Why Give a Damn:

The greatest truth is this: if the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out. The big thinkers are going to need health on their side to get it done.

The author of this post, Ann Garvin is an author, speaker and professor of health, stress management, research methods and media literacy.

Saving the world is a big pursuit. There must be planning, preparation, a crew of people, skill building and time. Lots and lots of time. It’s a long confidence game. It’s an endurance event. It’s aerobic.

People need clean water, there’s no time for a balanced diet

The people that embark on world saving ventures are big thinkers. As children they were the kind of kids who didn’t just decorate a tri-board for the third grade science fair, they built an erupting volcano, complete with marshmallow whip for frothy realism. When selling Girl Scout Cookies door-to-door these little girls set up shop at the Red Cross where cookies and blood go hand in hand and beat all selling records.

These are exactly the people needed for the biggest problems in the world: the unafraid, the creative, the out of box thinkers. So, it’s absolutely ridiculous, unreasonable even for these people to attend to a fussy body, needy with the small details of health. I can just hear them in my mind, “People need clean water, there’s no time for a balanced diet,” Or, “Sleep is for sissies when Malaria is on the loose.” When the world is at stake, fatalistic comments such as these might likely be uttered in defense of a lackadaisical health regime.

These are exactly the people needed for the biggest problems in the world: the unafraid, the creative, the out of box thinkers

When saving the world is on the agenda, however, the phrase the devil is in the details should be about health first and entrepreneur budgets second. Because, the greatest truth is this: if the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out.

So saving the world is going to take some time and saving the thinkers, that’s going to take stamina. Neither pursuit is easy. Just look at the statistics of long, complicated pursuits; doctorate programs 40% drop out rate, marriage 50% attrition, and living in general; 1 in 2 people die of heart disease which does not bode well for the long con–the greatest con of all which is convincing people that it is in our own best interests financially and otherwise, to save the world. The thinkers are going to need health on their side to get it done.

Saving the world is going to take some time and saving the thinkers, that’s going to take stamina

Therefore, it is not frivolous pampering when we say the body needs eight hours of sleep a night and fruits and vegetables to keep an upright primate, upright. We are not, blowing smoke when physiologists say that sitting kills and exercise is as important to mental health as finding work you like and potentially providing clean water for a village. Too much saturated fat, found in those easy to order pizza slices during long planning meetings, will plug a big thinker’s arteries just as fast as those of us who don’t have a save the world agenda.

So consider this one last fact. That while the singer, Warren Zevon may have made these words famous: “So much to do, there’s plenty on the farm I’ll sleep when I’m dead”. You might also be reminded that Warren died at the age of 56. Too young that’s for certain and with probably a lot of ideas left in his head.

About the author

Ann Garvin

Ann Garvin

Ann is an author, speaker and educator. As professor of health, stress management, research methods and media literacy at University of Wisconsin Whitewater, she has worked extensively in psychometrics, statistics and psychology. Ann is the author of On Maggie’s Watch & The Dog Year (Berkley Penguin, 2014).

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  • This confirms what people have been telling me for a long time. All the academic brilliance in the world is worth next to nothing if you don't have a healthy body to carry out your ideas. In high school I would occasionally stay up late to finish an assignment, the results were not pretty. Not only was my work of sub par quality, but my performance and temperament while functioning on minimal sleep made everyone else head for the hills. Before changing the world, young innovators need to slow down and take care of themselves.

  • It's a big thing I'm asking you to do. I'm asking you to take care of yourself before you take of THE world or YOUR world. What would you say to people who think it's selfish to take care of yourself first when others obviously need you?

  • This article is very interesting and inspiring. I do feel its important to better yourself before you help others. You need to make sure your healthy and have the right mind set to go into to helping others because its going to effect how you help others.

  • Great Article Ann. This brings to mind the thought that "you are not worth anything if you are dead." Our time on earth is the most precious gift we have and the best way to pay tribute to this gift is to take care of our bodies. Changing the world and health go hand in hand in my opinion as well. A big thinker cant necessarily think big thoughts if there brain is not at full capacity due to lack of sleep or exercise.

  • Great article and really resonates with me. As an entrepreneur, structuring your own life in a framework is vital, just as your venture relies on a deliberate framework to be successful. This is why Kauffman for example advocates for a free day which is a 24-hour period in which the entrepreneur does not engage in any business-related thinking, communication, or actions.

  • I enjoyed the article and found it to be very true. It would be hard to do much good if you don't feel it. It would be good to better yourself before bettering others so that you can better others even more. I never really thought about this much before, but it seems to be very true. I am very glad I read this engaging article!

  • I enjoyed this article and found it to be very true in life. People need to have a healthy mind and body in order to successfully carry out ideas in an efficient and effective way. You need to focus on your own health before you can start helping others. Great article!

  • I've had this joke lately about how many people can skip steps in Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs to get more work done, I'm not one of those people. When I need breakfast, it's pretty hard to think about anything else other than the fact that I need breakfast. I've met so many college students who just skip breakfast entirely, I never understood how they could that. Besides not being hungry in the morning, the early meal gives an incredibly healthy boost to your metabolism. Just one health mistake that's very easy to correct

  • It sounds like you are in agreement that personal health must come first. I would be hard to argue otherwise. So if we know it, why don't we do it? We do so many things that make us feel sick, it's illogical. Talk to me about that!

  • It's interesting how swapping pizza at meetings with something healthy could be the difference between dying at age 56 and living to go and change the world. I agree, don't choose between saving yourself and saving others, choose to save yourself WHILE saving others.

  • I think this is a great article because this is something that I don't think a lot of people realize. People are so worried about doing things for the greater good that they don't even realize that if they don't take care of themselves they won't be any good to anyone else. I think that if a lot more people read this article they would realize that sometimes they need to be selfish and think of themselves first when it comes to their health before they try and save the world.

  • I think this is a great article, because a lot of people can relate to it. Having a positive mindset and being focused on your health and body could make a huge impact on your life in a positive way, so it definitely is beneficial to find time to help improve it. I actually know a few people that don't think about taking care of themselves first because they are so focused on work, school, or whatever else they might be involved with. They eventually become exhausted or stressed, and it is partly because they didn't get enough sleep or put themselves first. I would say to people that your health should be one of the top things on your to do list, because your health is very important and it is what you make of it. I definitely do not think it is selfish to take care of yourself first when others need you, and sometimes people need to take a step back or else they may not be 100% when they take care of other business. In other words, even if you are saving the world you will not be saving yourself.

  • This article really makes you rethink how you pursue your goals in life. There have been many times where I would choose to study or hanging out with friends over improving my personal health. As this article shows, we all use "quick fixes" to make up for that lack of time. By ordering food instead of cooking, or maybe not finding the time to work out because were tired and rather watch tv is actually hurting us more then we are aware of. We need to start taking the time to focus on our health because in the end health is the most important thing that keeps us doing the things we love.

  • I agree, Ann, it's so important to remember to take care of ourselves amidst the craziness of entrepreneurial/startup lifestyles. My dad is an entrepreneur, and it seems like he never stops working. I can understand why the pressures of trying to get a business off the ground can make it hard to justify taking a break or getting those extra 3 hours of sleep – but I'll definitely be passing this onto him. Like you said, changing the world takes stamina and energy and, as normal human beings, we need certain things in order to maintain the desired levels of energy and productivity.

  • What I would say to people who think it's selfish to take care of themselves before others would be that when you are laying on your death bed taking your last breaths, the only thing that is going to matter is you and the ones close to you. People need to realize that it isn't a horrible thing to put yourself first sometimes. That it is okay to be selfish when it comes to your health because it is your body and your future. Nobody can help you but you and it's your life to change.

  • I really enjoyed this article and found it easy to relate with and understand. Everyone needs to have a heathy mind and body in order to live a positive and healthy life. In order to spread health you need to have a healthy lifestyle yourself, it is then that you can spread the health to others!

  • This article helps put into perspective that we all like to think we are invincible. Many people say they will sleep then they are dead, however in order to help change the world people need to begin by changing their own habits first. Some may say that is selfish putting your own health above so many others, but I believe if you want to make a lasting impact on others, you have to begin betting yourself, so you can be more effective while helping others.

  • It always amazes me when I see highly successful people who completely disregard their personal health I know from personal experience that diet has a direct effect on the performance of the brain. These highly successful and brilliant people perform in spite of their health. Imagine how amazing their work would be if their health was in order and they were functioning at 100% capacity. It is not a problem of will power with those people, they are able to practice extreme focus on work related things. I agree with Ann that hard working people often trivialize personal health because it doesn't seem as important as their work they are most likely suffering from decision fatigue as well. http://www.bulletproofexec.com/why-eating-saps-your-willpower/

  • This article really makes me think back to the way I used to take care of myself. Going back to high school and into my sophomore year of college I remember never getting any sleep and my health was definitely not a concern for me. I never thought about how important my health was, I was to busy trying to get by that my health was the last thing I was thinking about. Now, I can say that I am more concerned about my health over anything else, and it is so crazy how much happier you become when you acknowledge your own wellness. Eat, sleep, and exercise, the three most important components to living a healthy life. I think that people, not even the heroes, but every living person needs to take a step back from their life and really think about why they are here. Everyone has a reason for living and maybe that's what people just need to realize in order to really focus on themselves before anything else.

  • This article makes me realize that while I have big plans for my future, it is NEVER worth it to neglect your health! Too often I sacrifice sleep in favor of studying until unreasonable hours, telling myself "this test is more important than my sleep right now." I now realize that while both the test and sleep are important, the lack of sleep is only going to hurt my chances for success on the exam as well as all other areas of my life.

  • This article really put things into perspective for me. It reminds me of my time in college, and how little of a priority I made my own personal health. The overwhelming feeling that there was too much that needed to be done and not enough time caused more harm that anything else. When it came to my nutrition I didn't consider what nutrients I needed I made the least time consuming meal I could think of. As far as sleep, I treated it as unproductive time wasted where I could be studying never giving myself the necessary hours of sleep my body needed. I was sick a lot and stressed constantly. I was under the impression I was creating a better future with more opportunities which we're taught takes precedent over anything else. If I hadn't made these changes to improve my personal health all the stress may have never panned out and the damage could have been exponential. You can't change or better the world until you are in a place to do so. -Nick Canger

  • This article really opens my eyes to prove that it can be anyone that can be that person that changes the world. But it all starts with how you treat yourself and take care of yourself. Maybe we should think twice before ordering that extra McDouble for a buck. Instead pack your own lunch and make your sandwich with 9 grain bread. Sleep is a big factor in how we function through out the day. Going to bed a couple hours earlier, will help you be energized for the rest of the day. When we do everything almost perfect to keep our bodies healthy, it makes us stronger thinkers. Thats whats going to help us get our lives in check and to help change our world.

  • I try to do this every time I see my friends eating a pizza. I always try to tell them what they are eating and how bad it is for them. I feel that I am very creative in the ways I try to promote being healthy and I have had some of my friends say thanks for looking out for my health, and it feels pretty good to hear that you helped someone you care about out.

  • The personal health change an individual has on one self can benefit or be detrimental not only to their body, but to their mind as well. Becoming healthy by eating fruits/vegetables, getting proper amounts of sleep, and exercising daily has an effect on how we think, being able to have a different perspective on our personal life and the world around us. A more positive outlook on life gives you a sense of importance, a reason to make a difference in this world. Make an impact on the world you have around you because you only have one life, and in my opinion you want to make that life as enjoyable, long lasting, and memorable as you can. It all takes that one step to having a healthy mind by taking care of your body. Eating fruits/vegetables, getting proper amounts of sleep, and exercising daily. Live healthy, don’t wait until it is too late.

  • Physical conditioning had always been a key factor in my success as a trial attorney. A honed body builds, strengths, and maintains a sharp mind. It stands to reason a writer, plumber, or even a bus driver would benefit from this advice. Well written article. I loved it.

