Unleash the Full Potential of Your Lifestyle—The Antidote to “Self-Help”—Part 2
You are Living a Performance Lifestyle Right Now.
There is no one aspect of living performance lifestyle that you are not already employing in your life right now. That’s right, you are practicing every aspect of performance lifestyle right now in your life including the restoration of personal energy. If you weren’t you would either be seriously dysfunctioning, which may be true for you or dead, which is not true yet because you’re reading this.
Performance Lifestyle represents all the essential aspects of living, fist and foremost in service of maintaining your life force energy— the key to human performance.
The thing is, most of us are practicing the essential aspects of living today at such a low level because we are so caught up spending our energy on a lot of unessential trappings like social media, TV, and other pastimes that have exploded into all year round affairs, like your child’s soccer or lacrosse. Not to mention working all the time, innovative creative pursuits and the draw of individual and team sports at all ages.
With access to so much information and opportunity in modern life, so much of which is enthrallingly good; the busier we get the less time, we have to take care of our selves.
Sure, maybe we focus on eating healthy and exercising, and say we’ll get more sleep, but when we say “take care of our selves” we mean giving ourselves enough space, time and the environment to regenerate the energy that primarily drives us.
Having been distracted away from the essential ways of living (sleep and the getting enough sun for examples) we are now living without the full “recharge” (without the potential) we once took for granted when we were younger and recent past generations never really learned how to harness. And we end up willing our way through life, because of that depleted energy and diminishing performance capacity which creates a dysfunctional understanding of and relationship with human performance and lifestyle.
And that points back to living from the neck up, divorced from your body and what supports healthy, human performance as you live caught up in tier-one living practices.
Tier-one living practices are rooted in the traditional models of motivation and managing time, trying to keep up and performing at peak all the time; the thinking that keeps you overwhelmed, overstimulated, under recuperated, overfed but undernourished (sometimes overnourished), super busy but physically inactive, and coping with unresolved, unnecessary or excessive stress, that distracts and holds you back with depleted energy, and consequentially health, and performance issues.
Yeah, that is a mouthful, but that is what we’re doing these days. And worse, thinking that your performance issues are somehow, just you not living up to your potential!
Most people live at tier one, and somehow find the energy to keep going, driving themselves to perform with external motivations, many of which are inspiring and noble; but in spite of that, because most of us don’t have lifestyle’s that restore our energy levels, we have less and less potential to unleash. And that is why we aren’t talking about unleashing our full potential, and are talking about unleashing the full potential of our lifestyles.
If you don’t have a context for lifestyle and the levels at which you can optimize the way you live, ref: the content of a performance lifestyle; you risk going through life, never realizing that there is a “second tier” for living, and it’s awesome. Especially, as an achiever-type, because as a driven person, you want and depend on high levels of energy to achieve your goals…
It’s also our reason for being as a company.
Our primary aim is to resolve the fact that so few of us live at our full potential, with enough naturally occuring energy. And then don’t know what it means to “unleash” or better said “manage” that potential energy. We therefore help people evolve with the new performance lifestyle mindset and skill set so that we all know how to recover from excess stress and restore our energy. And then live in balance with vibrant health and peace of mind while achieving even our most ambitious goals.
Unleashing our full potential, sounds inspiring, but how do you do that?
A high profile site in the human performance space, asks “have you unleashed your full potential?” Sounds inspiring, but in our view, that is not the question; as if you do it once and then it’s done.
And what does unleashing your full potential even mean; how do you do it?
As stated above, for most it means driving themselves hard through life, overcoming fatigue and challenges to achieve their goals; and there is some value in this. There are times when you just have to overcome and will your way through a life situation because you don’t have space or time. But as a way of life, it may be shortening your life and quality of life, while you are alive.
And while that is not what the Human Performance Insitute is saying in the above link, knowing first hand that they have been pioneers in the fields of personal energy management and human performance; we assert that the emphasis needs to be on your lifestyle if you want to ‘unleash” your full potential, because performance is a lifestyle.
Therefore, we think it means living as who you really are at the full or near full capacity of your body-brain to accomplish and achieve your goals; and with a high quality of life in the process of living for nearly 100 years or more. And that could only be the result of a lifestyle that is “firing on all cylinders” so to speak.
It’s NOT enough to say you are going to eat a little healthier, exercise a little more, and get a little more sleep here and there (all noble ideas, even if they may be impotent) and then rely on willpower amidst chronic stress and energy depletion from excess stress.
That is not a winning mindset and reflects a limited skill set that results in the likelihood that you will expire at 75 or sooner in today’s fast-paced performance culture, with a dependency on drugs to stay alive; a full 25% short of the finish line, or your “full potential.”
Those are telling and accurate numbers. Just look around.
Why we use athletes as our primary models
Performance Lifestyle, at the outset, uses athletes as our primary model because they are the most visible example of a population of people who, for at least a period of their lifetime, knows they need to stay healthy and directly links their lifestyle with their performance and success. And because of that, we admire them for the way they look, feel and perform.
As the example, it shouldn’t be a surprise to you that 90+ % of diet and fitness gurus are current or former athletes. What does that say? It means they likely have a whole lifestyle supporting their health and performance, meanwhile, you’re focused on your diet and fitness alone, with maybe an extra hour of sleep here and there.
What is making that guru successful, to look, feel and perform at the level they are, is far more than their diet or fitness program; it’s the fact that they unleashing the full potential of their lifestyle or at least more of it than the average person.
