Each year in January, prior to my birthday, I complete a self-evaluation using the 7 Dimensions of wellness (Thanks for introducing them to me, Rhonda Bayless). Since my birthday is in January, this self-evaluation fits right in with creating my vision book. This year I will turn 43 and I’m pretty excited. I’m not excited because I have big plans; I’m excited because I’ve grown so much since last year.
1. Physically: I am in the best shape of my life. Really? Yes, really! Sure, I’ve had to get “progressive lenses” in my glasses (I’m still fly tho…lol) and I have a few more gray hairs on my temples (I love them), I feel really fantastic. When I think about it, running 1 mile was not even a thought in my 20s. Now I run/walk 13.1 of them…woot! I drink more water, I make better food choices, I participate in all forms of physical activity; overall I feel good.
2. Environmentally: I have stopped feeling like I need to conform to the ways of the extroverts of the world. Please don’t misunderstand. This is not an attack on extroverts. I am madly in love with and married to one; most of my friends are extroverts. However, I’ve learned to express my introverted ways so they understand, “it’s not you, it’s me.” Not only that, but my environment is surrounded by outdoor activities, art, music, and just plain ol’ good people. I’ve significantly reduced my interactions with negative influences that I can control…people, places, and things. I feel good about that even if some of the decisions were rough. I’m better for it.
3. Intellectually: I continue to discover through reading, writing, traveling, and surrounding myself with folks who are just think and do things different.
4. Socially: I think this is the area that I have gained substantial growth and it all started with accepting and understanding that I’m an introvert and being able to confidently express what I need and can give to relationships. This acceptance has caused me to re-evaluate relationships and if they were not mutually beneficial, I had to let them go.
5. Emotionally: I am in love with and married to my best friend. I have learned to forgive others and myself. I am learning to say no. I am still on a roller coaster, but the growth I’ve experienced has come from learning how to handle my emotions in different situations.
6. Occupational Wellness: I quit the job that was emotionally stressful and was blessed with a new one. Although there is still a certain degree of stress, it is nothing like before.
7. Spiritual Wellness: I stopped allowing the opinions of others to influence what my relationship with God should look like. Personally, I don’t feel like I need to be in the “church box” every Sunday to have a relationship with God; in fact, I know I don’t. That’s all I’m going to say on that.
8. Financial Wellness: With the help of folks who know what they are doing, my husband and I have a financial game plan. We’re by no means wealthy, but we’re working on it.
So there you have it, I’m turning 43; 42 was great, but 43 is going to be better.
If you are not familiar with the 7 Dimensions of Wellness I encourage you to visit The Fisher Institute for Wellness and Gerontology. You can also visit Center of Wellness for Urban Women to learn more and about the workshops offered by CWUW.
LaWanda Martindale is a wife, mother, sister, friend, registered nurse, and AQUARIUS living in Atlanta, GA