Welcome to July’s lifeskill, Wellness! While our nation’s healthcare reform is still in limbo, let’s see how we can work wellness around the “system” for our own health and wellbeing. Maybe we won’t need to depend on “the system” as much and actually help transform it!
One of the first things to face will be this question. “Am I ready to take personal responsibility for my own health and wellness, and that of my family?” If you are ready, that means you will be transforming just about everything in your daily life at some point along the way. That is, if you are genuinely ready to take it on. No matter your age or health condition, putting together your own wellness plan, goals, and actions is not an easy task. Your wellness will need daily priority. It will also undoubtedly involve you thinking outside our nation’s healthcare box. What does this mean for you and your family?
Like all life changes needing to be made, it is usually a few steps forward and maybe one back. No problem! You just keep moving forward the next day, one step at a time. To give you a glimpse of what will follow in the weeks ahead, here is a possible list of topics to be covered (knowing I will probably add a few other things here and there). A few topics may be a review from years past for some of my readers. Yet, a review is always good for the body and soul! So, stay with me, ok?
- The Three Worlds of Wellness = Conventional, Complementary/Alternative Medicine (CAM), Integrative
- Learning & Embracing Wellness Basics = Nutrition, Movement, Stress Management
- What’s up Doc? = Finding the Help You Need
- Is It Covered by Insurance?
- If Not, Can I Afford It and Is It Worth the Bucks?
While you contemplate how these topics will fit into your own wellness world, here is a definition of wellness to wrap yourself around (offered by John W. Travis, MD, Wellness Workbook, 2004, modified with permission).
- Wellness is a choice…. a decision you make to move toward optimal health.
- Wellness is a way of life…a lifestyle you design to achieve your highest potential for wellbeing.
- Wellness is a process…a developing awareness that there is no end point, but that health and happiness are possible in each moment, here and now.
- Wellness is a balanced channeling of energy…energy received from the environment, transformed within you, and returned to affect the world around you.
- Wellness is the integration of the body, mind, and spirit…. the appreciation that everything you do, and think, and feel, and believe has an impact on your state of health.
- Wellness is the loving acceptance of yourself.
- Wellness is Relationships! = Illness starts with “I”, Wellness starts with “WE”
Again, Wellness is Relationships—“CONNECTEDNESS IS THE CURRENCY OF WELLNESS” (John W. Travis, MD).
So, let’s start here by writing down your responses to these initial wellness questions. Even start a wellness journal or notebook, and add your responses as you begin your wellness journey. Definitely keep them handy to revisit as needed to keep you moving forward.
- What is your decision about moving toward optimal health?
- Are you ready to incorporate wellness as a way of life?
- Are you committed to wellness as a process you will continue in each moment and throughout your life?
- How do you see your current daily life creating balance in order to gain the energy needed to transform you from the inside out, and even change the world around you for the better?
- What changes do you see right now you can make to impact your state of health by integrating wellness in your whole life—body, mind, and spirit?
- In what way will you begin your wellness journey by the loving acceptance of yourself?
- How can you create and nurture personal and health professional relationships so you won’t feel alone in your wellness journey?