Life Principle #4: Input == Output

When I was growing up, the thought that food had any connection to how you felt was nowhere in the stratosphere of my brain.

I don’t think my parents — and probably their parents — didn’t understand it either. 

I’m sure someone out there knew that eating Eggos for breakfast every day before school would put you in a catatonic grumpy food craving rollercoaster all day, but I didn’t.

Side tangent: perhaps people who are apathetic just need a little more spinach and a little less breaded macaroni? 

My parents meant well, they just didn’t know. I think there was an inherent trust in food brands and government food opinions.

Honey Nut Cheerios, Coke a cola, McDonalds, Pizza Hut. They were helping you save a buck, right?

Another side tangent: perhaps food business didn’t know the effects of eating their products on your health either. Bottom line, not your bottom size.

It wasn’t until way after high school that I began to unlock the power of healthy eating. I started gradually. I didn’t immediately start eating all organic, making smoothies or avoiding restaurants depending on what kind of oils they cooked with. In fact, I started terribly! I probably did everything wrong in the book. But over time my understanding and intuition grew. And oddly enough, my allergies went away. I stopped getting sick ALL the time. I slept better. I felt better and didn’t feel so much like a walking zombie all the time. 

If there is anything you could point to that kick-started my journey towards pursuing a Renaissance Life it was health.

Renaissance Life Principle #4: Input == Output

In a way, the old adage “you are what you eat” is true. What you eat determines how you feel. It determines your strength, energy, liveliness, quickness. 

Your input equals your output.

And it doesn’t stop with food. Everything you consume, be that what you watch, read, listen to, surround yourself with and do directly effects how you think, believe, feel and see the world. 

Imagine it like someone who buys a dog. If you look at dog owners, slowly but surely the dog and her owner begins to look and act exactly the same. Does the dog change the owner or the owner change the dog? 

Both.

Not only does inputs determine our outputs, outputs reinforce what we input.

That’s why an outsider looking in might make fun of someone who only shops at Wholefoods and eats gluten-free, sugar-free cookies, and why that same wholefoods patron might make fun of the person who’s eating at Applebee’s.


The more you surround yourself with people, activities, and things you love, the more in love with your life you will be.

The higher quality of input you have, the higher quality of output.

Putting it into practice

Spend a day living normally, but writing down everything you do, see, eat, listen to, watch and surround yourself with.

Do the people you hang out with talk about ideas or just gossip about people?

When’s the last time you read a book that challenged you?


Becoming smarter, more creative, capable, ALIVE begins with doing and surrounding yourself with inputs that ARE smarter, more creative, capable and energetic.

Stay BOLD, Keep Pursing,

— Josh Waggoner

Related Insights

"Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher."— Oprah Winfrey

"If you want to become healthy, you have to surround yourself with a group of people that are getting healthy, and you have to be connected to a community that is doing what you want to do." — Henry Cloud

"Be yourself, but always your better self." — Karl G. Maeser