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The Leadership Podcast

The Leadership Podcast

Why do we do this?

We interview great leaders, review the books they read, and speak with highly influential authors who study them.

How we do this?

#1 We interview great leaders.
#2 We review the books great leaders read and write.
#3 We have fun!

Jul 19, 2017

Summary & Ideas for Action

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. 


Key Takeaways

[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.





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