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Balance: Equally Important to Personal and Organizational Health

It is important to be aware of your health during any month of the year, but as September is National Cholesterol Education Month, now is the perfect time to take steps to be more heart-healthy. High cholesterol increases the risk for cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in the United States. For the more than 65 million Americans living with high cholesterol, diet and exercise are important factors to be reviewed with a physician.   Scale 2 Balance Blog

 

But lowering your cholesterol doesn’t have to be about completely altering your lifestyle. Physicians advise raising HDL, or “good” cholesterol, levels and lowering LDL, or “bad” cholesterol, levels. The key is achieving a sustainable balance between them. Changing habits can be difficult, but the American Heart Association offers these simple tips for taking that first step:

  

§  Exercise for 30 minutes more days than not

 

§  Eat less meat – replace with beans for protein

 

§  Substitute egg whites for whole eggs

 

§  Lower dairy fats and saturated fat in meats

 

§  Eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains

 

§  Decrease your sodium intake


Similar to improving our personal well-being, creating a “healthier” business may involve making a few changes that complement one another. Again, the prospect can seem daunting, but it isn’t necessary, or always wise, to overhaul your organization to increase success.

 

Just as we strive to lower bad and raise good cholesterol, when enhancing our business we need to do more than simply remove or modify what isn’t working. We must also look at what is strongest in our organizations and put more energy into these practices or ideas.

 

A survey completed by global consulting firm McKinsey & Co. found that businesses that change and grow effectively have something in common. A corresponding article in Forbes reporting the findings explains, “A focus on strengths and achievements, not just problems, throughout the entire transformation process is strongly tied to success.”

 

In other words, to inspire positive change in your organization, there’s no need to throw everything out and start over. Change a few inefficiencies here and there. Take a critical look at old practices. And remember to search within the organization for opportunities to innovate.

 

McKinsey offers the following advice for creating a healthier organization:

 

§  Set clear targets – If your goals are understood by everyone, it is more likely that they will be achieved.

§  Create a strong and apparent structure – Have a plan and ensure that employees’ roles complement one another.

§  Maintain energy and involvement throughout the organization – Your employees are your best asset for positive change so engage them and inspire enthusiasm.

§  Exercise strong leadership – If you have conviction during a transformation, your team also will feel confident.

Whether you want to become more heart-healthy or your business needs a boost, balance is always central to change. Cut out some fatty foods, but eat more of your favorite fruit. Alter a process that is outdated, but listen more closely to your employees’ great ideas. You’ll be moving down a more positive -- and healthy -- path before you know it.

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