Living in a pandemic has given me new perspective as I realized for the first time in a long time that I cannot take health for granted. But in addition to my concern over physical health, I began to realize that isolation, worry, fear, frustration, anger, uncertainty and the threat of illness likely took a toll on my overall level of health in ways I had not even considered. As I read in scripture to “Love the Lord our God with heart, soul, mind and strength”…I realize the importance of considering balanced health and of being aware of all of those areas in my life.
In my work as a school psychologist, I noticed something when I would meet with parents that I can definitely say was a pattern. When questions were posed about how to best help their children with homework, parents often felt most comfortable with activities such as reviewing spelling words and/or math fact drills (like multiplication tables). When you think about it, that makes a lot of sense. After all, those are things that haven’t changed much over time (unlike much of the curriculum). Success (or failure) of those skills is easily measured and they make wonderful flash card content. But as well intentioned and diligent as these parents were, teachers had to help them understand that these skills are only one small part of learning expectations and they carry far less weight than they once did. Now students are expected to go much further than memorization of basic facts.
As I give thought to heart, soul, mind and strength…and then to measuring how we are doing in each of those areas, I fear that like many of those well-intentioned parents, we focus on the things we can easily quantify. Our physical health, for example, can be easily measured by how many exercises we can do, numbers on a scale, calorie counts, workout minutes, and clothing size. As a result, we tend to put a great deal of emphasis on this area of health (and rightly so, it IS important). But what about the other areas of our lives that impact health? What about our emotional health, our spiritual health or what fills our mind? How can we be sure we are measuring those things as well and what gauges can we use for reference? How can we be more balanced in our health priorities?
I’d like to help. I have created some tools and strategies to assist you in intentional thinking for ALL aspects of health. Over the next several weeks, I hope to be a source of encouragement and guidance as you think about balanced health. If this is of interest to you…keep reading.
To get started, let’s take this short assessment to give yourself a place to start. Please keep in mind, this is only a tool to identify your starting place. Not a tool to beat yourself up over or to feel worse about yourself. It is also a very broad, general tool with no scientific research basis. Again, just something to get you on the right track to even thinking about health in this way.
Here’s the link for the assessment:
Once you’ve identified your areas of strength and growth…stay tuned. I’ll be back in touch later this week with information about our first area: EMOTIONAL HEALTH…and we’ll talk more about the action plan in weeks to come.
If you want some inspiration for your physical health...we will be releasing four "What's Your Story?" podcast episodes during the month of January all about faith and fitness. You can use the link below to listen to this week's episode with Shelley Scott and look forward to a new episode each Sunday.
As always, if I can help you in any way, please reach out! I am really excited about considering these things with you over the next few weeks.
With much love,
Stephani Cook is a life coach, speaker, writer and creator of On Purpose Coaching. Through On Purpose Coaching she helps others to improve relationships and to discover intentional abundant living. She does that through several services including group and/or individual coaching, live event speaking or Enneagram workshops in private and corporate settings.
To connect with Stephani visit her website http://www.stephanicook.org.