The idea of living healthier and more fulfilling lives is not new. For decades, American culture has been obsessed with finding ways to look, feel and live "healthier" lives. We have been, and continue to be, bombarded with messages that claim to have the secret to living well. Sadly, these messages brainwash us to believe that living a healthy lifestyle means doing those things that are, in fact, very unhealthy. As a result, we have become confused about what health and wellness truly means and now have even more difficulty trying to lead a genuinely healthy lifestyle. The question now?
How do we define health and wellness and how do we get there?
The term health is usually defined as the state of being free from illness or injury. This definition might sound familiar as most of us have probably heard this described to us by a physician at some point in our lives. In many respects, this definition of health is very true. If we don't see or feel a problem with our physical bodies, then everything must be ok! Sometimes this is the case. However not all health issues can be seen with the naked eye. In addition, we can struggle with health issues that are not directly caused by any biological factors. Feeling stress as a result of a conflict with a colleague or experiencing difficulty during a significant life change can have a profound effect on our emotional and spiritual well-being. We might feel depressed, worried and even hopeless. We might also find ourselves questioning our spiritual beliefs and whether we might need to make some adjustments. This emotional and spiritual distress can have a direct impact on our physical health. Feelings of tension, stomach and body aches, headaches and difficulties sleeping are only a few of the physical sensations we might experience when our emotional and spiritual health is compromised. When talking about health and wellness, we need to consider more then our physical bodies!
What does health and wellness truly mean?
According to the World Health Organization, health and wellness is defined as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. This definition differs from the former in that it recognizes people are more than just their physical bodies. Health and wellness also includes the well-being of our emotional and spiritual selves. As a therapist, I further expand on this definition as I believe our social and occupational parts also influence our overall well-being. This idea is emphasized heavily in my practice: I strive to use a holistic approach with my clients, also emphasizing and encouraging my clients recognize their own Inner strengths and how their strengths may aid them through the healing process. Now that we know what health and wellness means, we need to know what we can do to improve our emotional and spiritual well-being.
5 Steps to Mental Wellness
Below are five suggestions for improving your emotional and spiritual well-being. I believe these suggestions are essential to living a healthier and more fulfilling life. Remember! Health and wellness involves all aspects of ourselves. We cannot lead healthier lives if we do not pay attention to the role all aspects of ourselves have on our functioning.
So there you have it. The true meaning of health and wellness and how to achieve a healthier mind, body and spirit! Use these five steps or create your own as you work toward a healthier life and overall wellness.
Health and Wellness: Definition and. Dimensions. Artem Cheprasov. http://study.com. May 22, 2016.
Preamble to the Constitution of the World Health Organization as adopted by the International Health Conference, New York, 19-22 June, 1946; signed on 22 July 1946 by the representatives of 61 States (Official Records of the World Health Organization, no. 2, p. 100) and entered into force on 7 April 1948.
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