Sometimes when working on our wellness goals, it can be an all-or-nothing way of thinking, but it is important to realize that it takes all dimensions of one’s wellness to create a perfect balance in order to reach optimum wellness and sometimes not having a perfect balance can make your goals not come to fruition.
The US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration’s workup of Wellness encompasses 8 mutually interdependent dimensions: physical, intellectual, emotional, social, spiritual, vocational, financial, and environmental. In reality, I am slowly realizing that it takes many of these factors to work in unison or be in a healthy state in order for me to be overall well. It is often that I think that not having some of these things in my life will simply solve the challenges in my life by avoiding them.
More and more, reality is striking hard by knowing that all dimensions are necessary to a well-balanced life. I know that I need to be physical, although my brain sometimes thinks differently, I know that I feel better once I do something like workout or walk, it’s just taking that initial step to go out and do it. Doing this brings benefits to my mental health such as improving my self esteem along with bringing more energy and resilience to the table.
Being intellectually well helps in knowing that applying what I learn to the other seven dimensions so I can learn how to best improve them and bring my wellness up to speed and applying them to the other dimensions will help you excel in those areas. I am slowly understanding the need to be more social and how it makes me well whether it be online, on the phone or in the community. It makes me well by having a connection to the outside world and not allowing my brain to constantly be stuck in my own little world.
This brings us to how being well in other areas can apply to the spiritual and vocational dimensions. For the longest time, I constantly thought I did not need these elements in my life in order to be well or they didn’t need to exist beyond my living room, now experiencing them now more than ever in person makes me realize the importance of having them not only there but in all aspects of my life and how they provide purpose in order of keeping my overall wellness intact.
In turn, having the last two mentioned dimensions have in a way allowed and provided me respectively see the importance of having financial wellness in my life. Not having the vocational opportunities that I have in my life would greatly prevent me not being financially well to where I could live the life I wanted and being spiritually well has allowed me to come to terms that in reality it is necessary to well on not only the vocational dimension but all dimensions of wellness to live the life that makes me well.
Lastly, having all these things allows me to live in the environment that I am blessed and chose to have. For the last few weeks I have had a deep resentment about having to move a few years back and how I thought I was handed the “raw” deal, but lately being more well has made me realize that I am in a good environment and being well in all dimensions makes that possible.
In essence, it is imperative in having all the dimensions in balance in order to properly manage being autistic and my comorbidities , but my overall health.