Wellness is an integration of all aspects of your mind and body working together to create one harmonious lifestyle. When people think of good health, they tend to focus on either the presence or absence of disease. Yet what we should really focus on is the seven dimensions, which when are in sync, help us achieve genuine wellness.
When one of these dimensions is not functioning, as it should, this makes you unable to reach your full potential of good health. Each one of them is connected to the other and together, they contribute to your overall wellness. The seven dimensions are:
Now that you know what the seven dimensions of wellness are, here are some ways to get the most out of each:
Everyone knows that the food you consume has a direct effect on your physical health. No wonder that there’s that popular old saying that goes “you are what you eat.” Well, in the same way food affects your physical health, the thoughts you have affect you mental health. Basically, it can also be said that you are what you think.
When you occupy your brain with toxic emotions like anxiety, fear, self-pity, and anger, you will feel hopeless and your quality of life will diminish. However, when you work hard to replace these thoughts with kindness, compassion, gratitude, forgiveness, and acceptance, you will instantly start experiencing a better life.
In general, being emotionally well means balance. It is the ability to identify and express emotions appropriately. It is being grounded and able to take care of your emotional needs, and to prioritize self-care. For many, this is a challenge, and is really a life skill that needs to be learned when it was not taught in childhood.
Men especially have issues with feelings because boys are raised to believe that feelings are not manly and make them sissies. However, in adulthood having the ability to properly cope with feelings and accept them is key in not only having a health relationship with your own self, but also being able to effectively elate with other people.
Of course, doing something like this is not easy, but you can pull it off by following these 6 key steps to emotional wellness.
Taking Control After A Failure
With winter coming on, many people are afflicted with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) commonly called the “winter blues”. Thought to be caused by a decrease in the hours of sunlight, typical symptoms of this mood disorder include a lack of energy, sleeping more, overeating, depression and a general overall lethargic feeling. If you are one that suffers from SAD, you have to take control of it or it will take control of you. Otherwise all the hard work you put into looking and feeling good across the other three seasons will be for naught with a gain in weight as a result. Exercising works at beating the winter blues for these reasons…
Increased blood flow
When exercising, your heart rate increases thus pumping more blood throughout your circulatory system. More blood over a given time means more oxygen going into the cells and more wastes coming out.
Any exercise increases the rate at which your body burns calories, but cardio training tends to burn more than strength training. Because people afflicted with SAD tend to crave carbohydrates more in the winter, it is important to do exercises that give you the most calories burn per minute of exercise. However be sure to include at least a couple days per week (but not in a row) of strength training for toning and definition.
Increased oxygen to the brain
Exercising not only increases blood flow to your muscles, but also to the brain. As a result of the additional oxygen, brain function increases making you more alert and cognitive.
You’ve likely heard it more times than you can remember- laughter is the best medicine. This is true in many respects, as laughter can bring about meaningful neurochemical and physiological changes that can benefit the body. In particular, laughter can improve brain health, and help manage many “silent” disorders, not easily observed by medical practitioners, or society as a whole.
Interested in knowing what a little more laughter can do for your health? Then read on below and find out!
What could be more important than the health and well-being of your brain? From conception to grave, we are worried about our mental performance. Except for that middle bit where we are preoccupied with making money, working, and taking care of our families instead of ourselves, but there are simple, easy ways you can care for your brain health.
Manage Your Stress
Stress is a big deal and can wreak havoc on all aspects of your life and your health. Stress is known to fatigue and seriously degrade the brain and its functions. Stress has an immediate and negative effect on things like concentration, short-term memory storage, and decision-making, but the effects aren’t just short term. Chronically stressed people show slower response time, less brain mass and slower plasticity than there less stressed counterparts.
Many people do not take mental health seriously, doing even less to ensure that they maintain an optimal mental state. It would be safe to assume that as much as 75% of men are not comfortable discussing their emotions, and thus sweep symptoms of depression under the carpet.
Is this ideal? No, far from, as all this does is compound a possibly simple issue, and deprives you of help you could have been receiving.
With that in mind, there are a few things you can do to minimize your risk of developing depression, even though it may also have a genetic link. Regardless, by limiting your external risk factors, you can limit your chance of developing it.
Let’s explore what you can do today:
The term depression is used to refer to a mood disorder that causes you to constantly feel loss of interest and sadness. It is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States. This mood disorder can be very dangerous, as it often causes a number of physical and emotional problems. It is also one of the leading causes of suicide.
Those suffering from clinical depression can’t think, feel, and behave properly, which has a huge negative effect on their life. In most cases, patients suffering from depression have trouble performing normal day-to-day activities. This mood disorder is also linked to a lack of motivation for living and can lead to suicidal thoughts.
Considering that physical health is often dictated by mental health, it would be privy to take nurturing the latter seriously. There are a myriad of means by which this can be achieved, but hiking/being in nature, meditation, yoga, nutrition, and listening to music are the focus here. Each offer well-documented and researched benefits that are advantageous to brain stimulation.
Hiking is an excellent means by which our brains are given a chance to thrive. The combination of a serenely scenic and calming environment allows the mind to cognitively realign itself. Being out in nature has a documented, physiological effect on the neurological functioning of the brain.
A recent study conducted by Stanford University explores the beneficial ramifications of being in nature, even in small doses. Unfortunately, opportunities for many to experience a walk in nature for any period of time have grown fewer and farther between with the ever expanding of the urban sprawl.
Andrea Stewart Roa, M.S.
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