One day in June, three months into the COVID pandemic, I decided to empty a back room in my basement. I knew that I had outgrown my need for possessions that had long been relegated to the unseen places of my home and my mind.
One of our core beliefs at BHWP is that balance is needed across what we call ‘the eight dimensions of wellness’ in order to thrive to one’s fullest potential. We encourage individuals to evaluate their wellness using these eight categories as guidelines, and to consider whether or not some of these dimensions could use more attention.
In uncertain times, we look for ways to ground ourselves. To gain a sense of control, we envision our future, set goals, and strategize. We seek ways to create meaning and draw lessons from our experience. We act, distract, and stay busy. All these strategies have their purpose and place. They help us to cope through difficult situations as we do our best to keep moving forward.
In the first couple days of 2020, I serendipitously noticed an old travel journal lying on the bottom of my bookshelf. Realizing that it was my collection of daily travel notes and memories from a January trip through Europe that I took in 2008, I thought it might be a good idea to read one entry per day, each one exactly twelve years later.
Often, perhaps too often, I find myself at the end of my day, feeling as if I have run a race. Moving nonstop from one thing to the next, there is precious little time to process all that I have experienced. While I am energized by this activity, I am also aware of my unfulfilled need for stillness and contemplation.
For those of us who greatly value the outdoor opportunities that are unique to summer—such as warm temperatures for water activities, easier alpine exploration, or simply the long daylight hours—this time of the year can present a difficult transition.
I am stretched out on the grass before a lake in a park near my house. It is late afternoon and this brief interlude provides a needed pause for wonder and reflection.
The movement of the fire burning in the chiminea behind me creates a complex dance of shadows on the side of the house. The warmth and energy of the fire matches my excitement as I engage in an animated conversation with a new friend.
It has been over 20 years since a landmark study called “Adverse Childhood Experiences” was published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine.
Birthdays have never held much significance for me and usually when I’m asked, I need to stop and calculate how old I am.