The meaning of what "being well" is, has changed a lot over time.
Over the last few years, my wellbeing has been defined through my physical health, my mental health and my emotional health; all of which have required me to regularly carry out self care techniques to make sure everything is in order.
It's easy to forget the many ways in which we could be falling apart when we aren’t aware what healthy looks like. Fits of coughs readily remind us that something isn’t quite right with our lungs, that shooting pain that catches you 5 minutes into a run is a sure fire way of knowing that something isn’t quite up to scratch with your cardio. With so many factors playing into our physical and emotional health, it may be harder to find a base line to work from. Even with all the variables that we could possibly account for, it's important that you take a few seconds to check in, to make sure that everything at base camp is still A-OK.
I used to have a habit of focusing in on whatever I thought was broken; plugging leaks as I went about my day to day. You can imagine that this was an exercise in damage control as opposed to a healthy attitude to wellbeing.
I soon had to begin picking out a few minutes of every week to check in with myself. Getting the MOT done on a regular basis keeps things safe. Sometimes I sit down to check in and write a bunch of thoughts down. As a writer, it's a habit that helps me articulate my thoughts; and as a man whose always on the move & who looks forward as well as looks back, my notes helps me keep track of where I am.
Beginning things with the end in mind is an invaluable skill set I picked up from Stephen Coveys: '7 Habits of Highly Effective People'. This guy taught me a lot, he introduced me to an idea of the body, mind, heart and soul; specifically the idea of "everyone wants to live, love, learn and leave a legacy".
I now always take time to make sure I am truly living. It's important for our bodies to be strong and fuelled well. I now make a continued effort to make sure I schedule appointments with the Doctor when I'm not feeling great, whether it be physical or mental.
To make sure that love is never lost, I keep close the things and people who fill me with joy.
The beautiful thing about learning is that you can take full charge of what counts as learning. The world is a noisy place, it's very easy to drown in all the static. Bearings aren't rigid lines, and they are subject to deviating. You don't have to write a mission statement and paste your goals on your four walls to systematically work through them; but having an understanding of what drives you, could save you from a rudderless voyage through the tides. There is no need to stress, there is no pressure to be anyone, or anything that isn't worthwhile for you. You can't possibly quantify purpose and spiritual health, but it's always worth checking in on the mind, body and heart.
Stay well. Live, love, learn and leave your legacy.