What Does A Life Of Commitment Mean To You?

What Does A Life Of Commitment Mean To You?

In David Brooks latest book, “The Second Mountain“, he perfectly summarizes the simplest way to make a healthy life sustainable:

A life of commitment means saying a thousand noes for the sake of a few precious yeses. 

A life of health…
A life of energy…
A life of well-being…
A life of feeling fit…
A life filled with the ability to go and do as you please without aches and pains holding you back…

Saying a thousand noes might look like this for you in the following areas:


  • No to chips in favor of a side salad.
  • No to processed foods in favor of real whole foods that come from a plant, not made in a plant.
  • No to a plate full of pasta in favor of filling half your plate with veggies.
  • No to ordering out lunch every day at work in favor of packing and bringing your own from home 2-3 x’s a week.
  • No to the 2nd and 3rd drink (wine, beer, liquor) in favor of a good night’s rest.
  • No to staying up late to watch a show in favor of getting an extra 30 minutes of sleep.
  • No to crashing into bed with your phone in hand in favor of establishing a bedtime routine and reading a book or journaling 30 minutes before bed.
  • No to sleeping in on a work trip in favor of lifting weights for 20 minutes.
  • No to skipping your workout in favor of a 15-30 minute walk.
  • No to blowing off your workouts because the kids are off from school in favor of taking care of yourself first as a top priority (knowing that you’ll be a better parent for your efforts).
  • No to grinding out 7 workouts in a row in favor of allowing for a day or two of recovery.
Mental Fitness:
  • No to using workouts as distractions (avoidance) from your emotions in favor of slowing down, connecting with a coach (aka: therapist) to work on processing your story.
  • No to working out intensely, 100% of the time in favor of working in energy with yoga, Pilates, mobility or stretching sessions 1-2 x’s a week.
  • No to allowing shame and fear drive you to run further or spin faster in favor of hitting the pause button and addressing the root cause.

Brooks concludes his thought with this:

If you aren’t saying a permanent no to anything, giving anything up, then you probably aren’t diving into anything fully.

It’s a time to experiment. It’s a time to fail. It’s a time to get back up. 

It’s a time to change by saying “no” to average, to the choices everyone else makes, to accepting “that’s just part of getting old” in favor of saying yes to the truly valuable and sustainable choices that make life worth getting out of bed for daily.  

If I can be of any help. Let me know.

Brent Gallagher

WordPress Video Lightbox