Understanding Wellness and Restoring Balance
“Just living isn’t enough, one must have sunshine, freedom and a little flower.” -Hans Christian Anderson”
The Cambridge Dictionary defines wellness as:
The state of being healthy, especially when it is something that you are actively trying to achieve
The state of being healthy isn’t just about eating well and exercising; wellness includes physical, mental, and emotional health. Lifestyle habits, spirituality, relationships, your career, and life purpose all have an impact on your wellness and how you’re feeling.
Wellness is about looking at each area of your life and figuring out what’s working, and what needs tweaking. Sometimes you might need a complete overhaul, other times you just need some fine tuning. Life can get chaotic, difficult, and stressful, and some days it can feel like you’re swimming upstream against the current. But there are ways to restore calm and balance and reclaim some control over your life.
Wellness Questions to Ask Yourself
Because wellness focuses on the whole person, it’s important to take your time when examining the different areas. Don’t rush – and be honest. A good place to start is to find out what nourishes you. What makes you feel energised, healthy, and whole? What activities or self-care practices make you feel balanced and calm? More importantly, have you been doing them?
Are there certain areas of your life that make you feel stressed? Do you have difficult relationships that leave you feeling drained and negative? Or do you have a career that you feel you’ve outgrown?
When was the last time you felt joyful, or did something that lit you up? Do you have a bedtime routine, and are you getting enough sleep? Have you been looking after yourself properly, eating well, and exercising?
Do you spend time looking after other people, listening to their worries and concerns? Do you brush aside how you’re feeling and bottle things up, thinking your own worries can wait?
Using the above questions as a starting point, grab a pen and paper and spend some time exploring the areas that feel relevant to you.
Poor sleep can often be a sign of too much caffeine or using your phone right up until bedtime. Difficult relationships sometimes need boundaries putting in place, which is also a part of self-care. Boundaries tell others what behaviour is and isn’t acceptable, and how we want to be treated. Being unhappy in a job, doesn’t always mean leaving to find a new one. Ask yourself what you don’t like. Is it the people, the management style, or your actual role? If it’s one of the first two, can you find the same role within a different company?
Go easy and be kind to yourself. The idea is to figure out ways to enhance your well-being, not bring out your inner mean girl.
Put Your Own Oxygen Mask on First
It’s easy to forget about your own needs and become busy caring for everyone else around you. I like the analogy of being on a plane for this. If there’s an emergency on a plane, you’re told to put on your own oxygen mask, before helping anyone else. It makes sense, because you can’t help other people, if you don’t look after yourself first. If you’re not taking care of yourself and meeting your own needs, how can you look after someone else? It’s a simple concept, but one that’s not always followed. However, just eating well and getting enough sleep can make a huge difference to your well-being, and how you feel.
Remember that we are all unique, and one size does not fit all. What works for someone else, might not work for you.
When looking at your own wellness and self-care routines, remember they are relevant to you and your circumstances. How you feel, and how you want to feel, the time and resources you have available, all impact what your wellness journey will look like.
I hope this post has been helpful and given you a starting point to see where you can reclaim some control. I’d love to hear your thoughts about how you got on, so please leave me a comment.