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What Is Wellness

The World Health Organization defines wellness as…

“A state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

Generally, a state of wellness is an individual experience that shares the common ground of a culmination of balance between the body, mind, spirit, and quality of life in order to maintain a high level of health, peace, and wellbeing.  

Wellness is absolutely something that is within our control and regardless of our current state, whether we consider ourselves to be well or unwell, we can make the conscious deliberate decision to maintain or improve our wellness on a daily basis. 

The goal of any wellness journey is to gain greater insight into the natural processes involved in bringing this state about, in order to learn how to effectively manage wellness to the point where it is consciously cultivated, instead of spontaneously produced.

According to the Global Spa & Wellness Summit, wellness is the state of being in “complete physical and mental wellbeing.” 

Many alternative healing techniques work together to develop wellness, such as making healthy lifestyle changes and using natural therapies to heal the body and mind. Yet there those who aren’t quite critical of this alternative new age concept of wellness. 

One of their criticisms is that wellness is often seen as a luxury pursuit because it is found more in affluent societies where the basic needs of clean living can be easily afforded. These needs include healthy nourishment, meticulous medical care, and comfortable shelter. 

In fact, one of the reasons why the concept of wellness became famous was that it tended to those who were affluent and who had the time and means to look for ways of reaching wellness and self-improvement.

All definitions and descriptions of wellness have shed the light on what that word really encompasses. It is such a broad concept with no right way of reaching your goal. 

It can be as simple as a relaxing massage to energize your inner flow and bring you clarity and awareness. Alternatively, it can be a holistic care system for cancer patients.

Patients who are undergoing treatment for cancer, irrespective of their stage of disease, and who take part in any number of wellness programs are introduced to the concept of how to regain control of their lives, reduce feelings of isolation and restore hope. Consequently, they actively participate in their healing process, and once they have been cured, these skills remain with them.

The 9 Dimensions Of Holistic Wellness

Reaching a state of overall wellness means addressing each of its dimensions and the state of current health within each one. Add to that, the desirable tools, a conscious initiative, and much-needed support and you will quickly find yourself making permanent changes on the road to a more optimal life.

There are 9 dimensions of wellness, each is vital on its own for optimum health, but every single dimension works in co-relation with each other. They are interconnected. 

In addition, once you understand how to sustain and enhance each of these areas of being well, you will easily be able to reach an ideal level of wellness in no time.

9 Dimensions Of Wellness 

  1. Physical wellness means taking care of physical health includes, diet, exercise, adequate sleep, stress reduction, preventative care and generally taking care of the physical body. Making healthy choices regarding sexuality, drugs and drinking also fall under this category of wellness.
  2. Emotional wellness involves mood and taking care of your emotional health. It is about paying attention to the development of inner resources, and being able to identify and deal with your feelings in an appropriate and healthy way and being able to respond resiliently to emotional states and the flow of the various events in your life. Emotional wellness also means understanding how your thoughts, behaviors, and feelings affect yourself and others around you.
  3. Mental wellness involves having a clear mind, seeking knowledge and mental growth, taking care to keep the mind working at its best, and to maintain clarity, focus, and concentration. Additionally, this dimension of wellness means developing a way of thinking that promotes mental wellness, positive thinking, utilizing creativity, having a strong curiosity and a desire to learn, and maintaining optimal focus, concentration and memory. Overcoming challenges and strategizing are also parts of mental wellness. 
  4. Social wellness involves performing social roles comfortably and effectively, and creating a support network that fosters increased sociability. Social wellness includes obtaining and maintaining connections that facilitate a sense of belonging with other humans, and basing relationships on commitment, trust, honesty, and respect. Developing a sense of connection, belonging and support with family, friends and romantic relationships is key.
  5. Spiritual wellness meansdeveloping a collection of values that help you seek purpose and meaning out of life. Wellness of the spirit refers to when our actions, thoughts, and emotions are in a state of balance and entails cultivating a mindset and way of life that promotes peace, harmony, and balanced development in all areas of life and self. Encouraging personal faith and incorporating your own personal values, moral and beliefs that define who you are and your place in the community promote the wellness of your spirit. 
  6. Environmental wellness involves being inspired to live a life that respects the environment. It is about encouraging yourself to live in peace with the Earth and protect the environment and yourself from environmental hazards.
  7. Financial wellness involves learning how to manage your finances. Money is important to everyone’s life and, when financial troubles are the greatest causes of stress for many people that can affect our mental and physical health. Learning to successfully manage expenses, taking time to plan and budget, striving when possible to improve monetary situations and accepting your financial limitations while living within your means are key in attaining financial wellness.
  8. Occupational wellness involves being happy with the work you do, and inspiring enrichment in your work life by promoting a stress free workplace and reaching a harmonious fit between who you are and what you’re called to do.
  9. Wellness in quality of life refers to the level of complete balance and satisfaction in your overall life and making the necessary improvements to avoid feeling oppressed, suppressed and depressed.

