How CEOs can stay on top of their game by prioritizing wellness

As CEO, you have a lot to do. You face busy and unpredictable schedules, late hours, long commutes, and many conflicting responsibilities vying for your attention. While this demanding and energizing lifestyle may be one of the things you enjoy the most about your job, it also has a huge impact on your health. In order to function to the best of your ability, it is essential to prioritize fitness, getting enough sleep, and eating healthy. It’s also just as important to avoid habits that can adversely affect your health and productivity at work. When you are constantly on the move and prioritizing your business over your personal needs, you may end up frustrating your best efforts. Contrary to what you might think, when you put your health and wellness first, you are in fact putting yourself in a position to contribute at a higher level. Plus, you’ll have less stress, more time for your family, and a better quality of life. I’m going to go over some easy ways to incorporate wellness into your life.

Unfortunately for CEOs and other high-level executives, it’s the characteristics that drove you to be successful in the first place that are the same ones that cause you to push your limits and sacrifice your personal needs in order to be successful. That doesn’t mean you have to sit down and accept your fate, though. Instead, also use your regulated nature and proactive attitude in your personal life. Chances are you know how important it can be to take an hour to yourself before you start the day, but if you’re doing it on your own, it can be easy to skip work calls. Instead, plan to train with a colleague you respect. This way, you will be less likely to skip the morning walk, the gym workout, or the yoga class.

In your position, you are probably quite used to bringing others together for a common purpose. Use your ability to inspire and motivate, and get a group of your peers together to participate in physical activity or sport together. Not only will this be a great way to stay in shape; it is both an ideal way to release accumulated stress and tension. Also, keep in mind that when you exercise, it helps you sleep better at night. So rather than burning the midnight oil to strategize for your next move, stop for the day and release some steam through physical activity. You’ll wake up refreshed, energized, and better able to take on challenges the next morning. I promise.

Michelle Greene Rhodes, MHS, IA, CMCN

From your position in the C-suite, you have a say in what the culture of your business will be. Make it a priority to incorporate wellness initiatives into your corporate culture if they aren’t already there. Not only will this mean that your employees will be able to participate in personal care practices, but it will make it easier for you to maintain that focus in your own life. Something as simple as replacing vending machine snacks with something a little healthier can go a long way. Also be amazed at how much productivity and efficiency increases when you encourage employees to participate in a wellness activity while they are on the clock. Yes, I said on the clock – it not only sends a great message, it really makes people more productive.

The most scarce resource among CEOs is actually time. With so much to do, it can be difficult to find the time to focus on wellness. When you are finally done with your work obligations, you come home and focus your energy on your family, which is great, but the focus is still on others, not yourself. If you’re like most CEOs, the majority of your time is planned; very few of them are spontaneous. However, achieving a drastic wellness improvement is as easy as scheduling this personal wellness time on your calendar. After all, if it’s on the schedule, it’s like it’s done.

When you approach your well-being as another component of the job, chances are it will be done well and consistently. This will give you time to strategize on all the ways you can more effectively integrate wellness into your life. Take the time to not only nourish your body, exercise, eat well and get enough sleep, but also make time to take care of your financial life. Make smart choices about where to store your money, how to use your finances to support your well-being, and how to make smart investments.

When you’re stressed out, exhausted, and pushed to your limits, you really aren’t doing your best job. As a CEO, it’s essential that when you show up for work, you are at your best. After all, when you’re good, you’re really good. Don’t sacrifice your health to give back to your business. Nourish your body and watch how to take better care of yourself gives you better results in your life all around.


Written by Michelle Greene Rhodes.

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