Dimensions of Wellness

Health and wellness are broad concepts. The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” That means that being healthy is more than just not being sick. Overall wellness includes many areas. It means being healthy in many areas of our lives. Achieving wellness is a lifelong process of “making the best better.” International Mind-Body Wellness Day gives us an opportunity to reflect on the many dimensions of wellness and the connections between body and mind.

Every aspect of wellness can affect a person’s life. The Eight Dimensions of Wellness take into account not only a person’s physical health, but all the things that contribute to a person’s overall wellness. These dimensions are interconnected, each one building on the other.

Eight Dimensions of Wellness

8 Dimensions of Wellness

Eight Dimensions of Wellness

  • physical
  • emotional
  • social
  • intellectual
  • environmental
  • spiritual
  • vocational/occupational
  • financial

For an overview of what each dimension entails, you can view a short 3-minute video from Northwestern University.

Creating balance in our lives is an important part of wellness. When we’re trying to get through a tough time—whether it is stress, an illness, trauma, or an emotional challenge—balance is especially important. In these times, our habits and routines can help us get that feeling of control back. This means focusing on ourselves as well as the roles we play in the lives of others including family member, friend, classmate, and club member.

Maybe you made a New Year’s resolution related to improving some aspect of your health. But maybe, with so many areas to consider, it can seem overwhelming to know where to start. In our posts, we’re going to break it down into more manageable chunks, day by day and week by week.

To start the new year off, we’re offering the Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN (special interest) Club to learn fun ways to keep your body and mind healthy. This SPIN club will be offered virtually through Zoom, with live sessions on Tuesdays from 5:30-6:30pm for 6 weeks starting January 19, 2021.

  • When: January 19 and 26 and February 2, 9, 16, and 23 from 5:30-6:30pm
  • Where: Zoom (link sent after registering)
  • Who: This SPIN Club is open to all 4-H ages youth 8 to 18.
  • What: 4-H professionals Frances Foos, Lori Now, Amanda Raines, and Cassie Turner will lead you through Yoga for Kids, games, activities, and more, all from the comfort of your home.
  • Cost: It’s free to participate, but some supplies will be suggested for activities.
  • Register here by January 14.
Promotion for Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN Club

Register by January 14 for the Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN Club

We’ll be addressing these dimension of wellness throughout the month of January, Ohio 4-H’s Mental Health Month. Come back for more information and ideas!

Yours in Health,


Adapted from: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2016). Creating a healthier life: A step-by-step guide to wellness. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Creating-a-Healthier-Life-/SMA16-4958

#4hhealthyliving #4thH #Ohio4Hmhm #MentalHealthMatters #4HGrowsHere

Give Yourself a New Year’s Resolution Break

Self-Care Saturday New Year's Resolution Break

Give Yourself a New Year’s Resolution Break

Should you make a New Year’s resolution for 2021? It’s a time-honored tradition – making a New Year’s resolution. With the turn of a calendar page, the start of a new year presents a clean slate. Research conducted at the University of Pennsylvania found that tying goals to specific dates, or what they called the fresh start effect, can help people to be more effective at setting and achieving goals related to changing their behaviors. Like the 4-H motto, many of us want to “make the best better.” However, after the challenges of 2020, 2021 may be the time to give yourself a New Year’s resolution break.

I’m not suggesting that you shouldn’t think about the coming year and what you might want to accomplish. By giving yourself a break, I mean being kind to yourself about what’s possible, especially given the current circumstances. Although setting goals can be a motivator, making too much change in a time of chronic stress can be have the opposite effect – it can actually increase our stress level and sidetrack us from taking action. Then when we don’t achieve our goal, we get discouraged and give up.

If you do decide to create a New Year’s resolution this year, here are some tips:

  •  Set small, specific goals. Setting small, specific goals will help you experience more immediate success, especially if your goal is one with delayed rewards.
  •  Accentuate the positive. Researchers in Sweden found that those who what they called approach-oriented goals were significantly more successful than those with avoidance-oriented goals. In other words, focus on what you want to do, not on what you don’t want to do (e.g., eat 3 servings of vegetables a day vs. don’t eat junk food).
  • Make a plan. Having a goal is great, but how will you achieve it? A resolution without a plan for achieving it will likely not succeed. Come up with some concrete things you can do and when you will do them.
  • Write it down. Writing helps you remember your goal and the steps in your plan. Tape your goal in a place where you will see it to remind yourself.
  • Get support. Identify a support person and give them periodic updates on your progress. The Swedish researchers found that group that received some support was more successful at keeping their resolutions.

