Wellness is the optimal state of well-being for each person, integrating mind, body, and spirit. It involves achieving the highest level of functioning in several dimensions: physical, social, intellectual, emotional, occupational, and spiritual. Achieving wellness is a continuous, proactive process that requires personal commitment, goal-setting, and balance. Thinking about making a personal wellness plan?
Dimensions of Wellness
Physical wellness involves doing what is necessary to maintain a healthy body. Regular exercise, proper nutrition, preventive screenings, avoiding harmful behaviors, and practicing safety are all necessary for physical wellness.
Social wellness involves your connection with others and the world around you and how well you relate to them. It involves not only a concern for the individual, but also an interest in humanity and the environment as a whole—being an engaged member of society. Social wellness allows us to be confident and amiable with others and in groups.
Intellectual wellness involves maintaining an active mind, using the resources around you, exploring interests, problem-solving, and being creative. It provides you with the knowledge and skills to meet challenges in all situations.
Emotional wellness involves the ability to recognize and understand our feelings and use appropriate means to address them. True emotional wellness involves the ability to adjust to change, cope with challenges, interact appropriately with others, and express emotions freely.
Occupational wellness involves using your skills and knowledge to contribute to the goals of an organization to an extent that one can experience fulfillment in their commitment to their occupation. Occupational wellness also involves achieving balance between work and personal lives.
Spiritual wellness involves development of a strong sense of personal values and a commitment to living in a moral and ethical manner in relation to oneself and others. For some, spiritual wellness might involve ties to religion, but it is not necessary. Spiritual wellness involves the actions you take to give purpose and meaning to your life.
Other dimensions of wellness exist, and each organization includes different wellness dimensions for their purposes. Other dimensions often include: environmental wellness, financial wellness, multicultural wellness, life planning wellness, sexual wellness, and many others. As with the six dimensions of wellness described here, each of these and other dimensions involve achieving an optimal level of functioning in that area.