Is There a Difference Between Health and Wellness?

Is There a Difference Between Health and Wellness?

Is There a Difference Between Health and Wellness?

You have heard the terms used a lot lately, and now you need to know is there a difference between health and wellness?  Easy answer is Yes.  While the terms are often used interchangeably, they are not the same.  You can be healthy and not be well, but can you be well and not be healthy?  And should you be?

Being healthy depends on your physical and mental state.  While being well is a lifestyle, it is you enhancing your state of being.  Let’s make it a little clearer.

Health

Being healthy is about your physical, emotional and social well-being.  It is mostly factors that you can control, but unfortunately sometimes there are things you can’t control.  Being healthy is being disease free, physically and emotionally.

Physical Health

You are in control of most of your physical health.  Are you eating foods that are good for you?  Are you exercising regularly?  Do you smoke or put in your body chemicals that really don’t belong there?  Are you getting enough sleep?  You control all these, and all these are contributors to your health.

Emotional

You can feel anger.  You can be sad.  And let’s face it, in this world you are going to feel stress.  But when you are emotionally healthy you are in control of how you react to the anger, the sadness and the stress.  Emotional health isn’t about showing the happy face twenty-four-seven.  It’s about controlling all those feelings.  And it isn’t about controlling the positive and the negative all alone.  Maybe you can.  Maybe you can’t. Seeking help for handling the positive and negative is a step towards being a healthy emotional being.

Social

No, this definitely does not include your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or any other “social platform” you may be hooked to.  Being socially healthy is the ability to interact with others.  Connecting with others in different social situations, preferably face-to-face or in real life interactions.  You know not behind a keyboard.

Wellness

Is the process of making choices towards a healthy lifestyle.  It is not the absence of disease (although we are always striving for that) but you are becoming aware of the choices you are making towards a fulfilling life.  I know, it sounds close to being “healthy” …well because when you are making those strides towards wellness, you are feeling better.  And that is always the ultimate goal.

Physical Wellness

Yes, you are exercising but what type of exercise are you doing?  Is it yoga or cross-fit?  Which exercise enhances your quality of life?  Are you a practicing vegetarian or a vegan?  Maybe the paleo diet is your thing?  How are you nourishing your body?  Speaking of which you are practicing safe sex, right?  These are all decisions that you make that will enhance your wellness.  It is not the same for everyone, each of us is different and our path to wellness will embrace our differences while enhancing our individuality.

For your physical well-being choose you.  Choose what enhances your well-being.

Intellectual Wellness

What was the last new thing you learned?  Are you trying to challenge your mind daily?  Although your brain isn’t a muscle, we have to treat it as one.  “Exercise” your brain daily, challenge your mind.

Here are 7 ways to challenge your mind:

  1. Read daily. Reading for wellnessThere are some excellent book clubs.  There are some great blogs (see you are reading one now).  And there is always the Sunday Newspaper.

Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge

New York Times Sunday Newspaper

This blog

What’s your favorite book club, or blog or Sunday reading?

  1. Watch thought provoking movies. I am a fan of Science Fiction (have you ever watched Killjoys it’s worth bingeing and while not a movie I still recommend it but here are some movies you might want to consider)

Interstellar (2014)

Memento (2000)

Inception (2010)

Do you have a movie that you would recommend?  Are there any thought-provoking television shows you can recommend? 

  1. Start a new hobby.

Gardening

Photographing

Dance (like no one is watching)

  1. Listen to classical music for bit.
  2. Learn a new language or maybe just the dirty words in a new language.
  3. Meditate.
  4. Smile.

Emotional Wellness

How are you doing with stress?  How are you feeling…not how are you supposed to feel, but how are you actually feeling?  Forget how you think you are supposed to feel.  HOW DO YOU FEEL?  Your emotional well-being depends on you being aware of how you actually feel. Not what the television or social media tells you how you should act…BUT how you feel.  It’s okay your feelings are valid.

Spiritual Wellness

Find your purpose.  Embrace your compassion and forgiveness.

Interpersonal Wellness

Get from behind the keyboard once in a while.  Smile at a stranger.  That friend from college or the friend from the last job or the last place you lived, give them a call…send them a note, strength your long-term relationships.

In Real Life Activities

It’s not the end because you are just getting started on being healthy and practicing wellness.  Are you looking for in real life activities to increase face to face social interactions? Want to have some fun and maybe get some exercise? What is stopping you from doing the activities you love? Our mobile app connects individuals with similar interest such as: playing sports, yoga, working out, running… Select the time and location, and invite friends or the app will find people for you! It’s that easy.

For companies looking for more focused and impactful employee experience platform, our workplace wellness program is a belonging solution that uses technology to foster real-world interactions between employees. Our inclusion based solution builds employee connections that may not happen otherwise.

Live your life of purpose.  Live it healthy.  Be well. Have fun!

Donna Field