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Op-Ed: Health Means Wealth


We need to be good to ourselves in bad times.

Editor's Note: The following is a letter from Minyan Strider.

Dear Toddo,

I always look forward to Wisdom Wednesdays: As my computer comes to life at 6:00 a.m., I immediately log onto MartketWatch to see your Mona Lisa smile gracing the screen -another great article to put things in perspective and provide structure by which to make informed and intelligent decisions. For that, I thank you.

The one paragraph I focused in on was the one about how many of your friends were getting laid off, becoming depressed, breaking up, or all of the above. I know you addressed this in your morning missive yesterday, but I would like to add my 2 cents.

Yes, it's bad out there; yes, we need to know exactly how bad it is, because only then, as you said, can we be in a position to eventually prosper. But please keep preaching: During the Great Depression, WWII or Vietnam, life does go on - we will survive, and times will get better.

Some might retort, "Yeah, that's easy for you to say - you're securely employed. (I actually work in a bomb factory.)

But I was unemployed during the 1980-81 recession. I do remember how utterly depressing and debilitating that experience was. You feel like a totally worthless human being - and I can still vividly remember that.

Fortunately, I ramped up my running during that period (and I didn't yet have a family to support). I pounded out over 4,000 miles in 1981 and ran a 2:37 marathon. I moved back to my hometown to be surrounded by family. It took 3 and a half months to finally land a decent job (at the bomb factory) and cash was running low - but I made it through the tunnel back into daylight.

I recently celebrated my fifty-sixth birthday. When someone would wish me a happy birthday, I would tell them that I'm a runner - we only get older every 5 years.The more I thought about it, the more it seems that healthy people who exercise regularly, eat properly and get adequate rest, age the same in 5 years as the average person does in 1 year.

The takeaway here for your depressed friends and other newly unemployed Minyans out there is have them return to their core. Get healthy and find support through family and friends. Just as debt reduction, capital preservation, and expanding financial literacy is Minyanville's financial mantra, physical (and mental) exercise, good nutrition, and adequate rest (this means you, Todd) should be every Minyan's personal mantra, now more than ever. You don't need a job to get healthy.

I just wanted to thank you, once again, for all you, your colleagues, and the critters do. Us wee Minyans appreciate your collective efforts.

Have a good freaky Friday,
Minyan Strider
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