BurnOut When to listen to your Mind and Body for greater success

In my book Balance is Bullsh*t I talk a lot about the ideas that push us to do what we do every single day. What keeps us looking toward the horizon and reaching for our goals. But when is it too much?  

balance is bullshit joshua lee book

One thing I’ve struggled with off and on throughout my life and business is my health. I want to share an excerpt from the book for today’s Dopamine Dose because many times at the beginning of the year our health becomes a priority.  

Give it a read and see how it resonates with you and how you approach your health and your business: 

Too busy to work out

I allowed the business to run me over and control my life. I was making money and thinking everything was good. I was wrong.  

I’ve had many lows where all of a sudden the money dried up. If you don’t have the strength and the willpower inside, and the health to keep yourself pushing forward, how are you going to move from that valley into the next business peak?   

That’s where it hit me. I realized you have to value all aspects of your life. If I am going to make it, I have to be just as committed to my health goal as I am to my business goal.  

That is when I started doing a lot of races because it was more engaging to me than just lifting weights. I did our first mud run because a couple of friends had invited me to do it with them. Some races we would even dress up in costumes. Before long, we had our own little group of individuals to compete with in these mud runs.  

mud run with friends

To my surprise, I started finishing higher in the mud races than I had expected. I really enjoyed those races. I liked doing the crazy obstacles. It was fun.  

I had a natural spirit of competition, so it would push me to go farther and faster. At a certain point, I’d hit a peak. I was doing a lot of different types of mud/adventure races including Spartan, Warrior Dash, Tough Mudder and others.  

Joshua B Lee mud race medal

Assuming you’re competitive, with a strong vision and motivation, you’ll do what it takes to rise to the next level and the next. I was peaking. I was at one of my fastest points. But again, I lost sight of my vision for my health. It happened as I was training to complete in a half Ironman.

One day while I was in training for this half Ironman, one of my friends called and said, “Hey, man, let’s lift today.” He was a good five or six years younger than I was, but that never stopped me and often times pushed me more.

At the gym he throws down the gauntlet “Let’s go heavy” I let my ego get the better of me and with out question I’m in…. I was 31 but hadn’t done heavy weightlifting in the previous 12 months. I was setting myself up for disaster with this workout and didn’t care as the thrill of competition had gotten hold of me once again. I had been preparing my muscles for the half Ironman, which has nothing to do with heavy lifting.

My muscles were stretched out and lean at the time, and when you’re planning to lift heavy, you have to train and prepare your muscles for that. I hadn’t, and my muscles weren’t conditioned for heavy lifting. We started bench-pressing and quickly worked up to 315 pounds.

I lowered the 315 pounds to my chest and then pushed them back up again. The next thing I knew, I felt this little sharp pain.

Riiipppp! A shooting pain bolted down my arm and radiated the other way toward my sternum.

I was only on the second rep but felt a piercing pain in my right arm and shoulder area. I thought I just pulled something.

As a guy, however, I had the mistaken belief I could work through it.

There are a lot of people in life who have the philosophy, “Why can’t we just work through it?” They don’t acknowledge the pain that is happening in their life.

If you feel pain in any part of life, this is a signal to stop and rethink what you’re doing.

dona stoner-blech quote

Because pain is not good. I don’t care if it’s in health or in business, you have to be cognizant of what’s going on.

So what did I do? I pushed through the pain, of course, like an idiot. It still hurt. We moved over to incline bench press and that still hurt. Then over to decline bench.

There must have been three different times my body sent me a pain signal to tell me to stop. Finally, on the second set of decline, I realized it was a more serious problem. I knew a doctor visit (and likely bad news) was in my immediate future.

This “just push through the pain” philosophy, without rethinking or discovering the root cause of the pain, is what so many people adhere to in life and business. And, it’s what holds so many people back.

There will be times in your life when you do have to persevere through the pain but pain is a signal to pay attention to and get to its root cause. There is more to the story. Simply doing more or trying harder may not be the solution. Many times it just leads to magnified frustration.

The moral to this story is – you can’t do it ALL, all the time.

Doing more and more can lead to you just spinning your wheels. You have to use your time wisely and recognize when the pain starts to happen, in all aspects of your life.

That’s it for this week’s Dopamine Dose, but don’t forget our first Community Call of the year happens on January 18th – we’re going to dive deep into all the most exciting new trends, tools and exciting predictions for social media into 2022 and beyond – click here and get registered now!

exciting predictions of 2022