  • Ann thank you for this insightful post. I agree with you that health is a one of the most important factors that is often overlooked when networking or training in entrepreneurial environments. How many entrepreneurs are sleeping with their iPhone under their pillow, afraid to miss one email or are rewarding their hard earned goals with celebratory feasts at least twice a week (2 am walk to the refrigerator for cold pizza left overs). These are things that I struggle with and need to improve on.

  • I loved the quote at the end because I say that all the time whenever I’m staying up late trying to get something done or just have a little too much fun for my own good! When she said that the author died at age 56 I laughed to myself becasue it really is pretty Ironic and if you can’t find humor in something that credits one of your own faults then your going to have a hard time accepting entrepreneurial criticism. Cool article though, staying fit and eating well is hard to do and that is why I think it is even more important. I believe it adds and air of credibility because it shows some form of dedication in a person.

  • Hmmm … this makes me feel validated that I enjoy helping individuals with their health, happiness, and well-being as my primary mission. Other people can go “save the world.” 🙂

  • Yep, everything has got to be well-balanced. Health, work, leisure, everything has got to be in balance in order to have everything in order. A simple thing such as health actually has a great impact. If you are sick, you can’t work, you can’t have fun – so what’s the point? Thank you Ann for pointing it out, we have to realize that taking care of our body is as important as saving the world.

  • This is so true. All these people that say, “ill just work and when I have money I will pay for the medical treatments.” Those people will never get there if they don’t take care of themselves now. I really see this message being so true in our materialistic society. But will this ever truly change?? I hope so.

  • This article makes me think about how many American’s neglect their health just because they are busy. I am guilty of neglecting my health when I get busy. If I do not plan out my food ahead and I am in a rush, I end up at least having some guilty pleasure. I am also guilty of staying up late studying instead of getting sleep! All in all everyone needs to look at what is truly beneficial for them! One make time get enough sleep, two find every way possible to move; such as parking in the furthest parking spot, and three eat a rainbow! Ann I agree with you 100% and saving the world is going to take sometime because not many people like to listen!

  • I’ve always liked the saying “there’s plenty of time to sleep when I am dead”, but never have i actually thought about it in a health stand point. In order to be at our best we need a good diet, exercise, and enough sleep to get through the day. Sure, we could sleep four hours a night, but then technically you are working at 50% the whole day and who wants that. Our health is the most important thing to us and in order to get those big ideas across, we need the right kind of tools to do so.

  • Another well written article Ann. I really agree with you about needing a healthy body in order to do great things. I think those are one of those untold things that kind of go hand in hand. Whats something else that could possibly help in the push to get more people to exercise.

  • Thank you Ann. I fully agree that one needs to be healthy first in order to reach their highest potential as a critical thinker. Without the essential nutrients needed by our bodies to replenish our systems and the necessary sleep to refresh our minds, our ideas will simply go to waste due to the lack of motivation that is unfortunately bestowed upon us because of these wrongful decisions. I think it would be difficult to take an opposing side to this argument, however, some may argue that they do no practice healthy decisions but are still highly successful. How do we overcome this and educate individuals on the true definition of success and how it relates to health?

  • I am realizing the truth behind your words more and more each day. I am one of those people who constantly keeps busy, who works nonstop to make myself look good, and to make sure I have as many resume building experiences as possible before I graduate college and find a real job. I find myself constantly stressed and anxious and when I have downtime I use it to relax when I should be using at least some of it to exercise. I want to find the motivation and everything I know about health should motivate me but I still struggle. I think I need to find little ways to get more active or find some form of exercise that appeals to me. What’s your advice on finding some form of exercise that works for you?

  • The little things you emphasize need to be priorities in so many of our lives. Especially as college students, we struggle to get enough sleep and eat properly. I know, I know… it won’t get easier after college. The environment we live in right now just isn’t conducive to getting enough sleep and eating well. I do my best to get enough sleep (as much as possible), and eat well/exercise, but why would anyone else? I am an athlete, a health major. This is my passion. I hear and read about this stuff everyday. That’s where the problem lies. Why would someone disinterested in this stuff (yeah, their health) change their ways and become healthy people?

  • This article is really eye opening. It makes me think of how many people didn’t have the chance to tell the world about their ideas all because of the unfavorable health risks they took that ultimately ended in their death. It makes me feel that i have a duty now to maintain my health so i can educate the future on how to stay healthy. If i can do that who knows how many creative minds i could be fostering along the way. The biggest problem is to take that first step towards a healthier life. What would be the most effective way to encourage kids to maintain good healthy lifestyle habits?

  • As great as it is I don’t plan on saving the World anytime soon… But i do like to help out when I can. I like to brighton people’s day whether that be by my actions or my personality. I cannot do this if I am living an unhealthy lifestyle. When I do not get enough sleep I am not myself. I’m kind of an ass actually. So i can’t go out and brighton anyones day let alone my own when that happens. The problem is it is hard to get enough at times. How do I make sure I get enough sleep every night?

  • Thank you, Ann, for sharing your blog…

    I agree with her 100%, according to her stated, “Because, the greatest truth is this: if the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out”.

    My first question is, how to nurture the mind, body, and spirit with America’s financial distress and priority?

  • Thank you for the post! I completely agree with you, while the world needs saving the people doing the saving must look at themselves first! The issues the world faces every day may be overwhelming for these people, thus leading negative health effects. I feel like these “thinkers” must pace themselves in order to fix the issues in the world, like you said almost 50% burn out and quit. Having a healthy diet and exercise routine can make all the difference, having those two checked into place would absolutely boost production of these thinkers hopefully leading to less issues in this world.

  • It’s amazing how uneducated people today are about their health. From this article, the idea of fitness combined with a healthy diet is key to health, but many do not see this, What a shame.

  • What a zinger! I agree. I mean, I can’t say I agree like “oh yeah, all my friends who are currently saving the world are totally unrealistic about their health,” but I mean, I get it. It makes sense that anyone involved so deeply in anything ie, solving world hunger, ending poverty, etc would tend to slack in other aspects of their lives. I’m not saying it’s right, but I can certainly see how it happens. Sometimes I put going to the gym over going to the library. What we all need is a little balance. How do you create balance in your life?

  • Same here! A little bit of planning can go a long way, and in the end I think you realize just how insignificant your excuses were before! I know I certainly have.

  • I can see how it happens, too, but I think it would be beneficial for these people to think longer term. More exercise could add years to their lives, meaning more time to work on what they treasure so much.

  • You are not alone when it comes to going to the gym over going to the library. All we do need is balance, and it takes time to know what kind of balance is best for each individual person. Me, I am not myself if I haven’t worked out that day. Therefore, how could I save the world if I take a nap, watch Netfix, or doing something other than care about my health. Do I want to save the world? Sure. But I am not going to stress about it. I believe that by keeping yourself as close to 100% as you can get when it comes to health, you are “hurting” the world, so technically your helping save it.

  • Thank you for sharing this article Ann! I completely agree with what you are saying in this article. It may sound selfish, but the people doing the saving of the world have to worry about themselves first. They have to look good in order to influence everyone else in the world. Going into the health field, I feel like I need to stay in shape in order to influence others. My question for you is how do we get people to stay healthy?

  • I agree with you there! I realized that making mistakes as a human being is just part of everyday life. But there are ways to work around making fewer mistakes to make it beneficial! 🙂

  • I agree with you ZakFritz it would be awesome to save the world right at this instant but that is impossible. The best thing you can do is take it step by step in making everything around you in the world better. In terms of sleep every night what I do is not procrastinate with my studies because I feel this is the main reason most students end up losing sleep. Set an alarm on your phone that says “GO TO SLEEP” and this may be the next step in improving your loss of sleep.

  • I wish more articles were like this one. Although very interesting and well written most of the other articles don’t deal with the aspects of health. I completely agree that with the idea of saving the thinkers, it first starts with their ability to function (health). I wish there was a productive way to change the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” culture because pretty soon they are going to be dead.

  • Thank you for sharing Ann! I remember taking your nutrition class and this was the very first thing you’ve said to us. “If the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out.” And I absolutely agree with you. I have to juggle four part time jobs, school and the TV station on campus and it’s easy to find yourself buying fast food because of its convenience. Going through a busy 4 years of college life, I’ve learned to manage my time more effectively. I’d have to say, finding the happy medium between our busy lives and healthy lifestyle was a struggle but it is possible. I have some tips that I live by. But do you have any other recommendations for us to find the perfect balance between a healthy lifestyle and a hectic schedule? Thank you so much!

  • Thank you Ann for this great article. Could not agree with you more. Taking care of the world is important don’t get me wrong. However, taking care of yourself is the most important thing that you can do. Not only will you be helping yourself but in ways you will be helping others as well. This past summer I told my family I was going to start eating a lot healthier and was cutting back on soda and fast food places. Well it really struck my family and they all started to eat a lot healthier and gave up going to fast food places as well. So if you take care of yourself and people start to notice it can start a chain reaction. Sleep is obviously very important. What type of advice would you give to someone who is having trouble falling asleep at night?

  • I completely agree with taking care of yourself first, then taking care of the world. Especially being in the health care field, it is our jobs to change the world. I know that I like to exercise and eat healthy and I started seeing my roommates following in my footsteps. I really liked this article and it made me think, what would be the best way for a college student to eat healthier on a college student budget?

  • Wow this article is so true! How could we even think about saving the world before we essentially “save” ourselves. I come from a family that generally eats very healthy, but my dad’s a farmer so the enough sleep portion of the equation doesn’t happen. What kind of advice would you give to a workaholic who works 16-18 hour days? I would like to say take some family time, eat a balanced meal, and cut back on hours, but if you have a farmer for a family member you know how stubborn they are.

  • I agree that to be healthy you need a
    healthy diet and fitness. It sounds so simple yet obesity is such a
    big problem. It is a shame! How do you think people can balance this
    out if they have a busy schedule such as school, work, and where easy
    cheap foods are the most convenient to grab?

  • I am in the same boat as you! Sleeping
    is such a problem especially being in college and doing all this
    studying and cramming so I can get the grade I am hoping for! And I
    could not agree more that it is NOT worth neglecting your health for.
    How have you balanced out maintaining your health and keeping up with
    your future goals?

  • Everything revolves around health. EVERYTHING. And to think it is one of the biggest things in life we take for granted. We forget how important it is until we become sick, then we would give anything just to feel normal again. How have our brains become so corrupted? I feel as though we suffer from always wanting instant gratification, and that is what kills us in the long run. I guess my challenge for you is, how can we better the lives of others if we don’t start with ourselves? Think about it, live it.

  • I agree with you, Anthony. I think more articles should deal with health a lot more than they actually do. It is one of the few things that everyone can relate with. Not that I don’t care about the business side of the blogs, I just think the health blogs are more important. How would you change the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” culture?

  • Spot on! No one is perfect, but just because perfection is not attainable does not mean you shouldn’t try! The real problem is getting this point across to people. Health Promotions is a daunting new career that I cannot wait to be a part of!

  • I think you should take some time to yourself and not have so much work. I have a family member that is a workaholic, yes he likes it so let him do it. I think you must talk to someone who works that much about how life is way to short to be working that much anyways.

  • How would you change the “I will sleep when I am dead” culture? A better question might be: how do we get people to stay healthy? Start with parents breaking the bad culture cycles. Maybe use the military approach: screen people for health and bad habits before they can enlist; do the same thing for families. Ann, I completely agree with what you said, and it’s unfortunate that America has too much freedom sometimes.

  • I completely agree with you when you say that we always want instant gratification and it kills us in the long run. Health is not just a “quick fix”. You have to care and take the time each day to workout or eat healthy. I love your question! If we aren’t happy and healthy in our own lives, how are the people around us going to strive to be happy and healthy? Start with ourselves, and then we will see how great it feels and spread the word!

