Wellness and Life Balance – What is it, and where do I get it? Part II

In yesterday’s post, we talked about the first three dimensions of wellness – social, physical, and emotional. Today I’ll explain the last four, which are career, intellectual, environmental, and spiritual.

Career wellness (or occupational wellness) is about finding work that is fulfilling to you, while also maintaining balance between work and the other parts of your life. When you want to make an impact in your career, you make an impact in the organization where you work, and then in turn you make an impact on society.  The impact can be positive or negative, and the best way to make a positive impact is to find work that you find fulfilling. In future posts, we’ll discuss how to find a career in which you gain satisfaction, unique ways to make a positive impact in your place of employment (and the effects that can have), and new ideas on balancing a demanding job with the other important parts of your life.

Intellectual wellness covers a lot of ground. Part of it is being open to new ideas and experiences. When you have the desire to take on unfamiliar challenges, learn new concepts, and improve your skills, you can move toward intellectual wellness. Critical thinking is also a component of intellectual wellness – when you examine your own thinking and judgments (and those of others), you build your ability to see things differently. We’ll talk more about how to keep an open mind, how to challenge yourself when you feel stuck in an old rut, and how to build on past experiences to learn in new ways.

Environmental wellness is the process of making positive choices relating to your impact on resources such as air, land, water, and energy. Positive environmental choices will contribute to sustaining or improving quality of life for people, animals, and plants. I look forward to talking about how to limit toxins, chemicals, and pollution. We’ll also talk about food safety, how to make a positive environmental impact, and anti-consumption movements.

Spiritual wellness is not about religion or how to live your life according to your religion. Regardless of whether you believe in a specific organized religion, you can move toward spiritual wellness by working on discovering your meaning and purpose in life, identifying values that are important to you, and then behaving in ways that are reflective of those values. These skills will help you develop peace and harmony in your life. We’ll talk more about calling on your personal belief system to help cope with both daily hassles and life crises, how to use your values and beliefs to elicit a relaxation response, and how to let go of worries, pain and stress to focus instead on hopefulness and satisfaction.

That’s it – you now know the seven dimensions of wellness. As you work on balancing all seven, think about what you are working toward. The highest and most important goal of your wellness journey is to attain peace – inner peace. And, in the words of The Dalai Lama,

“Without inner peace, it is impossible to have world peace.”

Let me know your thoughts about career, intellectual, environmental, and spiritual wellness in the comments! What areas do you want to work on?

Posted on March 3, 2012, in Career Balance, Environmental Wellness, Intellectual Health, Spiritual Balance, Wellness - Life Balance and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Excellent post, Nisha. Our future wellness depends on what we do in our life today. Right choice matters lot…

    • Your comment reminded me of something one of my professors used to say, “Everything in life is a choice.” She was challenged by people saying, “Even working? Breathing? Eating?” Yes! Everything is a choice, even those things, and it’s up to each individual to make his/her own right choice.

      Thanks for your comment!

  2. At the school where I work, the counselor always says some words of wisdom on the morning announcements then ends with, "Make it a great day or not. The choice is yours." Imagine the impact if we all acted as if we believed that.

    I'd like to hear more from you about achieving inner peace.

    • I love that! And it's good to hear the idea of choices is being introduced to kids. It's a lesson worth learning, for sure.

      As for inner peace, we're all working to get there. But learning to make good choices in all seven wellness dimensions (no easy task!) will get you moving in that direction. And hopefully this blog will help you to do that!

      Thanks for the comment – I appreciate it.

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