But just because that’s true, it doesn’t mean athletes know how to teach that to you. So you get what they can wrap their heads around and that is usually only a small percentage of what’s really in play in their own lives.
I know I didn’t have the expertise when I got started; I talked about nutrition and fitness in innovative ways too but realized that it wasn’t enough. It took nearly 20 years to become “performance lifestyle” fluent.
After a while, I realized that what we are really doing is helping the general population, in particular, the driven among us, to understand human performance, and the lifestyle mindset and skillset that gives rise to optimal human performance over the longer haul.
Athletes live to perform and are therefore prone to unleashing their full potential in the short span of their lives by becoming more proficient at a wider array of lifestyle skills than most to experience the performance results they do. But while athletes or former athletes know a lot about performance, and their culture reinforces many aspects of a performance lifestyle, it doesn’t mean they understand the lifestyle.
Case in point, after sports many fall prey to living poorly.
Discovering how to live in the second tier.
In athletics, we certainly discover the mindset and some of the Performance Lifestyle skill sets but often, even with athletes during or after sport we often see breakdowns and a morph into living like most people on a premature downward spiral.
To live in balance with vibrant health and peace of mind while achieving even your most ambitious goals, for life, requires the development of a ‘wholistic’ lifestyle that truly delivers what it really means to unleash your full potential.
Healthy and successful sports athletes and nonsport athletes alike (if you have a body you are an athlete) challenge themselves, and training is central to their lives as they prepare for events; mind-settings that would do any driven person a whole lot of good. But it’s not just their talent or skill that enables the elite athlete to perform the way they do, it’s their lifestyle that is supporting their health, performance, and longevity—success— that makes the difference and foremost, one that prevents them falling prey to fatigue.
With the same mindset, you too can steer clear of constant tiredness and fatigue, but now as a function of unleashing the full potential of your lifestyle. And that means proactively practicing all the essential activities that “enable” you to store energy, stay healthy, function and perform at the levels you see for yourself, by practicing all the essential lifestyle skills at a whole new level– at tier-two.
Reducing stress, managing your energy, elevating your health performance and longevity, is about living to perform in a healthy way for a long period of time.
Life itself at the core is about managing stress and energy from birth till death, from where we are to where we want to be. It’s a given. But when energy gets low due to too much stress, and we don’t recover from that excess stress, generally we end up coping in ways that create more stress; in an array of vicious psychological, mental/emotional, nutritional, and physical cycles, that result in a premature downward spiral.
That so many societally-determined successful people die in their 50’s, 60,’s and 70’s is evidence of that coping with stress in ways that create more stress; and many of those people, I’m sure thought they were unleashing their full potential. And they likely did, at the cost of their life.
Of course, that is not what we are suggesting you do in this article; but if you leave your lifestyle up to the self-help industry, the chances increase for just such an outcome as you drive yourself at least a little bit crazy; crazy busy accomplishing and achieving all the time.
We need more than self-help. Developing ourselves psychologically is useful, but divorced from the lifestyle that’s going to support and sustain the achievement-orientation that the self-help industry naturally promotes, the self-help industry is just another drug or stimulant.
Most performance solutions out there don’t solve the real problem or the whole problem for that matter. and offer only a partial view of the human performance landscape at best. And none is focused on unleashing the full potential of your lifestyle so that your entire approach to life improves, not just your thinking, diet or exercise habits.
We’re talking about learning how to recover from the excess stress of the past and it’s impact on you at the cellular level; optimizing your sleep, getting largely free of sleep and energy debt, de-stressing, periodizing your schedule, eating and exercising to free up energy, energize you and focus.
Then geing grounded in who you really are, in right relationship with your head, with the ability to straighten out your thinking
(eventually on the fly) and into a renewable life pattern. All of that will reduce your stress. And then as get you into a performance lifestyle, you can call your own, developing the lifestyle mindset and skills set that enables you to manage your energy, elevate your health, performance and longevity.
This is Living in Tier Two.
You improve your lifestyle (the original and central cause of almost everything) from sleep to living with optimal energy levels, in an optimal performance state in a lifestyle that supports you and what you are up to in the world. If we want to steer clear of lifestyle-induced diseases, which are 85-95% why so many people are suffering from fatigue, energy, weight, health and performance issues, to begin with, we need to improve our lifestyles in the context of maximizing energy, health, and human performance and literally live to perform. And that creates longevity.
That is what creates near and longer-term success results across a longer lifespan with a longer healthspan. And without the performance addiction.
When you don’t focus on human performance and the lifestyle that supports it, you will inevitably shortchange your potential (forget unleashing it). Slowly but surely fatigue, low energy, inflammation and weight gain, poor health, and a lowered performance capacity (none of which in and of themselves are original causes and are symptoms or byproducts of your lifestyle) will take over your life.
But you don’t want that do you. So focus on developing a Performance Lifestyle.
You wake up to be successful.
Performance is what you expect when you wake up in the morning and if you can’t perform at your full potential, meaning at your full performance capacity, it’s natural to look at why and fixate on the symptoms; but it’s your lifestyle that’s causing those symptoms; “lifestyle” is the original cause.
Does your lifestyle need to be healthy? Yes of course. Health-promoting is the given not the goal in what’s called a Performance Lifestyle, and it’s foundational to human performance. But if you want to unleash your full potential and perform a full or near capacity for a long time, then you’ve you’ve got to unleash the full potential of your lifestyle for health, performance, and longevity.
Your performance lifestyle will make sure you perform at your full potential, be productive and successful.