  • Sadly I don’t think there is a who lot more we can do to push people in the gym now a days. I feel like people choose their path, whether its a healthy one or not and based off their lifestyle this is what really pushes them. Most people know the benefits of going to the gym but most of them don’t go, why is that? Lack of motivation is what I think is holding a lot of these unhealthy people back. What could help more people get into the gym is just some motivation, this could mean the world to many people. Making a person more comfortable and confident in make healthy choices is the first step in my opinion in getting more people to practice a healthy lifestyle.

  • I agree with your response. Being healthy plays an important role in anything and everything we do! Like you stated it relates to whether we can work or not which is super important in making a living. It also is important to have personal time for yourself, such as having fun, which you also stated above! Who wants to have a day off and be sick?? The key is to be healthy 🙂

  • I also do the same thing to my friends and family. I dont think people realize how important health is, and how much an unhealthy lifestyle can affect their future. We need to eat foods that come from the earth. A lot of fruits and veggies. No fried foods, and no soda! Also moving and staying active is key to being healthy along with nutritional intake! Thank you for your response.

  • Thank you for sharing for a personal perspective. I also can relate to what you said. Sometimes I would choose to go out with some friends rather than putting in time to go to the gym. I also would go to fast food restaurants just because it is more convenient. I think a lot of people do this, and it is a problem. We all need to focus on our personal health. Better sooner than later. Have you found anyways to focus on your health more?

  • Thanks for sharing. I agree with what you stated above. Once someone is healthy themselves they can help other people become healthy! No bosy is gonna take advice from someone where the change in them is clearly not visible. Do you help others in trying to live a healthy lifestyle?

  • Thank you for sharing. I can agree with you that living a healthy lifestyle is hard nowadays. So many people give excuses that they do not have time to work out. It’s also difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle when were surrounded my fast food restaurants everywhere we go. It’s convenient and easy and thats what people shoot for because society is full of a bunch of fat lazy asses. To answer your question, I feel like people arnt necessarily “disinterested” in being healthy, and thats why they dont try to change. I think its because change is hard. And once they start it’s hard to stick with it. In my opinion what really gets them to change is when they find it in themselves that they truly arnt happy, and have had a risk such as a heart attack in themselves or even in a close friend or family member who also happens to be unhealthy. Do you agree?

  • Thank you for sharing. I am no health expert myself, but from what I do know, the little things can make the change. So many people are busy and cant find time to get to the gym. But you dont always need the gym. Take the stairs, walk the long way, or bike to places near you rather than using a car. One other thing, being healthy isnt always about staying active. A lot of it deals with nutrition, and eating the right portions at the right time. They say the real struggle is in the kitchen! As for you relaxing, you can still do it! Yoga is always a good go-to for me:)

  • I agree, long term is key. People are so caught up in the here and now. They want to lose weight, but when they don’t see results in two weeks, they give up. I think keeping people motivated is the hardest part.

  • I agree to an extent. My father was actually a very hard worker… Border line workaholic for about 15 years and he raked in all sorts of awards. Yes, I saw him stressed after long work days but everything changed when he got laid off. I never saw this side from my father. He was depressed for the next month or two before starting to job search again and doing house work. He did get a job again and now he is happier than ever. So yes being a workaholic is bad but at the same time, it can be worse.

  • I love that you brought up about your roommates following your footsteps. Isn’t that such a great feeling? When I started living with my four roommates they ate mac n cheese, and topper sticks every night. It’s nice to see them slowly change into healthier eating habits as well as even exercising. To answer your question, I as well eat very healthy and sometimes that can get pricey depending where you go. There are some grocery stores that I go to that are reduced prices but have some of the best organic vegetables and fruits. I go to Aldi’s have you heard of it?

  • I completely agree. The “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” approach is not a great way to live. For me at least, I need sleep. If I don’t have enough sleep there is no way I’m going to accomplish anything. Maybe some people can work off of no sleep, but it is not the desired approach. Wouldn’t you much rather work off of 8 hours of sleep rather than 4?

  • I think 8 hours of sleep is much better than 4. Yes people say they can work off that little of sleep because it is in their genes, but eventually it will catch up with the individual and become a greater problem further down the road. A lot of people say it is better to stay up all night and study for a test and get that 4 ours of sleep but actually it is better to get a full nights rest. Why do you think this is?

  • I’ve honestly never understood that either. To me, staying up to study for a test is not worth it. I would rather get the appropriate amount of sleep, because if I don’t have that I won’t do well on the test no matter how much information I try to retain. I think a huge part of this is time management. People need to learn how to manage their time better. Yes, we’re all busy and it’s hard to make time for everything, but that’s when you have to decide what is most important. The way I always do that is making a timeline of my day and week if I have a lot going on. That way I can get all of my studying done, and make time for sleep as well.

  • Yes I like your thinking. I agree time management is key but most college students like to procrastinate and study for that test the last night. The most important thing on college students “should be” their college studies, it is your job and main focus right now so follow through with it and manage your time and get the appropriate amount of sleep each night.

  • I like the way you talk, Amanda Ong. There are many great minds that are taken away from this life too early because of their negligence toward their health. I understand that adding care to health will create 5 things to juggle, but if you work on those juggling skills, I know you can do it!

  • I agree with your sentiments, Alexander Grycowski. So many people create excuses as to why they’re not taking care of health now, as if they will take care of it later. Well, as one Ann Garvin would say, “Old habits die hard.” Putting off making a change isn’t going to make it any easier to change later, as much as an individual would like to think so.

  • I think people think that because they’re studying longer than the person going to bed earlier. When, in hindsight, they’re hindering their ability to remember the material they spend studying to so long in the morning. While, the person that slept twice as long will remember the material more and do better not only during the day, but the rest of the school year, only if they keep the eight hours a night consistent.

  • It is true, the body needs to make health and sleep its number one priority! Not getting enough sleep makes the mind disoriented during the day and causes people to make decisions based on fatigue. When you are tired, you start making bad health decisions and a lot of the time you are not aware of it. For example, when you have not been sleeping that well, you are more tired and therefore, are less likely to not work out or eat healthy. Instead, you skip the workout and eat cereal instead of cooking a healthy meal for yourself. We need a good amount of sleep to make better decisions in our life. Not only will it make you feel better, but it will benefit you in the long run. Thank you for sharing this article Ann.

  • I agree that a person that has more sleep does better on tests than a person that jams it all in the night before. A lot people do not get that! But I like my 8 hours of sleep and it helps me function 10 times better! 🙂

  • Absolutely. If I don’t get at least eight hours of sleep and sometimes I need more, I do not do as well throughout the day, especially during my workouts. Are you more of a person that likes to spread out study time through a several week span?

  • I always go deep into thought about how backwards the world is when I hear that sitting kills. It’s really sad that most activities in this age are done by sitting around on our asses. I’d like to see how much more healthy, physically and emotionally, everyone would be if we weren’t sitting for extended periods of time like we are now.

  • I agree that instant gratification is the biggest problem for a lot of people. We delay what we really should be doing for some instant gratification, and that just keeps building more and more stress and therefore we keep diving more and more into activities that give us instant gratification. Most of the things that give us instant gratification are not healthy.

  • One of the biggest regrets that people had on their deathbed was that they worked too much, which didn’t allow them to focus on the things that really matter to them. Maybe hearing something like that would be a wake up call for him.

  • I agree with the balance thing and I think the best way to balance your life it to practice time management. It sounds so simple, but creating the habit of consistently managing our time wisely is very difficult for a lot of people.

  • Diet and exercise will help people overcome more than any kind of pill or quick fix ever will. People just see that “Feel better in 2 weeks guaranteed” kind of label and get sucked into the marketing. If only they would stick to a healthy diet and exercise regimen for a reasonable amount of time, they would notice such a huge difference in how they feel.

  • I agree, there aren’t many better feelings than knowing you have helped someone greatly improve their quality of life.

  • You must be fun to be around at a pizza party. Just messing with ya, I tend to find that people get annoyed by being told what they’re eating isn’t healthy. They know it isn’t healthy and I find that nobody is just going to start eating good food until they want to make that change for themselves.

  • Hah, I’m always the opposite. Whenever I’m sick of studying I always tell myself a good night of sleep is better than staying up and cramming for this exam. It makes me feel better about going to bed when I know I’m still not prepared enough for the exam lol.

  • Time management is a key phrase when it comes to resumes, I would like to know how many college students actually posses it!?

  • Kenzi you make a great point here. I like you how you say keeping yourself as close to 100% as possible. No one is perfect but, as long as they try they can accomplish great things. However, I disagree on the naps part ya they take time out of your day, but sometimes a nap is needed to get away from this world and regather your thoughts to keep improving.

  • I agree! As a physical educator as well as a health educator, I obviously would agree with you. How do we get those who are interested in either of these things… interested! By making it personal. Let them know just how it’s going to effect them. Health is personal and it’s all about prevention. Let’s help people see that!

  • Ann, this makes total sense that if you aren’t here on Earth than any idea that you have in your head is useless. Which is why being healthy should be the number one priority for everyone, everyday. My question is, what are the health benefits to standing rather than sitting?

  • It was always drilled into our heads that the proper order of precedence was the mission, your men, and finally yourself. After 12 years of living and leading under that premise I crosstrained into a career field that put the troops ahead of everything else. Time at the end of the day to hit the gym, basketball hoop in the hangar, serving breakfast on drill weekends before the flying day starts (ok, it’s egg sandwiches or pancakes but at least it’s not out of the vending machines) and fairly decent food at the frequent unit gatherings (aside from beer, you can’t have a unit activity without beer – its in the regs somewhere). In just the few years I’ve been out of the SF field and into the aircraft maintenance world, I have seen a huge difference in the ability to accomplish the mission, attitudes of senior and junior leadership, and perhaps the biggest factor to pay attention to for you civilian business leaders – much higher morale amongst the troops. Leadership that takes time out to care for their troop’s/employee’s health and welfare will find that those people supporting them will come through time after time. Those who follow the first mantra of mission/men/me, will get the job done however, at a higher cost to their people. Since our people are our greatest resource, their health should be our primary concern.

  • I agree Ann, without health know one can save anything. I think like you said earlier health is the most important information one can learn and the information could save many. What questions or ideas can be ask or relayed to get the information to translate and sink in? This is a very serious issue that needs to be addressed that honestly i don’t see changing because people are very set in their ways. Great article Ann!

  • This is such a great point, the people that are set on saving the world put so much time and energy into their philanthropic efforts that they forget to take care of themselves. Where they don’t seem to make the connection is that if they don’t take care of themselves, they won’t be around very long to see their efforts actually change the world! If you really want to make an impact on the world, take care of yourself first so you can make a positive impact on the world for a long, long time.

  • I too have tuned out comments like “Your health must come first.” I have failed to listen even when hearing it from my doctor. I might not be the person who solves the world’s need for clean water. If I plan on having a positive impact on my high school students, I need to get to bed at a reasonable hour, eat sensibly, and take a 30 minute walk once a day.

  • People who sacrifice sleep, get fast food, and choose to go out and not exercise on a daily are those whose health is in jeopardy. People always say “kids in africa would die to eat that”. But what is that food? Fats from a steak, extra french fries, sweets? The thing is that yes people around the world need help, but how are you suppose to help them if your in bed sick because you didnt eat or sleep well? Well now you arent doing anything but resting to get better. Now if your health is in line and good then you are able to go out and help. Priorities are yourself followed by others.

  • I agree, we need to spread the word about how important health is. It is up to us as health educators to do this, because obviously in our country there is a disconnect between good health and the people.

  • Health should always be number one priority but to the good majority of the population it is not. No matter what you only get one body so why not take care of that and it will return the favor by giving you a long healthy life. I know Ann you are in the process of writing a book to spread awareness but is there anyway college students like ourselves can help the cause too?

  • Health should be number one for everyone and is often overlooked or those that do make the healthier choices are often talked down upon. I myself have been looked down upon and made fun of by family and friends that I take smaller portions or choose the healthier choice when it comes to eating. I simply tell them that it’s gonna be really terrible living to 100 when I’m not sure they’ll make it to 50…While my friends I have no trouble being a sarcastic ass to, do you know of any way I can more kindly point family down a healthier path Ann? Or are they doomed to make a mistake and have to try and change after something goes wrong?

