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Glad you made it!

The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why.

MARK TWAIN

Happy young father looking with tenderness at his baby girl and kissing her feets.
Welcome to the world!

What were the odds of YOU being born on this planet? Believe it or not a doctor by the name of Ali Binazir (MD M.Phil) attempted to work this out based on factors such as the age of your parents, the probability of the two of them meeting each other, the odds of going on a second date, the odds of getting married, the odds of conception and finally the odds of birth.

In the end the probability of your arrival worked out to be the astronomical figure of about 1 in 10 to the power of 2,650,000. That’s a 10 with 2,650,000 zeros after it! Put another way the odds of it happening were about the same as two million people each being asked to pick a number between one andone trillion and all two million people picking the same number!

Now with odds like that stacked against you, you would have to say the fact you are here means you were either incredibly lucky or you were put here for a reason. A person with a nihilistic view of life would say there is no rhyme or reason to a person’s life and it carries no intrinsic value. Then again, your very existence against such overwhelming odds presents a compelling argument
in the opposite – that your presence here on earth must be something more than mere happenstance. The creator of “Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy“Douglas Adams said the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything was 42. That sounds as logical as saying that we are here for no reason at all. So, if we assume we are here for a reason, the next logical question to ask would be:

Why are we here?

That is a deeply philosophical question and not one that has a single, clearly defined answer. Rather it has 7.24 billion answers, one for each individual on the face of the planet (a number that is currently increasing by 155 people per minute or 82 million per year). Each of us see life differently, depending on our vantage point. Since we will never agree on why we are here let us change the question. Let us simply accept the fact that we are here and instead ask

What do we want OUT of life?

When people are asked this question the most common response is “to be healthy and happy.” That is an excellent answer because it gives equal priority to both sides of our humanity. Healthy refers to our physical state of beingwhile happy refers to our mental state of being. These two human states are intrinsically linked and each one plays an important role in the success or failure of the other. Neglecting either one will cause a deterioration in both. The opposite also holds true.

Healthy people are generally happier and happy people are generally healthier.

When we improve ourselves physically we feel mentally stronger and when we are on top of our game mentally, we feel physically stronger and more readily able to cope with the pressure that comes with life. It makes sense. If we are serious about living a healthy, happy life it is vitally important that we dedicate time to improving both our physical and mental states of being. Since both states are two sides of the same coin you have a choice of starting point – improve yourself physically and gain some mental benefit or improve yourself mentally and gain some physical benefit. It doesn’t really matter where you start, what’s important is that you start – NOW.

What do you think?

Written by Scott Williams

Scott Williams is one of Australia's most respected corporate communicators.

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