Well, Well, Well.

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The way to wellness is anything but a one-size-fits-all, linear approach. Truth is, there is no secret formula that will guarantee a healthier life. Despite the endless sea of advertised solutions, we must stand on guard against the perpetuation of false hope and grief. I wholeheartedly wish we all worked in one another’s best interest but it just isn’t so. Sadly, we live on a planet that worships money which is why we are warned to remain extra vigilant.

A few words of encouragement would be to get wise to the lies. A healthy dose of skepticism is recommended as one should not take things at face value. Each year, the health and wellness industry makes billions from the sorrows of people who want to look and feel better. The media is a greedy, ferocious beast that knows exactly how to target its audience in the most diabolical ways. They are aware of all the weaknesses and are more than happy to have you dig deeper in despair to fund their experiments. Even if you’re doing well, they’ll still make attempts to sow seeds of inadequacy and shame. This would explain why we have such an obsession to nip, tuck, lift and suck.

What’s worse is that this has far-reaching effects on really young people. I mean, why would a teenage girl be preoccupied with thoughts of aging? Nobody should be subjecting themselves to this kind of torture because we have not been designed to stay the same. We must come to terms with the understanding that going against the grain is done in foolishness and futility.

Please don’t fall into the traps because you are a precious, unique creation that lacks nothing.  Now, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with improving yourself along the way. In fact, it’s advisable that we grow through the seasons of life so that we can bloom to our fullest. The only problematic part is the way in which we choose to flourish and thrive. This process can take on many avenues and if we’re not careful it can easily lead to a dead end.

I strongly believe there are basic principles that need to be acknowledged and adhered to. These are unchallenged universal truths which apply to every human without discrimination, much like death. It’s not just about the food we eat or the amount of activity we do however it’s easy to understand why we would simplify it this way. People are visual creatures and we rely heavily on the visible therefore it’s a no brainer that we tend to depend on behaviours. We have a much more difficult time grasping concepts behind the behaviour such as discipline, purpose and consistency because they are abstract. It’s near impossible to package and sell intentionality so the beast only plays on what we can see. Again, we are cautioned to tread carefully with becoming overly dependent on eyesight because optical illusions are real.

The sobering truth is that authentic wellness encompasses all parts of  life and not just tattered pieces here and there. Would you have ever guessed that the types of music you listen to and the shows you watch attribute to your well-being? In most likelihood, probably not. We dismiss such simple everyday things as something that’s just there for our amusement. The reality is that we are affected by every single thing that we come into contact with but question very little of it. Even the people we call good friends could actually be major contributors to our demise. We can be quick to overlook offenses because we see someone we love but may feel otherwise in our spirit.

The thoughts we harbour, the things we say and what we do are all intricately woven together. All parts co-exist in an integrated network and are always speaking to one another. This means that we must take a wholistic perspective when it comes to  wellness. For example, a person may be able to eat perfectly and do 50 laps around the track with ease but their heart might be shrouded in darkness. It could be that they are incapable of nurturing loving relationships because of their inner turmoil. We cannot just work on the exterior aspects and expect everything to magically fall into place.

Before Jesus, I was in great spiritual poverty because I didn’t realize just how impoverished my spirit had become over time. Bit by bit, my heart was hardened by the trials and tribulations of life. I was robbing myself of real freedom and joy which comes from not being attached to a world that will fade away. My character was in need of serious refining and that could only be achieved by the acquisition of wisdom and love that comes from above. I opened my mind and heart in ways that I could never imagine. A deep-rooted hope that is no longer dashed away by the powerful currents that used to overtake me.

A peaceful, grateful and joyful heart is the source from which all wellness flows. It’s important to note that it is the internal (a.k.a. spirit) that spills over into the external (a.k.a. physical) and not the other way around. For the reasons already described above, if we allow the physical to rule  over us then we can be effortlessly deceived. A discerning heart is a valuable treasure which each of us can possess. It will convict and guide us in the torrential downpours of life and help strengthen our resolve. Resolve is what keeps us from drifting about aimlessly from situation to situation like a ship without a rudder. It keeps us on course with purpose and active follow-through so that we are committed to our desired objective.

Wellness is a personal journey which requires a lot of reflection and introspection. It’s about taking ourselves off auto-pilot and being fully engaged in the present. All we have is this moment and that is where our concentrated power should lie. We must expend our energy in areas that will breed more energy – not less. No denying that there’s something about the human spirit that wants to be set free so that it can soar uncharted territory.