  • It’s funny to me how people who want to save the world neglects their health. Why do you want cleaner water? Why do you want to reduce pollution in the air? To make sure people are healthier by drinking water that is not good for our body’s and cleaning the air to make it safer to breathe. The whole point of saving the world is making a difference and possibly extending life on earth, both humans, animals, plants, sea creatures, etc. You eating well and getting enough sleep is good for your brain. So, any big thinkers who thinks otherwise are probably not thinking at their best anyway.

  • It is pretty ironic that people put all the work into saving the world, but put no working into saving themselves. Health is definitely the number one aspect of life that should be number one on everyone’s agenda. You cannot save the world unless you a re a healthy person! If you want to think big and save the world, get your sleep, eat healthy, and exercise. How do we convince more people to take a step back and look at themselves individually instead of worrying about worldwide issues?

  • This is totally true of almost everyone. We all watch the news see natural disasters happening every day, and global warming creeping up on us. But the one thing we rarely seem to talk about is the fact of half of us dieing simply because we are too worried about other things. When you are dead its pretty hard to worry about what is happening in the world because it no longer effects you at all. When you make the right choices you can then pay it forward and help others so we can all start doing other things right now half of us cant stop for a moment and do 20 min of exercise and we want to save animals in Africa right choices leads to more.

  • The quote, “people need clean water, there’s no time for a balanced diet”, says it all. These heroic people are so concerned with saving the world that they forget that they need to save themselves. How will they help those who need water if they are going to die from malnutrition? Just as Warren Zevon had no worries about himself and lived a short life, as will others until they start caring more about themselves.

  • If a person does not value their health they will not perfom to their highest potential. Or as stated in the article, their great ideas will die and/or they will be too ill to present them or carry them out. This shows that people need to value their own health in order to make a difference. For instance if people are going to “save the world” they should worry about saving themselves first.

  • I’m wondering how we can get the health-first attitude into the workplace, as it affects so much of our daily lives. If our society pushes us to go above and beyond at work, how do we resist the temptation to put work first? It’s a tough question to consider, and a tougher one to answer, to be sure.

  • I think this applies to more than just the big thinkers as well. Sleep, nutrition, and exercise require a commitment and planning. All too often, people and the big thinkers put off those essentials the body needs because a problem or something came up. Instead of making sure the essentials they need are in check they push them to the side until the other activity is completed. Just like the article states, this will lead to bad health and that will ultimately distract them from their goals.

  • I think we definitely take our health for granted. after reading this article we are trying to fight health problems from outside in. Instead we should fight it from the inside out by starting with our own personal health then spread to the topics of clean water, and malaria

  • It really is a shame when such intelligent individuals are not physically and mentally aware of their wellbeing. It again comes back to priorities. They set their big ideas ahead of thee big idea, which is the importance of their health. How do we get the intellectuals of our world to be aware of more than just their surroundings but also their being?

  • I usually have that “I’ll sleep when I’m dead mentality”, but I know it is not the best way to go. I am not trying to save the world or anything. I am just trying to get a good career and provide for my loved ones and myself. I now see that it could all come to a screeching halt if I do not take care of my body.

  • As a college student myself, I think that we as a group take our health for granted. Most of us are sleep deprived and eating foods that don’t provide us with the proper nutrients that our bodies need. It isn’t until later in life that these choices that we are currently making begin to affect us and cause harm upon our bodies.

  • Thanks for creating this blog Professor Garvin! This brings up a great point because many people care so much for others that they forget to take care of themselves! I don’t think they realize the importance of staying healthy because if they don’t, they won’t be able to achieve all the goals to help others that they’ve set out for themselves! People think it seems selfish to worry about their health before others that are worse off, but it’s important for them to realize that if they don’t make sure they stay healthy, not as many people will be reached! What do you think is the best way for people to get out of this mentality and to care for their health as a #1 importance in their lives?

  • I find such assurance and truth in this post. Some people seem so smug to the rest of the world. As if there are too many huge life changing problems throughout our globe, that the everyday struggles shouldn’t be problems anymore. And we should feel ashamed because we have these tiny problems while kids out there are starving. Well yes, there are terrible, horrible, unimaginable problems throughout our world. However, that shouldn’t be to say that our day to day struggles become any less real to us. And if people didn’t work at their health or body habits then the people whom would be putting in all this effort the save the world, will kill themselves in the process.

  • I found the irony of that last paragraph pretty powerful. It’s all kind of a big joke until it’s over. Though death is inevitable for all of us, why invite it to come and take over so early? As far as a healthy diet goes, I think some people are just EXTREMELY oblivious to what “healthy” really means. These people are proud of themselves for drinking three diet cokes a day instead of three regular cokes and acknowledge the tomatoes and peppers on their pizza as their serving of vegetables for the day. I love that in all of your blogs you state healthy living with such simplicity. It really doesn’t have to be that hard. It’s when we get ourselves confused with all of the health mumbo jumbo out there used to sell products (low cal, low fat, made with natural ingredients) that we can quickly mistake our bag of potato for something that is “healthy.”

  • I definitely think the majority of the population takes their health for granted. There are so many things that we put above our health, but we don’t realize that health needs to be the number one priority. It is our bodies that carry us through life, and help get us through those other priorities.

  • When it comes down to it we could be the best people in the world with the biggest hearts and best ideas but if I am suffering from illness or diseases how I am I supposed to be this amazing person. When it comes to health we need to be selfish. We need to appreciate what is given to us so we can carry out the great potential we have.

  • I think that this article raises a lot of really good points. Saving the world is a very important pursuit that can be done in many different ways but I don’t think a lot of people realize that to be able to save the world they have to save themselves first and learn how to balance their lives out. Thanks for posting!

  • Thank you! I think the warrens zevon quote is awesome. I hear a lot of people say that and I can admit to saying it myself. I want to keep teaching people how to live right for the rest of my life so I have to keep my body healthy to do that. How do you convince people to change there lives for the long term?

  • I think the Warren Zevon quote really puts the topic into perspective. I used to have the same thought process. I thought sleep was a complete waste of my time and I wanted nothing to do with it. Though I was smart enough to not pull all-nighters, I would still stay up late doing homework or finding something to do. Thankfully, 1. I was almost always up and doing something instead of sitting and 2. as I’ve grown a bit older since my freshman year in college (7 year ago…my goodness that was a long time ago), I’ve also grown to enjoy sleep a bit more. I’m still the “work-aholic” but I am also learning when I need to call it quits for the night and go to bed. I’ve found that I get a better product, if you will, out of my work when I get more sleep. I’m more alert, I remember more and I feel better overall. Thanks for the post Ann. Sleep is good! Embrace it!

  • Thanks for the article, Ann! I agree that you need to be healthy in order to anything in life. So it is the most important thing. Which is why I always wondered why it isn’t taught more in high school. At my high school we only talked about health for about half of one semester which isn’t nearly enough. Why do you think health isn’t taught as much as the other subjects?

  • It is true, when you are not at your healthiest, you also do not perform the most efficiently. And I believe most people know this, but yet a majority of the population takes their health for granted. Why do we do this? We know saturated fats are unhealthy, yet we still consume them. We know exercising is beneficial, yet not everyone does it. It’s not that Americans don’t have the knowledge, there is plenty of information, but we simply resist change.

  • Thanks Ann for the post.
    Health is very important and a lot of people forget that. Many people but other obligations before health which causes heart disease.

  • This is so true! I agree that we for sure take our health for granted. We do not do what we need until it is almost too late. Being sick sucks, yet we do not do the proper things to stay healthy any not get sick. We do need healthy people to have a society. If we are sick, how can we be such an amazing person? I appreciate this article because it allowed me to think about some areas where I might be taking my health for granted such as sleep. In college, many people take this for granted. It seems like we do not have time, but we have to make time because sleep is very important to our health. We the people are the heart of this world, if we stop caring about ourself our world will slowly die as well. How can we really make people see that we have to care for our health besides the usual day to day facts?

  • I agree completely with this article. People take their health and their bodies for granted and do not take care of them. People get so busy that they put their own personal health and wellness on the back burner. I think that people need to think more long term and realize their body is their best investment.

  • Sick people cannot save the world, plain and simple. If you do not have enough energy, those creative juices will not flow the way that they would if you were properly nourished in all aspects of your life. This means that it is important to eat well, sleep enough, and get enough exercise. With that solid base, you will be able to be a real life superman.

  • I cannot argue against any of the information that is written in this article. I can however, say that I am fully aware of it and have accepted the fact that I will likely croak at a younger age than the average person. But should I have the chance to establish my ideas as a teacher and coach…at least I can leave something behind that another unreasonably thinking person can find and build his/her own legacy with while guiding the young.

  • Our world is flooded with smart people and great thinkers with good ideas. Unfortunately, most of them are lacking on sleep and the proper nutrition. We need to educate people more on how to be healthy and stay that way. With your’e blogs and articles you are helping spread the word. Thank you for your wonderful blogs!

  • Thank you for this article, I think these days most people don’t think of the bigger picture, especially in health..what could seem like a little thing e.g. “oh it’s okay I can have a burger everyday I’ll be fine” will most definitely grow into a much bigger problem in years to come such as heart disease. There are so many intelligent thinkers out there who could have amazing ideas to help solve big problems, but if they aren’t looking after their body properly, these ideas may never arise because they’re either not in the right state to be productive or they’re dead from a heart attack from all of those burgers. How would you suggest we help people see the bigger picture that we can save the world by first saving ourselves?

  • This article really opens my eyes to prove that it can be anyone that can be that person that changes the world. But it all starts with how you treat yourself and take care of yourself. Maybe we should think twice before ordering that extra McDouble for a buck. Instead pack your own lunch and make your sandwich with 9 grain bread. Sleep is a big factor in how we function through out the day. Going to bed a couple hours earlier, will help you be energized for the rest of the day. When we do everything almost perfect to keep our bodies healthy, it makes us stronger thinkers. Thats whats going to help us get our lives in check and to help change our world.

  • Many of my friends go by the quote, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead.” In the past I started to believe them that I didn’t need much sleep to be successful at what I did. I realize now that in order to achieve the goals I set for myself I need to be well rested. I will use this article to try to convince my friends that sleep and their is important and they will see the benefits of it.

  • Thanks for the article Ann! I feel this is very important for people who choose to buy the lowest,cheapest quality food just in order to save a few bucks. I am a college student so I know what it is like to be tight for money, however I feel that its essential for people to maintain their health so that they can live a long healthy life. One question I have is this: How would you propose convincing people that eating right and getting enough sleep is important? Especially when so many people are used to not doing these things.

  • Thank you for your article. It is hard for some people on a budget to eat healthy. It is hard because the better food for you is more expensive. I think that this makes people discouraged when it comes to trying to eat right because to them it is a lost cause. There is nothing they can do to really change the price of food. I think because of this people just take the cheaper route. With the cheaper route at least they get something in their tummy. I just think sometimes it is very difficult with what resources we have.

  • Thanks Ann, it’s always an eye opener to find out that half of Americans die from heart disease. Since I have really started to think about health, I have realized how bad the food in grocery stores really are. It is hard to eat healthy. I don’t mean that in a philosophical way, I mean physically. When you go to the stores, you have to be conscious of what you are buying. I have now tried to adopt the 5 servings of fruits and veggies a day diet. It’s tough to do, especially everyday. Eating fruits and veggies are easy to do, once. Eating them everyday takes dedication. If everyone dedicated eating fruits and veggies like they dedicated to what they love doing most, we as Americans would be a lot better off. After all, we should love our bodies more than anything. Without them, what would we be?

  • I do agree with you, but I also think that is an easy answer to get out of the hard habits of eating shit. We need to prioitize what’s important to us. Once we prioritize healthy food it will be easier to include the extra cost into our budget and take out something that isn’t healthy like fast food once a week or money for drinking alcohol every week.

