Fit to Sell

Tuesday, December 13 2011

Except for those of us with genetic illnesses or catastrophic injuries, the quality of our health is our choice. It’s our responsibility. We get to decide how healthy we are and will be in the future. Every day we make choices that lead us down the path to good, bad or neutral health.

When we’re young, we often take our health for granted and as long as we’re feeling okay, we assume we can continue to make choices that we know aren’t optimal. We know that eating fries, cookies and donuts is not good for us; yet, many of us continue to indulge our cravings even though we can imagine the silent damage taking place in our arteries.

Mickey Mantle said, “If I knew I was going to live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.” When it comes to taking better care of ourselves, salespeople are very fortunate. We have more control over our calendar. We can plan to include regular exercise in our schedule during those times when it’s harder to meet with clients.

We get to choose what we eat. We may be tempted to have the more expensive, unhealthy meal our customer is having or we can also choose a salad. We can choose to pack a healthy lunch in the morning, or eat something nutritious on the road. We know that salad, a salmon sandwich and a glass of water are much better for us than the greasy burger, fries and a tall soda.

We get to choose our schedule. Some of us are workaholics, working all the time, which will probably catch up to us eventually. But for the most part, we can decide what our hours will be. If we’re working a late evening, we can start later the next day. If we needed to get up early to attend a networking breakfast, we can probably go home early without feeling guilty or having to justify it to our boss. Those with an internal locus of control tend to be healthier and happier.

Aside from the obvious benefits of good health, there are some that accrue particularly to salespeople:

  1. Healthy people have more energy and confidence, thus making a better first impression. You appear more believable and trustworthy.
  2. Sales work isn’t a straight line. There are peaks and valleys. Having more energy enables you to dig in and work harder when it is required.
  3. Exercise improves attitude and perspective. A good attitude is critical to sales success.

Health and wellness is a do-it-yourself preventative strategy. Choose wisely.