The world of wellness can be mightily confusing. There is a glut of information out there on how to eat, how to exercise, how to parent, how to become successful, how to handle stress and how to be happy. There are experts on everything. So, whose advice should we follow? Which course of action should we take, and where do we start?
Even before we begin our journey, we can end up utterly overwhelmed and confused by the often conflicting information we read about how to achieve a true state of wellness. What an irony that wellness information can detract from our wellness rather than add to it!
We are reminded by the media, advertising campaigns and many of the most powerful social media influencers that wellness is something we must have and strive to maintain – but what is wellness, actually?
Let’s start with demystifying the concept.
To me, wellness means more than just being ‘healthy’. It means more than nourishing our bodies with good food and exercising regularly. Obviously this is essential, but wellness is all encompassing – all areas of your life must be working in harmony so you can be the best you that you can be.
At its very heart, wellness is more than a concept, it is a daily practice. Over and above nourishing ourselves with good food and maintaining mobility with daily movement, we must prioritise our sleep, practice switching off our minds, and slow the pace of our lives down regularly so our bodies can rest and repair.
These are all decisions we make daily that shape our bodies, our minds and our hearts.
But wellness doesn’t stop there. To achieve optimal wellness, all areas of our lives need to be operating in harmony. What most people miss about wellness is that it’s a web – each aspect is intrinsically linked and affected by the other. How we feel about our job can have an incredible impact on our attitude, which can affect our personal relationships, which can influence how we choose to eat and drink, which in turn affects our energy and ultimately motivation to stay active and healthy. Likewise, anyone who has experienced a relationship breakdown will understand how that can influence all of the above.
All the way along our wellness journey, we have to take all aspects of our lives into consideration and get real with ourselves about what needs to improve and change.
Take a look at your life as a whole – which areas do you feel have the biggest gap between where you are now and where you want to be? This is a good place to start and don’t overcomplicate it. Start small, and start to implement daily wellness practices into you’re your life one by one, starting with the areas that need to most attention (increased you time, cleaner eating, mindfulness practice etc.). It’s also important to note that your personal wellness journey should be filled with joy, not stress, hassle or fear of failure. The second you begin to feel overwhelmed or your goals are so ambitious that you feel defeated before you’ve even started, you have lost the essence of what it means to live well.
For a more in depth look at how to empower yourself to achieve and sustain wellness, in both your personal and professional life, check out The Australasian Sustainable Wellness Academy. I am super excited to announce the launch of ASWA’s website and programs (launching Friday 28 July, 2017). The website will be full of tips and techniques that you can integrate into your daily life so for all of you juggling life’s commitments, I’d love you to head over and check out what our contributors and mentors have to share.