What is Wellness?

  • Holistic: Mind, Body & Spirit.
  • The product of many choices we make daily.
  • Our personal responsibility to ourselves.

A Multi-Component Model of Wellness

We believe that holistic health means looking at the entire person and how that person fits into the universe. While each component of our lives is essential, no single area outweighs the others. We strive not to establish a hierarchy, but rather to create a balance.

Physical Well-Being

The process of making choices to create a flexible, cardiovascularly fit, energetic, strong body, able to perform daily tasks without fatigue. This includes choices we make about:

  • Exercise: Are you a couch potato? Do you over-exercise?
  • Sleep: 8 out of 10 Americans admits he/she is sleep deprived!
  • Nutrition: Are you eating enough of the good stuff? Five a day (fruits & veggies) keeps the doctor away!
  • Stress Management: How do you handle that last-minute rush to finish a project?
  • Drug & Alcohol Use: Legal issues, social pressure, and health risk factors… do you know the facts to make good decisions?
  • Smoking: Quitting smoking today reduces your risk of heart disease immediately!
  • Safer Sex Strategies: The right person, the right time, for the right reasons? Remember, you are a gift… choose wisely with whom you share this gift.
  • Injury Prevention: Do you keep yourself safe? Do you get regular physical exams?
  • Treatment for Illness: Do you get help when you need it? Do you follow doctors’ orders?

Emotional Well-Being 

The process of recognizing your worth and the worth of others. This part of wellness includes identifying and expressing your feelings in an appropriate way. It also involves our ability to:

  • Manage our short-term and long-term stressors (short term stressors may be a test you have to take or a job interview; long-term stressors can include break-ups or chronic illnesses).
  • Take a break (from work, from studying, from conflicts, etc.).
  • Ask for help when we need it.
  • Offer a listening ear to a friend.
  • Stop to smell the daisies (they appear more frequently than roses!).
  • Communicate appropriately when someone upsets us.
  • See ourselves in a positive light.
  • Direct our anger into healthy channels.
  • Look at others as capable and loving creatures.

Spiritual Well-Being 

The process of creating and discovering meaning and purpose in life. This includes demonstrating our values through words, actions and behaviors. Ask yourself, do you "walk the walk," or simply "talk the talk?" We can develop our spirituality in many ways:

  • Participate in a religious service of your choice (there are many churches within walking distance of Waldorf’s campus).
  • Walk with your Higher Power out in nature.
  • Experience a different viewpoint: go with a friend to their church (Waldorf is a Lutheran college… why not attend chapel service with a classmate?).
  • Volunteer to help a charitable group… there are a lot of area agencies that can use help (Forest City: Crisis Intervention, Good Samaritan Center, Hanson Family Life Center, Habitat for Humanity, North Central Community, Forest Plaza Assisted Living; Mason City: Community Kitchen, Humane Society, Heritage Care Center, Opportunity Village).
  • Pray or meditate.
  • Journal.
  • Learn about all different faiths, not only the one you subscribe to.
  • Be tolerant of other religions and practices (especially in today’s emotionally charged climate of religious wars and hate crimes).
  • observe the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Intellectual Well-Being 

The process of using your mind to develop a greater understanding of yourself, others, and the world around you. It’s not just about learning "book smarts;" it’s about life-long learning. To achieve intellectual well-being, we can:

  • Make rational, logical decisions.
  • Think before reacting to situations.
  • Learn more about our interests and hobbies.
  • Develop critical thinking skills.
  • Consider the impact we each can have on the world.
  • Keep up on global events.
  • Not judge people by their circumstances.
  • Try new things.
  • Read a book for fun.
  • Discuss the news with friends.
  • Listen to National Public Radio (NPR).
  • Debate.
  • Listen to a book on tape/CD when taking long trips.

Environmental Well-Being 

The process of making choices that improve the quality of our environment. This includes acting in ways that positively impact the environment, not only for this generation, but for those to come. We can become good citizens of the planet Earth in simple ways:

  • Turn off the water while we brush our teeth or do our dishes.
  • Recycle!
  • Never litter… even pick up trash while walking to class or out for a walk.
  • Walk or bike instead of drive (it’s better for the environment, better for our cars, and even better for our bodies!).
  • Limit the purchase of disposable items (paper or Styrofoam plates, plastic utensils, throw-away pens and razors, etc).
  • Reuse supposedly disposable items… most plastics can be used for more than a one-time use.
  • Purchase recycled materials such as paper products.
  • Donate clothes you don’t wear often.
  • Buy clothes, furniture, or other materials from a thrift store or rummage sale… it’s a form of recycling!
  • Buy energy efficient products from light bulbs to freezers.
  • Read 50 Simple Things You Can Do To Save the Earth.
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

Social Well-Being 

The process of creating and maintaining healthy relationships through choices we make. This part of wellness deals with our ability to interact well with others and to have satisfying interpersonal relationships. Remember, we can develop and build relationships with anyone who enters our lives:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Roommates
  • Classmates
  • Co-workers
  • Teachers/professors
  • Partners
  • Teammates
  • Neighbors
  • Community members

Why not meet somebody new today?

Occupational Well-Being 

The process of achieving a balance between work and leisure in a way that promotes health, enrichment, and a sense of personal satisfaction.  Occupational development is related to one's attitude about one's work.  To achieve occupational well-being, we can: 

  • Set short- and long-term goals.
  • Be involved with volunteer work.
  • Network with peers and colleagues.
  • Actively aspire to a positive work attitude.
  • Maintain an aspect of flexibility.
  • Reflect on our reasons for working.
  • Accept that no job is perfect.
  • Balance competing priorities.
  • Balance our work with the other dimensions of wellness.