8 Healthy Career Habits Inspired by National Eat Your Vegetables Day
Are you inspired by spinach? Do you swoon over sweet potatoes? This Friday, June 17 is National Eat Your Vegetables Day. We know we should be eating vegetables every day to reduce our risk of some chronic diseases, reduce risk for stroke and bone loss, and improve our blood pressure, just to name a few benefits.
It is so easy to grab the chips from the pantry when you want a snack, but it is a smarter decision to think “Do I really need that? Could I make a better choice?”
Daily intake of vegetables of course depends on your age, gender and level of physical activity. This Daily Vegetable Table to the left is from the USDA’s website www.choosemyplate.gov and is for individuals who get less than 30 minutes of moderate physical activity per day beyond normal activities. Are you eating your recommended amount?
What does filling your system with healthy vegetables have to do with your career? A lot, maybe. The right nutrients can result in better focus, brainpower and energy. Just eating your vegetables is a healthy habit. We’ve come up with some healthy work habits that you can add to your newly vegetable-packed diet of positivity.
Healthy Career Habits
1 – Make 10 calls before 10:00am. These can be follow-up calls, new prospecting calls or calls to old customers to reignite the relationship and see if they need anything. Think how many calls you would make if you did this healthy habit five days a week.
Associated Vegetable: the Plaintain. (Get it? Phone in one ear, plaintain on the other side?) A good source of potassium and fiber. Contains more Vitamin A and Vitamin C than bananas.
2 – Keep communicating with your client. Take every opportunity to stay in touch with your client. Send them an article you thought they may like. Email them your newsletter. Be sure to send holiday cards or gifts. And yes…just stop by or invite them for coffee. Let them know you want to hear about their business and that you care. It will make them happy.
Associated Vegetable: Tomato, a heart-healthy (aka happy) vegetable that adds protection against high blood pressure and heart disease through its Vitamins A, C, K, folate and potassium, thiamin, niacin, Vitamin B6, magnesium, phosphorus and copper, not to mention fiber.
3 – Create and stick to an organization system. Whether it is your Google Calendar and task list, Daytimer or an old fashioned handwritten list, keep an up to date “To Do list” that you check off daily. Just put your head down and get one thing done at a time with no interruptions. Prioritize what’s first, second and third. At the end of the day, check off the To Do list and plan for the upcoming day.
Associated Vegetable: Lentils. Lentils are very “efficient” vegetables because they cover so many bases. They are a vegetable, yes, but they double as a high quality protein and have fiber to help with lowering blood pressure. Other benefits of eating lentils are decreased risk of obesity and diabetes, healthier complexion and hair, increased energy and lower weight.
4 – Network. Networking is the “cardio” of your business. Work out – get your heart pumping. A healthy habit in addition to eating healthy is meeting new people, collecting cards, updating your database with new people that you can refer business to or they can refer business to you.
Associated Vegetable: Sweet Potato. Good for the cardiovascular system as this orange spud has Vitamin B6 which reduces homocysteine which has been linked to heart attacks. Other benefits: Vitamins A, C, B1, B2, manganese, copper, pantothenic acid, potassium, fiber, niacin and phosphorus.
5 – Manners count. Healthy work habits include replying to emails within 24 hours, replying to phone calls promptly, and being polite and considerate of your support staff. Be prepared for meetings – it shows respect and that you value someone’s time.
Associated Vegetable: Broccoli. Hated it as a kid, at least respect if not enjoy it as an adult…are we right? Broccoli is one of the most respected vegetables with cancer-fighting properties and no veggie list would be complete without it. It contains folate which has been shown to decrease the risk of breast cancer. Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli are also associated with a lower risk of lung and colon cancer. Broccoli also provides Vitamin K, great for improving bone health by improving calcium absorption.
6 –Stay informed. Read industry and market news. If you sell insurance – know what is going on in the industry. If you sell shoes – what are the latest trends and comfort technology? Make online or print industry and market news a part of your morning routine.
Associated Vegetable: Beets. High on the list of brain healthy foods, beets have natural nitrates that can increase blood flow to the brain, thereby improving mental performance. Also contains Vitamin C, fiber, potassium, manganese and folate.
7 – Disconnect from work. There comes a point during the day that you just have to stop. Put down the phone, unplug the laptop, and remember that you are a person who can find joy outside of your work life. Plan for time with family members or friends daily. Instead of work quantity, focus on being efficient, and demand quality of yourself during work time.
Associated Vegetable: Onion. People may disconnect from you if you eat raw onions at the wrong time without a toothbrush, but this layered vegetable has numerous health benefits and goes with almost everything. Onions help improve immunity through phytochemicals and Vitamin C. They contain chromium, which assists in regulating blood sugar, and they reduce inflammation and heal infections.
8 – Get a positive start. Start your day with a positive message such as a quote or a passage from a favorite motivational book. “Wake up with determination, go to bed with satisfaction.”
Associated vegetable: Spinach. Your morning meal is a prime opportunity to up your quota of vegetables. Add spinach to a smoothie or sauté it with scrambled eggs. Spinach is high in niacin and zinc, protein, fiber, Vitamins A, C, E and K, B6, folate, thiamin, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper and manganese. Talk about a morning powerbooster!
There are many websites that talk about the benefits of eating vegetables that you can check out including www.healthyeating.org, the USDA’s www.choosemyplate.gov/vegetables-nutrients-health, or www.naturalfoodbenefits.com. As for healthy work habits, they can be just as important as a healthy, vegetable-filled diet for satisfaction and productivity. Celebrate National Eat Your Vegetables Day on Friday – we’ll see you at the salad bar!
--The Brenner Blog Team