A Renewed Approach to Well-Being

By Ann Thelen

Follow these tips for a full dimension of wellness.

When the calendar ushers in a new year, it often serves as a time to resolve to adopt new habits or focus on achieving personal and professional goals. Through its annual 10 Week Wellness Challenge, the team at Live Healthy Iowa (LHI) embraces the opportunity to help influence the well-being of Iowans. This year, LHI is focused on a successful approach commonly referred to as the Six Dimensions of Wellness developed by Dr. Bill Hettler of the National Wellness Institute.

Each dimension offers perspectives for impacting a healthy lifestyle through six main areas.

1. Occupational. The occupational dimension recognizes personal satisfaction and enrichment in life through work. It means contributing your gifts, skills and talents to work that is personally meaningful and rewarding. It’s better to choose a career consistent with your values, interests and beliefs than to select an unrewarding one.

2. Physical. By learning about diet and nutrition, optimal physical wellness is met by combining good exercise and eating habits. Following this approach fosters an appreciation for the relationship between sound nutrition and how your body performs. Looking good and feeling terrific often lead to enhanced self-esteem, determination and a sense of direction.

3. Social. The social dimension encourages contributing to your environment and community. Actively seeking ways to preserve the beauty and balance of nature along with enhancing personal relationships and important friendships is essential.

4. Intellectual. Overall wellness involves stretching and challenging your mind with intellectual and creative pursuits. Identifying potential problems and choosing appropriate courses of action based on available information is encouraged rather than waiting, worrying and contending with significant concerns later.

5. Spiritual. It is better to live each day in a way that is consistent with your values and beliefs than to do otherwise and feel untrue to yourself.

6. Emotional. Emotional wellness follows two core philosophies – it is better to be aware of and accept your feelings than to deny them, and it’s better to be optimistic than pessimistic.

Registration for the 2022 10 Week Wellness Challenge is open through Jan. 24. Learn more and register here.