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Optimal Health

Don't just survive when you can thrive!

What is "Optimal Health"? Everyone has their version of what Optimal Health is, but for me it's all about 5 aspects of a human being - the physical, the mental, the emotional, the intellectual and the social aspects of our life. Optimal health is about working to create a balance between these 5 areas of our lives. Let's break it down a bit.

The Physical

This would include exercise and diet and no that doesn't mean hitting the gym 7 days a week and eating salad greens for the rest of your life. Everyone is unique, therefore what works to create health in one person doesn't necessarily create health in another. However, it does mean you need to get active at least 3 - 4 times a week. If hitting the gym is your reality then by all means, get that Virgin Active membership, but if your reality is walking your dog, doing yoga, swimming, gardening or dance lesson, then apply it to your life.
Diet doesn't mean never sneaking down the "death" (sweet) aisle at the supermarket, it simply means where ever possible avoid that death aisle - eat fresh, eat organic where possible and eat clean. Processed, sugar , colourants and additive laden foods are not fresh, nor are they clean! The healthier you eat, the healthier you will feel.

The Mental

We all know the power of a positive mind, and if you don't, you need to. Besides the fact that most people don't enjoy being around that negative drama queen, negative thoughts are destructive to our lives, and our health. There has been many an article written on our how our thoughts create our reality. Negative thinkers attract negativity and that becomes their reality. Mental wellbeing is about the thoughts not about exercising the neurons (see intellectual).

The Emotional

Being able to acknowledge, express, analyse and feel all of our emotions is a huge challenge for so many people, but holding on to the hurt, anger, irritation etc isn't going to get you to optimal health. Do the work, find the therapist, read the books - do whatever it takes to face the emotions head on and work through them! The mental and emotional are so deeply connected that they feed each other. This is how it goes. You wake up feeling a tad grumpy but instead of acknowledging it by saying it's ok, I'm just having a hormonal/bad/sad/grumpy day and accepting the reality, we can go from a tad grumpy to "oh my life is so bad and everything is wrong " in a matter of seconds. Hey listen, you can't be Happy Gilmore of your life! It's ok to just have an "off" day. Don't feed that emotion, just acknowledge it for what it is - an "off" day - and move on. If you're feeding it, you're not doing the work! Remember I wrote about the "death" aisle above? Well it's ok to grab that occasional Bar-One when you're having a 25 hour day!

The Intellectual

What's your reality? Getting an education, reading, doing crossword puzzles, being financially secure, changing your career, learning something new? Whatever your reality is, set goals to achieve it. Keep the brain, not the mind, active (unless you are affirming the positive, then that's ok to have an active mind). Don't stop learning just because you're out of school! Keep all your neurons firing because intellectual exercise is a important as physical exercise when it comes to optimal health. Intellectual health is about the neurons working not the thoughts. (See Mental)

The Social

Social health involves cultivating stable relationships with friends, family members, peers and co-workers and having a sense of confidence and security within yourself. The reality is that we can't like/love everyone. Some people just don't "gel" with who we are or what we stand for and in these cases you don't need to make that co-worker your new best friend, nor do you need to judge them, talk about them or give power to them by putting energy into them . . . . but you can be civil towards them! Remember that what someone thinks about you is really none of your business. What you think about yourself is totally your business and is vital to your optimal health. Put your energy into the people you do "gel" with and cultivate those relationships.

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