Right now, I’m at a place in my life where I am interested in learning more about the link between personal good health and wellness. I’m also interested in understanding if good health and wellness can cause an individual to be an effective leader in the workplace. Let’s talk about what is “wellness.”
In past years, psychologists used Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to measure one’s satisfaction. Maslow measured five key life ranges, and they are:
- Physical (food, water, shelter, sleep)
- Safety and security (property, employment, resources)
- Social (love, sex, relationships)
- Esteem (confidence, achievement, respect)
- Self-actualization (morality, creativity, problem-solving)
More recently, psychologist Martin Seligman’s study on optimism and happiness suggests five elements of well-being:
- Positive emotion: what we feel (pleasure, rapture, ecstasy, warmth, comfort)
- Engagement: thoughts and energy flow; immersion in a desired activity
- Relationships: essential social connections
- Meaning and purpose: our interpretations of what really matters
- Accomplishment: our desire for achievement and task completion
As a wide-ranging term, wellness describes overall health and well-being in terms of peak functioning of the body, mind and spirit. Our daily choices such as, what we do, how we eat, the battles we fight, who we love all help determine our wellness level.
For our descendants, running from a tiger meant staying alive. Early humans were forced to be strong and swift and didn’t have easily obtainable foods. Modern life offers us food choices at every corner, let it be a restaurant or a gas station. We now have far too many opportunities to make good choices to make all of the poor choices that we do.