This is a letter to my fellow competitive, ambitious, “Type A” high-achievers.
I see you hustling and I relate to being so busy chasing dreams that you neglect your health along the way. Unfortunately, people often only stop to pay attention to their health and wellbeing when they’re no longer feeling ‘well’ or experiencing burnout. I’m here to encourage you to think of health being the multiplier to your life instead of an after thought.
When you harness the vibrancy and potential of your mind and body, you’re able to achieve the goals across every spoke of your life wheel; whether that be a promotion, quality time with loved ones, connection to your community, overseas adventures, or being able to play without pain with your grandchildren. The point being, without health you lose the very vehicle that helps you do all these things.
“Type A personalities are more competitive, highly organised, ambitious, often impatient, highly aware of time management, and potentially aggressive, while more relaxed, less “neurotic”, “frantic”, “receptive” personalities are labelled Type B.”
A beautiful curse
There are so many magical attributes about being a Type A personality, but we are also our biggest enemies. We are the ones that set high expectations/standards on ourselves, berate ourselves for mistakes or when we fall short, and say ‘yes’ to too many things. And we pay the price.
The human body has not been designed for long-term stress. Yes. Short bouts of hormetic stress is beneficial and supports growth and evolution, but the longer you extend periods of stress, the closer you move towards disease such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes etc. Stack the stress/uncertainty of COVID on top of the stress we already had, with no ability to control or predict the days or weeks ahead, it is enough to overwhelm the best of us, putting you in the direct path to burnout.
“Burnout is a form of exhaustion caused by constantly feeling swamped. It’s a result of excessive and prolonged emotional, physical, and mental stress”
Burnout isn’t an outcome you want to face. Whether you’re Type A, Type B…or Type X. Not only can it make you bedridden; with complete, utter exhaustion and loss of mojo, but it takes longer than you expect to recover. I’ve learned this the hard way; with four severe bouts of burnout over the last 10 years that left me bedridden with zero mojo left. Once you get to this state, forget your goals/ambitions…at that point you have nothing to give! Therefore, you must avoid this at all costs.
As a fellow Type A personality, I am not here to tell you to stop doing what you do best. I’m here to help you round out the edges of your life and unlock your potential, while ensuring you have abundant gas in your tank leftover for fun, leisure, loved ones and joyful activities.
The first step is to improve bioliteracy (body literacy); improving your ability to better understand the signals your body is sending you, including the leading indicators of burnout, so you can avoid it. It’s our goal to help you successfully ride the very edge of performance vs fatigue and ensure you know which lifestyle levers you need to adjust on a daily basis to keep you on that edge
Finding the edge and riding the executive performance wave
Over the last 10+ years, I’ve worked with executives, leaders, high-level athletes and working parents (including solo Mums and Dads) when they’re in optimal cognitive and physical performance as well as when they’ve reached the end of the road; suffering from chronic pain, discomfort, and/or a complete loss of energy and mojo. I used all these lessons to become an Ironman Athlete within 10 months, working 30% less to match the level of fellow athletes and prove a performance model that we now call the Taylored Four Pillar Philosophy. It works for executive function just as much for physical (if not MORE).
What I have learned is that the key to finding the edge (and successfully riding the executive performance wave) starts with data. But it’s not just about the data, it’s really about the meaning behind it.
If data is king, context is queen.
It’s the art of combining these two things together that creates magic. It helps to identify your tipping point zones AND what to do about it.
Why is this important?
Your time is too valuable to be fluffing about with trial and error or excess information. For example, you most likely skimed this blog to find the key takeaways and landed here, thanks to the bold text.
Your success comes from the ability to radically focus on information and actions that create the biggest impact. And if you want to elevate yourself to the next level, a warrant of fitness is in order. We must understand what parts of your mind, body and lifestyle is affecting your ability to run like a Formula One car vs a beat up old Volvo. This process gives us an ‘instruction manual’ for your individual mind and body.
Formula one racing complexities
The human body is a complex system with many moving parts. Due to advancements in clinical diagnostics and wearable technology, we now have a deeper understanding of leading and lagging indicators of health and disease. These technologies now give us valuable insight into our physiology and biochemical processes, removing some of the guesswork of treatments and getting to the root causes of symptoms.
We can also better navigate your unique tipping point zones with targeted understanding of how to help you perform and recover. This helps you completely avoid burnout too.
With a direct insight into your internal systems, we can personalise an approach to your unique biochemistry and physiology. Forget the generalistic recommendations based on the “average reference human” determined from mass population studies (mostly caucasian men) or the “normal ranges” that your doctor looks at.
We know these classic ranges aren’t representative of optimal health.
Remember, doctors are trained to treat disease and sickness. If no disease is immediately apparent (because your still in the “normal range”) there is nothing to treat.
We’re not here to point fingers and criticise doctors or the medical system. If you’re clinically ill or have an acute problem like a broken bone, cardiac event, or car crash, seeing a doctor or going to the hospital is the right answer.
But a classic 15 minute doctor’s appointment doesn’t permit an intensive assessment and coaching on elements like mindset, lifestyle, nutrition and movement to support preventative measures and daily efforts to crush your goals.
Therefore, if something feels “off” or you’re not performing at your best and your doctor tells you that you are perfectly healthy, dig deeper! Their metrics a very broad and you could be knocking on the door of disease without even knowing it.
Instead, ask yourself how you feel compared to a younger version of yourself.
- Do you have the same vitality/energy and ability?
- Are you able to live your life optimally without pain or issues with your body or mind?
If you’re not feeling as good as you once did, you should not accept this as normal or okay. Just because you’re getting older doesn’t mean aging the way you are is your fate.
Did you know that aging is actually a disease! Don’t believe me? Head over to a previous blog to learn more. What you once felt as a chronologically younger version of yourself may still be redeemable with the right approach. We’re not even selling snake oil when making these statements.
I am well aware this paradigm shift can be overwhelming and hard to grasp if you don’t spend much time in the health and longevity space. This is a very young area of health and wellbeing, but it is quickly evolving with groundbreaking discoveries happening every day.
You could wait until the industry matures and everything becomes clearer and cheaper through your doctor and the classic medical system. They say it will take ~10-15 years to catch up.
If you wait for mass adoption, you’ve lost years and YEARS of reaping the benefits. Much like the best way to beat cancer is to catch it early, the best way to redeeming your vitality and enhancing your healthspan is to act early.
Personally, I’ve been delving into this space for the last nine years. My life and business partner Rachel Kelly, a fellow A-type, and I both decided 2.5 years ago to lean even deeper and explore the latest and greatest clinical diagnostics and wearable technology, globally.
We’ve spent over $150,000 of our own savings to better understand the research, tools, techniques, tricks and technology to reap the benefits firsthand. We’re not waiting. Instead, we are very intentionally designing our future of health…living better by design, and through science. This enables us to achieve our life goals faster while and filling ALL our life wheel buckets with energy to spare.
We call this living a #tayloredlife and this is within your reach too
Check out our blog on the Taylored Warrant of Fitness and what this path might look like for you.
If you’re keen to start a conversation and explore walking this path with someone by your side, get in touch.
Are you ready to join us?