Five Ways to Total Wellbeing

September 20, 2015
As Published on New Straits Times – 2 August 2015

More People are moving into a proactive, integrated, wellness-oriented approach to improve their lives, writes Jaime Shine

More and more people are aware of the term wellness as being more than just a spa experience but a holistic approach to better quality of life. People are adjusting from reactive, conventional, medical oriented, problem solving approach to a proactive, integrated, wellness oriented approach to improve one’s life.

It is evident through statistics that there has been a huge shift in recent years as political and business leaders around the world and companies like Google and Accenture have put health and wellness in place to improve productivity and a create a happier workplace. It is a US$3.4 trillion market that includes preventive health, alternative medicine, workplace wellness, wellness real estate and global wellness tourism. At 3.4 times larger than the worldwide pharmaceutical industry, it is a force to be reckoned with.

So what does wellbeing mean to you and your family and how do you include it in your life? In my context wellbeing, simply defined is a state of being healthy and happy, having a sense of belonging and connection to others and to a purpose in life. It can be expanded into 5 different aspects, and when improved, can have positive affects to all areas of our lives.


Our body is a temple. A functional one is having a healthy, fit and strong body allowing you to go and do whatever your heart desires. It is the energy and stamina to go the extra mile, pushing through the elements, having perseverance and being able to finish what you started.

The dysfunctional physical body ranges from sleep disorders, spinal injuries, pain to illnesses and diseases. All of which put a damper into our spirits, as we are then unable to move forward to achieve what we have set out for.


Without a doubt our mind is a brilliant entity. It creates our thoughts, perceptions and concepts, stores our memories, focus our intentions and allows us to analyse, strategise and more. A functional one is a conscious mind, fully aware of everything that is happening to you internally and externally in the present moment.

A dysfunctional one is the monkey mind, always turned on, unable to relax, constant analyzing, filled with doubts and worries, overly self critical and causing stress, anxiety, depression and even mental illnesses.


Perhaps the most overlooked but powerful aspect of our being is our emotions. When fully functional, it allows us to tap into and connect deeply within ourselves and use our natural ability and acumen that is our second brain – the heart, to decipher all the information available to us. It acts as a guide, fuels us to make decisions and carry out our actions.

When dysfunctional, emotions like fear can be crippling, anger can be destructive and sadness, heart breaking. When we are unable to comprehend our emotions, we will feel stuckness or stagnation, hindering other aspects of our wellbeing.


We all naturally crave for connection to fellow human beings as it makes life more meaningful. In essence, anyone that you form a connection with is a relationship. These can be with people or an entity – family, your romantic partner, work relationships, friendships, relationship with money, self and a higher intelligence than ourselves, the Divine are all relationships. When functional, your relationships bring you great love and joy, a sense of support and belonging in your life. When dysfunctional, it can create the greatest pain, heartache you have ever experience and the rest of your life no matter how functional can be destroyed together with it.


Lastly, the core and essence of living holistically, the one that links them all together is Spiritual Wellbeing – how you choose to live your Life. Spiritual wellbeing must not be mistaken for a religious practise, instead it is living life in an empowered way where you have a choice to decide for yourself; stripped bare of any religious, cultural or society’s influence.

When dysfunctional, you make choices based on what your parents say, what society thinks or how you are supposed to behave. When it is fully functional, you make empowered decisions based on what makes your heart sing aligned with your passion and purpose. When you give yourself the permission to do whatever that your heart desires, your creativity and passion is born and so is your purpose.

The old school success formula has always been study hard, get good grades, get a good job, rise among the ranks and earn lots of money in the process. The new success formula will be to incorporate total wellbeing in your life. Uncover your dreams and passions, strategise to make it happen, develop meaningful relationships as your support system, fuel your physically fit body and use your emotional acumen to drive you there. The result: a happy, meaningful, prosperous and fulfilled life.

The question therefore lies in not whether or not you want to incorporate wellness into your life but can you afford not to?

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