When we think of wellness, we often think of physical wellness. Most of us can agree that our goal is to be physically well. I don't know too many people that like being phsyically sick. We spend a lot of time and money on wellness products that focus on the physical.

Did you know that there are six other dimensions to wellness than just the physical? We have to keep not only our physical life but also our emotional life, intellectual life, spiritual life, environmental life, vocational life and social life in balance for true wellness. According to the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA), these are the seven dimensions of wellness. The concept of wellness moves the definition of well-being away from a mindset based in the management of disease and into the areas of prevention. To actively age, we need to try to live as fully as possible within these seven dimensions of wellness.

When I train people in the area of strengthening, I don't just train the left side of the body. I also rain the right side so the body has symmetry or a muscle balance. If one part of the body is out of balance, it can negatively influence the whole body. It's the same with welness.

Many people go to the gym for physical training. We should also be hitting the books for intellectual training (turn off the TV and video games and read). We should fellowship with others for social training. We should get outside and enjoy the great outdoors for environmental training. We should go to our places for worship for our spiritual training. At our jobs or volunteer positions, we should work hard and make a daily commitment to improve for our vocational training and we should cope with our challenges and behave in respectful ways for our emotional training.

Thnk about each one of these wellness dimensions in your life. Are you out of balance? Focus on balancing the dimensions of wellness in your life. Here's to your good health.

About the author: Jonathan Souder is the fitness director at Manor House, an ACTS Retirement-Life Community in Seaford, www.manorhouse.org. Email your questions to jsouder@actslife.org.

seven dimensions of wellness