Pilar Gerasimo, journalist, social explorer, podcaster and self-proclaimed healthy deviant, talks about the leadership benefits of good health. She explains the effects of the ultradian rhythm with periods of intense focus separated by periods of relaxation. She also cites recent research on high-intensity performers, how they recharge, and offers her favorite revolutionary ways to better health.
[4:04] A healthy deviant is above-average health, and making deliberate, healthy choices while sidestepping unhealthy norms.
[6:10] Pilar notes research that good health supports leadership success. Healthy, happy people are more capable leaders, and more able to manage stress and challenges. It takes a significant amount of resilience to be a good leader, when stress climbs.
[9:58] A major source of stress is having negative experiences, or unresolved conflicts, or friction with other people. Job satisfaction relates directly relationships with peers, and with bosses. Stress adds to your reactivity, which decreases ability to lead and manage teams.
[11:15] Early philosophers and scientists used their time to observe how things are and how they work. In spite of progress in technology, things have not really changed since then. What works for people, still works. What degrades quality of life, or presence with other people, is still true. A return to the philosophies of old is a refreshing break from sensational ‘listicles,’ and soundbites lacking substance.
[14:30] Pilar recently published a podcast episode of The Living Experiment, on attractiveness. She discusses the factors that contribute to attractiveness, and how attractiveness relates to promotability. Attractiveness is, in part, a reflection of health. Stress degrades health and attractiveness.
[20:41] Pilar discusses the 101 Revolutionary Ways to be Healthy. Some favorites: #5 Repossess your health; #9 Safeguard your juju; Don’t let yourself get run down, depressed, negative, or reactive; #68, and #89 slow down, and pace yourself. As people are rushing, they can lose sight of the fact that rushing is physiologically and mentally toxic.
[27:06] After about 90 to 120 minutes of focused effort without a break, the neurological systems start to degrade, mistakes happen, accidents happen, creativity, productivity, and capacity break down, along with the immune response, and you are unable to use new information until you rest.
[29:25] Ultradian rhythm breaks of 5, 10, or 20 minutes are recommended every 90 to 120 minutes. This keeps our focus fresh and inflammation down. This can be a walk, a nap, or other shift to low-focus activity. You produce energy resource adenosine triphosphate (ATP) during your break. You get an immediate pay-off. Come back to your project, and you see a solution quickly. You get more done.
How to contact Pilar:
“Leaders tend to be more successful when they’re healthy and fit, and, in fact, they’re perceived as more successful, and better leaders.”
“It takes a significant amount of resilience to be a credible leader — to be a good leader.”
“Stress .. adds to your reactivity, and reactivity is really what undermines a lot of people’s professional image, and their ability to manage teams.”
Pilar Gerasimo is a pioneering health journalist and innovator who writes, speaks and consults on topics related to her primary passion: Helping people cultivate what she calls “Healthy Deviance” — the ability to get and stay healthy in an unhealthy world.
Best known for her work as founding editor of Experience Life (est. 2001) — an award-winning healthy-living magazine that reaches more than 3 million people — Pilar is also the creative force behind a variety of other projects, including the popular mobile app, “101 Revolutionary Ways to Be Healthy,” and her award-winning Manifesto for Thriving in a Mixed up World.
Today, Pilar co-hosts a weekly healthy-living podcast, The Living Experiment, in collaboration with Whole30 cofounder Dallas Hartwig. Her monthly “Revolutionary Acts” column appears in Experience Life and at The Huffington Post. She is currently working on a book about Healthy Deviance.
Pilar’s work has received kudos from respected health thought leaders like Dr. Mark Hyman, Arianna Huffington, Dr. David Ludwig, Dr. Frank Lipman, and Queen Rania of Jordan.
She lives on an organic family farm in Wisconsin with her pit-bull pal, Calvin. Learn more at www.pilargerasimo.com, or connect with Pilar via Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.
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