Six Dimensions of Wellness
Select a dimension from the “Wellness Wheel” to view what each dimension entails as well as tips and resources for each.
Environmental well-being includes living in harmony with the Earth by understanding the impact of your interaction with nature and your personal environment, and taking action to protect the world around you. Protecting yourself from environmental hazards and minimizing the negative impact of your behavior on the environment are also central elements. Leading a lifestyle that is respectful to our environment and minimizes any harm done to it is a critical part of this dimension of wellness.
Engage in environmentally responsible activities, keep the company of healthy people, and maximize personal harmony with the Earth while minimizing harm to it.
Tips and Resources
Be a part of the process of environmental wellness.
Appreciate and respect the environment.
Do your part to preserve and improve environmental conditions.
Have a place that you can go to relax, chill out.
Whether it’s at home or work, have a welcoming space for you and others to feel comfortable in.
Colors can be a great way to spice up an area — decide which ones light your fire!
Reduce noise and pollution.
Keep yourself and others safe — like buckling up
Physical wellness encourages participation in regular physical activities which improve cardiovascular strength and endurance, flexibility, and muscular strength. This dimension involves understanding and appreciating the relationship between sound nutrition and how the body performs. It involves practicing medical self-care for minor illness and knowing when professional medical attention is needed. The physical benefits of looking good and feeling great often lead to psychological benefits of enhanced self-esteem, self-control, determination, and stronger sense of direction.
Play with your kids, walk your dog, cook with friends/family, train for an event.
Tips and Resources
Walk more! Invest in a pedometer (one that’s more than $12 is your best bet) and push yourself to walk 10,000 steps each day for optimum health benefits. View a map of campus walk route map of campus walk routes (pdf) (with step counts!).
Tips for Increasing Your Steps
- Take a walk with your spouse, child, or friend.
- Walk the dog.
- Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Park farther from the store.
- Get outside to walk around the garden or do a little weeding.
- Plan a walking meeting.
Join an Intramural Sports team.
Drop in on a Group Fitness class.
Let the Campus Rec Personal Trainers help you reach your goals.
Stop by one of the Wellness Zone Check-Ups.
Looking to learn more about proper nutrition, fitness, and athletic injuries, but not willing to surrender more of your life to classes? The SportWell Center provides individualized appointments according to your schedule.
Turn to the professionals at McKinley Health Center. Check-ups, shots, exams — these can be critical to maintaining your physical health. Find a doctor with whom you feel comfortable and schedule a physical exam annually.
Quit smoking! Your body will thank you. There’s tons of help online!
Think about your alcohol habits. While a moderate intake of alcohol is known to have certain health benefits, excessive drinking is a serious risk factor that can escalate your likelihood of developing a number of disease and conditions. The Alcohol and Other Drug Office (AODO) is a department of the Counseling Center with collaborative sponsors that include McKinley Health Center. Confidential appointments can be made to help you assess and address problems related to problematic alcohol and/or drug use.
This dimension involves seeking meaning and purpose in human existence. Development in this dimension includes developing a deep appreciation and acceptance for things that cannot be completely understood. It involves the tolerance of values and beliefs of others and participating in activities that are consistent with personal values.
Take “quiet time” to meditate, think or just breathe.
Tips and Resources
Beliefnet is the largest spiritual web site. Independent, and not affiliated with any spiritual organization or movement, the only agenda is to help you meet your spiritual needs. This site aims to help people like you find, and walk, a spiritual path that will bring comfort, hope, clarity, strength, and happiness.
Another great resource is the Spirituality and Health web site.
Facilitate a connection with yourself and others.
Nourish yourself through personal beliefs, morals, and/or religion. Develop a philosophy of life that you want to live by. Find purpose in life and meaning in the little things you do everyday.
Make a list of what you value most in life and keep it somewhere to reflect upon.
Meditate, pray, practice visualization, and/or maintain a yoga routine.
