Friday, September 28, 2012

What Is Wellness.?

Wellness is associated with not being ill or suffering with health. It's also much more. Wellness is viewed increasingly as completeness in physical, mental and emotional levels by living in a healthy and focussed way.

So how do we achieve wellness and what does it mean in terms of us as individuals?

Wellness is positively related primarily to our lifestyle, it creates influences on all we do whether it's work, play or active involvement with others. Responsibility for our health and taking care of ourselves is important and wellness not only includes nutritional adjustments but living a life where we educate and set ourselves healthy goals.

Looking after our weight, eating habits, exercise and being conscious of the risks we may be putting our bodies through, all play parts in the role of wellness. It's about getting our mind right as much as living and practising conscious steps to ensure we are receiving the best life we can.

Taking charge and being responsible for our personal lifestyle choices is the first step to wellness. It's a preventative course of action, which enables us to achieve the highest gains at all levels.

A wellness-oriented lifestyle encourages you to adopt habits and behaviours that promote better physical health and an improved quality of life. It also involves the recognition that you are aware of physical, psychological, social, and spiritual needs, with conscious work on each dimension to gain the best out of your existence. Thinking and feeling good thoughts positively improves our lives.

The six most recognised areas of wellness are:

Social - how we communicate. It's about the interaction and effort towards others, resulting in better friendships, partnerships, relationships and health. Friendships can be like mirrors reflecting the best and worst in us impacting on our wellness.

Spiritual - by increasing faith and belief in ourselves and others, we become more aware of the greater extensions in our lives and create consistent contentment levels, therefore attracting a more calm and deeper understanding in our approach to life's journey.

Physical - being aware of our bodies and finding ways to nurture our growth. Understanding the importance of exercise, eating and embracing an active lifestyle.

Mental - taking a positive attitude towards life brings more of this back to you. By meditating and going with life's flow you will be open to opportunities coming your way. Being open to travel, education and accepting change.

Emotional - understanding ourselves from the inside and approaching life positively helps us deal with stress and increases awareness of our own feelings and why we have them, allowing us to make better decisions with more confidence

Environmental - be somewhere you love to be - create surroundings you want to live in. By respecting nature and animals, as well as other human beings in our lives this increases our balance and our own placement in the world.

A pro-active approach to wellness will bring happiness and the ability to live an amazing life.

Health and Wellness

A vast difference exists between the words health and wellness. While most people consider these words to convey similar meanings, their definitions vary considerably. Health, according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, is defined as, "the condition of being sound in body, mind, or spirit; especially freedom from physical disease or pain." More simply put, health is a conditional state. A person can be in good health or bad health, based on their physical and emotional symptoms. As well, a person can alter the condition of their health by changing their habits for better or for worse. For example, if a person is considered unhealthy due to a weight problem or high blood pressure, they can start exercising, eating a healthy diet, and changing poor lifestyle habits. If this person eventually loses weight and lowers their blood pressure, the doctor may declare that they are now in good health. However, the term health is conditional. This person can easily slip back into a state of unhealthiness by returning to the habits that got them there in the first place.

On the other hand wellness is defined as, "the quality or state of being in good health, especially as an actively sought goal." Wellness, unlike health which is conditional, is a continuous state of optimal health that is maintained through persistent effort. If health and wellness were designated as running terms, health would be a sprint and wellness a marathon. Wellness, like health, does account for the physical, emotional, and spiritual state of a person. However, wellness primarily refers to a person's continual effort to strive for peak performance and overall well-being in the physical, emotional, and spiritual realms.

It is for this reason that corporate wellness plans are essential to a company's long-term success. Workplace health programs do not just promote employee health, but also stress the importance of wellness-a continuous state of health and well-being. The benefits of long-term employee health for a company include less payment towards health plans, happier workers, and higher production rates. While it may seem to be common knowledge, a person who is physically healthy and emotionally stable will perform at higher levels than an employee who is dissatisfied with his or her overall health. This does not just benefit a company while the program is in place, but long after as a result of its employees profiting from a healthy lifestyle.