A few years ago when I was struggling to manage stress, uncertainty, and loss, I found it difficult to answer this question, “How are you?”
Some days, some moments, I just wasn’t sure.
To help me better identify how I was doing, I drew a stick figure, and based on the following definitions, I assigned 1–5 to my mental, emotional, spiritual, physical, and social wellness:
- Mental: desiring lifelong learning and having the ability to process information well.
- Emotional: acknowledging, expressing, and managing feelings effectively.
- Spiritual: finding meaning and purpose through beliefs, morals, and values.
- Physical: living in a way that reduces risk of illness and injury (includes things like diet, exercise, sleep).
- Social: establishing and maintaining meaningful relationships.
Based on my findings, I then drew a face that reflected my overall health.
By doing this 5-minute check-in (or sometimes a more in-depth contemplation), I determined area(s) that needed attention. I could then explore underlying causes, better understand my overall health, and in turn articulate my present state to others. But most importantly, this exercise provided a clearer road map to self-care.
So . . . how are you in this new year?
Why not treat yourself to a weekly or monthly wellness check in 2020? This self-administered exercise is free and could quite possibly keep you moving on your best path yet.
Further Contemplation: Don’t limit wellness checks to just yourself. This simple exercise can be taught to friends and family members of most any age.