“Be the Best You Can Be!”, “Become Addicted to Constant and Never-Ending Self Improvement”, “It’s Not How Good You Are, It’s How Good You Want To Be”. Don’t you just love motivational quotes? It somehow speaks to our innermost self and cheers us on to BE BETTER!! What does that look like for you?
I think that if you are reading this, or other wellness blogs and posts, you are looking for ways to improve yourself. You are looking for tools to improve your “Mind, Body, and Spirit”. I think we can agree that self-improvement is a never ending journey. We learn and implement important wellness strategies such as proper nutrition, exercise, meditation, positive attitude, and we feel like it is all coming together. We feel healthier, slimmer, more focused, spiritually strong, we love that we are becoming a better version of ourselves. Then, life takes a turn, we get busy, distracted, stressed, and we fall back into our old familiar patterns. “Inside all of us is this fragile warrior or warrioress for good. Though beaten down by greater odds, it always re-emerges to pull us back on course towards health and well-being, just as surely as we strive to align our eyes level with the horizon”(Arloski)
What is it that makes it so hard to stick with good habits? Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just learn all this good stuff and stick with it, for good? I think the truth is most people are not able to stick with a diet, or new exercise routine, etc 100% of the time unless they have a profound reason to do so. That reason may be that if you don’t, it will be to the detriment of your basic physiological needs. That is the basis of Abraham Maslow’s theory “Hierarchy of Needs”. His belief and I would agree, is that there is a hierarchy to self-actualization. Essentially, if a person is struggling with basic physiological needs, such as a person in poverty who is worried about where the next meal will come from, they cannot rise up to the next level (as seen in the pyramid). Wherever we are in life, if we don’t have our basic needs met, we cannot achieve rising to the level of self-actualization. However, as Maslow so profoundly stated, “Self Actualization is the intrinsic growth of what is already in the organism, or more accurately, of what the organism is”, we as human beings are that organism. You have that desire, and you will strive towards it, knowingly or unknowingly.
As a nutrition coach, our goal is to coach someone towards higher levels of wellness, helping them to discover increasingly effective ways of getting their basic needs met. That is helping them do two things: Eliminate inadequacies and shortcomings from their lives and meet their needs. It is important to understand that people who are conscious of their wide range of needs will set out to achieve them, here and now.
Take a moment and look at the above worksheet. Perhaps a good place for you to start in working towards your permanent goal of optimal Mind, Body, Wellness, is to look at the pyramid and think about ways you are meeting these needs. By doing so I believe you can build a stronger foundation of wellness, on your way to achieving your higher purpose of Self Actualization.
Lastly, I would like to leave you with a thought. What is wellness? Wellness is not just the absence of disease, it is living your life consciously in ways that improve your health and well-being. Constantly striving to strengthen the “Trinity to Wellness”, Your MIND, BODY, AND SPIRIT.