Health is normally on top of the list of New Year resolutions, but health doesn’t only refer to our body. Yet, we seldom set goals for our emotional and financial well-being. This should change this year.
For you to be the best you, it’s important to take care of your overall health, including emotional and financial wellness.
According to Wikipedia, the definition of wellness is: a healthy balance of the mind, body and spirit that results in an overall feeling of well-being.
Wellness is much more than meeting the basic needs of food, a place to live and the absence of illness. It is a dynamic process of change and personal growth; an active process of becoming aware of the importance of well-being. It’s not a one-dimensional concept, rather it consists of several dimensions that require similar focus and attention:
- Physical wellness: maintaining a healthy body by exercising regularly, eating a healthy balanced diet, going for regular medical check-ups and getting sufficient sleep.
- Emotional wellness: understanding and acknowledging your feelings and emotions. As well as coping effectively with life challenges, such as stress, anger, fear, etc. Emotional wellness can be spilt up in the following:
- Spiritual wellness: set of values and beliefs that give meaning and purpose to your life in the form of religion, yoga or meditation.
- Social wellness: positive relationships with family, friends, colleagues and acquaintances.
- Intellectual wellness: developing an open mind when encountering new ideas and life-long learning.
- Occupational wellness: personal fulfillment through your job and career.
- Environmental wellness: respecting the environment that you live in and making a positive contribution towards conserving it.
- Financial wellness: managing your financial status in an effective way to create wealth and become financially independent.
How is the state of your mind?
Your state of mind has a direct impact on your health, energy levels, appetite, relationships,productivity and what you achieve in life. Your partner, children, boss, job or hobbies cannot make you happy. Happiness comes from within yourself. To become the best person you can be, you need to be positive and believe in yourself and your abilities.
Action steps to enhance emotional wellness:
- Surround yourself with positive people who support and uplift you.
- Schedule time in your diary to do things that you enjoy.
- Spend time with your loved ones. Tomorrow might be too late.
- Continuously look for opportunities where you can expand your knowledge. Knowledge is power.
- Give and you shall receive. Learn to give without expecting anything in return. That feeling when you know you made a difference in somebody else’s life is priceless.
- Spend a few minutes every day writing down all the things you are grateful for. It will teach you to appreciate the smaller things in life.
- Create a vision board of your life goals and put it up where you can see it every day. Believe that you will achieve all of that and much more. Compile a plan and take action to achieve these goals.
- Pray more, laugh more and love more.
How does your bank account look?
Although the saying “Money can’t buy you happiness” is true to a certain extent, we cannot ignore the role money plays in society and our daily lives. We need money to pay for our daily-living costs like food, accommodation, electricity, transport and medical bills.
Financial independence has become a necessity, especially in these days where retrenchment is a cruel reality that can happen to anybody, no matter who you are or what your qualifications are. Also do not rely on your partner to take care of your financial needs considering the high divorce rates, and the impact of crime and life-threatening diseases.
Action steps to improve financial wellness:
- Set-up a budget and keep to it, to effectively control your expenses. A budget cannot live in your head only, you need to write it down or keep it on a spreadsheet. You also need to capture your actual expenses and compare it to your budget.
- Adopt a savings mind-set. Always look for opportunities where you can save money. Your budget needs to include a savings component to save and invest every month regardless how small it is.
- Make a conscious choice to become debt-free. Compile a plan to repay your debt and allocate timelines to it. Whenever you have additional cash, repay your debt. Always repay more expensive debt first like car instalments, credit cards, personal loans and clothing accounts.
- Cash is king. If you cannot buy something cash, save until you can buy it but avoid using debt to buy it.
- Build up an emergency fund that you can use for unforeseen big expenses. This becomes very valuable to pay for medical expenses that your medical aid doesn’t cover, or for maintenance of your house or car. Use it only for emergencies and don’t be tempted to use the money for luxury items. Always remember to replace any funds you use from your emergency fund.
- Retirement planning is crucial. The younger you start planning and saving for your retirement, the better.
- Ensure that you have a will and that it’s up to date. Unfortunately death is a reality, and you don’t want to leave your family with chaos.
- Expand your financial knowledge. This will enable you to make good decisions without having to rely on partners, financial planners or employers. Read books, attend seminars, do online courses or get yourself a financial coach. You are the only person who will always have your best interest at heart.
Become the best you
Your well-being is your most valuable asset and that includes your physical, emotional and financial well-being. Nobody can take better care of you and your needs than yourself. Choose to live a healthy, happy and wealthy lifestyle and take action to achieve it. Become the best you. You deserve it and owe it to yourself.
MEET OUR EXPERT – Ronel Jooste
Ronel Jooste is a director at PhysEQFiT (Pty) Ltd, a company specialising in physical, emotional and financial wellness where she runs the FinanciallyFiTLife division. Ronel is a Chartered Accountant and helps individuals and businesses to become financially fit through financial coaching and consulting. She is passionate about fitness and is a qualified personal trainer.