It’s a great time in Nebraska as our harsh winters have set in and we have extra time to relax. The holidays are over for now and the weather tends to keep us inside more. We have extra time on our hands to reflect on life.

It’s a great time to think about things like the three most important things in life; do you know what yours are? I have asked that question hundreds of times during interviews and the answers have been anything from blank stares to the “right” answer.

There are no right answers, but the value of the question is in gaining an understanding of what drives that person. I believe the answers need to be given almost as quickly as an auctioneer can speak.

Three responsible answers are a belief in a higher power, family, and health. Let’s for the moment consider these are the right answers.

The good news is we have fairly good control of these three important things. In some ways, we may be closer to meeting some of these goals than we realize.

For instance, many believe in a higher power. Many show respect for their higher power by regularly going to church. Some may meet their religious beliefs with daily prayers. Some pay homage to a higher power through their love of nature.

The family includes valuing those directly related to us or even those that are so close they are considered family. A great example is part of my extended family is all the people that work at John Henry's Plumbing, Heating, Air, and Electrical that are so close. They have a special spot in my heart. We can show how important our family is by how we treat them.

Health is an important necessity in life that is often misunderstood. We can improve our immediate health by what we consume and how we exercise. Many looks healthy because they work out and have “abs of steel”, but the reality is good health requires other things that are not as obvious such as the impact of our environment on our water and air.

For instance, experts point to many ways our earth is being polluted with chemicals and quickly changing. Our oceans are warming at an alarming rate. Various species are disappearing. Feeling sluggish? Carbon dioxide levels have increased 60% since 1959, resulting in increased levels of pollens and allergies.

Life may be moving so quickly around us that we may feel we do not have the time to address all the things we value, but if we do not take on that responsibility head-on then who will?

If our health is one of the three most important things in life, then now is the best time to consider and do the things necessary to improve our health. The easiest way to improve our health is to make sure the air we breathe is of a good enough quality it promotes better health. The top three things to improve the air we breathe are:

  1. Air filtration can remove at least 95% or more of the impurities and protect our lungs. Anything not removed by air filtration may end up in our lungs and cause lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema, etc.
  2. Proper humidification levels of 40% to 60% are needed to promote good health. Excessively high humidity levels promote mold, mildew, dust mites, allergies, respiratory disease, deep vein clots, chronic lung disease, premature mortality, etc.

    Low humidity levels can dry out and inflame the mucous membrane lining your respiratory tract. It increases the odds of colds, flu, and other infections. Viruses may survive longer. Why be at an increased risk to get sick each winter?

  3. Adequate fresh air exchanges of filtered makeup air are needed to remove volatile organic compounds, which are the off gassing of chemicals. All chemical odors of the new carpet, printers, paints, etc. are harmful. These harmful chemicals cause eye, nose, and throat irritation, frequent headaches, nausea, and damage to the liver, kidney, and central nervous system.

Indoor air quality information is extremely important. I continue to be shocked by the lack of this information being publicly shared at a higher level because that knowledge could dramatically improve lives and reduce health care costs. You deserve to know what will damage your health or possibly kill you.

Please consider taking the steps that will help you be healthier so you can enjoy all the important things in life that are on your list. Here’s to better health!

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