Healthy, Wealthy and Wise: Lessons from Steve Jobs

Last night, I watched 60 Minutes, for the first time in more than a decade. Why? Because the episode featured Steve Jobs’ self-selected biographer, Walter Isaacson. As I said back in August, I was late to the Apple party, but I became a total convert long before I knew Mr. Jobs was ill with cancer, or owned non-Apple-wealth four times greater than Oprah, or anything about how iPads help autistic kids, his independent streak or rags-to-riches life. Had I known the full story, perhaps I’d have learned his lessons much sooner. How about you?

Yet, the 60 Minutes piece reminded us that Steve Jobs contributed more to the world in his 56 years than others contribute in seven or eight decades. A few lessons: Steve Jobs created because he loved the work; enjoyed wealth but didn’t chase money; although he didn’t give away his wealth to please his detractors, from nothing but thin air he created employment for thousands and billions in shareholder wealth. Good work was, for Steve Jobs, its own reward; he guarded his privacy instead of flaunting celebrity or politics. Yes, we all benefited from his contributions, whether we’re Apple geeks or Pixar freaks or not.

Perhaps he was not simply gifted with magical thinking, but as Walter Isaacson, his biographer claims, saddled with it as well. Sadly, in death Steve Jobs proved another truth: Health is the greatest wealth of all.

For these lessons and more, Thank you, Steve Jobs. Maybe, to pay our respects if for no other reason, each of us would be wise to commit to living a healthier life and seeking medical care when we need it. I’m off to the gym. What healthy habits are you starting today?

p.s. If you missed the 60 Minutes video, you can watch the biographer highlights here and the iPads and autism highlights here. To see more about Steve Jobs’ biography, click here.




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25 Responses to Healthy, Wealthy and Wise: Lessons from Steve Jobs

  1. Alana October 24, 2011 at 2:12 pm #

    I didn’t know much about Steve Jobs before he died even though I’ve been using Apple products for years. It’s interesting to start learning more about him. Thanks for sharing the 60 minutes link!

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 2:35 pm #

      My first Apple was an iPod. But I didn’t get converted until the iPhone. That really wowed me.

  2. Lisa Hall-Wilson October 24, 2011 at 2:22 pm #

    I also heard he wrote a book so that his kids would know who he was. There’s a lesson in that too. Thanks for the post.

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 2:35 pm #

      Makes sense. Such a private guy, and his kids are fairly young. I hope the book is a good legacy for them.

  3. shannon esposito October 24, 2011 at 2:30 pm #

    I didn’t know much about him, either but do want to read his biography. You’re right about the health part, a lesson in what’s really important in life! The new healthy thing I’ve started doing is juicing. Just hope I can stick to it 🙂

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

      Good luck with the juicing! I’ve never gotten into that, but I do love smoothies!

  4. Melinda VanLone October 24, 2011 at 2:32 pm #

    A person like that comes once in every..oh, 5 generations? 10? The impact he had on the world can’t be overestimated. I know he touched my life every single day, even though he never knew I existed. Then again I was an Apple fangirl the moment my eyes first saw the Mac Classic. My heart breaks to think of all the innovations the world has lost at his passing. The next book in my queue is his biography. I’m anxious to see what it says knowing Jobs had a hand in the telling of his story. I’m also anxious that it not be overwhelmingly negative. Jobs was human, he wasn’t a saint. But I don’t care to have his dark side rubbed in my face. So it’ll be interesting to see how it’s written.

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 2:37 pm #

      Totally agree. Jobs was a controversial figure, to be sure. I suspect it’s easier to like him from afar in some ways. But his contributions far exceed anything negative anyone can say, at least that I’ve read to date.

  5. Rachel October 24, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    I have been intrigued by Steve Jobs for years. What I think is so interesting is how he seems to have applied what he learned in his spiritual studies to the world of computing. He helped to create great products because he understood himself enough to know how he wanted to use them, thus being able to know how others would want to use them. And the whole idea of creating the devices and the software so everything works together is why Apple now dominates Microsoft.

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 5:13 pm #

      I think you’re right on.

  6. Karen McFarland October 24, 2011 at 8:49 pm #

    For all that he had, Steve Jobs seemed like a humble man. He enjoyed giving to others. He lived most of his life under the radar. Yet, it just goes to prove that you can have all the wealth in the world, but you can’t buy good health.
    I enjoyed your post. You can expect my regular visits!

  7. Emma Burcart October 24, 2011 at 9:09 pm #

    I didn’t know much about Steve Jobs and the only apple product I own is an ipod. It was a gift from my dad. I am actually a pc person. So, it was great to read about Steve Jobs as a person and the lessons we can take from him, apart from Apple. I try to focus on doing what I love and I remember how much I love writing every morning when I’m up before dawn and the day job. I also think health is important, but now I feel a little guilty because I couldn’t make it to the gym after a late meeting! But I do what I can. Thanks for the lessons, Diane.

    • Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 9:14 pm #

      Glad you liked the post, Emma. I was a PC person for many years. It was the iPhone that brought me into the Apple fold. I don’t know how I could live without it!

  8. Diane Capri October 24, 2011 at 9:12 pm #

    Thank you, Karen. Appreciate the kind words and look forward to your visits.

  9. Julie Hedlund October 24, 2011 at 10:52 pm #

    I wish I’d known about that 60 minutes episode. Will definitely have to look it up. Great post!

    • Diane Capri October 25, 2011 at 7:04 pm #

      Thanks! It was well done. You can probably get most of it online. The links in my post are clips.

  10. Kristen Lamb October 25, 2011 at 6:28 pm #

    Great start. Was kinda bummed it wasn’t longer. That’s a good thing, right?

    • Diane Capri October 25, 2011 at 7:02 pm #

      I hope!

  11. Janelle Madigan October 27, 2011 at 11:02 am #

    He was a really amazing person, wasn’t he? He gave us something to aspire to. Even if most of us don’t reach such heights of accomplishment and innovation, we can still aim high. 🙂

    • Diane November 2, 2011 at 6:08 pm #

      I agree!

  12. Sheila Seabrook November 2, 2011 at 5:49 pm #

    I caught a special about Steve Jobs on either the History or Discovery channel. His devotion to his job and his amazing creativity is a lesson we can learn from. May he rest in peace.

    • Diane November 2, 2011 at 6:09 pm #

      I agree with you, Sheila. He was a remarkable person. He will be missed.

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