  • I really enjoyed reading this piece. The vast majority of them that I read on here really open my eyes and really make me think about how I need to change my life for the better. Sadly, I am one of those college students who just eats whatever is available, and I do not consciously watch everything I put into my mouth. Of course when I have the time or the money to eat healthy or to buy healthy foods of course I do that, but it is extremely convenient just ordering out or just eating whatever is lying around. I have been trying for the past few months or so to turn my life around, but I have not found my niche yet. I have not found what will kick me into gear. I love reading all of these articles, and the of course make me think about all the horrible decisions I am making, but I never change….Since Ann is a professor of mine at my university, I want to talk to her more about how I could change my lifestyle.

  • Taking this article to a more relatable level for myself as a college student, I think that students don’t realize just how important their health is when it comes to their schoolwork and grades. If we don’t get enough sleep or eat the right foods, our bodies go against what we want and get sick. We don’t have as much energy as we want and can’t focus on a task as long as we would like to. For kids in grade-school, this is also important. I know that because of Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” program, schools are required to have a healthy lunch option for students and it still costs the student the same amount, but why is this not the same for college? In dining halls on college campuses, the healthier options are more expensive than the not so healthy options. There also isn’t nearly as much of a variety. Do you think this will change at all? Is it possible someday to have it reversed where the healthy foods are cheaper and have more choices?

  • Excellent article about how most people put their work and projects, homework before they take care of themselves.

  • With the majority of American lacking knowledge of nutrition and are at risk of life threatening affects, it is important to discuss the benefits. Ann is handing us the tools we need to again inform ourselves that though life gets busy, we are still in charge of our health. Instead of being worried about the rest of the world, it starts with us first! The question I have is, how effective is a balanced diet and having clean water?

  • Thank you! I believe people don’t understand the consequences that go along with not taking care of your body. You need sleep, exercise, healthy diet to live a healthy lifestyle. I understand the statement that entrepreneurs want to help people on the other side of the world because that is how their way of life is, to help people before themselves. Do you think some entrepreneurs don’t realize that if they don’t take care of themselves that wont be able to help the other people in the world? like dumb founded by that concept?

  • Thank you for sharing! I think that a lot of people start to plan out achieving their big ideas and ONLY focus on that and nothing else in their life. Most of the times, the simple things get avoided (sleep, eating a good breakfast, etc.). At first, it might not seem like such a big deal. However, over time it can take a toll on your body. Staying healthy not only improves your physical ability, but also your mental ability. It is vital to stay healthy so that gaining your goals is that much more realistic. How can we avoid falling into this trap?

  • Thank you! I agree with this although I wish I was better at taking care of my body by sleeping a bit more. It was neat how you said that no matter how busy and important of a job someone may be doing they still need to incorporate health into their lives. Eating healthy, exercising and sleeping should be looked at as a job, a big project, something we are required to complete everyday. I used to smoke, not sleep often, and not work out. I cannot explain how much better it is now that I require myself to take much better care of my body. By taking care of my body I am not held back by anything else I need to get done that is work or school related! What is one way to help us make time for our health?

  • Thank you for the post! Sometimes it’s easier said than done when it comes to health. Yes health is the number one important thing in life. We all need to take more time out of our day to make us feel better. Weather that’s getting more sleep or eating healthier. But if you want to save the world you need to save yourself first. By getting at least eight hours of sleep and eating your veggies, not giving them to the dog under the table. If you’re going to try and save the world when you’re in sleep debt or eating 17 donuts, good luck to you. Your quest will end sooner than you think. you may not believe you have time to help your body and do good things for it but there’s always time for health. It takes the same time to eat a banana versus a cookie, it’s just what you decide to eat that makes a difference. But to the people who think they don’t have enough time to be healthy, what do you suggest they do?

  • Health should be everyone’s number one priority. Our body is the best thing that we have ever got for free. Why would we not want to treat it well and do the little things to make sure we stay healthy. To make sure this is done there are three easy things to accomplish this. Those things are, eat healthy, exercise more, and get some sleep. Not be selfish but quit thinking about the whole world and worry about your well-being

  • Each and every day I hear from my mom and she always tells me I am working myself to the bone. She says I need to take time and stop what I am doing to make myself better. I have been suffering with depression and anxiety for about 3 years now, where it is so serious that I have been on medication. Although it is a life process I need to work on, it would help if I was in good health. I eat like crap, I sleep way to much, and I get no exercise, which in return makes my depression and anxiety worse. This article could have not stated it better that health should always be a persons number one priority!

  • This article really puts how people think about life into perspective. I know that I have many goals and things I feel that are more important than making it home to prepare myself a well-balanced meal. It is very true that if someone dies of heart disease when they are in their 40s or 50s they cut their life in half through simply not taking proper care of themselves. No one wants to do this to themselves, but people get caught up in what they think is more important and put their health on the back burner.

  • I loved the part about Warren! Clearly Warren is a hard working man if he has the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” mentality, but the fact that he is now dead at 56 is hard on his family. Granted if he didn’t work as hard, each year he might have made a little less money, but now that hes dead….he’s making $0.

  • For most people they just take the easy way out. That is when it comes to food and exercise. People are so caught up in the day to day rush of life that they just ignore the healthy behaviors. But like the article says, if you are trying to save the world you can not do it if you are dead. This write up is spot on.

  • Thank you for your comment, I too love this article in that part of it! I think it’s so important for people to realize how important health is because like you said them being gone doesn’t just affect. Also them being around longer could create better things to happen to. It’s actually even just like football players who put their bodies through so much that most of them and up with bad injuries or die young because of not taking care of their bodies or even their minds. My question for you is have you ever experienced this in your own life and did you just figure it out on your own that health is important or did something happen to change your mind?

  • this article really spoke to me even if no im not trying to save the world im just trying to make it to bed time to wake up the next morning and do it all over again. i consider myself to have a busy life style with that i ever so often but my health and diet on the back burner. i dont work out as much as i should and i eat rocky roccos way more then the average whitewater student. but the reason is rocky roccos is an easy fix, its easier to go to a fast food place then sit down and cook a healthy meal that i actually want to eat. its easier to sit in my bed and watch an episode of sons of anarchy when im really tired then going to the gym. but what scares me is what your article says, if i keep living this way i might not make it to Warrens age.

  • Just like your bog about “clean hearts”, I believe that the true key to changing the world is changing one’s own mind about how important their own health is to them. Our life is our most prized possession. Without taking care of our bodies, we squander out gifts. I for one am not the type to mistreat a gift. I would much rather maintain a health body than tackle other projects and neglect the ultimate project, which is wellness.

  • I don’t think one thing made me view health the way I do, I feel like it was a combination of life lessons and people that I’ve met. Dr. Ann Garvin’s classes have also played a big role in the way I think about various things in relation to health!

  • I like this comment a lot. I agree that in order to change the world, to take care of others we first need to realize how important our own health is. Without a healthy functioning body we cannot pursue our goals and change the world for the better. I like the idea that we all have a gift, but what good is that gift when your in a hospital bed because of neglecting a healthy lifestyle.

  • Excellent point, Kyle. Sleep is very important and is something a lot people need more of. As well as healthy food. Most Americans don’t get enough sleep and then eat fast food. Or other foods that are extremely unhealthy for you. This causes them to get sick. You can’t achieve much if you’re laying in a bed all day sick. So sleep more hours and eat better food. Good stuff, Kyle!

  • I completely agree although it is easy to burn out on working out or dieting too if you go to extreme. Balance is key to not burning out and being able to stick with something. Being healthy is the most important thing that influences how effective you do everything else.

  • Everybody needs to make health a priority no matter how busy they are. The heroes can’t save the world if they have to take a sick day. It is so important to stress taking measures to live a healthier life but so many people ignore them. Hopefully we can make this topic more popular to help change bad habits.

  • My Mom has the ‘Ill sleep when I am dead’ mentality and it drives me nuts! She thinks she needs to do all these things around the house and for my brother and myself on top of her workouts (working out is good for you yes but the way she gets up at 5am to do so sacrificing her sleep I do not think is very good). I see it taking a toll and I can’t get her to realize that she might need to tone it down a little bit. I hope that if i share this article with her maybe she will see more of where I am coming from.

  • If one changes their health for the better, it is saving the world. Imagine what that person can do and prevent if they prioritize health above all else. If one person can lead by example, many will follow.

  • Thank you for sharing! I completely agree with how much should make themselves and their health also a priority. The healthier a person is, better thoughts are created and more energy they will have to save the world. Helping the world is important but the only way someone can help the world is if they can make sure to help themselves first.

  • Thank you for sharing this blog! It’s is absolutely true that people need to put their body and their health as their number one priority! I’ll be honest and in the past I have always put other things and other people ahead of myself, but now I know that if I want to put 110% into those different things and help out people, I first need to take care of myself so I can help them. If I’m giving it/them 75% it’s not really helping. I need to be healthy and ready so I can be the best I can be. And that goes for everyone!

  • It is true that unhealthy and sick people do not perform at their best. This is a great reason to eat right, exercise and get enough sleep. I can personally relate and I think everyone can that when you are sick all you want to do is sleep or lay in bed and forget about homework and work. But they are still there and you have to do them. So if we take care of our health better we have a better chance of not getting sick. It’s an easy choice to change, yet most Americans still keep the same ritual of an unhealthy lifestyle.

  • This article just makes so much sense but is not given much thought. How can the innovative thinkers in the world help if they cant even help themselves? If they dont feel well, they wont be thinking their best and wont be productive so they cant help as well. The break through innovations only come when someone is thinking at their best. The best line that relates to this article that ive heard is “How can you help someone else if you cant even help yourself?” So thank you for writing this article.

  • SO true. We need to each change one health behavior that we do poorly and that helps everybody. As far as sleep we all need to get more and we are all starving ourselves from it! Exactly what you said, lead by example and others will soon follow.

  • My mother says the same thing! I am the type that has to have a ton of sleep and when I don’t I get so grouchy. My mother is the type where she can run off three hours and thinks she is fine. It is so frustrating and she says the same thing, “Nicole I can sleep when I am dead.” How do we change their behaviors?

  • Very true. People do things all the time and stress themselves out with little to no sleep when in all reality it may have been done better if they would have relaxed a little!

  • We don’t think it will affect us but it certainly will. I know that now I am very concerned about my diet because healthy choices now will help me in the future!

  • I try to tell my mom that it is not good for her to not sleep. I point it out when I come home from school because it is very noticeable. I hope that if I keep telling her that maybe it will eventually do something.

  • Sleep is so vital to our every day lives and we don’t even notice it, right away. Were all human and for some of the best thinkers might think they don’t need sleep or exercise are dead wrong because we all need those 8 or more hours. It’s unbelievably true that “how can you help someone one else if you can’t even help yourself.”

  • Although I once had this mentality myself, the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” idea drives me crazy. Yes, you can sleep when you’re dead but do you wan’t to trade that for a shortened and less productive and fulfilling life? Probably not.

  • This is very true. Once I made the decision to live a healthier lifestyle, my friends were impressed by the changes and began to apply the same changes to their own lives.

  • Thanks for this article, great read! I love how every time I read one of your articles, I can always feel the passion you have for health. When did you first become so interested in health and health education? I love how you made many valid points in this article. In my opinion, changing and improving your health is saving the world. If everyone became more interested in improving their health, then the world would be a much different, and healthier place! Saving the world is not always what we may think it means, it could be something as little as changing your sleeping or eating habits.

  • YES! I agree and I said the same thing! by changing your health is saving the world. Because what really is saving the world? I think that by changing the world of health would change a large part of society. Our world is full of people who don’t care about health and don’t care much about learning about health either. It would be so amazing to see more people care about health and take it more seriously.

  • I agree with this thought. Thanks for the post. If more people put more work into their health and wellness, advocacy for health would go way up. We need to lead by example and show people that health should be the number one priority in our lives.

