When your body talks to you…. LISTEN!!!

I’m dying. At least that’s what I felt like yesterday when I woke up. My throat was swollen, it was difficult to swallow, my nose was running and my head felt as though it would explode at any minute. Of course I wasn’t dying, it just felt like it.

I slug I to the kitchen thinking “Coffee will make everything better.” Who was I fooling? I got dressed, went to the office thinking my allergies, sinuses, and hay fever were going at it for the championship title but here comes the one, two knockout punch from a surprise opponent… the flu? No way!

First I was too hot, then I was too cold. Next I was too cold, then I was too hot. Chills. Back and forth like a tennis match. This can’t be good. After the “hacking” started and my Sister screamed “Get Out!” from her desk outside my office door, I knew I needed to leave, but I closed my eyes instead. Forty-five minutes later I’m awakened by that metallic taste in my mouth, you know, like you’ve been licking pennies. Yep, it’s time to go. My clothes hurt. All over

I got home, ate some soup, downed some orange juice, drank a shot of NyQuil and climbed into bed. That was the best decision I’ve made all week and it was only Tuesday.

I was sick. You get the picture.

I knew this would happen eventually. I stretched myself too thin. I was doing too much and I wasn’t taking care of my body causing additional stress. The result? Immediate shutdown. I should have seen it coming. Last week, I didn’t get to bed before 3am on two consecutive nights doing classwork. And just the night before “the shutdown,” I was up after 3am even though I finished my assignments a little after 1am. I knew this would happen. The question was when.

Being back in school has placed tremendous stress on me as it’s been 14years since I received my MBA. Couple that with working, community service and having a life, I’m not sure what I was expecting. You’ve seen/read these tips before but I can’t stress them enough:

1. Make sure you’re eating a balanced diet. My eating habits have been horrible since my classes started last month. I blew my budget for January relying on Panda Express, McDonalds, Jack N The Box and Wingstop for my nutritional needs. I know. Way to go. Claps all around. My multivitamin couldn’t compete with all the “junk” I was eating.

2. Make sure you’re exercising regularly. My exercise regimen has been relatively non-existent since the doctor told me last year I could no longer continue my marathon career. Not only was I running for endurance, but lifting for strength. I used to have six pack abs. Now it looks like an ever so slight kangaroo pouch. (This will never do honey.)

3. Make sure you’re getting adequate rest. I already knew those late nights spending time with textbooks, chapter notes and financial calculators would catch up to me. I’ve said it aloud several times, “If I don’t get enough sleep, I get sick.” Well look at me now.

When your body is already in distress, adding a teaspoon of an unhealthy diet, a pinch of a lack of exercise and a cup of inadequate sleep is a recipe for disaster. 

Listen to your body when it’s talking to you. Yes, you have an empire to build, yes you have goals. Having a “can’t stop, won’t stop attitude” is fine, but stay in tune with your body. It’ll give you small cues when it needs rest. If you fail to yield to those cues, a crash is bound to happen. Don’t ignore those recurring headaches, or that lower back pain. Your body is telling you to slow down. If necessary, take a day off and just “relax.” I’m still learning to do that. After these last couple of days, I’ll try harder. 

This morning after sleeping a good 14hours, I thought about going to the office but thought, “Nah, you’re not 100 percent.” Have I not learned my lesson? This was a no-brainer. So I got my coffee, OJ and soup and am back where I was yesterday… In bed. But now, like this…. 

I’m being productive running my empire from the comforts of my bed, yet still resting. And you know something? I feel so much better.

Maybe I’ll move to the couch… Nah!

~The Financial Hack ©2015

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