With our world’s societies plagued with sickness, sadness and stress, it’s almost rebellious to take good care of your health. The word ‘health’ has etymological roots which define it as ‘whole’. So when you think of being healthy, it’s wise to consider what layers of your life need attention to bring your whole experience into a functional and productive synergy. In other words, your personal well-being is much more than just the common description of ‘physical and mental health’, it’s a myriad of mirrors which reflect the wholeness of your being.
1.) The Body
Obviously this is the most basic. Your physical body is a biological computer. It requires certain inputs to operate functionally. The first step is to be smart about what you put into it (and don’t) especially the food (real medicine) you feed it.
We now have a food supply that is laced by a corporate culture hell-bent on testing out whatever cheap, artificial ingredient they can to maximize their profits, we’re bombarded with a rich tapestry of genetically and chemically modified products that struggle to resemble real foods. Many nutrients we need are not in the synthetically produced diets they manufacture. Ultimately, you need to respect your body and its needs. After all, it’s the only one you’ll ever have, at least in this lifetime. Therefore, use your body like its intended. Move it, work it and fuel it properly. When it gets out of balance, including your gut health, it has severe impacts on your mental wellbeing, so as a prerequisite for being mentally healthy there needs to be a minimum respect for balancing your body’s health.
2.) The Mind
Your body is the hardware and your mind is the software. Without both conscious and subconscious programs, the body won’t run and will therefore die. Yet if the programs are poorly designed and operated they will cause the mind and body to generate disease.
To say it simply, your psychological self is that which captures your thoughts, emotions, memories, desires and beliefs. It’s your ego; your finite snapshot of infinite consciousness. It’s also the result of your environmental influences and your freewill. Therefore, the way you organize your mind and respond to your experience can either be predominantly self-abusive or healthy. No one ever gets it perfect, of course, but it’s important to understand where you sit on this spectrum so you can do what’s necessary to have more healthy and functional mind and heart states. However, it’s not rocket science: toxic thoughts cause stress, which can lead to disease.
Another aspect to your mind are your philosophies. Etymologically, philosophy simply means ‘love of wisdom’. Practically, your philosophies are your beliefs and the paradigms they’re conceptualized within. Your philosophical positions are part of the category of mental health because the more healthy and empowered your beliefs, the more healthy and empowered your inner health. Philosophy is rarely discussed in terms of health, probably because there are as many belief systems as there are people. But just because we all have the right to believe how and what we want, that doesn’t mean that those beliefs are actually healthy.
Ultimately, your mind can be broken down into two fundamental layers: the conscious and the unconscious. In addition, the scale at which you are actually conscious compared to the activity of your mind is so insignificant that you need to dive into your subconscious to effectively take care of your internal health.
Whether its achieved by specific meditation techniques or by simply giving more focus to your mind’s activity, the purpose is to become more aware of the drivers, themes, patterns and habits that emerge from your subconscious because they will illustrate the dysfunctions and toxicities you need to heal and the immaturities you need to grow. By identifying the disease that exists in the deeper layers of your consciousness, such as your traumas and fears, you can now get on with important layers of self-healing and self-development.
3.) Your Connection to Reality
There are two parts. Let’s call them the inner and external realms. First is obviously the connection to yourself; how aware are you of the activities of your mind/body/spirit interaction? The external is how connected you are on several key levels. Family and your ancestry is your genetic connection. The animal and plant kingdom is your ecological connection. The earth is your cosmological connection.
Simply, they’re two sides of the one coin. So, how healthy are your relationships with your family and friends? How healthy are your community relationships? Are your actions healthy for yourself and those around you? What impacts do you have on your environment and natural systems?
Your connection to Reality is always evolving. It’s the knowledge you’re sharing and absorbing. It’s the energy you’re emitting and attracting. Therefore, how you perceive your experience can either be a masterpiece, or a war. The good news? It’s entirely up to you to choose.