Quite often we hear or read about a young and seemingly fit person passing away too early. While such people appear to be fit, they may be unaware about so many other factors such as stress, lack of sleep and exercise, and other unhealthy habits taking a toll on their overall well being. Well being or the holistic health of a person, therefore, goes beyond just the physical health. However, when people neglect their holistic well being, it often manifests first and more pronounced in their physical health.
What are the seven components of health that everyone should take care of?
Eating and sleeping habits along with regular physical activity mostly govern your physical health. Eating a balanced and nutritious diet, sleeping for a good eight hours, exercising at least four times a week will go a long way in building immunity, stamina, strength, and flexibility for both children and adults. Avoiding bad habits like smoking or consuming alcohol in excess or binging on junk food will serve to ensure longevity. While keeping diseases at bay, it is also important to practice safety consciously to prevent accidents and fall related injury. While we take care of our own physical health, we also have a responsibility towards society to ensure our habits like lack of self-hygiene or environmental consciousness do not make others fall ill.
While a health body has a definite say in emotional wellbeing, it is important to understand and take care of our emotions as well. In today’s fast moving world, there are enough stress factors that can badly sway our emotional stability. Deciding on our priorities, managing time, developing a healthy relationship with our family, friends, colleagues, and other people we deal in our daily lives, having a positive attitude, knowing our limitations and strengths, and living in the present will help us to ensure our emotional balance and lead a peaceful life. Teaching children to set aside time for each activity like study, play, watching TV and fixing their bed time will help them to manage their various activities and reduce stress levels. Remember the saying all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. What’s more, while you are parenting, treat your children as friends and talk to them…but don’t talk down.
A healthy body and mind also demands a satisfied intellect. Intellectual health is vital to keep age related ailing like dementia at bay. The mind should be adequately exercised to keep it alert and healthy. While buying toys for children, do include puzzles and brain teasers to pique their curiosity. Taking time out to pursue one’s hobbies and passions will activate the grey cells in our brain and keep our mind alert. It will automatically help to counter stress caused by our day-to-day life as well. Learning never ends and learning about what interests us will keep our minds young and healthy even when we age.
We go through life facing ups and downs and trying to deal with happiness and pain. To remain sane through the various changes in life, we need to be rooted in reality, adhere to our principles, and nurture hope and positivity. Many people fall back on their religion to survive during some of the toughest and darkest moments of their life and some others find peace in their principles, commitments, and responsibilities. A flawless character nourishes spiritual health and spiritual health in turn helps us lead peaceful life. It is important to teach children moral education early in life.
While the above four aspects help us take care of ourselves, there are another three that are external but nurture our individual wellbeing as well. Worldwide there are healthy and safety standards that govern the health and wellbeing of the workforce and labor laws ensure this beyond organizations and even inside homes for the support staff. Doing what matches one’s talent, skill, and personality helps in achieving that intrinsic motivation to work. This intrinsic motivation helps in achieving self-satisfaction, which transcends the individual and benefits the organization at large.
Environmental health has a huge influence on our physical wellbeing. All of us have a personal responsibility towards preserving the quality of air, water, and land and keeping the noise levels to the minimum level. By conserving water, serve as a role model for your children to live in harmony with the environment. Electricity, which is derived from natural resources like coal, water, or sunlight should be saved so that our excess consumption doesn’t lead to depletion of these natural resources. Paper usage is another aspect that we need to be aware about. Teach the practice of reduce, reuse, and recycle to your children as they grow up.
Humans are social beings. We need to live in harmony with our society and therefore have a personal responsibility to our neighborhood and the community we live in. It is important to help your children to socialize with others and develop a healthy relationship with your larger family circle and their friends and teachers. Again initiating them early in life to care about the less privileged people in the society and support them in their community endeavors is very important. This early life social service will help them to grow into socially responsible citizens who can create positive change in the society.
Continuous growth and balance of all these seven dimensions is important for our overall health and well being. Imbalance in even one of these aspects will tend to adversely affect the other dimensions and eventually affect our quality of life. So be mindful of nurturing these seven wellness aspects in yourself as well in others.