The last year of the pandemic has created uncertain and isolating times, which have impacted our wellbeing in many ways. It’s made us more aware of just how important our health really is, and what can happen when it’s not intact. And as vaccine rates continue to rise, Covid-19 cases continue to decline, and the world continues to open back up, we’re emerging into a new normal. Two important components of this new normal, for many, include a desire for wellness and community.
According to a Gallup Active Living Study
and a Texas A&M Wellness Community Study
featured in Fast Company, those living within active environments and communities experienced lower rates of obesity, diabetes, smoking, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and depression, and higher rates of social interaction and cohesiveness. Studies show there’s a clear and positive link between wellness communities and health and wellbeing, which could also lead to being successful in many aspects of our lives.
Here are four ways a wellness community can inspire us all to be healthy and successful in life.
1. Keeps Us Physically Healthy
There’s something to be said about being surrounded by people and environments that encourage us to focus on our physical health. Whether it’s a city filled with fitness, yoga, or dance studios, an organization that offers in-person or online nutrition workshops, or a neighborhood charity run put on by a local business or nonprofit, we have the ability to focus on our physical health when we have the communities and resources to help us do so.
When we exercise or participate in nutrition challenges within a community, we feel a sense of accountability to ourselves and others. This accountability can allow us to stay the course, even on those days when we’re feeling unmotivated and want to give up.
And as a result, we’ll become stronger, have more energy, and increase our stamina, so we can be productive and successful in reaching our personal and professional goals. We’ll also be able to prevent or manage many of the diseases mentioned above if we’re consistently moving our bodies and eating healthy.
2. Challenges and Motivates Us Mentally
Wellness communities also provide us with mental health benefits. Being part of a group, especially one that focuses on mindfulness and meditation, can help alleviate feelings of isolation, anxiety, and depression, which became even more prevalent for many during the pandemic. We have an opportunity to slow down, get centered, stay present, and focus on connecting with ourselves and others.
Communities can also support and motivate us to work hard to reach our goals, whether at work or at home. When we see others within our community overcoming challenges, achieving goals, and being successful, we can feel hopeful that the same can happen for us, and we can experience our own levels of success in the future.
When we see others within our community overcoming challenges, achieving goals, and being successful, we can feel hopeful that the same can happen for us, and we can experience our own levels of success in the future.
Being part of a wellness community can also be mentally stimulating, as we meet new people, have new experiences, and learn more about ourselves and others. It gives us something to look forward to and engage in, which can enrich our lives in other areas as well.
3. Provides Emotional Support to Build Confidence
When we’re part of a group that’s focused on living a healthy lifestyle, we’ll naturally feel supported in many ways, including emotionally. These groups are often intended to help everyone rise up together and support one other through positive and negative times.
We can talk to others who may share similar interests or have interesting viewpoints on topics we want to learn more about. They can be sounding boards when we’re trying to solve a problem or provide advice or comfort when we’re going through challenges.
Wellness communities can also help us feel as if we’re not alone, as others may be going through their own trials and tribulations and may be in need of support as well. We may also develop a sense of self-confidence when we’re surrounded by others who believe in us, even through times when we don’t believe in ourselves.
This type of encouraging and supportive environment can have a positive impact on so many, making more and more people interested in also joining and becoming part of wellness communities that may help them meet their needs.
4. Allows for Social Connection and Camaraderie
One of the greatest benefits of wellness communities is the ability to experience social connections with others and a sense of camaraderie. After this past isolating year we’ve had, connecting within a community, in many cases, can feel essential to our needs as humans.
It’s uplifting and impactful to be part of something bigger than ourselves. We have an opportunity to help others and ourselves and make life healthier and brighter for everyone in the community. Therefore, it’s important to invest and engage in communities that are in line with our core values and that allow us to give and receive support.
The connections within a wellness community can help us personally, and perhaps also professionally. When we’re in consistent communication with others in the community, there may be opportunities to collaborate with one another on a work-related project or make introductions to others who work in a similar industry. The many ways in which being part of a community can be beneficial, are endless.
When we’re in consistent communication with others in the community, there may be opportunities to collaborate with one another on a work-related project or make introductions to others who work in a similar industry.
So how do you find the right wellness community for you? To start, take note of your natural interests, whether they’re focused on fitness, dance, or sports-related activities, mindfulness activities such as yoga or meditation, nutrition-focused activities such as healthy cooking classes, or other areas of interest.
Given that wellness has become such a fast-growing industry in recent years, there’s no shortage of opportunities to find communities online, through gyms, studios, companies, non-profits, and other organizations. I encourage you to research, connect and join one today!