Health is important, but something we rarely think about until something goes "wrong."
Wellness is not simply the absence of being sick. Someone can have excellent wellness practices, yet still be or become ill. And the opposite is also true - a person can choose not to address wellness themes at all, yet be free from disease or sickness...for a time.
Health is an active, dynamic process that spans many key areas - not just physical health, but also emotional, social, intellectual, spiritual, and occupational health. Within an individual, each of these components can impact each other and have an influence over one's total state of well being. Striving for wellness is a continuous process. A person with challenges in one area may compensate in another. At different times in your life, you may become more aware of a particular dimension - perhaps one that brings you great joy, or great challenge. And conversely, a person can't ignore each of these six dimensions for long!
Dr. Bill Hettler identified six key areas in his Wellness Model. The model has been a vital tool for scholars, researchers, educators, and the general public for more than 30 years. Visit his site or the National Wellness Institute to explore each dimension - click on each "pie wedge" for a more complete description of each area.
What's important is to strive for balance. If the day ahead will be filled with physical or emotional challenges, try to draw from the strengths in your other wellness areas to prepare for the day, or to de-stress afterward.
What about LGBT people?
Some health issues affect LGBT people in ways that are similar to non-LGBT people. Other issues may affect LGBT people differently, for a variety of reasons.
In this section, you'll find more information about the components of wellness, keeping things in balance, and health topics of special interest to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Respect yourself, protect your health!