"Wellness" just like "health" is a broad term that can mean a lot of different things depending on the person. In health coaching we often ask what our member's vision is for their health & wellness, and most of the time we receive a different answer from person to person. I've heard anything from the classic "I want to look better" to "I want to be around for my grandkids" to "I want to be able to bend down and tie my shoes on my own"; to "I want to be able to fit in an airplane seat comfortably"; to "I want to be cancer free; etc. Since we are all unique and different it is important to identify what true "wellness" means specifically to us, so that we can make changes as needed to live both healthier and happier lives.
To me personally "wellness" goes way beyond just the physical aspect. I believe that true "wellness" encompasses several branches including: purpose, social, spiritual, mental/emotional, financial, community, and physical. I like to look at it as a table where "wellness" is the table top and each of the components make up one of the legs. If one of these components (or legs) are lacking then the table is going to get wobbly. Then most likely it's going to put more pressure on the other legs or components to where it might eventually completely break down. For example say you are dealing with depression or anxiety, this is looked at as your mental and emotional health, but most likely it will probably start effecting you physically; socially; financially; spiritually; and the list goes on..... Everything goes hand and hand, and more times than not just being in "good physical health" is not enough.
I encourage you to ask yourself these curious questions below to identify what is going well for you in terms of "wellness" and what might be some areas of opportunities for your "wellness". Reflecting on this is the first step to achieving greater health and wellness. From there you can start implementing actions one by one. This is a process, so while you are doing this I encourage you to be patient with it and never hesitate to reach out for additional support when needed. Remember, slow and steady wins the race!
Questions to Ask Yourself:
What does true " health and wellness" mean to me?
Where would I like to see my health and well-being 6 months to a year from now?...What about 5-10 years from now?
What is going well with my "health and wellness?
What are some areas of opportunities for my "health and wellness?
"What are to the top 1-2 areas of my "wellness" that need the most improvement right now
What is 1 realistic thing I can do to start strengthening this area of my wellness?
How will I achieve this small realistic goal to support my wellness?" (think accountability; specific action steps; what your strengths are that you can apply to this goal; etc.)
Say I did this 1 thing consistently what would that feel like both physically and mentally?....What impact could it have on my life 6 months to a year from now?