New Delhi, April 4, 2021: Wellness means various things to different people. For many people, wellness means physical fitness, holistic care, happiness, relaxation, emotional balance, stress reduction, quality of life and spiritual health. However, many people agree that wellness is more than just being free from illness; it’s a proactive way of living.
Wellness, a way of life
Over the last decade, wellness as a concept has attained massive public spotlight. While this need for wellness was initially triggered by the increasing rate of chronic illnesses and mental health conditions, it is now an evolved term that’s helping people find solutions for a fulfilling and thriving lifestyle.
Importance of holistic wellness
Holistic wellness, today, implies improving the manner in which we live, eat, work, play, connect, and even pamper ourselves! Considering most of us have hectic schedules that often leave us anxious and overwhelmed, attaining physical, mental, and spiritual well-being should be at the top of our priority ladder.
Although each one of us has our own definition of being “well”, there are six constituents to the holy grail of wellness that can help us reach our fullest potential in all facets of life. It’s time to understand all the six dimensions individually and grow in each one of them.
Physical wellness is listening to and taking care of your body for optimal health and functioning. As one of our most valuable possessions, health should be prioritized over other things and should never be put on the backburner. The average India leads a busy, stressed-out life and positive health habits can go a long way in lowering the risk of disease, increasing energy, and controlling anxiety. In this age of instant information, keeping up with the latest health and fitness trends can be a little complicated.
Here are some tips for holistic health that you should stick to
● Regularly eating healthy foods such as vegetables, fruits, lean meats and whole grains
● Sleeping for eight hours every day
● Keeping the body hydrated by drinking at least two litres of water every day
● Avoiding sedentary behavior and getting enough exercise
● Going for regular health checkups
● Quitting risky habits like smoking and drinking
● Minding your metabolism and finding a healthy weight
Being mentally well means that your mind is in order and functioning in your best interest. You are able to think, feel and act in ways that create a positive impact on your physical and social well-being. Mentally well people are positive, self-assured and happy. They are in control of their thoughts, emotions and behaviour. This enables them to handle challenges, build strong relationships and enjoy life. You could be at the peak of your physical health and doing absolutely well in your career, but if your mental health is not in place, you are likely to experience distress and dissatisfaction. The simple act of being attentive to your thoughts, learning to cope with change and uncertainty, maintaining healthy relationships, learning new skills, staying in the present etc can help.
Other steps that you can take are:
● Connecting with others
● Seeking support when needed
● Eliminating toxic people or things from your life
● Listening to calming music
● Being physically active
Social and family wellness
It is often said that no man is an island. To lead a happy and fulfilling life, it is necessary to establish healthy relationships with those around us, while also maintaining our individuality. It is about nurturing ourselves, others and our relationships. Social wellness consists of not only balancing our own physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health, but also actively participating as an interdependent piece of the bigger puzzle of humankind. Likewise, staying connected with your family and working to establish a healthy relationship with each member can help you reap emotional benefits. The basis of our social wellness often rests on empathy and it is something that helps us in forming connections with those around us.
Here are a few other things that can help you establish a functional community:
● Have regular conversations with your family and friends
● Make sure that you meet your family and social circle on a regular basis
● Step out of your comfort zone
● Positively interact with people of different cultures, backgrounds and beliefs
● Practise empathy
● Build a support system
● Develop communication skills
A state of being wherein you have control over day-to-day, month-to-month finances; have the capacity to absorb a financial shock; are on track to meet your financial goals; and have the financial freedom to make the choices that allow you to enjoy life refers to financial wellness. The absence of money-related stress can go a long way in enhancing overall happiness. But attaining financial wellness means adhering to a strict financial roadmap that lets you choose the best for yourself.
Here are few handy tips:
● Automate your savings
● Plan for major purchases
● Save early for retirement
● Stay away from credits
● Create a budget
Environmental wellness is a process that involves learning about and contributing to the health of the planet. This involves establishing a sustainable lifestyle, protecting natural resources, and eliminating pollutants and excessive waste. Environmental wellness also includes having respect for and awareness of your surroundings and playing an active role in your community. Environmental wellness encompasses not just our relationship with the planet and nature but our relationship with our personal surroundings as well. By practicing environmental wellness, we can interact more with our natural world and take steps to protect it.
Here’s a list to start small:
● Recycle and compost
● Reduce plastic consumption
● Carry your cutlery whenever possible
● Buy local
● Walk, bike, or car-pool as much as you can
● Use non-renewable resources judiciously
Considering we spend a larger part of our day at work and interact extensively with our colleagues, it is important that we ensure holistic wellness at work as well. The decisions that we make at the workplace are critical to our wellness. A happy employee is a productive employee and if you are stressed out at the workplace, it will certainly affect other aspects of your life too.
Here are some tips that can come handy:
● Find a work-life balance
● Network with people who share similar career interests
● Make professional goals
● Plan out your day in the morning
● Communicate thoughtfully with colleagues
In a country like India, where the concept of wellness is often misunderstood, it is important that the general public is introduced to these six aspects of wellness so that they can work on attaining holistic wellness.