It’s a ‘happy’ coincidence that it’s Men’s Health Week because, after a long weekend which tested my energy and stress levels past breaking point (I have a toddler), I decided to take some steps to be a better person - less stressed, more patient and tolerant.
The first step I took was to start writing a list – if you have a plan, you’re halfway there. The first thing on the list? Exercise. I’ve ‘trained’ in some physical capacity for as long as I can remember, and (for me at least) getting the pins moving and the lungs burning is a sure-fire way to improving mood and clarity of thought.
So, as I ‘old-man shuffled’ through Sydney’s Botanical Gardens, along the harbour and around the Opera House, I listened to an excellent episode of ‘The Big Jim Show’, where Big Jim interviewed the Chief Smuggler at Budgie Smuggler. I always thought this company/brand was a bit cheesy, a bit ‘try hard’, but Chief Smuggler Adam seemed like a genuine, caring bloke, and it was refreshing to hear the story of how he ditched corporate ‘safety’ and took a chance on a loss-making business, how he chose to ‘not compete’ (instead focusing on sports that were not swimming), how the company steadily grew over many, many years, and how they try to look after those that have looked after them. It was also interesting to hear how Adam, who is a similar age to me, has had to prioritise his health more in recent years – the once ‘gut of steel’ finally showing its mortality, business woes and becoming a parent taking its toll (something I can empathise with).
The steps he’s taken to be healthier include drinking less, getting up and exercising in the morning, spending less time head down staring at his phone, and just appreciating the good things in his life – nothing ground-breaking, things we can all do, things we probably all know we should do. Whether you’re a man or not, this week is as good a time as ever to start taking steps to be healthier – and therefore happier.