Our bodies bear the brunt of our constant hustle. We can get so lost to working so hard thinking that it’s the only way we can produce more when, in fact, it impacts and lessens our output. In this episode, Kim Sutton discusses how physical health, or the lack thereof, impacts our productivity. She shares her personal experience of struggling with sleep deprivation and its toll on her life as a whole. Join Kim as she offers insights on productivity and why it goes hand in hand with our health.
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When Your Physical Health Suffers, Your Productivity Does Too
We’re talking about physical health. I know you may be wondering, “What does health have to do with productivity?” When my physical health has been struggling, my productivity has struggled right along with it. For example, when I am eating at my worst, I get all sluggish, I’m tired all the time, I need a nap in the afternoon and I’m likely gaining weight. If you haven’t heard me talk about that before, I have an underactive thyroid. When I’m not taking care of my thyroid, the same happens. My metabolism goes practically non-existent. I get irritable. I’m not hungry so I’m not nourishing my body. I’m tired some more. It’s a vicious cycle. In Episode Number 703, I talked about how we need to take responsibility for our mental health. What I didn’t share in that episode is that when I went to the mental hospital in 2008, the diagnosis that I received, in my opinion, was wrong. I must share this with you, not because I want to point fingers at the doctors and not because I want to say that they were 100% wrong because they have a point but they were treating the symptoms and not the cause.
When I was admitted for anxiety and depression, they did a blood test. What they found was that my thyroid levels were way out of whack. You may have heard me talk about this before. I am not a doctor, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist or anything that has initials after my name. Know that I don’t always know exactly what I’m talking about. One of the thyroid hormones is supposed to be measured normal between 0.1 and 0.2. Mine was 168. The doctor looked at me and he’s like, “I do not know how you are still alive.” For the rest of that stay and the months afterward for treatment, they were treating my thyroid. Had they asked more questions than they would have also found out that for years, this is 2008, I had been working a full-time job, as well as building a business on the side, which I would work until the wee hours of the morning.
I was seriously sleep-deprived. If the doctors had taken the time to find the root cause of my anxiety and depression, they would have known this. This is all in my humble opinion but I don’t believe I should have been all the meds that they sent me home with. I should have been on a prescription for sleep, exercise and more self-care. My job as an interior designer required that I get up at about 5:30 or 6:00 every morning. I lived an hour away from my office on backcountry roads so I had an hour of commute. I worked nine hours, drove the hour home, picked up my littles, fed them, put them to bed around 8:00 and then I would be up until 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning, working on my business, then rinse and repeat. Every day, up at 5:30 or 6:00, up until 2:00 or 3:00. This was for three years. Dear friend, unless you are part of the 1% that does not require so, you should be getting a minimum of 6 to 8 hours of sleep a night.
I likely had adrenal fatigue. I know I was sleep-deprived. Sleep deprivation leads to horrendous mental and physical side effects. The drugs that they put me on when I left the hospital were a variety of anxiety and depression medications. As a creative, I had a hard time with them. Along with the medications, I was also ordered by my doctor to shut my business down and I did. For the next year and a half, I was sleeping eight hours a night. My anxiety and depression went away on their own because I was not sleep-deprived. Did it happen overnight? No, but the drugs did more to affect me negatively than they did positively. When I look at white paper, I expect to see magic. When I was on those drugs and I looked at white paper, I didn’t see anything. When we’re looking at our business, mental health, physical health and relationships, if there are issues, problems or obstacles that we’re facing, we need to not just look at the symptoms but we need to look at the root causes.
I have three little ones. I have 6-year-old twins and a 7-year-old. I also have a 15-year-old and an 18-year-old. The twins and the seven-year-old are addicted to Band-Aids. If they get a scratch, even if it’s not bleeding, they want a Band-Aid on it. We need to stop putting Band-Aids on all the areas of our life, especially our physical wellbeing, where we need to investigate further. Ignoring the root causes can be expensive and costly in more ways than financial. Ignoring the root causes could, unfortunately, cost us our life. In the spirit of this theme where we’re discussing physical health and how it affects our small businesses, I want you to please start taking off the Band-Aids and looking deeper at everything. Look deeper within yourself physically and mentally.
Look deeper into your business. Stop slapping Band-Aids on everything and find out how to solve the solution and the problem at the source. As we discuss physical health further, I want to invite you to come back when I’ll share a journey that I had with my primary care physician. I promise you, it is relevant for positive productivity and how to grow our businesses. Make sure to come back. If you found any value in this episode, I would love to learn about it. Hop on over to TheKimSutton.com/pp705 and let me know your thoughts. With all this set, go forth and make it a positive and productive day.