Health and Wellness - What Exactly Do They Mean?
“Health and Wellness” – We see the term used everywhere we look. It is a way of categorizing everything from books to events, to products and services. And yet, when I ask people what it means, I often vague responses or, even more curious, the answers I get are all different.
Since the work I do is in the realm of “health and wellness” I want to clarify what these terms mean to me.
The meaning of "health"
When I use the term “health” I am referring to our body’s ability to complete any of the tasks that are required of it, from the most infrequent to the daily, from the most important and urgent to the least important.
Our body’s ability to achieve peak performance is based on 4 factors:
Physical health – our ability to physically move the way our body was designed to move
Emotional health – our ability to express the full range of human emotions
Spiritual health – our ability to articulate our core values and our life’s purpose and the extent to which our lifestyle honors those values and that purpose
Mental health – our ability to think clearly, to problem solve, to connect with others
The meaning of wellness
When I refer to the term “wellness” I am referring to the extent to which our mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health are working together to allow us to move through the ups and downs of life with relative ease.
You state of health and wellness is directly linked with your quality of life
Health and wellness are important because the truth is that life is not a smooth ride. Each of us is faced with ups and downs and our quality of life is determined by our ability to cope, to deal with both the joy and with the pain, without feeling overwhelmed.
Your mindset determines your commitment to your health and wellness
The extent to which you are willing to devote your time, energy and money towards your health and wellness is a reflection of your mindset.
If your mindset is "I have to always put myself last", you will likely feel guilty when you take time for self care.
If your mindset is "I want to show up in life as the best version of myself", you will give yourself permission to regularly practice self-care so that your physical, emotional, spiritual and mental health are all working together so that you can deal with whatever comes your way with flow and ease.
In a world that expects us to to be everything to everyone and put ourselves last, health and wellness are often the first casualties.
There is a reason why all airline safety demonstrations tell you that in an emergency you need to put your own oxygen mask on first before you try to help others. If you yourself are incapacitated you cannot be of service to others.
Health and wellness are the foundation of a life well lived. It is never too late to make this a priority.
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