We all know what “sickness” means. We’re familiar with the term “health”. But not everyone intuitively understands “wellness”.
The dictionary defines wellness as “the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort”, qualifying it with an emphasis on “preventing illness and prolonging life”.
The difference between wellness and health is thus nuanced and subtle. The emphasis is shifted from treating diseases to actively promoting well being.
Of equal importance is the significant focus on conscious effort to accomplish this end. Wellness doesn’t happen by accident, nor is it purely determined by your genetic make up or where you choose to live. It is influenced by several other choices you make about your lifestyle.
Your Wellness Makeup
Everyone’s wellness is made up of many different parts. Your well-being matters in areas like
- physical health and fitness
- mental peace and intellectual challenge
- emotional satisfaction
- social relationships
- spiritual growth and development
- your place in the universe
How To Assess Your State of Wellness?
Many of us are so rooted in our current lifestyles that we assume they are ‘healthy’ or ‘good’ just because they are familiar and comfortable. But once you sit down to formally assess your wellness under several categories, some cracks begin to appear in the edifice that’s your lifestyle!
To maximize your potential and reach your highest level of performance and growth, you must enhance your level of wellness in all 6 areas listed above.
Here’s how to evaluate your state of wellness.
Wellness and Physical Health or Fitness
- Have a complete physical examination done, including a gynecological exam if you’re a woman.
- Look at your eating habits and the kind of foods you prefer.
- Assess your exercise levels and chart your level of physical activity.
- Get dental and eye evaluations done.
- Observe how much alcohol you drink.
- If you smoke, watch the cigarettes or tobacco you consume.
- Ditto for drug use or prescription drug intake.
- See how often you get personal care – massage, spa visits, health resorts etc.
Wellness, Mental Peace and Intellectual Challenge
- How ambitious are the goals you’ve set for yourself?
- Are you taking advantage of opportunities and leveraging your experience?
- Do you take relaxing breaks to de-stress and refresh yourself?
- Do you build mind-body connection through meditation and other exercises?
- How do you reward yourself for accomplishments?
- What new skills have you acquired in the last year?
Wellness and Emotional Satisfaction
- Watch to see how your emotions affect your body’s functions.
- Share with people what you feel, think and want.
- Smile at things – and don’t make mountains of molehills.
- Write a daily journal, expressing your thoughts.
- Talk with friends and family regularly.
- Hug people you love – often.
- Have a cheerful and positive outlook on the future.
- Stop loading your mind with negative thoughts. Turn off TV.
- Seek professional help if your emotional burden is crushing.
Wellness and Social Relationships
- How are your relationships with people in your life?
- Are you comfortable and confident in interactions, both public and private?
- Can you adapt easily to different social settings?
- Do you stick with your values and opinions despite challenges from others?
- Are you in any club or group where you meet like-minded people regularly?
- Do you get magazines and newsletters about your special interests?
- How frequently do you meet classmates and work colleagues socially?
Wellness and Spiritual Growth
- Nurture your personal beliefs and moral values.
- Ground yourself in your religious thinking and worship.
- Feel the universal connection with other humans.
- Find purpose and meaning in whatever you do.
- Evolve your personal philosophy of life which guides all that you do.
Assessing your state of wellness is only the first step.
It gives you an idea of where you stand, with your current lifestyle and way of living. This objective evaluation can help you understand your wellness state – and decide whether or not you must make changes to enhance it.
It is rare that you’ll find yourself accidentally in the “perfect zone” of wellness. More often than not, some component or the other will be out of whack and need changing.
So let’s begin. Go through the steps above to give yourself a wellness check-up. In other reports we will explore ways to improve various levels of wellness. To help you get started, here are “5 Quick Ways To Improve Wellness”.