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Make It Happen Tipsheet
Career Management and Life Balance

Fit and Sharp

Most successful executives are bombarded with emails, voicemails, faxes, and a queue of people looking for feedback or approval. With their attention so divided, how much time do they have to be creative, do their own analysis, or even digest the big picture? And once family pressures are added, stress will eventually take its toll. Yet how is it that so many senior people look so fit and sharp? This is where exercise fits in.

Beyond helping give you a buffed-up physique, exercise provides two key benefits: stress reduction and thinking time. The more you exercise - whether it be a long cycle, an aerobics class, or even a walk with your dog - the more benefit you accrue. Most people intellectually know that they should "get fit", but don't recognize this connection to achievement. Even the smallest amount of exercise can help. How to start? some ideas:

* Instead of a coffee break, take an exercise break: walk around the block, or at least do some stretches at your desk.

* Park your car in the far reaches of the parking lot, to get in a few extra minutes of walking. Even better, consider walking or cycling to the office.

* Change your weekly schedule to make room for walks, fitness club time, or some other regular exercise.

This week's action item: just before exercising, write a list of your top three problems. When you are back at your desk, sit down and attack these problems one-by-one. If you are like most people, even the most challenging problems will seem simpler. Do this often, and you too can be fit and sharp.

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Make It Happen
Copyright 2006 Knowledge to Action Press and Randall Craig. All rights reserved. Publication date: April 11, 2006