The key to being healthy in the holistic sense is realizing that your physical body is just one fraction of seven dimensions that comprise your whole being. Discover how to nurture each interconnected area of wellness and maintain balance among them for the betterment of your entire self.

Emotional Wellness is our willingness to be aware and accept a wide range of feelings in ourselves and others. We can properly care for our emotional health in a number of ways, including gaining perspective in tough situations. In most cases, the challenges we are faced with are not ‘life-or-death’ circumstances. Once we realize that, coping in those situations should become much less stressful.

Environmental Wellness is our willingness to actively participate in and contribute to efforts to protect and renew the environment. The best way to maintain wellness in this area is simply to find ways to connect with nature on a daily basis, which gives us a break from the hustle of everyday life and helps us feel connected to something bigger than ourselves.

Intellectual Wellness is our willingness to engage in self-directed behaviours like the pursuit of continuous learning, self development and creative hobbies. Ways to keep our intellectual selves stimulated include attending sporting events, movies and live concerts.

Occupational Wellness is the personal satisfaction and enrichment we experience from our jobs. A high level of work engagement has been linked to positive emotions and higher job performance. We can increase our work engagement by focusing on the things we like about our careers, rather than concentrating on the negative.

Physical Wellness is our willingness to pursue an active lifestyle and treat our bodies with care. Frequent exercise, ample rest, healthy eating habits and regular doctor visits all help to improve the quality of our lives.

Social Wellness is our willingness to actively participate in and contribute to the common welfare of our communities. Research indicates that people who have more meaningful social relationships are healthier, happier, and even live longer, so eat dinner with your family more often, hang out with your friends frequently and volunteer some of your free time now and then.

Spiritual Wellness is our willingness to seek meaning and purpose in human existence, to question everything, and to appreciate the things which cannot be readily explained or understood. Ignite your spirituality by implementing deep, slow breathing or meditating for as little as five minutes per day (free meditation guidance apps and online videos are easy to find).

If one of these dimensions is out of whack, it can easily throw one of the other six areas off balance. Be vigilant in your commitment to fostering your 7D wellness and, chances are, your odds of living a long, happy life will multiply.

Article sources: Wellness definitions courtesy of the University of Guelph, Wellness Education Centre; tips for maintaining health in the seven dimensions of wellness courtesy of Alive magazine

~Write-or-die girl