Opinions expressed by entrepreneur Contributors are their own.
As entrepreneurs and leaders, we plan strategically for nearly every aspect of our businesses. But the one thing that can affect or destroy our entire operation is the one thing almost nobody ever talks about or plans for: our personal health and the health of our team members.
If you got sick today, would your company’s cash flow dry up? If your COO became ill, who would step in and fill that role? You spend years building and training your team, and with a diagnosis it can all go downhill. Nobody wants to think about the possibility of someone getting sick, but planning for the health and longevity of you and your employees is something savvy business owners need to do.
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I know that from my own expirience. At 45, life was smooth sailing. I had more than $1 million in contractual commitments that allowed me to have a beautiful lifestyle for my family, with two mortgages, a private school, and upcoming college expenses for my son.
Then came the cancer. I was so busy with work that I ignored alarming signs that something was wrong until it was too late. When I saw my doctor, I was diagnosed with stage 3A colon cancer at a critical point in my career. Those contracts had to be fulfilled, dead or alive, and in the meantime I had to endure surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, and all of the horrific aftermath, including financial strain.
Somehow I survived that nightmare scenario and today my business is thriving. But I swore I would never go back to that place, nor do I want anyone I know or love ever to have to go there.
make health a priority
My cancer experience has taught me to do things differently, to put my health above all else, through learning stress management techniques, mindset hacks, nutrition logs, and exercise programs to help me feel good. One thing I now know for certain is that you can’t run a business well if you’re pushing your body into the abyss, and you certainly can’t achieve your long-term goals if you’re battling disease or disease.
When I was feeling my best, my productivity increased and my outlook on life changed. But I kept thinking that what I didn’t know before my cancer diagnosis nearly cost me my company, my lifestyle, and my life. How would my life be different if I had known about my cancer earlier – before it was stage 3A?
So when I heard about the medical advance known as a full body scan, I knew I had found a new way to live life to the fullest. Body Scan is a way to manage your health the way you manage your business – by anticipating problems before they get out of hand.
“With a quick four-minute scan, a radiologist can quickly pinpoint an area of concern, disease or disease, and if there’s an area of concern, the quickest route to the treatment you need,” says Steve Marler, a pioneer of body scanning Technology and owner of Advanced Body Scan. “It’s a concept that flips traditional American ‘nursing’ on its head — looking for underlying problems before they become symptomatic and taking action to fix them before you actually get sick.”
In my desire to prevent future illnesses, I immediately signed up for a body scan. I was surprised to learn how badly my brain had been affected by the chemotherapy and began the necessary treatment.
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I was so impressed that I wanted my wife in the scanner next. And then I invested in my team’s preventative health by paying everyone I work with over 40 (and anyone with a possible pre-existing condition or genetic marker) to get a body scan.
What happened to one of my key employees further cemented my commitment to invest my company’s resources in health strategies. The scan revealed that this young and apparently healthy individual was suffering from an undiagnosed ‘widowmaker’ heart condition, which fortunately can be treated if caught early.
And since life extension strategies are among my clients’ most requested tools, I’ve also incorporated mastermind retreats of ABS body scan technology for them – and I know we’ve positively impacted the lives of many of my clients in some serious ways.
The smartest investment
Now body scans and other health strategies are benefits for my employees. Surviving cancer and being committed to my personal health has taught me that allocating resources to individual and team health and longevity is a progressive and necessary step in the health of your organization that is as important as focusing on the final result. If you are the driving force behind a business or are highly dependent on one or more people in your business, you cannot afford to do anything else.
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For me, helping my team members and colleagues focus on their own personal health is an expense that pays off every day. Everyone comes to the table knowing that I value them as an individual and that I value their health and well-being as much as their energy output. And that gives us a much better chance of achieving our common goals.
I now know that the way to live life to the fullest and in your zone of true genius is not to burn yourself out in a flare-up of stress and worry. The way to optimize your life is to focus on health and longevity and to increase the quality of your life and the life of those around you.
“You can be the CEO of your own health and you can do it on your own terms,” Marler once told me, and I now know it’s true.