Division of Student Affairs > Student Services > Health & Wellness > Mental Well-being > Facets of Wellness

Facets of Wellness

facets of well-beingMental well-being is caring for ourselves holistically. It encompasses our mental, physical, spiritual, emotional, social, financial, and environmental health. To feel happy, healthy, socially connected and purposeful, we need to pay attention to all of the facets of our well-being. Often times, we look at just one component, like physical wellness to improve our health. But, we need to be paying attention to all these facets to truly care for our well-being and thrive. When one facet is not being cared for, it affects our whole body and the other facets of our well-being.

Health is more than just the absence of disease; it is a resource that allows people to realize their aspirations, satisfy their needs and to cope with the environment in order to live a long, productive and fruitful life (CDC). We use the term well-being to encompass positive outcomes and encourage everyone to continue to thrive and maintain their positive well-being.

As college students, you have many worries, stressors and unknown factors. This can all lead to stress, anxiety and potentially other areas of your life where you may feel unwell, tired and sick. This can lead to a drop in your academics performance, strained relationships, lack of quality sleep, mood changes, changes in appetite and other changes. To truly care for our whole selves, we must pay attention to all of the facets of our well-being as listed below.

When one of these facets is out of balance and/or we might not be doing as well as normally, perhaps due to extra stress, life events, relationships, etc. it will begin to affect our other facets of wellness. Each dimension of wellness can affect our overall quality of life. We encourage you to get familiar with each facet and understand where you are in your wellness journey to support your well-being and thrive.

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Emotional wellness is accepting your worth, recognizing and expressing your feelings in healthy ways, and coping with life’s challenges. It is a dynamic state that fluctuates frequently with your other facets of well-being. It includes having the ability to love and be loved and achieving fulfillment in life.

Tips for optimal emotional wellness:
  • Tune-in to your thoughts and feelings
  • Cultivate an optimistic attitude
  • Seek and provide support
  • Learn time management skills
  • Practice stress management techniques
  • Accept and forgive yourself
  • Practice gratitude

Environmental wellness is understanding how your surroundings and community may impact your overall well-being and establishing environments that stimulate and support your health. It also consists of maintaining a way of life that maximizes harmony with the earth and minimizes harm to the environment; including being involved in socially responsible activities to protect the environment.

Tips for optimal environmental wellness:
  • Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
  • Conserve water and other resources
  • Minimize chemical use
  • Buy only the things that you need
  • Minimize your use of plastic
  • Appreciate the earth and spend time in nature
  • Choose things that support your health and well-being

Financial wellness is understanding your current financial situation and planning for future financial health. Financial wellness can allow us to plan for the future while we are working towards these future goals.

Tips for optimal financial wellness:
  • Learn about credit cards, loans, savings, investments and 401k
  • Only buy what you need
  • Pay your bills on time and avoid late fees and interest
  • Review your expenses every month
  • Understand your loans and debt
  • Become financially independent
  • Keep a rainy day savings fund
  • Plan for vacations and other large expenses

Intellectual wellness is being actively engaged in creative and mentally stimulating activities in pursuit of lifelong learning. Our minds need to be continually inspired and exercised just as our bodies do.

Tips for optimal intellectual wellness:
  • Engaging in new learning
  • Learning or perfecting a language
  • Seek out people who challenge you intellectually
  • Develop a growth mindset
  • Read a variety of books, articles, news, etc.
  • Appreciate and engage in art
  • Keeping up to date on current events

Physical wellness is maintaining a healthy quality of life through regular physical activity, proper nutrition, and restful sleep.

Tips for optimal physical well-being:
  • Daily movement
  • Getting adequate restful sleep
  • Using seat belts, helmets and protective equipment
  • Recognizing signs of illness and seeking professional help
  • Practicing intuitive eating and eating a variety of foods
  • Understanding your relationship and goals for alcohol and other substance use

Social wellness is developing a sense of connection, belonging and creating and maintaining healthy relationships and a well-developed support system. Including, showing respect for yourself and others and contributing to your community and to the world; which builds a sense of belonging.

Tips for optimal social wellness:
  • Cultivate healthy relationships
  • Get involved
  • Volunteer
  • Contribute to your community
  • Share your talents and skills
  • Communicate your thoughts, feelings and ideas
Tips for optimal social wellness:

Spiritual wellness is expanding your sense of purpose and meaning in life. This may include understanding and exploring beliefs, values, and ethics that help guide your life.

Tips for optimal spiritual wellness:
  • Explore your spiritual core
  • Spend time alone
  • Meditate regularly
  • Be inquisitive and curious
  • Be fully present in everything you do
  • Listen with your heart and live by your principles
  • Allow yourself and those around you the freedom to be who they are
  • See opportunities for growth in the challenges life brings you