Jason Gore
Info@JasonGore.com
Boulder & San Francisco

Jason’s Top 21 List for Minimizing Risks for Long-term Health & Well-being

I’m a bit of a safety nut (my dad was a personal injury lawyer) and I am very tuned in to maintaining personal integrity.  With play in mind, I put together a “Top 21 List” for minimizing risks for long-term health and well-being.  Feedback welcome.  Enjoy.

Accident Prevention/Mitigation Accidents account for about 50{249f46d35e125e5d36d4111e0cd334f9fdb6c3b4f27c324a0773c7a3741b98d9} of deaths in young people.

  1. Be a responsible driver and passenger. Driving is one of the biggest risks most of us take.  The driver’s behavior is the number one cause of car accidents, so avoid getting aggressive or distracted while driving.  If someone else is driving and you feel danger, ask for what you need. Obviously, don’t drink and drive or get in a car with a drunk driver. Wear your seatbelt and ask others to do the same.
  2. Keep your car in good working condition. Have good tires.  Also have a way to get unstuck if your car doesn’t start.,  You don’t want to be put in a dangerous situation because you’re stuck.  Have a travel club and a cell phone, or have jumper cables and know how to change a flat tire.
  3. Keep Safety in Mind.  Especially if you’re a pilot, skydiver, work in a chemical plant or with heavy-machinery, etc., pay attention.  Know the “rules” and use checklists whenever lives are at stake.  Make a conscious choice when you divert.  Most accidents occur because people get lackadaisical.  For example, skydivers are most at risk when they have about 500 jumps and pilots’ greatest risk is at 100-500 hours.  Pay attention to safety and support others in doing the same.
  4. Wear a helmet when skiing, boarding, bicycling, riding a motorcycle, roller skating, or anywhere you can take a fall over six feet or at speed.
  5. Learn CPR and have others learn with you.  The first 15 minutes after a drowning or heart-attack is the most critical for survival.
  6. Avoid situations where you can be assaulted. Manage your personal safety in parking lots, deserted areas, or isolated spots where you could be assaulted.   Ask someone to walk you to your car if you feel concerned.  In bars, women should be cautious when leaving their drinks to avoid being drugged.  Consider taking a self-defense class.

Manage Suicidal Risk Suicides account for about 12{249f46d35e125e5d36d4111e0cd334f9fdb6c3b4f27c324a0773c7a3741b98d9} of deaths of younger people.

  1. Take suicidal thoughts and depression seriously. Suicide accounts for about 12{249f46d35e125e5d36d4111e0cd334f9fdb6c3b4f27c324a0773c7a3741b98d9} of all young adult deaths.  If suicidal thoughts arise, see someone that can help with your lifestyle, regimen, diet, psychology, and perhaps explore western medicine. If you have a friend who you suspect is suicidal, ask them directly if they are thinking of taking their life.

Health Management

  1. Don’t smoke cigarettes: This is the best way to help mitigate long-term health risks.
  2. Get exercise every week: Find something you enjoy, even if it’s just a walk around the block every day.  If we don’t remind our bodies that we need them, they stop working, especially as we age.
  3. Manage sexual safety: avoid STDs and prevent pregnancy. Have safety conversations before sexual activity–even if the conversations are uncomfortable.
  4. Test for breast or testicular cancer: early detection is the best defense.  These types of cancers progress quickly.
  5. Use moderation to avoid getting hooked on drugs or alcohol, or avoid them all together. Alcohol is part of our social structure, but it’s not for everyone. As for drugs, make choices that are right for you, which may be different than the choices that people around you may make. If you do choose to partake in drugs, consider your environment, who you are with, your state of mind, and where substances are coming from.  If you feel any sense of discomfort or fear, it’s best to pass.
  6. Learn to manage stress. Whether it’s through breathing, meditation, exercise, spontaneous naps, or dancing in your living room, learn to reduce stress and take life in stride.  All the hormones that are released when stressed are extraordinarily harmful to the body.
  7. Be conscious of what you eat: What we put into our bodies has a much bigger effect on our bodies and our moods than people realize.  White sugar really messes up the body’s homeostasis and the mind’s attention span and ideally should be minimized—not drinking sodas or sugar beverages is an easy way to significantly reduce sugar intake.  Also, minimize processed foods and fast-foods.
  8. Floss every day. According to my research, flossing every day is actually more important than brushing every day.  Without flossing, bacteria builds up in your gums and just eats away at the gums and the teeth, so floss every 24-hours to get those heeby-geebies outta there.  It also reduces the risk of coronary heart disease.

Financial Well-Being

  1. Have major-medical health insurance. Be covered for medical bills over $5,000.  It ensures you can get the care you need without bankrupting you or your family.
  2. Maintain your credit. Pay your minimum on credit cards on time every month (or pay them off.)  Pay your bills, parking tickets, and licensing fees on time.  If not, you end up with fines, penalties, towed cars, poor credit scores, and lots of headaches.
  3. Do your taxes by the deadline. Sooner or later, you’ll have to do them.  Even if you can’t afford to pay your taxes, it’s better to do them on time and set up a payment plan than not doing them at all.

Community

  1. Find a supportive living arrangement. If you feel unsafe or unloved in your home, find a new situation. If you feel scared to do so, seek help from a local violence prevention organization.
  2. Speak your truth and have good cleanup conversations Being honest with how you feel will help you deepen relationships, be your truth in the world, and manage your boundaries.  When we don’t have cleanup conversations or speak up, we let things go on.  For example, we guarantee that the relationship or friendship will get worse or end.  In groups, if something is happening that doesn’t feel right, simply speak your truth even if the problem is not clear, “Hey, something doesn’t feel right here.  I don’t know what it is.  Let’s pause and talk about it.”
  3. Avoid hanging out with people who are likely to wind up in jail. Our shadows show up in all sorts of ways.  One way that young people explore their shadow-side is to hang out with people who have a more embodied shadow.  But if you hang out with people who are likely to wind up in jail, they might bring you along.

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