‘Wellness is an active process through which people become aware of, and make choices toward, a more successful existence’ – the National Wellness Institute.
The Way of Wellness is the very beginning of identifying your innate qualities, and then sharing these strengths, which is how community is built. Wellness includes self-awareness, lifestyle choices, healthy nutrition, eliminating toxicity in your personal environment, setting boundaries with others, & knowing your own internal limits whilst developing inner strength and the ability to cope with the stresses of life.
HOW ARE YOU?
Are you looking for someone else to tell you how you are? Do you spend most of your time judging and evaluating others instead of looking inside? Are you assessing yourself in comparison to what you surround yourself with, instead of looking inwards to determine what your outer needs are and how these can best be served? How do you decide where to place yourself, or choose what to do or where to go? Do you know what you really need and want, or have you never looked?
This is not about fantasising or living in a dream-world of desires – it is about what is really necessary in your life for wellbeing. What makes you feel healthy, vital and full of energy? Where is your effort going – are you wasting your life, exhausting yourself, or have you found a balance that puts you to good use without self-depleting, getting lost, or just letting time pass by? What do you truly and realistically see for yourself? And what are the practical steps needed to take you in that direction?
Often wellness is about changing habits, over time, in small increments; sustainably, kindly and willingly. It is about lifestyle choices and a multitude of decisions which lead to ill-health or feeling well overall. Given the ever-increasingly polluted, nervous and fast-paced environments we live in, especially in big cities, these choices and routines become more significant to maintaining health and sanity. Taking time out, contemplating, reflecting back, awareness, and being conscientious in the present moment, all contribute to how you interact with the outside world in a way that functions for you, rather than it presiding over you.
So in these sessions, we are looking at life from the inside out, rather than being dominated from the outside. Is this a process that appeals to you, and you would be willing to try? Are you keen to give this approach a go?
ENTER SILENTLY & TAKE CARE WHEN SHARING
I ask that you enter quietly, leaving the past behind, allowing the outside world to go, and coming to yourself. Refrain from idle chit-chat and conditioned greetings and banter. Stay with what is true to yourself, and don’t feel pressurised to put on a pretence, or expect anyone else to either. This is not about performing, or putting on a display of ‘niceness’ or being liked by everyone. Nor is it a place to act out your nastiness and heal your past traumas – this is not counselling or therapy.
See it as an open space where what you say and do can be seen and heard by others, and shared more widely too. Whilst being aware of your weaknesses, bring especially your skills and strengths. So instead of sharing your private wounds, when you speak it is to say something useful to others, a practical discovery you have made or a solution you have found, that they may make use of too, and take home to others who can benefit as well.
The only confidentiality asked for is that you do not divulge the identity of the person who shared. By all means share the content but not the context or contact involved – in other words, don’t say who it was said by. For those who know of it, we are following the one Chatham House rule.
Therefore, this is not a space to tell stories or gossip. It is not a dumping ground for all your troubles. It is not a place to come to moan and whinge. Leave all that aside. There are plenty of places where you can do that – it happens all the time! You can observe people complaining all over the place, constantly, and moreover condemning and belittling the world. Instead, the focus here is on what works, solutions, strengths, assets, what you have found to be successful and are willing to share with others and receive from them in return, without criticism and doubt, but a thorough examination.
This is not a debating club either, to bandy about ideas – there is also plenty of that about in the world already. We are looking here at you own inner resources and those of others, and sharing them, with care and consideration rather than mindlessly.
Thus healthy relating patterns are formed contrary to social pressures to conform, and this is how more interdependent and resilient communities are eventually established.
It all begins with a sense of self – how are you today, really, right now?
“A friend is one to whom one may pour out the contents of one’s heart, chaff and grain together, knowing that gentle hands will take and sift it, keep what is worth keeping, and with a breath of kindness, blow the rest away.”
― George Eliot