Submitted by Health Karma, April 2021
To understand the significance of wellness, it’s vital to understand how it's connected to health. One way to understand wellness is to consider health as a spectrum that stretches from illness to a state of optimal well-being. Knowing the difference between the two terms matter for a number of reasons. One of the most important reasons being that while we cannot always choose the state of our health, we do have the conscious choice to make active decisions towards wellness. We often use these terms interchangeably and forget that there is a fundamental difference between the two. In order to better understand, let’s break them down by definitions.
Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, according to the World Health Organization)
Wellness is the active pursuit of activities, choices and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health, defined by the Global Wellness Institute.
The typical American in today’s world is interested in moving past diet and exercise to define good health, and leaning more towards mental stimulation and well-being. Wellness is holistic, self-directed, positive, evolving, and multidimensional. Although there does not need to be an equal balance among all dimensions, all require some level of awareness and commitment. When we stop thinking in a sickness mentality and shift towards a wellness mentality, we can begin to recognize some great changes. How can one achieve such changes? Most models of wellness include several pillars. According to Global Wellness Institute, the main 6 pillars are:
Physical: A healthy body through exercise, nutrition, sleep, etc.
Mental: Engagement with the world through learning, problem-solving, creativity, etc.
Emotional: Being in touch with, aware of, accepting of, and able to express one’s feelings (and those of others).
Spiritual: Our search for meaning and purpose in human existence.
Social: Connecting with, interacting with, and contributing to other people and our communities.
Environmental: A healthy physical environment free of hazards; awareness of the role we play in bettering rather than denigrating the natural environment.
Other pillars may involve:
Financial: Feeling satisfied with current and future financial situations.
Intellectual: Recognizing creative abilities and finding ways to expand knowledge and skills.
Occupational: Finding personal satisfaction and enrichment in one's work.
At Health Karma, wellness is at the core of our mission. Health Karma has created a space where you have the power to take control of your health and wellness through a personalized experience that comes with the tools and resources right for you. You can learn more about Health Karma here.