Reducing Stress Is Key

While all of these dimensions may require different goals and steps to achieve an optimal level of wellness within each one, stress reduction plays a key role in achieving such a holistic state of wellbeing. 

Stress affects all aspects of our lives and bodies, from the physical to the mental and emotional as well as the wellness of the spirit.  

When we learn to effectively manage stress, we become much more prepared and able to succeed in our journey of holistic wellness.

Roadblocks To Wellness

Nowadays everyone suffers from the pressures of daily life. Too little exercise results in a lack of energy, being overweight as well as a general feeling of discomfort.

Some people suffer from drinking or drug problems, depression and social disorders. Even what we eat and drink is causing us more problems than we imagine, and not just the obvious kind.

Studies carried out by the World Health Organization (WHO) estimate that by the year 2020, stress and all related disorders will be the second-leading cause of disabilities. 

These stress disabilities will have a direct effect on the weakening of physical and mental functions, and that these impairments, along with the high use of health care services, will become as noteworthy as workplace accidents and medical conditions.

Our bodies require a sensitive balance between acids and alkaline to stay in tip-top shape. On the pH value scale, this means being at 7.4. This balance also helps keep all of our metabolic activities running smoothly. 

When we eat mostly vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts and grains we tend to move the scale to become more alkaline in nature, which means having a pH value of more than 7. Foods like meat, fish, seafood, milk products, animal fats, sugar, alcohol and coffee are more acidogenic which means they have a pH value lower than 7.

Most of us tend to acquire more acids in our bodies than we can handle. It becomes difficult for the body to get rid of it easily, so it stores it in our connective tissue resulting in a process called acidosis.

The symptoms of acidosis are different from one person to the next, but there are a few that will often arise if someone is suffering from acidosis. These symptoms include:

  • Feeling weak
  • Feeling tired
  • Having little desire for food
  • Feeling confused
  • Breathing fast
  • Having a fast heartbeat
  • Suffering from headaches

Once the body gets rid of these acids, metabolism will get back to normal.

Your immune system will once again be able to care for your body against different types of diseases. 

You will feel revitalized, refreshed, and with a new, hopeful outlook on life.

Wellness Programs

Maintaining an ideal level of wellness is undeniably fundamental to enjoying a higher quality life. Wellness is critical because it is a direct reflection of our daily actions and all the emotions we experience. It is a cycle that goes round and round; one affects the other. 

This is why achieving an optimal level of wellness and maintaining it is crucial to, not only be happy and stress-free, but to also decrease the risk of getting sick. It is also a guaranteed way to make sure that your connections, whether work-related or personal, are personal and with purpose.

For example, those suffering from cancer must learn to create a harmonious balance between the medical side of being sick and dealing with all the treatments, and the emotional and psychological aspect of this disease. 

The more they are able to attain this balance and maintain it, the better they will be at bolstering their healing process.

Wellness programs support this concept and encourage it further by providing the cancer patient with the strength to cope with everything going on in his life, in addition to providing him with life skills that will carry him far after he has beaten the disease and healed.

Achieving wellness is a multifaceted collaboration of a number of factors that lead to a high quality of life. 

Studies show that people who repeatedly make healthy lifestyle choices enjoy more productivity, have a more optimistic outlook, and lead a healthier life. 

The Journal of American Medical Association reported a study that found that a “wellness approach” reduced medical doctor visits by 17% for any reason, and a 35% reduction was seen in visits to doctors for minor complaints. 

How Spas Contribute To Wellness

The classic spa treatments are now going a step further by incorporating wellness programs into their facilities. 

These programs are monitored by certified physicians, and usually range from relaxing massages to decrease stress levels to programs that focus on specific health problems. 

  • Wellness programs may be utilized when recovering from a specific illness 
  • Today, more and more people are seeking wellness programs and all that they provide as a preventive measure to simply enjoy a better quality of life, and to address all the nine dimensions of holistic wellness to improve their overall wellbeing

Generally, wellness programs focus on improving all facets of life by recommending positive lifestyle changes. 

These changes have to take place in the various dimensions of your life, from eating right, to getting the right amount of physical exercise, to balancing the relationships in your life with your career.

What these programs offer clients can be stationary remedies such as brine, mud, salt or thermal water. There are also detoxifying treatments, which help strengthen the immune system, stimulate lymphatic circulation, and release painful swellings and blockages. 

