Is your personality causing health issues?

I’ve worn a lot of hats in my work life. I am or have been an exercise instructor, yoga instructor, personal trainer, children’s program coordinator, senior exercise instructor, Title III program coordinator, English as a Second Language teacher, health endorsement trainer, University adjunct professor and of course, mom!

With all of those hats, throughout my life, I’ve striven to give everything 110% and, as my family tells me, I’m a bit of a Type A personality. What are the different types of personality? And what are you? And how does that impact your health?

Type A tends to be aggressive, ambitious, controlling, competitive, a workaholic and lacks patience. Type A personalities may be at risk for heart issues and stress related illness.

Type B tends to be relaxed, less stressed, flexible, emotional and expressive, and have a laid-back attitude. Type B personalities do not run the risk of stress related illnesses or risk factors connected to coronary due to personality.

I am definitely a workaholic but that is because there always seems to be something to do to make tomorrow easier. I used to always bring work home. I was working until 9 or later just to get a head start on the next day. I always thought that doing this would make me less stressed and even more productive the next day. But you know what? It doesn’t matter if you do everything in advance – there is ALWAYS something to do tomorrow. In all my years of working, all the preparations for school, all the meetings, book studies, classes for renewal of licenses, etc….I would work extra hard to keep ahead of everything only to find out that there was still just as much to do the next day, even though I’d pushed myself the previous day – stressed myself out – to get more done.

The moral of my story here is that if you are driven, if you are a Type A personality, you might want to take a page from Type B’s book. Pushing yourself to do more, be more, work more, etc….can push you over the edge and into a negative health event.

We only have one life. Make it the best one. Give yourself a gift and slow down, enjoy the ride, take breaks, and know that work will be there tomorrow and the next day and the next. Don’t bring work with you on your breaks, vacations, evenings. It’s important for your health to give yourself downtime and allow your mind to think of other things besides work. Put yourself first – not your job.

Here’s to a work week that is productive but not overpowering. Here’s to a weekend that is slow and easy and here’s to a life that is stress free and empowering. Peace.

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