Take 5 A Day

They’re kill joys, self righteous and just plain annoying! Is this how you feel about the people who ram endless healthy and nutritional advice down our throats that we’ll always ignore and then somehow feel guilty about afterwards? You know the ones I’m referring to, they’re obviously well intentioned but sometimes a little misguided in how they go about it, because no-one wants to feel guilty for living the way they choose to.  Please stop preaching at me and making me feel bad.

Aah but there is a catch here. At what point does good practice, education and sharing knowledge switch from being just that to in your face and annoying unwanted preaching? If we all knew the answers already then quite obviously we wouldn’t need to be reminded or shown a different way. With global obesity statistics going through the ceiling and child heart attacks and diabetes figures at record levels and continuing to grow the message obviously isn’t getting through. So why do we, metaphorically of course, want to shoot the messenger?

Is it just simply that we choose to “ignore the good advice I just should have taken” (Thank you Alanis Morissette). Do you think we are immune and bullet proof so it won’t affect us? Having run my business for over ten years I have ignored more advice than I care to admit in public, my actions, lack of actions and indecisive nature has cost me ’00s and ‘0000s. But much of this could have been avoided if I had taken that good advice.

We live with our choices. Take Five a day = 1200 per year (based on 240 working days in a year) – If I asked you to complete a simple task or activity 1200 times (eat 1200 apples) in a year the chances are you would probably flinch and ignore the request. But that is just 5 a day – it could be Tweeting 5 times a day, making 5 cold calls a day or just simply speaking with 5 customers or introducers every day. What would or could that do for your business?

Take this a step further and consider an average of 5 a day – which means some days you will need to do 10 because there will be days when you will forget, get distracted or just not want to do X. I prefer the rule that you have to turn this into a positive habit, meaning it must be done every day, should you do extra on one day you cannot carry them onto another because every day starts at zero. This isn’t always practical, but it’s your choice. Set an average or create a habit that can’t be broken – either way it will make a difference.

Reality says the reason why we get annoyed by the advice is due to self-inflicted guilt because we have chosen to ignore it time and time again. If you have a balanced system in place then guilt will not come to haunt you, however if you’re burying your head in the sand and hoping that it won’t affect you then it’s time to make a different choice. 5 fruit and veg really isn’t that difficult to achieve and some days you’ll have loads more. Find your balanced average. Good Luck

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