Saturday, June 8, 2013

It's All About Health & Wellbeing

Health & Wellbeing

When I Started my website/blog about wellbeing and health, it led me to ask the question, “What exactly is wellbeing, and how does one translate the correct meaning to the reader?” Dictionaries are often great places to start for general definitions:

Well-be·ing [wel-bee-ing] noun -a good or satisfactory condition of existence; a state characterized by health, happiness, and prosperity; welfare: to influence the well-being of the nation and its people.

Health [helth] noun -1. the general condition of the body or mind with reference to soundness and vigor: good health; poor health.  2. soundness of body or mind; freedom from disease or ailment: to have one's health; to lose one's health.  3. a polite or complimentary wish for a person's health, happiness, etc., especially as a toast: We drank a health to our guest of honor.  4. vigor; vitality: economic health.

These definitions are simple, easy, and to the point, yet not quite the definition we have come to recognize in today’s alternative health circles. But, when browsing the Internet; we need to remember to take a lot of what’s out there with a grain of salt. Amazingly enough, a definition was found that captured the very essence of today’s holistic culture:

Health and Wellbeing - more than just good health, wellbeing describes a state of wellness of body, mind and soul, where all are in a state of health, the individual is happy and prospering. Wellbeing is not available by prescription, there is no one path and many different roads can be taken to arrive there.¹
     It is true, health and wellbeing when put together become one entire picture, and seems to better capture today’s view of alternative health. When separate, the aforementioned dictionary definitions seem to keep that picture in pieces.

One may further ask: “What is wellness?” Yet another good question!  Here are some ideas on the subject-
According to Wikipedia², wellness can take two paths, the Alternative Medicine (this topic will be covered in a later article), and the scientific, Western medicine outlook. Science states that wellness is defined as: health, freedom from disease.  Not a bad description. In alternative or holistic practice, the meaning expands: generally used to mean a healthy balance of the mind, body and spirit that results in an overall feeling of well-being.
Both meanings are correct, but we mustn’t leave out the dictionary definition:
well·ness [wel-nis] noun -1. the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort.  2. an approach to healthcare that emphasizes preventing illness and prolonging life, as opposed to emphasizing treating diseases.

When speaking of total health and wellbeing, one must consider the inside as well as the outside. You may well have a totally sculpted, organically-fed package with which to look upon, but your inside; your spirit, or soul, and/or mental capacity, could be found wanting.

While having good physical health is certainly not a crime, it is only part of the whole picture we are trying to paint. When you add good mental health practices, maybe some deep breathing exercises, relaxation techniques, anger management, to name a few, along with a stable spiritual awareness, delve into meditation, research healing prayer perhaps, and please remember proper nutrition, it is vital to the operation of your entire system; mind, body, and spirit- all of this is what defines the essence of contemporary alternative wellness, or a state of wellbeing.