Becoming Brilliant at The Basics is My New Year’s Resolution

I just read this inspiring story about Green Bay Packers trainer Vince Lombardi. In 1959, when he became the head coach of the team playing poorly, someone asked him if he were to change players and strategy to correct the situation. Lombardi’s response was unexpected: “I am not going to change anything. We will use the same players, the same plays, and the same training system. But we will concentrate on becoming brilliant at the basics.”

The beginning of the first team meeting with the new coach became legendary: he raised the football and declared: “Gentlemen, this is the football.” Under his leadership, the Green Bay Packers won two Super Bowls, and he went down in football history as an outstanding coach.

I love this story because of the three words starting with the Bs: Becoming Brilliant at the Basics. These days, our focus is diluted by all the extras, especially regarding health. But in contrast to what the latest advertisement says, good health does not require an Oura Sleep Ring, clothes from Lululemon, or the newly developed collagen powder.

Stop chasing smoke and mirrors. It is time to tune out the fluff and get back to basics. Sleeping in a dark & cool bedroom, moderating your caffeine/alcohol consumption, a short daily morning workout in pajamas, and bone broth may do more for your overall health than all the shiny and the latest gimmicks combined. It is ok to have them, just don’t get carried away to be distracted from your main goal. 

The basics of health are simple and have been around for centuries: spiritual life, movement, nourishing foods/beverages, sound sleep, a chance to pursue your passions, an outlet for creativity, rewarding work, and loving relationships. These all can be attained organically through consistent, focused effort and practice. As the legendary coach Lombardi said: “Practice does not make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect.” And while “perfection is not attainable…if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence…”

My New Years Resolution summed up: Perfect Practice of Becoming Brilliant At Basics To Catch Excellence

The perfect practices of the basics for me would be:

1) spiritual basics= daily morning guided meditation, spiritual literature, Bible reading

2) physical basics= 4-7 minute movement of my body first thing in the morning + cold shower + quality food & frequent colorful smoothies + going to bed by 10 pm + daily walks + yoga

 3) mental basics= reading 1 book a month; exercising my passion in writing + working at the clinic helping people feel better

4) loving relationships basics = make quality time for romance, family, and friends  

I will be keeping myself accountable for these practices in the new year.

What are your basics? What consistent practices of these basics would you want to become brilliant at in the New Year?

Pigeon Island National Park (St. Lucia)

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