that he’d be broke instead of making jobs for thousands of people. I decided that if he could guarantee a ten-dollar watch, that I’d not keep anyone’s money who was not happy with my services. I don’t try to treat everyone (I can not heal every disease and I am not the best physician for every person), but if someone gives me money, my rule is that they must think they received something worth more than the money they paid, or I do not keep the money.

Sometimes, I feel maybe someone takes advantage of my rule; but, usually, even when I give back money, it just feels better to me and to my patient.

As you go through your day today, maybe consider the following passage from today’s reading:

Ezekiel: 22:12-13 …thou hast greedily gained of thy neighbor by extortion, and hast forgotten me, saith the LORD GOD. Behold, therefore I have smitten mine hand at thy dishonest gain, and at thy blood, which hath been in the midst of thee.

The 1-3-5 Plan (click to see plan):

Ezekiel 22-29

Industry: Lose no time; be always employed by something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.

Walk 3 miles

Eat 5 fruits or vegetables

Sincerely,

Charles

Charles Runels, MD

Books by Dr. Runels<—

More about these 365 Health strategies<—

3-Day Fat Burn<—

Get up, make up your bed, go walking

WK34Day2

John 5:8 Jesus saith unto him, “Rise, take up thy bed and walk.”

There was a man near the pool of Bethesda who had an “infirmity.” We do not know what the infirmity was; but, we do know that it made him slow with walking because before he could get to the water for healing, others would arrive before him and he would miss his chance of healing.

Notice that when Jesus healed him, he did not say, “You are well now, hang out and watch TV.”

Instead, he told the man to go walking: “Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

Translation: “Get up, make your bed, go walking. “

Christ walked.

Thoreau walked.

Emerson walked.

Beethoven walked.

Moses walked.

Steve Reeves walked.

Gandhi walked (averaged 11 miles per day).

Four out of five of those people hospitalized or dead from COVID have been obese. Walking fights obesity (but it takes much more walking than you’ve probably been told).

Are prophets and artists walkers because they are prophets; or, are they prophets and artists because they are walkers?

Rise, make your bed, go walking.

John4-6

Justice: Wrong none by doing injuries or by omitting the benefits that are your duty.

Walk 3 miles

Eat 5 fruits or vegetables

Sincerely,

Charles

Charles Runels, MD

More on walking<–
3-Day Fat Burn<–

Your Inner Circle

The “inner circle” principle is used by the healthy, though sometimes unconsciously. I’ll show you first an extreme example then a practical application.

First, an extreme example…

When Christ prepared to walk into a house to raise the dead, he “permitted no one to follow Him except Peter, James, and John” [Mark 5:37]. Then, before he took care of the problem and commanded, “Little girl, I say, get up” [Mark 5:41], before he did anything dramatic, he sent everyone out of the house except the 3 in the inner circle and the parents of the child. He didn’t call for T.V. cameras; he didn’t try to convince anyone of anything. He just ejected from the house the people who “ridiculed Him” [Mark 5:40] and then did his job. Not even the other 9 disciples were allowed in the room.

Practical Application (Importance of Your Inner Circle)…

So, is there really a practical application concerning health in this Bible story? Possibly, your most important and difficult goals, resolutions, aspirations, and tasks for the day should be kept private (not televised or broadcasted). Sharing the most important somehow dilutes resolve and dampens results of my patients. Consider a practical example:

You’re at your mother’s house and you start to explain to your cousin details of how you plan to drop 50 pounds and increase your energy with your new exercise plan. What are the chances that cousin Sue (who’s watching TV and eating a 700-calorie snack) is interested or apt to offer encouragement? If your next party is like most, you’ll hear no comment if you drink a couple of sodas and eat a large slice of desert; you’re more likely to face “ridicule” if you eat a bowl of oranges and skip the desert. That much you know and probably need no reminder. Here’s the part that possibly needs pointing out: the less explaining you do the more likely you are to continue with your resolve.

Explaining and making all actions transparent opens the door that leads to your inner circle of value and resolve. Allowing anyone into this circle weakens your results (even Christ found it necessary to rope off an inner circle). Repeatedly, I see my patients discouraged in the effort to improve their health by the ridicule (implied or direct) of friends and family. Explanation of plans usually brings a reply listing all the reasons for failure. But, change does seem to demand Resolve.

Ben Franklin listed in his 13-point summary of the virtues “Resolution.” A better word might be Promise. Steven Covey said the best way to care for relationships is to make and keep promises. Franklin would have said, “make and keep resolutions.” I’ve found the healthiest seem to make and keep promises to self but are reluctant to reveal those promises.

