In light of March being Women’s History Month, this article is dedicated to all inspiring, motivating and energizing woman in the world. Are you one of them? To be in a position that inspires others, you must first be content with where you are and meet your own daily needs. If you’re not certain that you have achieved a level of balance in your life, then read on and take the personal wellness test.
Physical wellness incorporates many inter-related areas such as emotional, spiritual, occupational, social, intellectual and environmental. Each area is important and when your body senses a lack of one, it may react with symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and feelings of frustration, apathy, or simply irritability. These relatively harmless symptoms, if left untreated, can cause many long-term problems down the road. They can also impact your daily interactions with students, residents and co-workers.
Usually when we think of physical wellness, we visualize toned bodies and high intensity aerobic workouts at the gym or yearly visits to your primary physician to get reassurance that you have a clean bill of health. While both of these are pieces to the physical wellness puzzle, there are many other areas to consider. Nutrition has a tremendous impact on your energy and performance level. You may want to consider taking a daily dietary supplement if you do not get enough vitamin B, C, D, E, iron or calcium. Consult your doctor before starting a new regime.
To maintain vitality you must also continue to feed your mind and soul. This may happen with intellectual conversations, continuing in the pursuit of the next educational degree, or simply joining a book club. Meeting up with friends in a café or chatting on the phone are also excellent ways to release feelings, emotions and stress. For your soul, you may consider religious organizations, silent meditation or walking through a museum to look at the new exhibit.
Stimulating total body wellness includes taking a bath, relaxing with a good book, or taking a vacation. The reality is that you can create moments in each day where you can re-energize your body, mind and soul.
Here are some suggestions for during your day:
• A fifteen minute cat-nap
• Bring in a small bubbling fountain for the corner of your office
• Aromatherapy – spray mint or jasmine for a quick pick-me-up
• Take a walk around campus and take in the fresh air
• Use visualizations to help with high stress moments.
Leaving work at a reasonable time is another extremely important aspect of physical wellness. Once you’re home try one of the following techniques to relax and unwind:
• Try a new tasty dinner recipe with invigorating flavors
• Alternate your exercise routine or try a new medium like Tai-Chi or Yoga
• Have a mini-vacation in a warm bubble bath or scented oils
• Schedule a one hour massage
• Curl up in your favorite chair and read a good book
• Do a fifteen minute stretching routine – be sure to lay flat and just relax
• Practice deep breathing techniques
Physical Wellness: Self Reflection Chart
When you meet your wellness needs, people generally take notice. When you feel rested and energized you can then focus better and create quality work. It is often difficult to say to a co-worker or boss that you have to leave at a certain time because of _______(fill in the blank) but the reality is that they value you and your work and it is important to set your own wellness as a top priority. We only get one chance to maintain a healthy body, use each day wisely.
Submitted by Heather K. Arnold, Residence Hall Director, University of Connecticut