Welcome to our fourth blog exploring the Six Dimensions of Wellness. Each of the six areas, or ‘dimensions’, contribute to our overall wellness – physical, social, intellectual, spiritual, emotional and occupational. These areas complement each other to provide a well-balanced, vital and prosperous life.
New year, new start?
The start of the year can often be a time when we re-evaluate our lives. Many people take it as an opportunity for a fresh start or to make a change in their work-life – a new job, career or industry.
While our jobs no longer dictate our names (Blacksmith, Potter, Mason, Tailor and so on), they are still often a major part of our identity. Often one of the first questions we ask when we meet someone new is, “What do you do?”.
A person’s profession or job can be a defining detail of who they are, providing clues as to their values, interests or background. So, having a job or career that is personally meaningful, and that brings us happiness or satisfaction, is important.
What is ‘occupational wellness’?
The Six Dimensions of Wellness are a guide to help us achieve balance in all areas of our lives. The occupational dimension recognises the personal satisfaction and enrichment that we achieve through our work. Our attitude to our job or career has a crucial impact on our lives, occupational wellness is being able to achieve a balance between work and leisure time, addressing workplace stress and building successful relationships with our colleagues.
According to Dr Hettler, who devised the Six Dimensions of Wellness, it is better to choose a career which is consistent with your own personal values, interests and beliefs. To find this, we need to explore various career opportunities until we discover one that fits.
As our job or profession encompasses so much of our time, it is essential that it brings us joy and fulfilment. When we are doing something that we love, it deepens our sense of meaning and purpose.
Your choice of profession, job satisfaction, career ambitions and personal performance are all important components of occupational wellness. As is using your skills and talents in a role that is both personally meaningful and rewarding.
Getting involved, taking part, learning something new and developing new skills is far better than remaining inactive or uninvolved.
How to know when you have achieved occupational wellness
- Do you enjoy going to work most days?
- Do you have a manageable workload?
- Do you feel that you can talk to your manager and colleagues when problems arise?
- Does what you do make you feel satisfied?
If you answered ‘No’ to any of these questions, it may mean you need to look at that area of your occupational wellness to see what could be enhanced or improved.
How can you develop your occupational wellness?
- Explore different career options, especially those that involve taking opportunities you enjoy and that suit you best.
- Look for, and take advantage of, the chance to learn something new along with opportunities to develop new skills.
- Use your skills and talents in a way that is personally meaningful and rewarding.
- Explore both work and volunteer opportunities in areas you are interested in to enhance your personal satisfaction.
- Develop positive relationships with colleagues. We can’t all get along all of the time, so it is also important to learn how to practise open communication and effective conflict management.
- Aim to find a satisfying balance between the financial fulfilment and the personal accomplishment and happiness from the work that you choose to do.
- National Wellness Institute – Six Dimensions of Wellness
- Our other blogs:
- Part 1: Physical Wellness
- Part 2: Emotional Wellness
- Part 3: Social Wellness