For accomplishment of promises, Inner Circles seem to strengthen the resolve of the healthy who share powerful goals with healthy people; so, a healthy inner circle can be a powerful motivator and facilitator.

The unhealthy either have an inner circle of mostly people who practice unhealthy habits or else have no inner circle, only resolutions diluted by the ridicule of the crowd.

__ Mark Chapters 4 – 5

__ Walk 3 miles: actual miles walked _____

__ Eat 5 fruits or vegetables _____

__ Virtue: Resolution/Courage – resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.

Peace & Health,

Charles Runels
Cellular Medicine Association

More about these 365 Health Strategies<–

Tune Your Group…Tune Your Health

Reading about construction of temples in Exodus reminds me of another powerful health strategy: plugging into the right group.

Go to a place with a band and dancing, there’s a good chance you’ll do some dancing. It’s natural to be caught up in the activity of the group. Why not use the power of the group to improve health?

Those who go to church are likely to pray. Stay home, you may say a prayer, but go to a temple and prayer will be more intense because of plugging into the group.

I believe someone with an aversion to exercise could change their healthy by simply going to the YMCA and spending an hour there every  day. Something about being around a large building full of people exercising just makes you want to move.

But, there are other less obvious ways to use the group to improve health. You can subscribe to a health inspiring magazine and read it. You may be alone while you read the magazine, but you’re still exposed to healthy group of people through the articles. Hiking magazines, Men’s Health, Runner’s World, and Prevention Magazine are good choices. There are many web sites, and e-zines like this one; but for a strong influence, a regular magazine with articles and pictures of people who improved their health seems to work better.

You can start a walking club that meets once a week on the weekend for a long walk (at least 2 or 3 times as long as what you normally walk). I’ve been part of such clubs when I was running marathons. I normally ran 5 to 10 miles during the week; but would meet a few people for a long slow 15 to 20 miles early on Saturday morning.  I don’t recommend a daily walking club because people usually walk at different speeds (you  don’t even want to walk the same speed every day)…so a daily club frustrates the faster walker and exhausts the slower walker.  Also, when one or the other can’t make the walk, each becomes the other’s excuse for not walking.  Best, is have a daily appointment with yourself and meet for a group walk once a week.

Let’s say you normally walk 2 or 3 miles a day. If you met a friend or 2 for an easy, slow 5 mile walk on a weekend day, then the extra mileage would make up for a missed day during the week. Also, and more important, knowing that you would be meeting someone on Saturday (who’s probably going to ask you about your walking and who also walks) will motivate you to stay on your program. Even meeting just once a week will encourage you to stay more consistent the other 6 days.

Some religions stress healthy living and weekly worship becomes good for both body and mind. The Seventh Day Adventist Church is the healthiest, most long-lived group in the nation.

WARNING:    Watch for groups that glorify the unhealthy. You may connect with the healthier members of a group, but if the group consumes much time and encourages unhealthy behavior, do you really have time for that group?

Which would be healthier, a chess club or a birdwatching club? Which would be healthier, a Mardi Gras society, or a class in outdoor photography? What groups could you consider dropping? What new groups could you consider joining?

__ Exodus Chapters 29 – 34

__ Walk 3 miles: actual miles walked _____

__ Eat 5 fruits or vegetables: actual eaten _____

__ Virtue: Order – Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.

Sincerely,


Charles Runels, MD

More about these 365 Health Strategies<–

Wk1.Day6.Fight

Week 1: Day 6
Fight

__Read Genesis 36 – 41_____

__Walk 3 miles: actual miles walked _____

__Eat 5 fruits or vegetables_____

__Virtue: Temperance: eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.

If I had to name one thing that keeps most people from superior health, I might name this: not realizing the necessity of a fight and preparing for that fight.

Physical laws state that things go toward a state of more disorder. It’s the reason that rocks don’t roll up hills. It’s the reason your home becomes more disordered with use rather than becoming more neat after a party. It’s the reason we become less healthy without efforts toward better health. You work to stay in place and you work harder if you want to improve.

Part of the effort involved in breaking the inertia and moving toward better health requires breaking through conflict with other people. Usually unknowingly, the people who love you most will do the most to distract you from healthy activities you wish to accomplish and will lead you toward the things you wish not to do. If someone not close to you interrupts, you may have little difficulty saying, “no.” But, most people when faced with choosing between something that’s very important to them and something less important but urgent to someone they love will choose to care for the other person.