  • I agree with you completely. Thanks for the post. Health is not a big priority in the United States, and we need to do a better job promoting it and leading by example. That being said, if more people are healthy, better ideas and thoughts can be surfaced to change the world in a positive way.

  • People who pursue great ideas and who work hard to make the world a better place are so inspirational. They can seem so strong and powerful and indestructible. However, they are just the same as everyone else. They are just as susceptible as the rest of us. If we are wanting to make a true difference in the world, if we want to help others live a longer and more fulfilling life, then we must first make sure to help ourselves.
    Such a great article!

  • Lead by example. If you change your health and behaviors maybe someone close to you will see you changing and want to change themselves. It can be contagious and thats all that it takes. Be the reason for change. Great article

  • Just as the smallest cells in our body help keep us alive, the people that drive organizations forward to thrive and produce efficiently need the most attention. It just so happens that these “big-thinkers” tend to have so much ambition that they lack the proper self-awareness, which results in poor health. Not only does their physical-being suffer from fussy bodies, but the amount of emotional passion that is usually involved with these individuals causes insurmountable amounts of stress. A few healthy steps for people like this would be: take a step back, re-evaluate their approach at success, and possibly re-prioritize.

  • People who are successful spend hours and hours working their butt’s off to create their success. This means losing sleep, as sleep in their mind is overrated- not as important as carrying out their dreams. I liked how this blog brought up the point that dreams cannot be carried out without good health. We need to set our priorities more straight and put our health as the top priority, as we are useless as human beings without good health.

  • You’re so right that everyone needs to make health a priority no matter how busy they are! But so many people just make excuses instead. “not enough time in the day, can’t afford a gym membership, etc” But it all starts with small changes first like taking the stairs instead of the elevators..if we change our minds then we can change our habits..and hopefully help motivate those around us as well!

  • Having good health and staying healthy is most important. I like how it mentions that ” So saving the world is going to take some time and saving the thinkers, that is going to take stamina.” People are going to need good health on their side. We can not do much with out good health. I like how the article is about the people who think well are the ones who have the best thinking.

  • Many of us have the goal to be successful in life because no one enjoys failing. Its a tremendous feeling to know you did something good, came up with a genius plan or idea, or ended up being the best at something. However, we need to remember the reason we accomplished something good was because we had the proper energy to do so. Our body and brain runs off of how we treat our bodies, how much sleep we get, and the fuel we put into it. People sometimes don’t realize the importance their body. If you “feel” good inside and out, you will most likely have the motivation to succeed in daily tasks. Once you reach your goal, being healthy is more crucial than ever. You worked this hard to get to where you are; don’t slip now.

  • The hardest part about eating right and exercising is finding a way to personalize it to your own crazy life. I’ve always thought that if I had my own personal chef to chop my vegetables and bring me a healthy lunch then I wouldn’t be so tempted to just order Toppers. While having a personal chef would be awesome, it isn’t a realistic option for many. Eating healthy and exercising needs to be a top priority, it will help you in all other aspects of your life. Even without a personal chef there are no excuses!

  • I think saving our own personal health and being a role model for others, and then educating other’s on how to do it is how we will save the world. People will see us and realize that it is possible to live a healthy lifestyle and be healthy. We can save the world, one person at a time.

  • I agree with this article. If people do not take care of themselves, they will eventually get sick and then who will save the world? No one. That’s why it is so crucial to make sure you are taking care of yourself while also trying to help others. Finding time to stay healthy may be hard but it can only help you.

  • This article makes you think you really need to value how you spend your time and what you are doing to keep yourself healthy. I know I want to live a long life and the only way to do it is to be healthy need to sleep need to exercise. Everything needs to be taken care of to live a long happy life. Everyone talks about how short life is and that you can sleep when you are dead I don’t want to bring death around any faster then it is supposed to happen.

  • This is a great way of looking at productivity. If the entrepreneur isn’t healthy and in their right state of mind, then it will be difficult for them to stick around long enough to accomplish what they want to accomplish. Supplying the world with clean drinking water isn’t going to happen over night and anyone wishing to pursue this dream needs to stay healthy to keep their mental focus and physical.

  • I totally agree with you Kayla. It is important to see how you spend your time, whether it be in productivity or laziness.
    Sure it may be easier and more relaxing to sit in front of the couch and have a movie marathon with friends, but is that really accomplishing anything if it becomes a habit that replaces your physical health? And mind you, if you are in this kind of scenario, it’s highly debatable that everyone’s eating a salad with only one tablespoon of dressing.
    It’s about the little ways that you can change you in order to impact the world later.
    Being at home now sick, my body on it’s not so normal 8 hours of sleep (I usually get 7), I feel much more alert than normal (without coffee!) even with this fatigue. How it works exactly, I have no clue; but befalling some viral sickness (from stress I imagine) has really shown me how important it is to take time more seriously and remember that there’s only so much that can be done, but what can be can become remarkable.

  • This makes absolute sense. My mother is always telling me “that health is number one, what good is it if I have great ideas and future plans, if I die from malnourishment” which is true. I focus on work all the time, and tell myself I don’t have “enough” time to eat breakfast or lunch or snacks. Which we all know is a lie. I can make time to eat, I just choose not to, because I think there is something more important that eating… which nothing should be. From now on, I will take the time I need to eat and keep my self nourished.

  • When you are sick your body is trying to recover and basically when you only get 7 hours of sleep a night you are in sleep debt. Your body will take anything more to get out of the debt. This might explain why when you are sick you feel more refreshed

  • I agree with you intuit we take our health for granted, and I am included in that. I just think that there is an issue that not everyone is educated enough to change it. Even someone like myself who does have the knowledge to change it, I don’t just because I have other things to do. I feel like the issue is that we need to figure out how to reprioritize and then we will have the right mindset to make these changes.

  • This is very true. As much as we like to say it’s not true, we really do follow along with the rest of people. Right now everybody is into convince (high in fat, sugar, carb, and everything else bad food). If only we could somehow make it cool to eat healthy, maybe saving the would might not be such a daunting task.

  • I definitely agree with how we need to be role models and educate others. People are more likely to follow other peoples actions when they see them benefiting the individual. If you are happy and healthy then people are going to wonder what you are doing. They will want the secret to your success. You can educate them and then hopefully they will spread the information.

  • It’s funny because right now as I am reading this I am sick. Over the past couple of days I have had way too many leftover cookies and brownies that I made for this bake sale that my professor made me do… This is definitely why I am feeling like this and I cannot seem to be able to get out of bed and do anything productive. It is true that if someone wants to do the best job they possibly can in anything they must have a balanced diet to go along with it.

  • Leaving the article with that last fact about Warron Zenon made me literally say “Wow” out loud. We have talked about that phrase in class and I used to always say that too. It makes so much sense how silly that phrase is when you open your eyes. In order to be succesful you need to stay healthy. Sleep is the most important thing needed to keep going in life followed by nutrition. I realize how crappy I feel after a bad meal, and eating like that all the time….I couldnt imagine doing so. When i stick to a healthy diet, i not only feel refreshed and ready for the next new task given to me, but i also am more confident with my looks and therefore it shows it my everyday apparance and work life.

  • Sarah, I agree with you. It is important to stay healthy and take care of yourself. If you can’t take care of yourself, how can you save others? Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States and it can be prevented by staying healthy long term. By taking more time out of the day to eat right, sleep enough, and exercise, less people will develop heart disease and more people can develop and find ways to save the world.

  • “Because, the greatest truth is this: if the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out.” This quote really puts things into perspective for me. People today are all too busy to worry about their health because they have bigger things on their mind. But without health people cannot get these ideas out and that is a tragedy. People should be more concerned about their health if they really want to make an impact on this world.

  • Sometimes I feel like we overthink health and stress ourselves out more than we have to in order to eat right, sleep enough, and exercise often but when it comes down to it, staying healthy is fairly simple. I believe the more we stress ourselves out, the more tired and unhealthy we become so that is an important thing to remember when trying to “save the world.” No doubt health is necessary to reach our full potential (age-wise), but if we continuously stress ourselves out that we are not healthy enough, we might as well be shooting ourselves in the foot. It is important that we stay fit and active, but why not implement that into our own daily activities and routines so we save time and money? This can play a huge role when coming up with big ideas to help save the world. It may keep you alive a little longer in order for you to carry out your projects or ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  • I agree with this, but I also think they should not get too concerned (unless they are suffering from a severe illness, etc.) with their health if it is going to make them feel even more stressed out. Finding an activity that is right for you, the food that you will eat consistently, and most effective time to sleep for yourself are key ways to help you live a bit longer in order to contribute your ideas to the world. What do you think is the most difficult thing about finding and balancing these three things? Lack of motivation? Thanks for sharing.

  • Hope you’re feeling better Zak! Yeah, I definitely agree with you that having a balanced diet is not only key to producing positive results physically, but mentally you will be able to contribute your ideas more effectively. Balanced sleep and exercise also will help keep you alive and well for a longer time, hopefully. I find that having a routine is one of the most effective way to keep these three things balanced, and if I get bored with a routine then I will generally switch it up and try something new. Thanks for sharing, and cut down on the brownies and cookies! Haha.

  • This is a good idea because my routine I have now is getting very boring to me. When I get bored I eat so I need to start doing something new besides sitting at home and eating!

  • I am not going to change the world from my grave. I have the possibility of changing the world if I am at least alive. This article makes that point very clear. Then why are people not doing the little changes to their eating, sleeping, and exercising that Ann has suggested in multiple articles? I think it has to do with a lack of sustained motivation. Anyone who reads these articles will agree with the information. Some will change for maybe a few days. But how do we take this information and create lasting motivation in a generation who wants to be alive to change the world? I think changing habits helps to sustain motivation. If some how I am able to change my habit to sit when I am on the computer or sit while I am watching TV, then I could be healthier and change the world.

  • Maybe find some body weight exercises to do at home to stay in shape and burn off all the calories from the cookies and brownies! There is something about working out in your own house/apartment that is hard to get yourself motivated though, so I understand if that would be tough. Running is always a good way to avoid boredom as well, as long as it isn’t snowing outside…

  • Being in the profession I am, I think it will be easier to be a leader/role model for others when it comes to health!

  • Yes, I agree with you that lack of motivation plays a role in sustaining healthy activities, but I also think it is so much “talking the walk” versus “walking the talk.” It can be super easy to “talk the walk” but actually getting out of your routine/comfort zone to achieve optimal health is something many people struggle with. Having someone else to discuss health issues with, and make a significant change in diet and exercise can be one way to increase motivation and sustainability. Thanks for sharing!

  • Exercise is another huge factor in making a difference. Taking care of yourself is a top priority. I am a full time student, working two jobs, and I will always try to exercise at least twice a week (better than none). There have been times where I would go months without exercising and my energy levels would go down tremendously. Exercising, eating well, and getting enough sleep can easily motivate a person throughout their day.

  • I agree that people shouldn’t be too concerned with their health, but it is something that should be kept on ones mind. I mean our health is something we are usually in control of and we should pursue health not sickness. I think lack of motivation has a lot to do with it, I also think that people don’t want to put the time into it either because everyone is so busy these days.

  • I think much has to do with how people prioritize there time and how much they want to get done in one day. Finding the motivation to change an already implemented routine or starting a new one is always tough, but if you want to see a change in your health (to get better hopefully), then a bit more effort is required to provide maintenance on your body. How do you believe people perceive the topic “health” in todays world? Good thing or bad thing, or could it be both?

  • I just wish the art department could read this blog. They are gifted with their creative ideas, but they’re always so burned out because they never sleep, they smoke, they drink, and they’re zombies, and it shows in their work. They have so much potential, but I don’t see a lot of the art students use their full potential. Also, I told my twin sister the statistic about one in two people will die of heart disease. She’s currently a PA student (she’ actually getting her white coat this weekend :), and she said they recently changed the guidelines and that everyone will develop heart disease in their lifetime and pretty much everyone has to be on a statin when they’re older! That’s scary!

