People often complain about health concerns, stating their weight is problematic, explaining how they can't do what they used to, sharing uncomfortable tales of unfortunate bathroom experiences. The idea of physical well-being is known, but people often confuse age-related decline as unavoidable, and to some extent, it is, but not entirely.
Also, health concerns go beyond the physical. Many people express emotional and cognitive disparities between expectation and reality, believing they should be happier than they are or that their job should provide more satisfaction than it does.
These perceptions, those about physical and mental well-being, contribute to the overall category of health and wellness. However, too many people do not understand the classification's definition, often assuming that one term is synonymous with the other. The remainder of this article will delve into each half of the category, providing reasons for its priority and steps for its implementation.
What Does It Mean to be "Healthy"
Most people assume that health refers to the absence of infirmity or disease, but that is too limited as a definition. The World Health Organization classifies health “as being a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being.” 1 Health, then, is all-inclusive, attributed to nutrition, exercise, sleep, social connectedness, and mindfulness, complete encapsulation of the mental and physical spectrum focused on psychological and bodily well-being. With this understanding of health, the assumed idea of wellness becomes murky, making many people wonder if there is a difference at all.
What Is "Wellness" & Why It Is Important?
Health requires action; after all, sedentary lifestyles are precursors to disease and infirmity. Wellness is the action, the habits that contribute to health, the acts of embracing a healthy lifestyle. These habits or acts include exercise, diet, sleep, social interaction, and mental clarity. Each practice contributes to overall health; eating right and exercising improve digestive efficiency and immune resistance; social interaction and mental clarity reduce stress and provide a purpose.
In addition to lifestyle changes, it is important to pay attention to the ingredients in everything you put into your system, even when you get sick with a cold/flu or cough, and choose a medication that does not use harsh chemicals, that doesn't dampen your systems, that helps your body heal itself. Wellness leads to physical and psychological health. You cannot achieve complete health without healthy action and habits; each contributes to the symbiotic partnership, improving the quality of life for the practicing individual.
Reasons To Prioritize Your Health & Wellness
Are you ready to embrace new and healthy habits? There are so many reasons to pursue health through a wellness regimen.
- Reduces risks of illness or disease
- Promotes better sleep
- Improves energy levels
- Encourages positive mood
- Motivates those around you
- Fosters more profound and lasting relationships
- Enhances confidence and self-esteem
- Lowers stress and anxiety levels
- Improves skin vitality and elasticity
- Lowers medical expenses and other health-related costs
Steps To Make Your Health a Priority
To make your health a priority, you need to create a plan. The following six steps can help.
Create realistic goals:
Focus your goals on smaller tasks that contribute to a more significant desire. For example, losing 50 lbs is a worthy goal but not achievable in a month. Instead, focus on losing one or two pounds a week.
Focus on building habits:
You want to focus on building habits. If you don’t get enough exercise, try going on a walk every day. When that becomes part of your routine, add something else.
Make actionable plans:
For a plan to be actionable, it needs to focus on concrete results. If you plan on eating healthier, for example, start meal planning! Make Sunday’s your cooking night and schedule out the meals for the week. It makes staying on track easier and the organization feels good!
Incorporate change into your schedule:
You need to fit new activities into your schedule; this can be challenging, and it might mean sacrificing some luxuries, like watching TV.
Reevaluate after a month:
At the end of every month, reevaluate and adjust. There is no shame in starting over or making changes.
Changing to improve your health is worthwhile, and there are so many ways you can begin! Take a moment each day and truly focus on yourself. You are worth it.