Engaging with WHOLE Health
Updated: Jun 18
Everyone has a different “health story.” Many of our stories involve food, weight, skin, how we feel about our outsides, and how our insides are connected to everything. As we learn and grow it is important to reflect upon your struggles with being healthy and what that has looked like in different phases of your life. It is also important to emphasize that our body, mind and spirit are all connected and so important to one another. Your body physically reacts to stress and anxiety. If one’s emotional health is not in balance it can lead to issues like back pain, headaches, digestive issues, increased acne, and high blood pressure.
A 2017 Yoga Journal article cites research that showed women that participated in weekly religious or like-minded group activities actually decreased risk of death by 33% and “those that attend regularly are more optimistic and have lower depression rates, perhaps because of the message of hope.” Taking care of our WHOLE SELF and reflecting on our emotional state is just as vital to our total well being as eating well and working out. (Ask anyone who loves therapy!)
For the Lotus Project, we teach that there are 5 basic pieces to our whole health and specific questions that we need to regularly ask ourselves.
Nutrition, movement, sleep, spirit and reflection are all important to our well being. Are we fueling ourselves properly? Are we moving our bodies enough? Are we getting enough sleep? How are we fueling our spirit? Are we reflecting on our physical and mental health and adjusting our actions accordingly?
Here's a place to start, but as always, check with your health professionals.
Nutrition: Food is fuel for life! Almost half of your food intake every day should be fruits and vegetables, along with lean protein, whole grains and dairy.
Movement: Teens should be getting at least one hour of physical activity a day. Exercise affects your body’s overall health, reduces stress, lowers the risk of some diseases, tones muscle, burns fat and boosts your mood!
Sleep: It is recommended that teens get between 8-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. This also includes moving technology out of your sleep space. Good sleep helps with your metabolism, digestion, skin health, memory and your ability to learn.
Spirit:Connecting to your inner soul, whether through meditation, organized religion or both, stimulates the “feel good” parts of the brain and has proven to help in recovery and stress reduction. Surrounding yourself with positive contributing people can also help soothe your spirit and feed your soul.
Reflection: Being healthy is a journey for the rest of your life, but it starts now. It’s always good to “check in” with yourself to see if you’re on track in all areas of your world.
These things don't come easy to all of us. Or, sometimes we do really well in one or two areas for awhile and then we "fall off the wagon." That's okay! You're human! It's reflecting, making commitments to yourself, and following through which is important (and repeating this over and over). Don't be too hard on yourself. Practice self compassion and try again. It does get easier. I promise. Don't forget, it's hard work sometimes to love yourself.
But, here's what I know. YOU ARE WORTH FIGHTING FOR. Always. And the first person that should always fight for you is YOU. Nobody else can wave this magic wand over you. YOU HAVE THE MAGIC WAND.
Want more? Video above and workbook below. =) xo LP