  • This article hit it right on the nail. People really believed 50 Cent when he said, “Get Rich or Die Trying”. But how in the hell is that going to happen if you’re to sick to get rich or worse spend the money you’re killing yourself to get?

  • I agree that health is what will hold your life together and allow you to pursue other goals in life. Without good health it will be very hard to accomplish anything else.

  • Agreed! I am also a full time student and work on the side and I always try to get in a workout almost every day. Even if I do not have that much time, I will try to squeeze in a few extra minutes to get a quick workout in. Essentially, it makes a huge difference in my day if I do not find the time to workout. I feel less productive and lazy and I just feel bad in general. It is true, exercising, eating well, and getting enough sleep are necessary to keep a person going throughout the day.

  • You pretty much hit the nail on the head. Sleep is the most important thing needed to keep going in life followed by nutrition. If you do not get enough sleep, it is easy to make bad health choices. For example, I know that when I do not get enough sleep, I am more likely to eat more crappy the next day. The lack of sleep makes people lazy and less productive and as a result, they make unhealthy choices throughout their day. That is why sleep is the number one thing needed in order to live a healthier life. When you sleep good, you eat good too.

  • I think a lot of people think of health in terms of being sick. If they are not sick then they are healthy and that is what health means to them. What do you think?

  • I would definately agree with that. Many people aren’t fully educated about health and up to date on the most recent studies, but they think they know basics on what it means to be healthy. In my opinion safety is a part of health as well, but many people don’t classify it as that. Why do you think that is? Why is it that people look at health as something that is only “in the moment,” or at that present time? But not futuristically..

  • I think safety is a big part of health definitely. I’m not sure what else people would classify that as. If you’re not safe things can happen that affect your health. Again I think people are very narrow minded about what health is, they are reluctant to add anything to health that doesn’t have to do with a hospital or doctor. I agree that people only see health as in the moment but I’m not sure why that is. I guess people are so busy with their day to day lives they don’t care about the future of their health. People wanna do what is pleasing in the moment rather than what is better for the long run. Do you agree?

  • To go along with this article I believe that individuals try to only put in partial work until things start to go wrong and health problems begin to occur. Because the world throws so many foods and bad choices at us that coincides what the general population thinks and feels it makes sense to why we have such a strong epidemic in our world. People do not think about things until it is too late.

  • I completely agree and I feel like there are a lot of individuals out there with the live fast die young motive. Individuals pursue sickness instead of health and by doing this when the real chance for them to do something comes, they cannot preform like they could have if they were healthier.

  • My mother is great at doing everything for everyone else, and is always fighting some kind of virus or another. I guess you could say, well that’s a mother for ya! But, to be honest, how much are we really helping others if we are not taking care of ourselves. I feel how we take care of ourselves is a large indicator in how we would or do take care of others. Now, sometimes this is just the total opposite, but its a question or statement rather that I feel begs questioning.

  • The biggest thing we need to realize, that in our world, we can sacrifice little things to help out others, and not take a heavy hit. BUT (of course there is a but) we have to understand is the fact that we need to help ourselves out first, just like how the airlines mention. They got it right. If we cant help out others, due to a illness or lack of health, then what good was the person coming to ask us in the first place? If we were like a “1 Stop Shop”, meaning that we were good for only one use and then we were useless for anything else, like a napkin for instance, then we would be forced to see that delegation and these ideas of ME FIRST, YOU SECOND (in the good sense) is much more beneficial in the long run.

  • This article resonates with me personally. Through modeling my mother, I have adopted the “sleep when you’re dead” motto. However, I have recently come to the realization that if you don’t help your own body first, you don’t have nearly the same capacity to help others as would have otherwise. I used to see taking care of my body as selfish, but I now view it as a necessity to achieve my own goals, as well as help those around me to achieve theirs too!

  • Yes, I agree with this that people focus more on their health during the moment at hand versus long term health problems that might arise. I think it is important not to stress too much about long term health issues if you are currently balancing sleep and nutrition, along with some exercise, but it is important to be aware of habits you might develop that could lead to heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, dementia, etc. The more you know about long term health, the better off you are at surviving for a longer period of time, as statistics have shown, but how do we spread that knowledge to our world so more people become aware? Should there be mandatory health classes all the way through high school every semester? What are some solutions?

  • I think a huge part of the American ideal is to put success first, at all costs. You can always count on the TV or a movie to show people putting their work way ahead of their personal wellbeing and their relationships (First thing that came to mind was from House of Cards); but how do we realize this and overcome the societal pressures?

  • i agree with you. even though i am taking a full load of credits this semester, i hate sitting around and being lazy. i feel a lot better when i am active, and the more active i am, the more conscience i am to eating right. some healthy things are like a domino effect that lead to great things.

  • Yeah I mean I think schools need to place a bigger empahsis on health. Schools just blow it off because they feel the core subjects are more important but those subjects mean nothing if you can’t use them because you are too sick. There should be health for every grade for the full year, this is the best time to reach all the students. I also think that companies should team up with health clubs and such and have like gym passes available or even have healthpromoters come in and give seminars and such

  • If the “world” savers would think about how they treat their bodies a little more and get enough sleep and have a balanced diet we might already have the cure for cancer or aids. Now I’m not saying I’m a perfect example but within the last year I have tried to better my life by trying to do these things.

  • I think that would be a good idea to help emphasize how important health is from a young age. This might draw students attentions a bit more rather than simply having a health class every week where they might get bored or ignore the subject. I think the sooner we emphasize health from a young age, the more we will start noticing a change in our society for future generations to come. Without any change, how can we expect the obesity epidemic to just disappear, or increases in heart disease and diabetes to just get rid of themselves? There is no way without a change in education and program planning. An effective way would be to provide more gym passes for kids enrolled in school full time, teaming schools up with health clubs, along with health professionals coming to give seminars every month or so on various health topics. These would be effective ways to improve our societies health, starting with education for young adolescents. Thanks for sharing!

  • I completely agree, many of the things you suggest are easy things to get done people just need to have the motivation to make them happen. I really like your idea about providing gym passes to full time students, i feel like that is something really practical that could help a ton. Great ideas, thank you for sharing!

  • this article makes me think of a saying ive heard many times in my life, “you must love yourself to love someone else.” I believe the same goes with your health. You must be healthy physically and healthy if you want to have a lasting effect on people and the world.

  • I really like how you put this! I always here the saying “sleep when you’re dead” but that’s definitely not the best idea. Accumulating sleep debt is not going to help you in your everday life activites and is definitely not going to help your performance in the long run

  • Exactly! It’s so difficult too because I find that accumulating sleep debt occurs most often when you need the most sleep (exams, etc.). Although I often (and admittedly sometimes still do) have the mentality that less sleep will equate to more productivity, the inverse is true. Procrastinating and sleep deprivation is a vicious cycle and almost always leads to a decrease in performance. Have you had similar experiences?

  • I think in this generation we are growing up in it is seen as normal to worry about success first and our own well-being later. I feel that this is shown through media mostly. I don’t think it’s fair. We all want to be successful but we need to start realizing that in order to be successful for a long time we need to be healthy first.

  • I agree completely! From a young age we are told to think about what we want to be when we grow up and then are prepped throughout school to choose a career, go to college and get a job. The only time we are given health information is from magazines, TV or the one or two health classes you are required to take in middle and high school. We definitely need to find a better way to educate people on their health.

  • Living in such a goo-getter society, everyone is pushing to be the best. Doing anything and everything that they can to get to the top. But what they are forgetting about it doing anything and everything to get their personal health to the top which is the most important. Without health, you will never be able to be on the top, and you will never be as successful as you could be.

  • Completely agree! Without our health, how are we going to change the world? I hear it’s pretty hard to do from 6 feet under ground… I can’t imagine putting the world first in front of myself. There are things that I usually need to take care of before I can change the world. And just like you said, it’s hard to go and change the world when we as a society are having obesity problems, heart disease, cancer, etc. Taking care our ourselves should be a top priority and then the world should be taken by storm after we get ourselves in check!

  • I too want to live a long healthy life…and it all starts now! We have to start somewhere, right? Well the first step is admitting there is a problem that needs to be fixed. My problem is that I need to take care of myself before I can take care of all the issues that surround me. Once I make myself happy then I can focus on the other people’s happiness. First step is taking care of myself and then I can take care of the world!

  • Very true, just by setting a good example we can change the world! It doesn’t even have to be something drastic…but if people see other people living healthy lives, then it’ll change things. By being a healthy influence on ourselves and portraying a healthy life in society will help change the outlook on living a healthy life! It’s a start…and I think it’s a great idea that seems simple enough!

  • I have definitely have had similar experiences. I am great procrastinator when it comes to getting homework done which can then lead me to having to stay up later to get everything done. When that occurs I can really notice my decrease in alertness and productivity the next day because I am so tired from not getting enough sleep the night before.

  • This article is exactly what you have been telling us in class over the past 16 weeks. If I have learned nothing else, I have learned that your health should always come first. I see people constantly trying to do everything and be the best but not even getting enough rest. Which in turn causes them to do a lot worse than what they are capable of. You can’t save the world if you’re not alive. No, you can’t sleep when you’re dead, you’re just dead. So I love the idea that saving the world starts with keeping yourself healthy.

  • That is the first step! It is good that you see that and know how to start helping others. If everyone could realize that if you focus on being the best you, that you can be it can only help others in the long run.

  • Agreed. I feel that if people just focused on themselves and not trying to change the world overnight then things in this world would be different! In all aspects of life, if people just worried about what they were doing and not what everyone else was doing…things would be different. But yes…realizing this is the first step and is an important one too! This is how change is made!

  • First off, heart disease does not kill 1 in 2 people. It is 1 in 4. Otherwise, I agree people need to spend a lot more time on their health, especially in today’s society where there is near none physical activity at the work place and people consume so much more calories a day than what we used to. Also, I felt like I could hear you talking as I was reading this because this is exactly what you’ve been saying all semester.

  • I was actually just talking about this concept with my mom the other day. She recently has become very sick and was in charge of making my brothers prom dinner. The night before she was trying to do all of this prep work which would have been way to exhausting for her to handle. So I told her that she needed to take care of herself now so tomorrow she can be at her best given the current situation. She did what I said and the next day she was the most energetic that my family has seen in weeks and the dinner was a huge success.

  • I completely agree! Ann made a comment recently that really stuck with me about how taking care of yourself is actually the least selfish thing you can do. I think so many people these days (often myself included) view taking care of your body by getting enough sleep, exercising, etc. as selfish. In reality, it is a necessity to have the capacity to help others. I think this is often seen in motherhood. For me personally, my mom acted in a manner that taking care of herself was selfish. She would do anything for her children, which is an amazing quality to have, but in retrospect I wish she would have put herself first more often. She deserves it! Still to this day, she puts others first so much that it takes a toll on her personal health, and ultimately her ability to achieve her goals.

  • Love this quote! Health should be your number once priority in life because how are you supposed to function when you are not up to your full potential! If you are promoting health then others will follow in your footsteps and want to be healthy to when they see what being healthy does to you. Make an example of yourself and it will effect other people.

  • This is awesome. I see people will all of this work to do and things they want to change. People with these huge and incredible ideas, but if they continue to not take care of themselves they will not be able to accomplish as much as they could have. We need to take care of ourselves before we can take care of others. Some may find that selfish, but how can someone perform at their best if they are not even at their best. I think many people do not even have any idea what they are missing out on and how great they could feel. Most of it is not even that complicated. We make being healthy seem like it has to be some complicated burden when it actually pretty simple and basic. Eat your fruits and veggies, take the stairs, get enough sleep every night.

  • I really agree. This society is very go-getter. If you are not striving to be the best, then what are you working for? I personally just want to be the best me I can be. Many people do not even realize that they could even be better if they put good health into their daily. It could very well be the difference of getting that project turned in on time and being awesome and puts you at the top versus it only being okay and your boss going with someone else’s project.

