Fostering Well-Being through Connections
Well- being is defined as living a good life with which one is satisfied. Connectedness is defined as a feeling of belonging to or having affinity with a particular person or group. Together they create a security and belonging, which goes to the core of our human needs.
From the moment an infant is born he is seeking a connection with his mother and father. He turns his heard to their voice, he seeks nourishment, he cries out to be held and comforted. As we continue to grow into toddlers and then young children we seek out our parents or caregivers to meet our needs; shelter, nourishment, protection, affection. We are distressed when those on whom we depend are gone, even for a short period of time. We are joyful when they return. Our well-being and connectedness is bound to them.
This need for connectedness as the basis of our well-being does not end in childhood but is present our whole lives. We have a need to stay connected with those who nurture us emotionally, physically and psychologically. When those bonds, that connectedness, is broken we flounder. We experience loneliness, sadness, isolation and despair. When the connections are strong we flourish; we are happy, productive, hopeful and joyful. Keeping the connections strong takes time and commitment.
It is up to each of us to nurture the connections in our lives to secure our well-being. We can do this by:
- Communicate: No matter where we live or the distance between ourselves and those with whom we are connected we can communicate through letters, phone calls and technology (email, Facebook, skype) on a regular basis sharing both major events and the daily ups and down of life.
- Involvement: Participating in community activities through faith organizations, interest groups, and community service allows us to be connected to those who share our lifestyles and interests.
- Socialize: Attending local social events allow us to develop and sustain friendships with those
whose company we enjoy. Regular outings and engagement in enjoyable activities strengthens our connections and increases our well-being
- Staying Healthy: Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through an exercise program, a balanced diet and regular medical treatment provides us with the energy and motivation to be and stay connected to important people in our lives.
- Purpose: Identifying and fulfilling a purpose in our life provides us with the opportunity to contribute in our community thus connecting us to others in service and those needing support.
- Intergenerational: Being involved with people of all ages supports our need to connect with
various generations sharing and learning wisdom together.
- Spirituality: Staying connected to the universe through a spiritual process fulfills the greater need to be part of humanity in a global perspective.
“Love, Belonging and Connection are the Universal Sources of True Well -Being”
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