Not surprisingly, health is at the top of the list for New Year’s resolutions. Throughout the month of January, we’ll share more information and ideas for keeping healthy in 2021.

Use this page to think about a New Year’s resolution.

Yours in Health,


#4hhealthyliving #4thH #Ohio4Hmhm #MentalHealthMatters #4HGrowsHere


Daily Dose – The Loss of What Might Have Been

4-H clover emblem

Sometimes we experience a loss like no other, a loss that means that something near and dear to our life is put on hold, or may not happen the way it was supposed to. We certainly have a lot of that going on right now with the current Coronavirus pandemic. It’s changed the way we learn, work, live, laugh, and love one another. One loss after another stacks up until finally one day you realize, this is too much. This is too much burden to carry.

I’m telling you it’s okay to cry. It’s okay to grieve the loss of what you thought would happen or was supposed to be. You can be angry, be sad, or just be. Whatever you do, you must express and manage your emotions in a healthy way. We will all handle changes differently. When one person is expressing sadness, another may simply be quiet. We process all things, all trauma, differently.

Yes, I said trauma. Trauma is defined by Merriam-Webster as “…c: an emotional upset.” Mental health experts remind us that any situation that leaves us feeling overwhelmed and isolated can result in trauma. The changes, challenges, and things happening to us right now are causing trauma. It’s upsetting because there are so many unknowns and the changes keep coming. It’s okay to feel these emotions. With time, you will realize that you have what it takes to get through these feelings. It’s okay to reach out to others to help you get through tough times. You will learn that we humans are given the great power of choice and ability to do the best with what we have, when we have it.

For today’s 4-H journal entry I want you to identity a change of plans that has happened due to the Coronavirus pandemic. In this journal page you can explore feelings related to it, your ability to change it, and who you can talk to. Writing a letter to this pandemic to express what it has done to you is another way to share how you feel.

It’s upsetting because there are so many unknowns and the changes keep coming. It’s okay to feel these emotions. With time, you will realize that you have what it takes to get through these feelings. It’s okay to reach out to others to help you get through tough times. You will learn that we humans are given the great power of choice and ability to do the best with what we have, when we have it. We are 4-H’ers after all. There is much work to be done and you all are up for the challenge. The choice is within you and deciding what that challenge will be and how you can make an impact on the world given the change that has happened to you.

The Loss of What Might Have Been (PDF Download)


In great love,



Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor



Daily Dose – Mental Health

National Public Health Week and COVID-19

Public Health Week - Mental Health MondayMONDAY: MENTAL HEALTH — advocate for and promote emotional well-being

Dealing with COVID-19 is causing heightened levels of stress. In particular, isolation and quarantine can be highly stressful. Because it means separation from loved ones, especially those detained off-shore or in other countries. Many in the public health and health care sectors, as well as those working in affected industries, are shouldering a significant mental health burden.

Reach out and check on your loved ones and community members. Read and share such resources as the World Health Organization’s Mental Health Considerations During COVID-19 Outbreak and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s tips on managing anxiety and stress.


Journal Entry of the Day

page with lines and numbers

Benefits of Staying Home Journal Page

Today’s 4-H Journal is focused around Mental Health and how we have changed our lives since the onset of Stay-at-Home orders, working from home, and dealing with COVID-19. Staying home is definitely a change, but today we are going to consider the benefits of staying home right now! What are five (5) benefits of staying home? What things have you enjoyed being home with your family? Have you tried any new activities?

Heather’s List of 5 Benefits of Staying Home

  1. Regular walks in the neighborhood!
  2. Spending more time with my dogs.
  3. Working on hobbies at night and learning new skills.
  4. Exploring ways to share information from home to 4-H’ers like you all!
  5. More time to sit, relax, and enjoy the sunshine.

To download the full PDF of this, click the following link: https://osu.box.com/s/wskthmlsezylub0scskc9zhc5yz917jw

In great love,