  • This is a beautiful way to emphasize the importance of your own health! You won’t have the energy it takes to change the world or fix problems if you aren’t putting your physical needs first according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. Fulfillment in all other categories requires the proper fueling of your own body first.

  • This is really a true fact. You have to be able to take care of the world. But to be able to do something you need to be in a good health conditions: spiritual, physical, mental, etc. This is necessary because to take care of something you need to dispose of money, or time, or some another resource which you have. But if you do not have it, how is going to be possible support someone else?

  • Absolutely! Your mother clearly cares too much about her family and puts you all before herself but it is a good thing to remind her to take care of herself more too 🙂 she won’t have the energy it takes if she isn’t putting her physical needs first according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. Fulfillment in all other categories requires the proper fueling of your own body first.

  • Agreed! In lecture we just talked about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and this is the best example of the very first and most important need: Physical! Proper care of yourself has to always be the first step.

  • I think the article is more so saying that people who want to make a difference need to take care of themselves to actually be able to make an impact. If you aren’t healthy, your less likely to be successful in other categories according to the lecture we just had about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Physical comes first!

  • I loved this article! To be able to care for others and the world we live in, you have to be able to care for yourself first. It’s so vital to get enough sleep and eat healthy to ensure that we are in our best condition every day. When we are at our best we are able to conquer the world and create such strong ideas that make a difference.

  • Exactly! She tells us every day that we need to get enough sleep and eat healthy to be at our best. Then we can live our lives to the best we can. I love how this article emphasizes on keeping yourself healthy first.

  • I try to live my life to that quote as best as I can. I agree that you have to be healthy if you are trying to make an impact on the world. I know so many people who are smart and have so many great ideas for the future, but I see how they put their health on the back burner.

  • Prioritizing your healthy is so important! What’s the point of living if you are not living your life healthy and happy? If others see how much of a positive impact a healthy life has made for yourself, then they will want to follow your lead as well.

  • I see this as well and I have seen it first hand with family members as they put their work in front of their well being. I know how important it is to provide for yourself and your family but living a healthy life is the only way to keep happy.

  • Sleep is so important! I understand that people have very busy schedules and with school work and studying it can be very hard to get the full healthy amount of sleep each night. But that is why it is necessary to create a schedule that allows people to accomplish all of the work they need to get done as well as get their full 8 hours of sleep each night so sleep dept is avoided.

  • This was very interesting. Thinking of people with a busy schedule, they probably don’t sit down and have a nice healthy meal a lot of time.When you are busy it is a lot easier to just grab some fast food which is not healthy but just more convenient for them. I wish they could read this article and understand that the healthier they, the more productive they will be.

  • Well this article is an eye opener because I always use the phrase, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” because my schedule is never ending and I always have too much on my plate. So maybe instead of trying to do everything at once I should probably take a step back and take a break. Even if it mean putting things aside then fine, if it is going to help my health then I’ll do it.

  • Thank you for sharing! I totally agree that people don’t realize that they need their health to be in top shape in order to go after their dreams of saving the world. Their goals are very important, but if they don’t keep their health in line, they will quickly figure out how hard it is to achieve them. WE need to put health as our top priority in order to do what we want in life. Hopefully when these people start to change the world and are asked How did they do that? They will be able to stress the importance of being healthy.

  • I think that it’s good our generation is starting to think that way. I feel that we could have a huge impact on this issue going forward.

  • I think so too! I think that we need to be the ones to take a stand and help others to know what good health really is. That way we can help stop the progression of becoming the amber color on the obesity map like Ann always talks about.

  • I love this because people have these huge dreams to chase after and by the time they reach them, it’s like your life is more than half over because you were too busy chasing your business dream or the man of your dreams. You let your health slip away and that’s the only thing that is going to keep you alive and well. Sure your money and family will help the time pass in a fun way sometimes, but what is killing you everyday is that you aren’t focusing on your health and foods! Health needs to start be advocated in fortune 500 companies, and companies across America. If we start with the higher up companies, I think the trend will catch on down the way.

  • I like your point how if people don’t have their health as a priority, it will be hard to achieve their goals. It is hard to have the energy to achieve great obstacles without a healthy diet, exercise, and proper amount of energy.

  • The number one priority of anyone’s life should be health no matter what they are doing. It is hard for us to realize that because we think that everything that we are doing is the most important thing in the world and people are just stubborn like that. We all need to realize that health is the number one priority because if we do not have good health we cannot continue to do what we think is more important than our health itself.. Think about that.

  • Thank you for this comment. usually when people are obsessed with their body and over sleeping its viewed as selfish. I have never put it into my mind the other way until I saw this comment. Motherhood is a perfect example for this thank you again for this comment.

  • i agree that health should be a number one priority but people look at money and being rich rather than about there health. I believe that money consumes people and that it will fix every thing but if you do not eat good and exercise, you won’t be able to enjoy all of that money you do make. Learning and containing to educate yourself/people is a step forward and we need to continue to take steps forward in this World.

  • I like your point about how if we are not healthy, we won’t be able to do what is important to us. If we keep putting our health off so that we can do other things, it will eventually catch up to us. With good health, we can live a much better quality of life and be able to do things such as play with our grandchildren without pain.

  • I also used to think that I could sleep when I was dead, but I realized how important sleep is, and how it can actually save me time to get enough sleep at night. When I don’t get enough sleep at night, I always feel like I need a nap during the day that ends up wasting time.

  • I agree that it is so much easier to just grad some fast food to eat rather than making a meal yourself. Not only that, it is just so much easier to make an unhealthy meal at home than to make a healthy meal. I used to only eat foods that were easy to make like frozen pizza, soup, mac and cheese, or romen noodles, but I realized that I would feel better if I would actually cook a decent meal, and since I’ve started doing that, I’ve felt so much better.

  • I agree with this. It will catch up to us fast and the long term effects will be things such as low mortality rate. I want to be that mom that is able to keep up with my kids. So often I see parents that can’t keep up with the simplest that their kids do, such as walking them to the park. That’s when you know something is wrong with society.

  • Your point on that if we are not healthy then we wont be able to do whats most important to us is so true. I prioritize other things before my health but I need to prioritize health first. I want to be able to do the things I love to do. Someone once told me that my generation is going to die before my parents do, im not sure if i believe it or not but if it is true, we ned to be more cautious of our health.

  • “if the health of the individual is not cared for then all the big ideas die when the thinker becomes too ill or tired or burned-out to carry them out.”
    I wonder how many people are convinced to care about their health BEFORE they get really sick or burnt out. I was not one of them. But I want so much to convince others before it’s too late and they are sick or worse..

  • I agree with you one hundred percent! people focus so much on their money then they do on their health. When yes money is important and you need to be able to balance both out in order to be healthy and live a successful life

  • Everyone needs to push to lead a healthy life style no matter how hard it is. I know I do not do enough to be healthy and If I want to watch my grandchildren become old I will have to do much better at being healthy rather than keep pushing it off till later.

  • I do the exact same thing. I try to squeeze everything in and get as much done as possible and sometimes this means staying up too late and not getting enough sleep. But I know this will wear me down and eventually cause me to burn out which isn’t good. I need to take breaks and prioritize the things I need to get done.

  • So true! If you aren’t healthy, you can’t do anything you want to do because you will be too tired, sick, etc. to get anything done. Staying healthy should be your number one priority because that will lead to a more productive life!

  • Me too Katie Germain! Getting enough sleep and eating right is the best thing you can do for your body to stay healthy, alert, happy, awake, rested, productive, and beautiful. This is definitely a great article.

  • I definitely agree with you. You must put yourself first sometimes, which isn’t selfish, it’s healthy. Everyone needs to take care of themselves, especially if they want to be healthy enough to take care of others.

  • OMG this is soooo true. If you treat your body right and are healthy and looking/feeling good, others will see this and want to do the same. It’s crazy how much of an impact you can have on other people without realizing it. For example, when my friends are eating healthy and working out it makes me want to eat healthy and work out too!

  • If you are living life but you are unhealthy and unhappy, then what’s the point? You are only given one life to live so why not try to make it as good as possible?!

  • My dad always talks about wanting to work out but he never actually does it. He spends so much time working and taking care of my sister and me and doesn’t ever put himself first. I always tell him that he needs to take some time for himself to get into shape because if he isn’t healhy then he won’t get to live long enough to see my future kids and or my sister’s future kids grow up.

  • For sure! If you aren’t getting enough sleep then you will be less productive because you will be too tired and want to nap, take breaks, etc. People might think that they’re more productive when they stay up super late because they are getting stuff done, but then they are just tired the next day and can’t be as productive as they could be with more sleep!

  • Great point, Kaila! It’s ridiculous how people overcomplicate health these days. In reality, it’s quite simple! Get an ample amount of sleep at night, eat whole foods (lots of fruits and vegetables), and get out and move! Your body will take care of the rest. I think when people get busy they often sacrifice their health. They don’t get enough sleep, eat processed foods, and don’t get enough exercise. However, those are the things they should be prioritizing first so they have the energy to do everything else.

  • It is very important to prioritize your health and I have kind of learned that the hard way and after taking Ann’s class it has definitely opened my eyes more. I know people who put their health first all the time and it is overkill because they are addicted to working out all the time and eating healthy and if they don’t do that one day, they feel like they have failed themselves. After taking this class I have made it more of a priority in life to think before I act and go out on the weekend if I’m not running on much sleep. i just need to start thinking about what is better for me and actually acting on it.

  • You make a great point. People struggle to do the preventative maintenance your body needs, and end up with serious problems. If people just learned how to do easy things like that, health problems would not be nearly as bad as they are now.

  • Prioritizing health is so hard, especially at the college age. Living on campus, healthy eating is not easy. Dining hall food has gotten better, but is still not as good as I could be. Plus, with the ease of access to soany bad options, it makes health even more difficult. Maybe instead of giving out so many Toppers coupons, they should give out coupons to fruits and veggies.

  • Helping in need is always so rewarding in life. Not only do you feel great about what you did but you build lasting relationships.

  • People think of ideas best when they are at the most productive times in their day. In class we talked about getting the most important things done at the times you are most productive, usually not when you wake up, after you eat, or right before bed. I know for a fact when I am tired, I never think completely straight or make the best decisions so getting enough sleep is the most important for making good decisions and thinking of ideas that could possibly change the world.

  • Thus article tells me that you only get one life, so you netter make the most of it. Why wouldn’t I want it to be as long as it should be? Preventative maintenance saves the day, and your life. Take care of your temple!

  • My favorite takeaway from this was the idea that pizza will clog a big thinker’s arteries just as quickly as anyone else’s. Illness doesn’t care who you are. Unpreventable illness can strike anyone at anytime, so we need to ensure that the preventable ones aren’t given a fighting chance.

  • Ann’s classes do a great job in teaching us young college students how to live a long healthier lifestyle. I am in the same situation here. My roommate is in love with his health, always at the gym, and always eating healthy. I have always found it easy to get to the gym but I never really got into eating healthy or focusing on getting enough sleep. After taking these classes with Ann I now see the importance in getting enough sleep, and eating healthier and am putting in a good effort to make a change in order to better my life!

  • Illness and unhealthiness do not care who you are. If you neglect your body, it will not perform for you like you would want it to. You have to treat your body with respect and it will benefit you. Otherwise it will do you no favors. You cannot be productive if your body isn’t given the tools to produce.

  • Saving the world is a pretty big dream to have. The. World is a pretty big place – lots of people. Are we saving the people of the world? The world itself? All of its inhabitants? Either route will prove challenging I would imagine. I don’t mean to sound…selfish, but I. Ever understood why anyone would want to save the world. It’s kind of a far-fetched concept that really would never manifest itself (we can’t all be will smith from I am legend). People can contribute different things that would benefit mankind, but saving the WHOLE world seems a bit unreasonable