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How a Simple Table Led Me to a New Model for Health

A simple table that created a new mental model for better health

Sometimes the obvious isn’t so clear.

I was outlining and working on a post for our brother site on becoming your best self and in doing so I jotted out a table of how controlling stress, sleeping and eating better and exercising more effect your Physical, Mental and Emotional well being. Being the geek I laid it out with the behavior in a column and the well being item in a row.

  Physical Mental  Emotional
Control Stress x x x
Sleep Better x x x
Eat Better x x x
Exercise x x x


At first glance, one would say duh.  If you control stress for instance, it helps all three types of well being, same with the other behaviors.

But can’t you also read this as making an effort to take care of your Physical well being, will control stress, help you sleep better, and make you more likely to eat and exercise better…

And then I realized that a two dimensional table was unable to contain the relationships withing a behavior group or mental aspect.

For instance if you fail to eat better, but exercise more will the indigestion from a poor diet kill your sleep, which in turn raises your stress?

or if you sleep, exercise and eat right, but fail to control your stress, surely your mental and emotional well being will suffer and maybe even physical health.


So the 4 behaviors are lock step and need to be moved in the positive direction or they may cancel each other and neglecting emotional health, may impact not only your mental and physical health, it will impact your stress, your sleep, your eating patterns and your desire to exercise.


Summary, no easy way out, you must eat and sleep better, you must control your stress and exercise regularly AND you need to pay attention to and seek help for physical, mental and emotional health issues.  


So perhaps a better model for better health would be a spider web where each item is connect to every other item.  That strand whether it vibrates positively or negatively effects every other with its energy.

So, if you are on the struggle bus with any of these aspects, take a hard look at all the other attachments.


The (Un)Settled-Man


Simplicity should not be identified with bareness.

~Felix Adler



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