The children need you to help with homework and it’s time for a walk. Guests are coming and you must prepare food they will enjoy (but which may not be your best choice). You’ve been away at work and your family wants to see you; so you skip the walk to sit and visit a little longer.

The people we love may not even realize that they’re keeping us from something important to our health. But, they do.

Here’s the analogy to remember: if you’re in an airplane, the steward(ess) briefs you on safety measures. If you’re sitting next to a small child and the cabin loses pressure, whose oxygen mask should you put on first–yours or the child’s?

The answer: you put on yours first! I’ve heard that advice every time I fly. Of course the reason is that if you’re passed out then you can’t take care of the child. You cannot care for those you love if you’re not alive and functioning well.

Most of us love family and friends enough to die for them. But to die or become less healthy and be unable to care for others because of homework that can’t wait or because dinner must be served at 5:30 instead of 6:30 after walking, to do these less important things to care for others while you forego practices that keep you healthy seems less wise than putting the child’s mask on before yours when in the airplane that’s lost pressure.

3-Day Fat Burn<–

Usually, those who love you will encourage your efforts after you say something like the following: “I must go for this walk (or not eat this cake or drink this drink, etc.) because I cannot be there for you the way I want to be unless I’m healthy and happy. I need to do this to take care of myself so that I can then be a good father (or mother, friend, spouse).” Even children can understand this concept.

Usually, there’s no unpleasant fight. But there is inertia and there will be conflict and occasional difficulties satisfying others if you stick to your resolutions. Prepare for conflict and stand firm with love.

So, prepare for a fight. The internal fight will be to stand resolved in your health practices to care for the goose (you) who lays the golden egg (service and love) for your family and friends. The external fight will be the occasional resistance by those you love when they forget that they must occasionally wait for the egg while you care for the goose.

Peace & health,

Charles Runels, MD

 

Record. Week 1. Day 4.

Week 1 Day 4

Mistake Three: Not keeping records

Most of the business gurus seem to stress setting measurable goals. Without a measurable goal, how do you know if you’re on track at the end of the day?

The same principle applies to health. For example: if you resolve to eat less and exercise more, exactly how do you know if you’ve accomplished that goal at the end of the day? Beneath that simple goal, you find complicated questions: How much less do you need to eat? How much more do you need to exercise? What exercise should you do? If you miss a day of exercise or if you eat an extra piece of pizza, how do you compensate tomorrow to reach overall goals such as losing 20 pounds or breaking free of your hypertension medication?

Losing 20 pounds will be accomplished by behaving in a particular way for many days; so, the 20-pound goal will be accomplished more successfully in the people who set measurable daily goals. If we win or lose our lives in day-tight compartments, then it’s in the accomplishment of the daily goal that we achieve long term dreams.

Solution: Keep a simple daily record

The better the performance, the more likely you will find detailed records. Successful people in every area of life keep good records. The super coaches and athletes keep good records. Very healthy people often keep records. James Loehr tells (in his book, Stress for Success) how he coached Olympic and professional athletes to superior performance by asking them to keep records. He tells how to use similar records to improve your performance with work and with your health. I highly recommend his book to understand the power for records.

Is it artificial to keep records about your health?
Yes, I suppose so.
But, being trapped in a box (called house and office) instead of working outside is artificial.
Driving a box (called a car) instead of walking is artificial.
Having monstrous amounts of food available without doing any physical work is artificial.
It may take something artificial to counteract our modern environment.

Keeping a record of your accomplishment of daily goals which lead to long range goals does more than keep you honest with yourself. It also keeps you focused on what’s important. Just defining what you will track with your record can work magic.

It’s better to track healthful activities done and not unhealthy activities. By tracking the good things you do, the record will be more fun and you’ll be more likely to repeat the good activity. This goes back to using the good to replace the bad.

Also, a good record system to improve your health should take no more than five to ten minutes per day. For example: don’t record every calorie eaten–that’s not something you can do for the rest of your life. Instead record simple activities you can quickly track and which make a dramatic change in your life.

We’ll talk more tomorrow about how to make a health goal. So far we’ve mentioned these characteristics: day-tight goals, strive for something positive (not stopping something harmful), take baby steps, make it a measurable activity, and keep a daily record.

Read Genesis: Chapters 22-28 __
Walk 3 miles: Actual miles walked_____
Eat 5 fruits or vegetables_____
Virtue: Temperance-eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation_____

Best regards,

Charles Runels, MD
Books by Dr Runels<–

email:DrRunels@Runels.com

web: 365HealthStrategies.com

Powered by WishList Member - Membership Software

%d bloggers like this: