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Poverty & Equity Thought Leadership

Wellness and Its Importance for Our Daily Lives

Building resilience is a step-by-step process. Part of that process is having a healthy well-being. With the tumultuous nature of life during COVID-19, finding the path to a healthy well-being has been challenging. We recently asked, Dr. Edward Valentin, director of Clinical Services at Families First, about the importance of wellness and how wellness can foster resiliency. 

How important is the state of wellness?

Dr. Valentin: 

In America, we put strict values in working hard, maintaining, and providing for our families. We also tend to express how we use our time and often it does not sound so positive.   

Wellness is a personal experiment of frequency. The state of wellness is the balance of collecting well moments versus unwell moments. For me, sitting in the Atlanta traffic would be considered an unwell moment. However, taking advantage of that time I am around people that will never see me again; to sing my favorite song with a young person for me is experiencing a well moment. 

The more well moments I collect, the more positive changes affect the way I experience the world. There are many ways to collect more well moments that ultimately bring us closer to the feeling of “I’m doing well.” 

What are well moments? 

Dr. Valentin: 

People often use the word “well” to describe state of neutrality, however being well is better than that. Feeling well is feeling good and many times we cancel those moments out when this state is challenged. Negative things can happen to us but with some practice we can learn how to come back to being well because most of our negative moments are prolonged by our own thoughts and we continue to feed negative feelings. We then remember those negative feeling more because we tend to emphasize them with more time and energy. It is when we collect more positive moments and put longer times of feelings such as joy, and achievement, we are strengthening our wellness. We recognize that a bad situation is bad however we should recognize the good situations that fosters joy and personal growth. 

What are some of the steps and tools needed to build a healthy well-being?

Dr. Valentin: 

Here are some examples that have helped millions of people achieve greater wellness:

Physical Wellness: Increasing your physical wellness frequently has shown to be beneficial. Not only to your physical health but also your emotional health. Even a 30-minute workout a day has worked in increasing motivation, alertness, and general focus. 

Social Wellness: It is a fact that we are pack animals! We need to feel connected. We care for others, and we cannot deny how good it feels when others care about us. Social wellness brings with it great powers of healing and personal growth. It makes us resilient. The feeling that you matter and that you belong is the very foundation of wellness because as long as we can connect with others our anxieties are lessened greatly. Make it your mission to connect with people and dedicate meaningful and enjoyable time with others.

Emotional Wellness:  Mend the negative self-talk. We have gotten accustomed to being too harsh about ourselves. Everyone has flaws just as everyone has their virtues. We tend not to focus on the positive things we have to offer life. Maybe because it is not often that we hear positive things about us from others, or perhaps some of us live trying to cope with trauma from past experiences while at the same time living in a hypercompetitive and fragile system that feels like it is constantly threatening our sanity. You are not alone! You are meant to be connected and you deserve to feel whole. Your struggles are real, and it is okay to process these things with a professional who was trained to accompany you towards recovery.


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