The good life, the Thinner This Year life, is a three legged stool. The three legs are: 1. EXERCISE, 2. NUTRITION AND, 3. (perhaps surprisingly) CONNECTION AND COMMITMENT.
One of the core points in the book is that us mammals (unlike the nasty reptiles) have a separate “limbic” or mammalian brain (one of our three separate brains) that lets us feel and convey emotion. That is all the limbic brain is for, and it was the mammals’ great, competitive gift, in the Darwinian crucible of survival. It let us spend longer, raising our young, and it let us cooperate to form herds and packs and… law firms. We are hard wired to be deeply connected to – and caring about – one another. We get isolated at our peril.
Our new, human or thinking brain – the three or four pounder that sits on top of the other two and seems to make all the decisions – is less emotional, but, don’t kid yourself: we are still profoundly, irreversibly mammalian creatures. The three brains are densely wired together. Every single thing we think, do, see or smell has a deep limbic or emotional marker on it. We were designed to be emotional creatures and, sure enough, we are. We were built to work and live in close connection. We are built to care deeply about one another. Get isolated and you will literally get sick. Not just unhappy… sick.
A guy who has a heart attack and goes home to an empty house is four times as likely to have a second heart attack and die, as a man who goes home to a family. The guy with a dog does twice as well. We are not built for being alone. You may think you are, but no. We are mammals, at the core.
There is a grave risk of isolation in America, where we value Individualism so highly. And it gets worse in retirement, when we step out of the “limbic stew” of the workplace. It makes a ton of sense to fight that risk tooth and nail. To make a hard, conscious effort to make new connections… to stay deeply connected with and caring about family and friends and others, all the way out. That critical business is going to be a central focus of this site. Staying in touch… caring… is hugely important. Think about it. Join us. Tell us your ideas and experiences. We care like crazy. We’d love to connect, and help you to do so. It is one of our basic commitments…one of the basic purposes of the site. Chris
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