Maintaining positive mental health is a delicate balancing act. Many different factors make up your mental wellbeing, from personal to social life, your occupation to your spirituality. When certain areas of your life are out of balance it can lead to your mental health feeling “off”.
This is especially true for those who live with mental illness. Mental illness adds another layer to the balancing act of keeping good mental health. Thankfully, clinicians have created various tools during the last few decades to help you manage your mental wellbeing. These tools make it easier to track how you’re feeling and make adjustments in certain areas.
One of these helpful tools is the Wellness Wheel. It’s a simple, easy-to-use resource that offers a way to look at the various aspects of life that affect your mental health. What exactly is the wellness wheel and how can it help you work on your mental health and wellness?
What is the Wellness Wheel?
Wellness is the concept of positive mental health and the absence of distress or illness. Reaching a place of wellness isn’t always straightforward, though, and no signpost marks your arrival. This lack of a single pathway to wellbeing can make it difficult to know how you’re doing or which areas you need to work on.
The Wellness Wheel recognizes the multifaceted approach that is the most effective way to work toward mental wellbeing. It’s a visual tool that helps understand the factors that affect your mental health. It also assists you in making more healthy decisions that contribute to a balanced, meaningful life.
There are eight dimensions to the Wellness Wheel:
- Emotional Wellness
- Physical Wellness
- Intellectual Wellness
- Social Wellness
- Environmental Wellness
- Occupational Wellness
- Financial Wellness
- Spiritual Wellness
What do these dimensions mean, and how do each of these contribute to your mental health?
The Wellness Wheel and your mental health begin with emotional wellness. Your emotions affect everything from your mood to your mindset to your outlook on the world. Emotional wellness consists of your thoughts, emotions, and capabilities to deal with challenges in your life. When your emotional wellness is struggling, you have a hard time feeling content, sharing how you’re doing with others, or being able to relax. When you’re doing well, you can experience your emotions as they are while still feeling good about yourself.
Physical wellness is another pillar that holds up your overall mental health. Caring for your bodyand listening to the cues it gives you are vital parts of maintaining this dimension. Neglecting your physical wellness can cause things like poor sleep quality, illness, or injuries. Eating nutritious foods, getting regular exercise during the week and maintaining a consistent sleep schedule all contribute to positive physical wellness.
Intellectual wellness is the next dimension of the Wellness Wheel. It doesn’t mean you have to become a genius, though. It simply refers to engaging in mentally stimulating and creative activities that engage your mind. Intellectual wellness means you’re able to think critically, are open to new ideas, and looking for creative outlets and solutions in life. Signs of intellectual wellness include having a strong sense of self, a set of values you live by, as well as the ability to question your opinions and challenge yourself.
Social wellness involves the connections between you and your family, friends, colleagues, acquaintances, and anyone else in your life. Having strong relationships in your life can make a massive difference in your mental health. When your social wellness is strong, you can communicate effectively, be who you are in any group of people, maintain and develop relationships with others, and more.
Environmental wellness refers to your surroundings, from your personal to your professional life. Maintaining positive environmental wellness means being aware of the spaces you spend your time in. When you’re surrounded by stress and negativity, your mental health is going to suffer. On the other hand, ensuring environmental wellness keeps you engaged with life, motivated to reach your goals, and safe and at ease despite difficulties and challenges.
Occupational wellness is another important dimension of the Wellness Wheel and your mental health. It means working in a career that brings meaning and purpose to the work you do. If you work in a place that doesn’t make you feel useful or satisfied, it’s going to bring you down and leave you feeling like you’re wasting time. But when you’re dedicated to occupational wellness, you’re doing work that interests and motivates you to work hard and do your best.
Although money isn’t everything, having money is a necessity in life. Money can be an incredible stressor and a severe lack of it can have a serious negative impact on your mental health. Dedication to financial wellness gives you the best chance at eliminating as much financial stress as possible. Financial wellness involves making responsible choices about living within your means so you can contribute to your success in the future.
Spiritual wellness is the final dimension of the Wellness Wheel. Spirituality involves the practice of learning to be self-aware and recognize your existence here in time and space. Spiritual wellness doesn’t mean you need to go to church or become religious. It simply means that you have a system of beliefs and values that matter to you, and you recognize and understand your purpose in life. Dedicating time to cultivating spiritual wellness has plenty of positive mental health benefits.
Taking Action to Boost Your Mental Health
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to improving your mental health. Since there are so many dimensions to working on your mental wellbeing, there are many places you can start! The Wellness Wheel gives you a list of factors to look at when you’re not feeling well. This starting point is a great thing to consider if your mental health is suffering. If you’re struggling with mental illness, though, it’s difficult to work on your wellness alone. Seeking help from a professional treatment program can make a massive difference.
Clearview Treatment Programs has been a leader in the mental health space for over 20 years. We provide specialized programs at our Los Angeles treatment facilities for individuals living with a variety of diagnoses. You’ll feel welcomed and at ease from the moment you get in touch with us over the phone.
Our individualized treatment plans provide you with a continuum of consistent care that empowers you to overcome your mental battles and live a life of sustained recovery. Whether you’re looking for a residential, day, or outpatient treatment program, we’re here to help.
To learn more about the services offered at Clearview Treatment Programs, reach out to us today. Our admissions specialists are here to take your confidential call and help you find the program that best fits your needs. No matter where you are in your mental health journey, we’re here to help at Clearview Treatment Programs.