They also aim at loosening the tissue and play a big role in support the metabolic process in the body. These treatments can be in the form of body wraps or deep tissue massages.

The main goal of any and all wellness programs is to sustain the client’s physical composition, thereby strengthening his body to endure and resist various problems regarding his health.

Spa Treatments That Support Wellness

One of the fastest growing new industries is medical spas and the business of wellness. People are starting to realize that they need non-traditional and natural ways to stay healthy and youthful. 

They are beginning to understand that taking care of their bodies and minds today is the first step towards aging gracefully.

When you decide to enter the world of health and wellness spas, also sometimes referred to as destination spas, the possibilities are limitless. 

There are hundreds of destinations to choose from all over the world; in Morocco by the Mediterranean Sea, deep in the woodlands of Europe, or set in the heart of Budapest with all of its natural hot thermal waters.

Health is the new wealth! Are you Well-thy?

No matter your destination, you will be met with an array of personalized possibilities of relaxation, rejuvenation, healing and restorative therapy. 

  • There are the healing powers of aromatherapy, which is becoming increasingly popular due to its effective therapeutic qualities, which, according to the scent you are using, can calm your nerves, enhance your sleep quality, treat pain, and boost your mood. 
  • There are massages in various techniques and methods. 
  • There are facials, body therapies, and thermal baths to cure all the pains and aches of your tired, overworked muscles and joints. 
  • Just floating in the water, whether it is heated or rich in minerals, allows you to let go of all tensions residing in your body and mind, and enjoy a feeling of serenity and tranquility.

Healing Powers Of Water

Thermal Baths

Soaking your body in water that has been naturally heated by the earth has been known for hundreds of years to soothe weary bones, tired muscles, and achy joints. It also has the power to ease away stress and anxiety of the mind and spirit. You can also enhance your thermal bath with mud wraps and seaweed body wraps that are highly rich in minerals to improve blood circulation and help the body get rid of toxins and built up stress.

Healing Waters Of The Dead Sea

The naturally healing waters of the Dead Sea are optimal for curing medical skin problems. They are also ideal for anyone who suffers from rheumatic diseases and joint pains. 

These waters that are rich in minerals and salts are the perfect place to let go of all the tension and aches in your body. The Dead Sea is also famous for its nourishing dark mud that has been used for generations to sustain and replenish your body from the outside in. it has the power of giving your body the ability to recover its vitality and natural health, to detox and replenish itself.

Massage Therapies

The first thing that pops in your mind when you hear the word ‘spa’ is massage. They go hand-in-hand. Now that the concept of ‘wellness programs’ is gaining such unprecedented fame and attention, spas worldwide are focusing on their most celebrated healing technique while at the same time, incorporating a few stellar additives for the ultimate wellness massage therapy. 

There are a myriad of massage techniques, according to where you are in the world and which wellness program you have chosen. 

There are various names and titles given to these techniques, such as:

  • African Rain Foot Massage
  • Traditional Thai Massage
  • Oriental massage
  • De-stress Massage
  • Deep tissue
  • Swedish
  • Healing touch
  • Reflexology
  • Lymphatic massage
  • Head massage
  • And so many more

An important part of wellness massages is that they are more often than not, made specifically for each client’s needs, and with specific targets to focus on individual needs.

Muscle Relaxing Massage

Massages are made to provide you with a sense of relaxation. They can also be therapeutic when you are stressed out or suffering from tension in your muscles. This is become crucial in our day and age because we have become a society that is lacking the most fundamental of needs, to be touched. 

Add to that the healing power of kneading your sore, tired muscles and you get a recipe for ultimate success. Most wellness spas will also include essential oils that are picked out especially to suit your needs.

Deep Tissue Massage

This type of massaging goes deeper than a traditional relaxing massage to help alleviate chronic muscle fatigue. 

It provides instant relief from pain in the muscles and bones. It also helps restore the entire muscular system through the use of special balsams and essential oils especially made to bring a sense of ease and health to your body.

Head Massage

Many people tend to focus on their feet, hand, even the ears when they are getting a massage. However, very rarely do they think about getting a head massage, when the head is your body’s powerhouse. 

It is the chief of the body since it is where the brain is located which is always working to analyze information, create, dream, and investigate. This is why so many ancient civilizations paid such attention to head massages and treatments.

Holistic Therapeutic Massage

Health and wellness spas have experienced therapists that know how to pinpoint your trouble spots and, in turn, create unique healing sessions to meet your own needs. 

These may include a number of different techniques, such as Deep Tissue massage, Reflexology, or Lymphatic massage, for your relaxation and enjoyment.

