We cannot compartmentalize our lives into neat little time slots. Separation is impossible!

We are a whole human being.

We have a body.

We have a mind.

We have emotions.

They are not separate, they are ONE!

We need to seek something more loftier…a fully integrated life.

When Anne and I were going through pre-cana classes prior to getting married 17 years ago, Deacon Bill gave us some of the best advice I've ever received.

His advice may seem obvious to you, but I assure you its practice is among the hardest challenges.

Family FunThe advice is simple.

Take care of yourself first, your spouse second, and then your kids. After the top 3, you can shuffle between extended family, friends, work, etc. Put a premium on the top 3.

One of the most neglected resources you have at your disposal is YOU! You are your most valuable resource. 

Your happiness is completely dependent on your ability to mange you. Without personal management, you will send your dissatisfaction to every relationship you have.

In most cases, you will do so without even being aware of doing it.  Call it a built-in survival mechanism to protect us from knowing the subtle damage we cause.

You cannot be of service to anyone else if you are not of service to yourself. 

Yes, this statement is one of the most obvious things you have heard. Sure it's common sense, but that does not mean we do not consistently take it for granted.

We cannot out run or hide from ourselves. We don't need a near death experience to realize the importance of taking care of ourselves.

What we need is a commitment to doing it.

What would have to be true for you to fully commit to taking care of yourself? What wake up call do you need to care for your most valuable resource?

Years later, Deacon Bill's advice plays out everyday of my life. Daily pressures to do this or do that seem to compromise my ability to take care of my most valuable resource. Alas, that is just another story I tell myself.

The truth is, when my life does not feel fully integrated, it is due to me not taking care of myself first. External constraints are not responsible for my self-neglect, I am.

My personal well-being is dependent on continually refueling my most precious resource, ME. Commitment to taking care of me is the foundational building block of a fully integrated life.

Knowledge becomes wisdom with practice.

Try I might, I will not always do so. I will fail. My failure will help me learn. Success will come from my learning.

My lofty goals cannot be satisfied by short-term gratification. Every day is an opportunity for me to practice getting better at taking care of myself. Every day is an opportunity to honor my most valuable resource.

Committing to taking care of myself for the long run is the gratification I strive for.

What say you? Are you commitment to protecting your most valuable resource?