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Preventive care before disrepair is all about supporting health, wealth, and happiness. The big three that all humans chase like a sweaty kid running down an ice cream truck.
I’m no different. Statically, I’m average.
As I’ve grown into my wrinkles and wisdom, I’m leaning more toward preventive care before disrepair.
When I was younger, I had little wealth and not much happiness, but I had abundant health. How else could I go on a boozy bender and still function the next week?
Now, after a couple of drinks, I wake up feeling like Oscar the Grouch, ready to yell at anyone getting too close to my can.
To have more health, wealth, and happiness and less green and mean, there are safety systems I can establish. Similar to how a town has police, fire departments, and hospitals. It’s like that, but tiny and questionable.
When I feel better, I act better.
When Mr. BuLL and I returned from Iceland, we had an unplanned souvenir.
Not surprising when the airports, planes, and buses contain one or more humans hacking away their sickly woes.
To combat the cold, I cleared all priorities and focused on getting better. Because when my baseline health feels similar to The Walking Dead, there’s a problem.
Along with taking cold meds, I went to bed at 8. Normally, I go to bed at 9. Going to bed a full hour earlier felt like a lot.
Yet, it was necessary. My workload was increasing as school groups poured in and things became more hectic with visitation and seasonal employees.
For a week, I went to bed earlier than normal. Along with kicking a cold, I found out I had smaller bags under my eyes, and felt more energized during the day, including into the night.
Getting into a better sleep exploded into everything else.
Other healthy habits include:
- Drinking water as a default
- Eating fruits, veggies, and lean meat
- Getting exercise even if it’s walking around the room for 30 minutes
If I want to feel better, then I have to do better which includes the work that supports feeling and being better.
I don’t need to be rich to feel wealthy.
Back when I was broke on repeat, I thought I needed the wealth of Paris Hilton to feel wealthy. Turns out that’s not true.
Wealth is subjective and there are support structures that are the same no matter where I’m at on my financial journey.
Those support structures look like accounts that support the wide range of human possibilities and calamities. That wide range includes an emergency fund where if I get laid off, need a new car, or decide to become a temporary nomad, I’ll have the funds to make that decision and not be concerned about debt.
A sinking fund for annual, big bills like car insurance, medical expenses, and gift giving.
Retirement accounts for when I buy my freedom from the working world.
My favorite fund is the travel account for all my travel desires. Last year, the travel fund paid for a trip to California for family fun, the color run, and Joshua Tree National Park. Plus, oodles of local adventures like learning to pole dance and a trip to South Dakota for a wedding.
As a civil servant, I don’t make a large wage. I’m able to live largely because I prioritize where my money goes. I save for specific areas and don’t have debt (outside of a mortgage). Rarely do I invest in restaurant meals, new clothes, or a new car.
These are sacrifices I’m happy to make, though these “sacrifices” are more ingrained habits than happiness destroyers. I struggle to picture life not being frugal in some areas to live richly in others.
Happiness isn’t helplessness.
Science is quite chatty about the demands of happiness.
Happiness is generated when interacting with others, from visiting to volunteering, having strong social support can add years to any lifetime.
Meditation and mindfulness are another piece of the happiness puzzle. In a world of instant demands, meditation and mindfulness bring the frazzled human back to reality and what’s important: enjoying the moment as it is, right now. The past is unchangeable, and the future is unknowable, all that’s left is the present.
Having a purpose can also boost happiness from work to play, a life of intention is worthy of mention. My work is infused with intention between coworkers and cohorts to school and visiting groups, I have plenty of reasons to show up and share.
Frugal fun is also purposeful fun too, from reading and learning new skills to practicing hobbies and exploring locally. The purpose is all about placement; what I value is where is where I place my money and time.
Preventive care before disrepair is like an ounce of effort to avoid a pound of pain.
My life wasn’t always a 10 out of 10. I had to do the work to find out what would take my life from an 8 out of 10 to a 10/10. Then, I worked the problem backward. Also, it’s not a one-and-done problem, it’s something that gets fed and tended to just like all the other relationships.
But this relationship is the most important because it’s with myself and the life that I lead. I only get one, from start to finish, so any effort is worth it.