Vitality first of all means endurance and the ability to live long. It naturally indicates functional and organic vigor. You cannot be vital unless the organs of the body are possessed of at least a normal degree of strength and are performing their functions harmoniously and satisfactorily.
To be vital means that you are full of vim and energy, that you possess that enviable characteristic known as vivacity. It means that you are vibrating, pulsating with life in all its most attractive forms. For life, energy, vitality-call it what you wish-in all its normal manifestations, will always be found attractive.
A vital man is at all times thoroughly alive. The forces of life seem to imbue every part of his organism with energy, activity and all characteristics opposed to things inanimate. A vital man is naturally enthusiastic. He can hardly avoid being ambitious. And consequently success, with all its splendid rewards, comes to such a man in abundance. Life to such a man should be resplendent with worthy achievements.
No one belittles the importance of success. Everyone is guided to a large extent by the desire to succeed. When a child toddles off to school the training which he secures there is given for the single purpose of bringing success, but this goal cannot possibly be reached without throbbing vitality. In fact, you are not yourself in every sense unless you possess vitality of this sort. The emotions and instincts that come to one when thoroughly developed, with the vital forces surging within, are decidedly different from those which influence one when lacking in stamina.
Many who have grown beyond adult age are still undeveloped, so far as physical condition and vigor is concerned, and this lack of physical development or vitality means immaturity-incompleteness. It means that one is short on manhood or womanhood. This statement, that one's personality, under such circumstances, is not completely brought out, may seem strange to some; but careful reasoning will soon verify its accuracy. Success of the right sort, therefore, depends first of all upon intelligent efforts that are guided day after day, with a view, first of all, of developing the physical organism to the highest possible standard, and maintaining it there.
A DUTY TO BE HEALTHY AND STRONG
In other words, it is our first duty to be men, strong and splendid, or women, healthy and perfect, if we are desirous of securing life's most gratifying prizes. Many actually go through life only half alive. They are, to a certain extent, doped by their physical deficiencies. They have been handicapped by a lack of the energy that comes with physical development. They need to be stirred by the regular use of the physical powers of the body.
When the body is complete in all of its various parts it is truly a marvelous organism. Throbbing vitality stirs the imagination, gives one courage and capacity, thrills one with the possibilities of life, fires the ambitions. The efforts involved in one's daily duties, be they ever so important, then become mere play. To such a man inactivity is impossible. Every day must be filled with active, interesting duties, and progress in such cases is inevitable. Such a man grows, he improves, he ascends. He becomes a positive dominating force in the world.
Can pulsating, vibrating, vitality of this kind be developed?
Can one who lacks enthusiasm and organic vigor obtain these valuable forces?
If you have failed up to the present to become a complete man, or a splendid woman, can you achieve these extraordinary rewards in the future?
You can rest assured that if the necessary efforts are made a revolution can be wrought in your physical and mental powers. You, too, can feel these throbbing vital forces stirring your every nerve, thrilling your very soul. Go to work, in an intelligent manner, realizing that fundamentally the attainment of these great rewards comes from the development of the highest degree of physical excellence. You must have strength of body. You cannot have too much strength. The more nearly you feel like a strong man the more you can achieve in the desired direction.
All successful men are, and have been, men of tremendous energy. Their achievements have been simply the expression of the vitality and nerve force which can no more be repressed than the power of an engine when it has been once liberated. Success is due to the dynamic quality of energy. It is true that physical energy and bodily strength are not sufficient for success in all fields. One must have aptitude for his chosen work. Your energy must be directed in the proper channels, but without this energy and vitality you can accomplish virtually nothing.
Take the one particular characteristic known as vivacity.
How we envy those who possess in abundance this great gift!
No matter how irregular one's features may be, even though they repel, if a smile shows vivacity associated with a keen, intelligent personality, one cannot be otherwise than attractive. *John Bunny, with features rough, unchiseled, ugly, almost uncouth, yet possessed a personality that spread its contagious good humor to millions of people in all quarters of the world who mourned his recent death as that of a personal acquaintance. On the other hand, even though a man or woman possess regular features, the lack of animated expression, of vivacity, causes the person to be regarded as "cold" and "repellent." Speaking in the vernacular, it puts you in the class of the "dead ones." One may say that magnetism and all the desirable qualities that draw others to us are closely associated with the supreme development of the forces of life. No vivacity, then no personality.
The average individual goes through life without living. In other words, he scarcely exists. He has never felt the throbbing exultation of a keen joyous moment. Nor on the other hand has he ever suffered the tortures that are supposed to be associated with the damned, for we must remember that the power to enjoy carries with it a corresponding power to suffer.
But we should also remember that the possession of these extremes, the ability to enjoy or to suffer, indicates the attainment of what might be termed the most complete human development. If we wish to find a perfect picture of the phlegmatic temperament, we can study a pig to advantage. And yet there are many human beings incapable of manifesting life-forces equal to those of this humble animal.
But why not be alive, vital, vivacious? Why not be alert, keen, energetic, enthusiastic, ambitious, bubbling over with fiery ardor? The possession of these pulsating, vibratory forces proves that one's physical development has closely approached to perfection. To such vital individuals life opens up opportunities that are almost countless.
But those who have never lived in this "world" of fiery ambitions and throbbing powers, who have never been stirred by the keen, satisfying joys that go with these extraordinary, vital qualities, may ask if these invaluable powers can be developed. Are these stirring, vital forces the possession of favored classes only, or may they be obtained by anyone and everyone?
DEVELOPING VITAL FORCES WITHIN
In other words, can they be cultivated or developed?
My reply, in nearly all cases, would be in the affirmative. There may be exceptions. There is a limit to the development of the physical force, but health is attainable by the majority. So long as there is life you should be possessed of sufficient vitality to attain a normal degree of health. It really takes more power to run a defective machine than it does to operate one in which all parts are working in harmony, and the same can be said of the body and its parts or organs. Therefore, if you have vitality enough to continue to live even though diseased, rest assured that you have enough to acquire health if you conform to Nature's enactments. And this kind of health usually brings a physical and mental exaltation that is truly beyond description.
It is my purpose in these pages to help the reader to solve the problems associated with the attainment of vitality and health at its best. By following out the suggestions which you will find in this volume, by stimulating the life-forces in connection with the thyroid gland, by straightening and strengthening the spine, by toning up the alimentary canal, and by adopting other suggestions set forth in these pages, you should be insured the attainment of vital vigor really beyond price. Do not be satisfied with an existence. If life is worth anything, it is worth living in every sense of the word. The building up of one's physical assets should be recognized as an imperative duty.
* John Bunny (September 21, 1863 – April 26, 1915) Silent film comedian.
Page Updated 6:47 PM Tuesday 13 March 2018