The World Health Organization (WHO) defines wellness as not only the absence of illness but a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being. Graduate Medical Education (GME) believes that a multi-faceted approach to wellness is crucial to the success of our residents and fellows. Quillen’s goal is to provide one comprehensive resource to promote balance, healthy habits and behaviors in all choices related to aspects of wellness.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has identified eight dimensions of wellness to optimize an individual’s overall, holistic wellness.
Assistant Dean of Wellness
Assistant Professor, Pediatrics
Director, Lifestyle Medicine
8 Dimensions of Wellness
- Emotional Health
- Physical Health
- Intellectual Health
- Occupational & Career health
- Community Health
- Spiritual Health
- Social Health
- Financial Health
Maintaining and balancing each dimension of wellness is a vital component to overall health.
Quillen is committed to monitoring residents and gaining feedback on how to provide consistently superior support and promote resident wellness.
Emotions are often difficult to control, but the development of coping strategies to temper them can help develop a pattern of RESPONSE, not REACTION to emotion provoking situations.
Coping strategies can include:
- Listening to music
- Talking to close friends or family
- Speaking to a therapist or spiritual leader
- Relaxation Breath Relaxation Breathing Technique
Physical Health is essential to the complete health of an individual. Physical health can be broken down into many dimensions, all which are important components to achieving the best you!
5 components to physical health:
- Active Lifestyle: be active throughout the day, not just when working out.
- Healthy Diet: eating and drinking a balanced diet to fuel your body, avoid excess.
- Disease Prevention: live a healthy lifestyle and seek medical care when warranted.
- Physical Fitness: intentionally strengthing your physical body by working out.
- Rest: a key component of a balanced lifestyle to replenish your body, mind and spirit.
Intellectual Health is defined as a person's ability to think critically, question their surroundings, be attentive to current events, and develop creative ways to adapt to unexpected obstacles.
Recommended Goals for Intellectual Health:
- Strive to be open to new experiences and ideas in all areas of your life.
- Expand your ability to create, develop, analyze, critique, concentrate, understand, evaluate, problem solve, predict, comprehend, etc.
- Feel competent in intellectual and academic activities by improving your skills in academics, studying, time management, stress management, note taking, listening, and public speaking.
- Develop a love for learning and philosophy for “life-long learning”.
- Know when to ask for help!
Occupational Health and Wellness is the ability to achieve a balance between work and leisure in a way that promotes health and a sense of personal satisfaction as defined by Washington State University. Occupational health focuses on exploring career options and employment opportunities that you enjoy and encourage personal growth. Your attitude about your profession is critical to overall mental wellness.
Methods to improve your Occupational Health and Wellness include:
- Stay motivated and work towards what you want.
- Increase your knowledge and skills to accomplish your goals.
- Find the benefits and positives in your current job.
- Create connections with your co-workers.
- Write out goals, create a plan to execute them, begin working toward your plan.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says that health and well-being are products not only of the healthcare we receive, and the choices we make, but also of the places we live, work, learn and play.
At Quillen Graduate Medical Education (GME), you are not only part of the Quillen Community, but also the University, Tri-Cities, Tennessee, United States, and even global communities. Finding your niche will support community health, and it will help your community support you.
Spiritual health is the process by which you seek meaning and purpose. This can be achieved in a variety of ways including organized religion, prayer, meditation, yoga, as well as a careful assessment of your morals, values and beliefs. Spiritual health is achieved when you feel hopeful and peaceful. Spirit cannot be defined as part of the body or as part of the mind. Body, mind and spirit all have an effect on one another. One must work to keep all parts healthy and in doing so you can help your bodies, minds, and souls to remain complete.
Religion and spirituality are not always the same. Some people find spiritual health in practicing religion. Others do not. It is whatever works for you. There is no right or wrong way to achieve spiritual health.
Some ways that may improve your spiritual health include:
- Being in nature: Some people feel connected and at peace when they are walking outdoors.
- Helping others: Service learning can give others a sense of fulfillment. Being helpful can take on many forms. It can be doing volunteer work, being kind to strangers, or supporting a friend.
- Gratitude: Some people recognize peace by remaining grateful. They may make lists of all the things they are grateful for or say a thank you out loud for all they have.
- Religion: Some find the meaning of life through the ritual and practice of religion.
- Mindfulness: Some people gain hope and peace through mindfulness. This involves purposefully bringing attention to the present moment without judgment. It derives from sati, a significant element of Buddhist tradition.
Social Health is a term that refers to the ways in which people create healthy and positive interpersonal relationships with one another. Having good social health helps people improve their emotional wellbeing and feel supported in their daily lives. The social health definition is a broad one, there are many different elements of social health that come together to create a coherent picture of positive relatioinships.
Elements of social health include:
- Treating people with kindness.
- Communicating clearly.
- Developing meaningful relationships.
- Acting appropriately in relationships.
- Establishing and respecting personal boundaries.
Financial health can be defined as the dynamic relationship of one's financial and economic resources as they are applied to or impact the state of physical, mental and social well-being. Financial health and debt management are two dimensions that you must consider when you begin residency. Your focus as a medical student was matriculating and succeeding in medical school and leave the issue of how to pay for it at a later date. The financial decisions you made at that time, however, impact the amount of debt you are now dealing with and the number of years of your professional career it will take to pay off your student loans.