Intellectual wellness encourages continued learning, problem solving, and creativity. This dimension involves improving verbal skills, keeping abreast of social and political issues, and reading books, magazines, and newspapers.
Take classes offered in your community, participate in something contrary to your strengths and comfort level.
Tips and Resources
Explore issues related to problem solving, creativity, and learning. Identify your potential, your strengths, and you’ll discover your “life mission.”
Check out the Counseling Center’s self-help brochures that discuss time management and provide additional resources. And there are always workshops provided by The Counseling Center (see web site for current schedule).
Would you believe that there exists a National Association for Self-Esteem? Well NASE does exist, and their web site has an array of material available relating to self-esteem and you.
Recognize and value learning as a life-long process.
Take a class outside your typical major or minor courses; these new opportunities may offer you different experiences, and you may find outlets that are intellectually stimulating. Search for new classes in the course catalog.
Set and meet realistic goals academically, personally, and professionally. (Then, spoil yourself once you meet a goal!)
Read for fun! By choosing books just for fun, you not only learn about a subject or particular interest, you learn about how others express themselves.
Develop the curiosity of a child. Children have a knack for being curious about everything around them. Try to regain this curiosity about the world. You may be amazed by what you learn.
This dimension encourages taking an active part in improving the community by supporting a healthy living environment and initiating better communication with others. This includes contributing time and/or money to community projects, participating in recycling and other conservation efforts, and developing harmony within your family. Becoming more aware of your importance in society, improving our world by encouraging healthy lifestyles, and initiating better communication with those around you.
Make an effort to meet your neighbor or members of your congregation. Join or even form a club or team. Designate a night out with friends.
Tips and Resources
Join a Registered Student Organization.
Volunteer! Give back to your campus, community, and country!
Join Alpha Phi Omega, national service fraternity! Look into joining a fraternity or sorority.
Express your political opinion.
Take advantage of the incredible Arts and Culture offerings on campus.
Check out the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Resources.
Spread your social wings and meet some new people!
Roommate troubles? Work out your differences in a safe environment with the help of the Office for Student Conflict Resolution.
Enjoy the beauty of nature! Visit one of the many beautiful Champaign County Forest Preserves.
Join an Intramural Sports team. Campus Rec offers both team sports and individual events, allowing campus amateur athletes to show off their abilities in one or more areas — and form some lasting friendships — all while having a great time.
Pick up trash on your way to class.
Save energy. Shut down your computer if it is not in use. Switch those lights off before you leave. And do you really need that TV on when you’ve got your music blaring?
Study abroad! It will change your life!
This dimension involves feeling positive and enthusiastic about ourselves and life, in general. Development in this dimension includes recognition of feelings and the ability to manage feelings, being able to develop autonomy, maintain satisfying relationships, and the ability to cope with stress. Being aware of and accepting a wide range of feelings about yourself and others.
Take appropriate steps to cope with problems having to do with emotional wellness. Tune into your personal thoughts and feelings. Actively communicate your feelings. Create opportunities for valuable conversations and discussions.
Tips and Resources
Don’t be afraid to ask for help. The Counseling Center is a great resource on campus.
Turn to the Psychological Services Center (PSC), a mental health agency operated by the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois.
Sometimes it’s hard to admit that we need other people. Sometimes depression and suicidal thoughts contain a component of upset and anger towards the world and the people in it. Give yourself a chance to get help.
National Suicide Hotlines (available 24/7)
Mental Health Center of Champaign County Crisis Line
For faculty/staff, help is just around the corner with the Faculty/Staff Assistance Program.
Take a mental break. Treat yourself to a massage, immerse yourself in a bubble bath, find a quiet spot and meditate, journal.
Take time to notice the little things in life that you may usually overlook.
Express yourself through various means. Sketch, paint, sing, dance, take photographs, write. Allow yourself to be in the moment. Cry if you need to, laugh if you want to, all feelings are okay.
Stressed out? Get away from your work for a minute and go for a walk. Without a doubt you’ll be more productive once you get back to the books.