Reclaiming Wellness

By Kitty Von Tastique

Wellness can be something we associate with the rich, famous and hard-core. 

People on Instagram with amazing bodies, posing in impossibly hard positions on tropical islands. Smug wellness experts with the wind in their hair, eating bowls full of unicorn tears and chia puffs, or gym junkies taking chiselled ab selfies in the mirror. 

All of those idealistic images can be daunting, discouraging and sometimes downright dangerous, so here is what wellness means to me:

1.    Wellness is not a status update, it’s a state of mind.

Wellness should not be about what you wear, where you live, your size, your status or your budget. Wellness is about your ‘wellbeing’ and not your ‘well doing’, or for that matter ‘well having’. It’s about living in the present moment.

Some conventional health and fitness tends to disengage us from our minds and bodies to push us further, (which, at times can be useful if it distracts us from the burn of that last push up, lol) but I also believe that we need to spend just as much time re-engaging with our minds, to avoid an essential part of our wellness being overlooked.

I’m a strong believer in mindfulness, which I’ll talk about further in the coming months, but becoming aware of our disconnection is the beginning of positive change.

2.    Your phone doesn’t love you

The truth is, we spend so much time with our screens, that we’ve forgotten how to snap ourselves out of auto pilot, and so we effectively sleep walk through 90% of our lives. 

How often have you been focused on your screen and then looked up to find hours have passed? It happens to everyone constantly, including me. It has become the norm but it comes at a cost. 

When our lives flash before our eyes, are we just going to see a series of memes and gifs? Or are we going to remember those moments with our friends, family and most importantly, those times we connected with our true selves?

Limiting our screen time and increasing our green time (or offline experiences) is important and shouldn’t be underestimated. 

In addition to this, certain supposed wellness ideals promoted on social media can often be unrealistic, which brings me to…

3.    Be your own unicorn

Social media has put a huge amount of pressure on us to conform to specific ideals.   

I’d like to say right now, there is no one version of ‘perfect’. You have the perfect body for you, right now, in this moment today.

I’m not suggesting we all abandon our health and fitness goals but I am suggesting that we start making them specific to ourselves as individuals and run our own race.

Putting yourself or others down by using comparisons is not going to make you happy. Understanding your own body and working towards your own personal goals and ideals is essential. I’ve always said that the only person I am competing with, is me. 

You’re a unicorn! It’s time to embrace whatever makes you, you, because trust me, you are one majestic creature!

4.    Goals are for a season but kindness is forever

I have been both a goal driven machine and a broken, hopeless wreck. When I was smashing goals, and achieving PBs (personal bests) I got a lot of things done, and I found it very satisfying but when some of those long-term goals and dreams didn’t materialise and/or life took a turn I didn’t expect, I would crash. I realised that there were times that I needed to rest goal setting for a while. 

It turns out that goals are apparently a very western idea. In some other cultures, just ‘being’, is enough. 

So, at times in my life when I have been broken, I let my goals go. Like Kate let poor old Leo drift away in Titanic, I let my dreams sink away into those salty pools of disappointment. I just let myself heal for a while and that was enough. 

Resting goals doesn’t have to be forever, but kindness first and foremost, should always be our number one goal, especially when it comes to ourselves. Then when we are ready, we can pick up our goals and dreams again, and get going.

5.    Wellness should be fun

The last thing I’d like to talk about is ‘fun’! I’m not sure when it happened, but ‘Wellness’ seems to have become very serious and I’d like to be the one to change all of that. My vision of Wellness is all about enjoying yourself, whether you like boxing up a storm, dancing it out, walking your pooch, mindful breathing, a purple salad or a gold star chart covered in rainbows (I have that one, lol). 

Whatever you choose, it needs be something you’re willing to get out of bed for, something that makes you feel alive and something that fits with who you are and where you are headed!

If you’ve enjoyed this article, I’d like to invite you to check out my new live stream, every Sunday 8pm UK time, on the Vintage Life Facebook page. I’m going to be chatting about Wellness and I would love to see you there!

Until next time, have a fabulous month, and I’ll check in with you again soon to see how you are going.

Hugs & Happiness!
Kitty xxx

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN VINTAGE LIFE MAGAZINE AUGUST 2017

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