People often think about wellness in terms of physical health — nutrition, exercise, weight management, etc., but it is so much more. Wellness is a holistic integration of physical, mental, and spiritual well-being, fueling the body, engaging the mind, and nurturing the spirit (1). Although it always includes striving for health, it’s more about living life fully (1), and is “a lifestyle and a personalized approach to living life in a way that… allows you to become the best kind of person that your potentials, circumstances, and fate will allow” (2).

Wellness necessitates good self-stewardship, for ourselves and for those we care about and who care about us. For those in the helping professions, such as ourselves in veterinary medicine, wellness is a professional as well as personal responsibility. In order to ensure high-quality patient and client services, we have an ethical obligation to attend to our own health and well-being (3). Sufficient self-care prevents us from harming those we serve, and according to Green Cross Standards of Self Care Guidelines, no situation or person can justify neglecting it (3).

Wellness encompasses 8 mutually interdependent dimensions: physical, intellectual, emotional, social, spiritual, vocational, financial, and environmental (Table 1) (1). Attention must be given to all the dimensions, as neglect of any one over time will adversely affect the others, and ultimately one’s health, well-being, and quality of life. They do not, however, have to be equally balanced (1). We should aim, instead, to strive for a “personal harmony” that feels most authentic to us (1). We naturally have our own priorities, approaches, and aspirations, including our own views of what it means to live life fully.

Continue Reading At:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5508938/#:~:text=Wellness%20encompasses%208%20mutually%20interdependent,Table%201)%20(1).