We make a living by what we get. We make a life from what we give. – Winston Churchill.

I believe the best thing you can ‘give’ is a great example. I am thinking specifically here about family and health.

In health and fitness, it is all about a getting into a consistent routine. When you can display this in your own life, you will start to see it multiply around you. Your kids will model what you do. Have you ever heard the saying “I can’t hear your words because your actions are screaming so loudly”? If you are wondering why your kids aren’t getting outside to play whilst all you ever do is crack a beer and slouch down on the couch, then maybe it is time to think what kind of picture you are giving them of life.

Perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed and all you ever do is give. Well, the idea that charity starts at home is well worth considering. When was the last time you gave something to yourself? When did you last carve out some ‘you time’? I have mentioned this concept before. You are no good to anyone if you are feeling this way. You need to factor in some ‘energy up’ time. Let’s also not forget recovery and recuperation. It is a salient point that the most gains in fitness happen when you are NOT doing anything. But of course you have to do the ‘something’ first!

So harking back to the wise words of Winston… You can make your own life all you want it to be when you give appropriately to yourself. What you end up being able to give out because of that energy, self esteem, radiance, strength, vitality and what leads quite often to lifelong health, are gifts of the greatest value. You don’t have to do cross-fit folks or have massive body transformations or run marathons (these things can all be good though when done right), you just have to commit to small and incrementally more challenging steps. A great example is going for a nightly walk with your wife, your dog, your kids or all three! This simple act has the added benefit of relationship nurturing, mind clearing and energy boosting – a triple whammy of good things. Put down the remote and give yourself a long hard look in the mirror. Do you want to be known as the giver or the taker? Takers sap the life out of everything and sometimes even come from a place of the best of intentions. But remember, it doesn’t matter what you want to have happen, it is what you make happen that counts.

Give until it hurts! Or maybe, give until something good starts to happen. If we are talking health and fitness, I can guarantee it will happen and very quickly at that, as the seeds of a ‘do it till the end of your life’ habit start to take hold. You never know, you might be able to give back like my mate Damo who ran from Brisbane to Sydney and raised over $60,000 for a very worthwhile charity.

Let’s think back to Winston Churchill’s comment again… We make a living by what we get. We make a life from what we give.


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