Wellness Wednesday: The Cure of Connection
“Contrary to what many people believe, well-being isn’t just about being happy. Well-being is about the combination of our love for what we do each day, the quality of our relationships . . . and the pride we take in what we have contributed to our communities. Most importantly, it’s about how these five elements interact.” (Rath & Harter, 2010)
You can argue all you want about how many “dimensions of wellness” there are, but that doesn’t change the fact that we as a world need measurable factors to consider when discussing the topic.
The Five Elements:
1. Career Well-being: Being appreciated and respected for your work (or volunteer efforts!).
2. Social Well-being: Having strong and healthy relationships, and a support system you can rely on is very important.
3. Financial Well-being: Without enough money for basics, the rest of wellness is more difficult.
4. Physical Well-being: Getting rest, eating well, being active – this is the stuff that gets most of the attention because it’s an easy message to say “just do it.”
5. Community Well-being: Your community involvement influences your state of well-being. Being engaged in your neighborhood, church or school is a great way to boost your sense of well-being.
Community well-being also comprises the environment in which we live – both the built and physical environment, along with the emotional and social structure in which we take part.
Does your community have safe spaces to walk and play? Are there grocery stores that have the kinds of food that fit your needs? Is there clean air and water? Do people demonstrate care for one another? Are the neighbors respectful and open to communication?
LBCC is one level of community. Family is another. The town in which you live, the places where you work and the school you attend are also different levels of community.
Human beings are not at their best when isolated. Social isolation has been linked with less restful sleep and greater difficulty paying attention or doing complex tasks. Of course, you can feel lonely even with a group so it’s important to find a way to connect with folks or share an activity – it doesn’t have to be a deep involved conversation or a commitment to taking a dance, film, ceramics or yodeling class.
LBCC has a plethora of ways to get involved, interact and be a part of the community. A few examples may be student clubs, student leadership, work experience or being a tutor. You don’t need to be on stage, or take on leadership of a group. I do suggest you critically look around and, with an open mind, challenge yourself to connect with something new, interesting or just plain fun.
It will make a difference for your well-being, and also for the well-being of the community.
Image by storyset on Freepik