WELLNESS: THE NEW HEALTH GOAL3
wellness will be. Similarly, as you develop the ability totake care of your own physical needs, you ensure a greaterlevel of physical wellness. To achieve optimum physicalwellness, you need to make choices that will help youavoid illnesses and injuries. The decisions you make now,and the habits you develop over your lifetime, will largelydetermine the length and quality of your life.
Your emotional wellness reﬂectsyour ability to understand and deal with your feelings. Emo-tional wellness involves attending to your own thoughtsand feelings, monitoring your reactions, and identifyingobstacles to emotional stability. Achieving this type of well-ness means ﬁnding solutions to emotional problems, withprofessional help if necessary.
Those who enjoy intellectual (ormental) wellness constantly challenge their minds. An ac-tive mind is essential to wellness because it detects prob-lems, ﬁnds solutions, and directs behavior. People whoenjoy intellectual wellness never stop learning; they con-tinue trying to learn new things throughout their lifetime.They seek out and relish new experiences and challenges.
Your interpersonal (or social)wellness is deﬁned by your ability to develop and main-tain satisfying and supportive relationships. Such rela-tionships are essential to physical and emotional health.Social wellness requires participating in and contributingto your community, country, and world.
To enjoy spiritual wellness is to pos-sess a set of guiding beliefs, principles, or values that givemeaning and purpose to your life, especially in difﬁculttimes. The spiritually well person focuses on the positiveaspects of life and ﬁnds spirituality to be an antidote fornegative feelings such as cynicism, anger, and pessimism.Organized religions help many people develop spiritualhealth. Religion, however, is not the only source or form of spiritual wellness. Many people ﬁnd meaning and purposein their lives on their own—through nature, art, medita-tion, or good works—or with their loved ones.
Your environmental wellnessis deﬁned by the livability of your surroundings. Personalhealth depends on the health of the planet—from the safetyof the food supply to the degree of violence in society. Yourphysical environment either supports your wellness or di-minishes it. To improve your environmental wellness, youcan learn about and protect yourself against hazards in yoursurroundings and work to make your world a cleaner andsafer place.
Other Aspects of Wellness
Many experts consideroccupational wellness and ﬁnancial wellness to be ad-ditional important dimensions of wellness.
refers to the level of happiness and fulﬁllmentyou gain through your work. Although high salaries andprestigious titles are nice, they alone generally do notbring about occupational wellness. An occupationallywell person truly likes his or her work, feels a connectionwith others in the workplace, and has opportunities tolearn and be challenged. Other aspects of occupationalwellness include enjoyable work, job satisfaction, andrecognition from managers and colleagues. An ideal jobdraws on your interests and passions, as well as your vo-cational or professional skills, and allows you to feel thatyou are contributing to society in your everyday work.To achieve occupational wellness, set career goals thatreﬂect your personal values. For example, a career in salesmight be a good choice for someone who values ﬁnancialsecurity, whereas a career in teaching or nursing might bea good choice for someone who values service to others.
refers to your ability to live withinyour means and manage your money in a way that givesyou peace of mind. It includes balancing your income
Examples of Qualities and Behaviors Associated with theDimensions of Wellness
• Eating well• Exercising• Avoiding harmfulhabits• Practicing safer sex• Recognizing symp-toms of disease• Getting regularcheckups• Avoiding injuries• Optimism• Trust• Self-esteem• Self-acceptance• Self-conﬁdence• Ability to under-stand and acceptone’s feelings• Ability to sharefeelings withothers• Openness to newideas• Capacity to ques-tion• Ability to thinkcritically• Motivation tomaster new skills• Sense of humor• Creativity• Curiosity• Lifelong learning• Communicationskills• Capacity for inti-macy• Ability to estab-lish and maintainsatisfying relation-ships• Ability to cultivatesupport system of friends and family• Capacity for love• Compassion• Forgiveness• Altruism• Joy• Fulﬁllment• Caring for others• Sense of meaningand purpose• Sense of belong-ing to somethinggreater thanoneself • Having abundant,clean naturalresources• Maintaining sus-tainable develop-ment• Recycling when-ever possible• Reducing pollu-tion and waste
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