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In her latest book, Dare to Lead, Brené Brown recounts a story from Air Force Colonel, DeDe Halfhill, in which Colonel Halfhill's airmen reported feeling exhausted. The cause of the exhaustion was something unexpected, and could teach us a lot in how we navigate the current pandemic. The cause of the exhaustion turned out to be loneliness.

Later in the book Brown lists her four pillars of self-compassion as Sleep, Healthy Food, Exercise and Social Connection, adding the last pillar to the Exercise, Diet, and Sleep that I have always considered to be the pillars of good health. We could add other things to the list, like Sunshine, Fresh Air, and A Sense of Purpose, but the four pillars offered by Brown are good for a minimum.

In another analysis, Brendan Burchard includes the ability to Generate Energy as one of the six things that distinguishes high performers. Energy is what makes us feel good and gets us out of bed in the morning, and much of it harkens back to these same basic things:

  • Sleep

  • Diet

  • Exercise

  • Social Connection

Admittedly, getting everything in the proper balance is easier said than done, but isolating ourselves indoors, away from sunlight, fresh air, and in many cases exercise and the people we love, is a very unhealthy way to live, and one that sucks our energy. Zoom is probably here to stay, but I, for one, am happy to be interacting with live people again.

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