Lymphatic Massage

The lymphatic system plays a very important role in your body. It is part of your immune system, which helps collect, filter then get rid of foreign, unwanted objects in your body such as dead cells, bacteria, viruses, excess water, and fat. 

If your lymphatic system is not working properly in sync with your other bodily systems, which means it is unable to drain toxins and excess fluids from the body. This can result in swollen limbs, cancer, infections, inflamed sinuses, lack of energy, a sluggish immune system, and digestive problems.

Lymphatic massage offers a gentle, soothing healing technique to help unblock and ultimately increase your lymph flow. 

The outcome is instantaneous. 

Your sinuses immediately start to drain and toxins are flushed out from the body, renewing your energy and reinforcing your immune system.

Facial & Body Therapies

The main reason why people opt for facials and body therapies is two reasons. The ingredients used have been proven to cleanse the skin. 

They provide it with nourishments. 

They also nurture it by supplying it with all the minerals and vitamins it needs to be glowing, healthy, and younger-looking.

The other reason is the way these ingredients are applied. Spa therapists use a series of skilled, efficient movements to achieve a sense of balance and health in the skin. 

You will find that some spas give their facials more elaborate names, such as the Hydra Boost Facial, the Glow and Radiance Stimulating Facial and the Balancing Purifying Facial. 

Spas differ in the choices they offer their clients, and before trying any of their facials or body therapies out, a wellness specialist will sit down and discuss with you what it is you are looking for from your visit to the spa. 

You will also be asked some questions to determine which therapy is best for you and your needs. Some of these may include:

Express Therapy

This type of skin therapy is basically a specialized facial treatment, which hones in on our own personal skin type. Give your face and neckline a special treatment using your own choice of natural, pure products to give your skin a glowing, healthy appearance. 

You can choose between clay to deeply cleanse your face, or opt for a natural soap, which is used to hydrate your face and neckline. Both choices are followed by a lathering of natural serum and hydrating cream made with natural fruit to give your skin a young, refreshed look.

Sun Care Treatment

During the summer months, our skin is in constant need of hydration. It can also develop rashes and burns from the sun and heat. These treatments focus on moisturizing the skin by using ingredients that help replenish the skin’s natural oils and help boost its regeneration process. 

Most treatments opt for Greek yogurt because it contains proteins, calcium, vitamins that all play an important role in relieving skin problems, hydrating the skin, and giving you a sense of healthy freshness.

Facial Therapy

Your self-confidence starts when you feel as good as you look, and what these facials promise is exactly that. Keeping your skin healthy, shiny and nourished means you use high-quality products that replenish your skin’s natural glow through their anti-oxidant properties, proteins, and enriching minerals. These ingredients result in a deep anti-aging and firming result.

Express Treatment

Starting with a purifying peel using ingredients full of anti-oxidants and replenishing minerals, this treatment helps get rid of dead skin cells for a soft, smooth feel of your skin. After that, you will enjoy head-to-toe body massage that will leave you hydrated, relaxed and stress-free.

Body Firming

Firming and anti-aging skin treatments employ ingredients that are rich in mineral and anti-oxidants which replenish the skin’s collagen and restore it to its former glory. Seaweed, green tea, essential oils that especially contain lemon and ivy will bring the desired results and leave your skin with a healthy, replenished glow.

Nourishing and Purifying

There are many treatments that use the natural anti-oxidants found in honey. This naturally made magical ingredient has been used for thousands and thousands of years. Kings and queens used it to make their skin look shiny and nourish their face and body. Some spas go a step further and add fruit to the honey mask, such as apricots, which are rich in vitamin A and C, which help in making your skin glow from head to toe.

Final Thoughts

When each of us actively cares for ourselves, we, as a community, become stronger and healthier. 

There are many ways to achieve wellness. There is no ‘right way’ of maintain wellness, it all depends on the person and the surrounding environments and tools. 

No matter how elaborate or even fundamentally simple the treatments or the wellness program you choose may be, the simple action of taking the time to take care of yourself solidifies your desire in reaching a state of holistic wellness and taking the actions necessary to do so.

Self-care includes making the right lifestyle choices, strengthening our relationships with others and the world around us. 

When the choices we make align with our values and the opportunities that arise in our lives, only then can we reach a level of optimal health and flourishing wellness.

Balance really is key to leading a lifestyle of wellness. 

Wellness is a journey of awareness, personal responsibility, and choices that facilitate the best in your wellbeing. It is the integration of body, mind, and spirit and the ongoing development of one’s own meaning in life.

Spa days and wellness programs can go a long way to making this journey successful. 

STAY WELL-THY AND TAKE CARE!

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