Taking a moment to pause, reflect, and ask yourself a series of wellness questions is a great habit to include in your routine. As our comprehension of health evolves, we must continue to survey our wellness to ensure we are headed in the right direction.
Today, understanding your health and wellness means asking yourself a vast range of questions on topics that we are only just beginning to understand. Twenty years ago, health and wellness focused exclusively on nutrition and exercise, and on a societal level, weight loss was the only concrete measure of our health. After almost a century of diet crazes and a mass movement to gym classes starting in the early 1980s (remember Richard Simmons television workouts?), we now know there is so much more to understanding our personal, uniquely individual health.
Being healthy still includes maintaining the percentage of body fat that prevents inflammation, hormonal imbalance, and elevated blood pressure, but those measures alone are not enough to ensure our overall wellness. Our bodies are a series of complex integrated systems that do not stand alone. Science has opened the door to a greater understanding of the importance of stress management, hormonal balance, depth of sleep, food choices, and mental and emotional health. Singular approaches to health do not work. So we need to ask ourselves questions from multiple angles to determine if we are in balance, and therefore, truly well. (if you want an in-depth framework for surveying which areas of your health are strong and which need nurturing, take our wellness questionnaire)
To kick-start your self-reflection, consider the following 5 thought-provoking wellness questions:
1) Do you ever stop and take a moment to reflect?
Do you ever just stop what you are doing, take a breath, and scan your body and mind to notice what emotions you are feeling? What thoughts are bubbling up? What is your energy level? How is your posture? How is your body doing?
Do you ever stop to ask yourself what you need?
In our fast paced world of “doing”, it’s easy to forget to check in with ourselves. Our minds are hardwired to create routines and habitual behaviors as a form of energy management. It’s how we used to survive, but now that energy (food) is no longer scarce, we have repurposed this mental process in our quest to achieve optimal efficiency (think Steve Jobs wearing the same clothes every day). While this does eliminate decisions and save time, it also causes us to mindlessly perform tasks. This state of mind is a perfect stage to get lost in thought and let your to-do list, calendar, or even doubt, anxiety, and regret rule the show.
We do have a choice, though. We can break the spell by mindfully invoking pauses and curiosity. This will allow us to savor moments.
This does not come naturally, however. Remember, we’re hard wired for the opposite. But that is why we practice mindfulness and integrate it as a foundational principle in our award-winning program.
2) Are you happy with your life at this very moment?
Is there anything about your physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual well being that you need to attend to in order to be more fulfilled, peaceful, and joyous?
The word happiness is often associated with fleeting moments of pleasure. We reach a milestone, experience a rush of our reward and pleasure hormone dopamine, and then come down… hard. Or, we feel happy when we think about some future version of ourselves that has accomplished what we seek, only to be brought back to reality with a financial hardship, death in the family, or any one of life’s many curveballs.
To get beyond the ups and downs that come with the pursuit of happiness, we can instead orient to an alternate perspective on life, one that doesn’t depend on the fleeting moments of success. A perspective that focuses on the quality of our journey, rather than our ultimate destination. A journey that is filled with the richness of peace, flow, joy, presence, and heartfelt connection.
A deep and stable state of happiness comes when we decide what is more important; the quality of our journey or the destination?
3) Does your energy-in match your energy-out?
Think of yourself as a rechargeable battery. Every day, you perform actions that both charge you and drain you. Eating the right foods at the right times, exercising and moving for circulation and inflammation prevention, sleeping for recovery and repair, releasing stressors, and avoiding and eliminating toxins are all actions that charge you. On the other hand, poor health habits, work stress, family stress, anxiety, doubt, and a long list of other things, drain you.
Do you have enough energy-charging habits to balance out your energy-draining habits?
In other words, are you burning out?
Finding ourselves out of balance with the energetic cycle of life is becoming the new normal, but it’s not sustainable. You can, however, reclaim balance by attending to how you eat, move, sleep, manage stress and avoid toxin load, while creating boundaries for how much, when, and to who you give energy to. Journaling is a good tool to pause, reflect, and become curious about the different energy aspects of your life and can give you the insight you need to make the changes required for harmony and balance.
4) Are you working towards a better version of yourself?
Do you have any actions you are focusing on in an attempt to create a healthier lifestyle? Are you rewarding yourself for the efforts you are applying towards these goals? Are you enjoying the process of accomplishing these goals or just counting the days until you succeed (see #2)?
The path towards balanced health, happiness, and longevity is paved with small, incremental improvements, not one big massive accomplishment. Once you’ve decided which of your physical, mental, emotional or spiritual needs you want to address, you need to take action. Start with small, seemingly trivial improvements. Repetition of these actions over time will result in sustainable habits that support the life we truly deserve to live. And rewarding ourselves for our efforts keeps our subconscious supporting our conscious goals and actions. Learn how to build healthy habits in 6 easy steps.
5) Do you have support?
Are you supported by a trainer, coach, nutritionist, naturopathic doctor, counseling therapist, or balanced health program?
We all need support. The very best performers, athletes, and CEOs all have coaches—why don’t you?
After realizing why you need to make a change, and learning how and when to make a new action, you need support in making it part of your healthy lifestyle. From tracking apps to trainers and nutritionists to counseling therapists, we are fortunate in this era of individualism to have support resources that accelerate the success of our unique goals.
Align yourself with allies, you deserve it!
What is Mountain Trek?
Mountain Trek is the health reset you’ve been looking for. Our award-winning health retreat, immersed in the lush nature of British Columbia, will help you unplug, recharge, and roll back years of stress and unhealthy habits. To learn more about the retreat, and how we can help you reset your health, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out below: