APU Business

The Elixir Of Life

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Ken Makovsky, Forbes
Special to Online Career Tips

Everyone knows that people in business tend to complain about stress, and there is a plethora of articles that tell us how to manage it. I have seen more tips than I know what to do with.

Having been in the public relations business for a long time, I know that the fields of advertising and public relations are often cited and discussed as among the most stressful. For example, I recently read that, for the third straight year, “public relations executive” was among CareerCast’s annual list of the most stressful jobs in America.

You may agree or disagree with the findings of this study, but there’s no doubt that stress exists. The good news is there’s at least one easy fix for stress, according to research from Princeton University … and it’s exercise!

“Physical activity reorganizes the brain so that its response to stress is reduced and anxiety is less likely to interfere with normal brain function,” according to a Princeton news release issued in early July.

Research aside, I am not sure how many of us are aware of the savior that exercise really is. Someone told me, years ago, that you have to be healthy if you are going to build a successful business, and therefore management of diet, exercise and sleep were critical. Each had to be taken as seriously as if they were client projects in and of themselves. After years of doing this, I swear by this advice.

Exercise goes on my calendar is if it were a client meeting — three times a week. Sometimes I have to cancel out, just like any meeting, but it always gets rescheduled. I also know that exercise is the best antidote to severe stress or “depression.” When something bad happens, exercise. After an hour or so, you will feel markedly better. It returns you to your normal range so you can function enthusiastically. Being depressed increases stress, wastes time and halts progress. One can suffer darts daily, so having a methodology to return to normalcy is as critical as any other business skill. If you get hit hard, you get no more than one hour for depression! That enables you to make good things happen quickly!

I can tell you from personal experience that, as corny as this sounds, exercise along with diet management is, for me, the elixir of life. It enables energy and drive beyond your years. It keeps your complexion radiant. And it enables you to become a shock absorber, handling difficult developments in a calm, confident state, so that others you work with know that you are under control. Because you are.

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