If the cornerstone of personal development is self-esteem, the foundation is personal care. Self-esteem is how we value ourselves. It is not what others think of us, but what we think of ourselves. Self-esteem is your measure of your value. It requires you invest time, thought and energy into the care and development of your spiritual, physical and psychological well-being.
I will share what that looks like for me. Ten years ago, I started writing down my goals. In the personal area, when thinking ten years out, I wrote that I wanted to be able to get to a spa retreat four times a year – basically, once a quarter. It was an ambitious goal, yet I envisioned those weeks as a time to realign my fitness and health plan and to reinvigorate my spirit and clear my mind of clutter. I saw my personal life and my business life benefiting in a major way from this seemingly self-indulgent activity. What I knew for certain back then was that I was committed to maintaining the best health and fitness, and yet remaining involved and invigorated throughout my career.
Now for the reality of that goal. At best I have succeeded in scheduling a week-long trip once every two years. As this year evolved, I realized the last time I had prioritized that “necessary for my well-being and success” week was almost three years ago. My body showed it, my spirit longed for it, and my psyche was in overload.
Enter the Red Mountain Spa in St. George, Utah (http://www.redmountainspa.com/). A convenient and easy two-hour drive from Las Vegas, the Red Mountain Spa took all the thinking out of the equation. All you have to do is get there. The scenic outdoors provides the spiritual and psychological lifts, and the fitness schedule of classes provide the physical maintenance. To round out the experience, executive chef Dale Van Sky presents a nutritionally balanced menu in the form of three incredible meals a day, and any of the Sagestone spa treatments will guide you back to your road of well-being and success. A personal favorite was the Lavender Marine Bolus Massage I received from Jennifer. It was a mix of light pressure, with Thai stretching and the wonderful aroma of lavender salts. After that treatment, all was well with the world.
There was also a terrific personal growth side of the Red Mountain Spa experience. One such experience took the form of an ego adjustment. On the first day I gleefully anticipated a morning hike at the Trekker 3 level, their highest offered. After slugging through the sand, I was informed that we would be traversing the sandstone faced elevation of the 1,500 foot peak in front of me. The elevation was not the challenge; the fact that I was to take it at 4.5 miles per hour stopped me in my tracks. I tucked my ego back into its rightful place and announced I could not attempt that speed. Graciously, one of the two trail leaders simply took me another way! Then there was a personal growth of the ego enriching kind. On Friday evening I signed up for the Evening with the Stars with John Kolb. John is a master, yet amateur, astronomer and geologist. I learned much about the value of life and following your dreams from John in two short hours under the stars. When I got to see clearly the sites in the heavens 400 light years away, I knew that no matter how crooked my road of success might be, the Red Mountain Spa and John Kolb’s stars would help me find my way.
A powerful Zen saying offers us this path for success in life and work: “The master in the art of living makes little distinction between work and play, labor and leisure, mind and body, education and recreation, love and religion. The master hardly knows which is which. The master simply pursues the vision of excellence in whatever there is to do, leaving others to decide whether it is work or play. To the master, it is like always doing both.”