I invite you to look back over your life focussing on when you have felt higher or lower on a “wellness scale” of 1-10, with +10 being extreme wellness and +1 being extremely low. (Use your own definition of wellness. To me it is more than just physical health.) You can draw a horizontal line across a page, treating this as an Age line from left (your birth) to right (now). Place 10-year or 5-year marks across the Age line, then you can simply chart your subjective sense of wellness factors, up or down (highest = +10; age line = +5/neutral; +1 = lowest). After a basic mapping of your sense of relative wellness values in this manner, you can write words or phrases or insert clip art images (as below) to represent what was going on at high or low points, or in between, that contributed to the wellness levels you have charted.
Mapping my own relative wellness values, I found I could first place high and low events along the Age line, then I could connect these to show general trends. Here’s my map using clipart icons as an example:
Now then, what factors turn up in your wellness mapping as “lifting” factors or as more ‘descending’ factors instead? For me, the sport of fencing that I practiced through undergraduate college years, and returning to fencing once during graduate school right before graduating, were very positive factors. Discovering my lifelong approach to spirituality was also a major positive factor. Illnesses (shown by the needle icon) were ‘descent’ factors. Relationships were a lifting factor for several years, then briefly a negative factor with divorce. Career has been a slightly higher than neutral factor for much of the ‘building’ process, and it has become a lifting factor recently as writing and teaching have both been more productive.
What can you learn from your wellness mapping that can help you to maintain or improve your own wellness ‘quotient’ now? For me I see the value of physical exercise in my life, as a major means for enhancing wellness. I’m thinking of returning in some measure to fencing (as faculty advisor to a fencing club I could participate). Or at least I commit to work out once or twice a week in addition to walking my dog.
So, try it if you like. Use whatever design format you like. What shows up for you? Is there ONE THING you can do in your life to enhance or maintain your level of wellness?
I welcome your comments, insights, and stories.
Better Endings to You!
“To me, good health is more than just exercise and diet.
It’s really a point of view and a mental attitude you have about yourself.”