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Pillars of Wellness

Build a life you don’t need a vacation from

The Eight Pillars of Wellness

“Wellness is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

– The World Health Organization

Over the course of my journey from traditional-corporate-career-ladder-climber to independent entrepreneur, I discovered recurring themes on my path to wellness. These discoveries were not an isolated find like a treasure chest, but rather an active process of healing.

Slowly I became aware of making choices that pointed me towards a healthy and fulfilling life. By thinking of life as a whole, eight pillars of wellness emerged as interrelated concepts.

Each pillar is of equal importance in the pursuit of optimum health and I am better able to reach an optimal level of wellness by understanding how to maintain and optimize each of the pillars of wellness.

It is my pleasure to share them with you.

 

Physical Wellness

Seeking physical wellness has long been a heavily supported pillar. It is far easier to understand how to measure success when it can be seen with our eyes. But even in our physical bodies, everything is intertwined and highly personal. What works well for one, may not be the case for another. It is important here to read the signals which our bodies are constantly sending. By honoring my physical health messages through exercise, eating well and getting enough sleep, my life has been transformed.

Spiritual Wellness

My spiritual wellness is anchored in my values; whereby I feel a sense of meaning and purpose. This is a sacred space where I allow myself to be dedicated to thoughts, relationships and activities that build me up. Spending time in nature or appreciating expressions of creativity in other people, help me stay connected to my values.

Emotional Wellness

I like to think of emotional wellness as having passionate feelings, which are expressed intensely. By understanding this truth, I am better equipped to manage stress. Paying attention to self-care, relaxation and play, I have been able to develop deep inner resources.

Intellectual Wellness

Being extremely curious, even in the face of challenges allows intellectual wellness to thrive. I find it imperative to have an open mind towards new ideas and expanding my knowledge. Practicing intellectual wellness can range from outward facing cultural and community activities to personal scholastic research and study.

Social Wellness

Brené Brown says: “We are hardwired to connect with others, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering.” It took me a long time to realize this and to understand how much I needed social wellness in my life. It was like denying myself enough food and water to thrive, when I didn’t honour my need for social connection. In a world where social media can lead to disconnection, I am on a quest to strengthen my social wellness through time honoured creative pursuits.

Environmental Wellness

It is hard to understand our environmental wellness when we don’t spend enough time outdoors! As a child I yearned for endless days indoors to read books and do other inside creative projects. Now I know that I need a balance. I want to live in harmony with the earth and I try to do my part to protect it from harm. There is always a better way and I continually strive to understand how I can improve my environmental wellness.

Financial Wellness

Being content with delayed gratification has always helped me achieve a sense of financial wellness. Sacrificing a little today for a greater payoff in the future is a hard concept, but a worthwhile one. Staying out of comparison helps to keep me connected to my financial goals. Understanding what I am willing to do in exchange for a salary has been helpful. Knowing how much money is enough is a personal quest towards true financial wellness.

Occupational Wellness

I’ve prescribed to various forms of occupational wellness over the years. As a student, I strived to get good grades, almost as an activity in and of itself, learning was not always the main point. As I progressed in my career, I often took on extra projects and challenges because I thought there would be a reward down the line, not because I necessarily desired extra work. Now I am involved in work which I find interesting and is in service to others, which is a much healthier practice of occupational wellness.

Practice the Eight Pillars in Your Life

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