There’s two types of workaholics out there. The first is the workaholic too socially terrified to approach the natural world and, therefore, subsequently insistent on submerging themselves in a pile of to-do’s. The second is the workaholic so genuinely infatuated with the literal work at hand, the act of achieving, the process of making money, that he can barely eat, sleep and socialize on a regular basis, let alone roll out to the bar and manage to get laid. And unless you’ve magically learned to balance this work fetish with calm and centeredness (i.e. living in some remote Italian villa on the Amalfi Coast while making millions working out of home), you’re probably really stressed out right now.
Step One: Sleep – Somehow
Getting good sleep is no joke – it couldn’t be more necessary. Oftentimes people in high-stress environments pursuing extremely ambitious careers feel superior to sleep and the importance of a regular sleep schedule. Ultimately, this always ends poorly. Sleep expert David F. Dinges, Ph.D., of the Division of Sleep and Chronobiology and Department of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine cites "apathy, slowed speech and flattened emotional responses, impaired memory and an inability to be novel or multitask," as common symptoms of unhealthy sleep patterns. So while it may seem as though you are conquering the world by denying yourself sweet dreams, be ware that you may slip into temporary lunacy during your pitch meeting and wish you had chosen to do otherwise.
Step Two: Wake Up with Intention
Most of us throw ourselves from the mattress, to the coffee maker, to the shower, to the car door, to the desk. The problem here is that we begin our day without any sort of conscious direction, which is key to an ability to remain relaxed in the face of deadlines, surmounting projects and potential plans. So, upon flipping back those eyelids, take a simple one or two minutes to do a brief meditation. Whether this means looking out the window and internally whispering words of positivity, having your coffee in the garden, or reading the comic strip in the morning paper, this moment will encourage your body to stay alert to the human in you, instead of the tireless machine you’ve taught it to become.
Step Three: Travel – Whenever
I know you’re rolling your eyes already. You’re thinking, there’s barely time as it is even to brush your teeth, but traveling is worth making more time. If you don’t allow yourself to broaden your scope of thought and move beyond the office space and computer screen, you will never escape the circular pattern of work, work and more work. Something as simple as weekend trips to nearby sights or something as well deserved as an exotic trek through the African countryside will refresh, revitalize and remind you that life is about more than transactions and telephones.
Step Four – Allow Healthy Isolation
Speaking of telephones, shut them off. Now you’re really rolling your eyes, I know. But, even if just for five minutes a day, it is essential to throw your iPhone into a drawer somewhere and recollect your senses. Take a walk around the block, lay back and shut your eyes, meditate through deep breathing. Five minutes is enough. Swami Kriyananda, a direct disciple of the yogi Paramahansa Yogananda, encourages everyone to establish a connection with such practices in order to revitalize their whole beings. "Meditation is more than a practice conducted at specific times of the day. It is a habit of mind, a way of life," says Kriyananda. The idea here is that in time your body will not even necessarily need the meditation in order to feel relaxed. You’ll have created the inner habit and will therefore be able to maintain calm even in the midst of ten meetings, managers and more work to do.
Step Five – Have Sex – Always
We all know sex feels fantastic, but it always happens to do fantastic things for our inner beings. Upon orgasm, a chemical called DHEA is released which Dr. Theresa Crenshaw, author of Alchemy of Love and Lust, declares may be the most powerful in the relationship between physical and personal feelings of goodness. working to "balance the immune system, improves cognition, promotes bone growth, and maintains and repairs tissues, keeping your skin healthy." Between DHEA and Oxytocin (another chemical released which floods the body with endorphins i.e. bliss), having a healthy sex life should be a number one priority to a stressed made man.