First a quote: “Health is not valued till sickness comes”. – Thomas Fuller
Bill Gillispie, Jr., a good friend of mine, recently suggested I write an article on the importance of valuing, and appreciating, your health before it is gone. It’s true isn’t it, far too often we take our health for granted until it is too late. It almost feels like an epidemic; poor eating habits and/or too little exercise, too little sleep, maybe a sedentary lifestyle, could be too many cigarettes or too much alcohol, or perhaps a combination of bad habits with little desire or effort to change, all because we take our health for granted.
Bill should know. While his health challenges are not related to his personal habits, he was diagnosed with MS in 1999 and has been fighting this disease for almost 20 years. His MS progression has been slower, and his symptoms are currently manageable, making him one of the more fortunate people fighting this crippling disease. More recently, Bill was also diagnosed with prostate cancer which required the surgical removal of his prostate gland. All of this prompted his suggestion of imploring people to not take their health for granted.
I’ll never forget the day Bill told me he now sees his MS diagnosis as a blessing in his life. You might ask yourself how MS could possibly be a blessing! Bill’s answer would be that he no longer takes each day for granted, and for the first time in his life, he is living with purpose and focus. Bill has made it his personal goal to support others in their battles with the same disease and he seeks to help find a cure for MS in his lifetime. Team Gillispie has raised more than $1.97 million dollars in that effort. This year, we hope to top $2 million dollars. (We would love your help and welcome all donations!)
Having an attitude of gratitude has served Bill well. His doctors have told him over and over that a positive attitude is an important part of fighting the disease. Plus, he and Gretchen find lots of ways to make a difference in lives the of others including generously feeding, and serving, the hungry and homeless on the streets of Chicago. I am so proud to call both friends. They make me a better person for sure.
Bill’s advice to others often includes:
- Do not take your health for granted. Eat better, move more, make time for exercise.
- Have a positive attitude about life! It’s a choice you make every day!
- Learn from the past, prepare for the future, enjoy the present… every second.
- Serve others, especially those less fortunate than yourself.
- Have fun, enjoy life.
And two bonus quotes:
“Those who don’t make time for exercise will eventually have to make time for illness.” – Edward Stanley
“You can’t expect to look like a million bucks if you eat from the dollar menu.” Anonymous
How will you lead differently, or better, this week?
All the best! Give your best. Do your best. Be your best and the best shall be returned to you in full. I promise.
“Expanding Your Capacity for Success”