Monday, April 23, 2012

Wellness at Work

Everything on the earth has a purpose, every disease an herb to cure it, and every person a mission. This is the Indian theory of existence.    ~ Morning Dove   Salish  1888-1936

Not too far back I counseled a man who was complaining about age discrimination. While it is true that if the person interviewing me is 35 or 40, at 65 I am old.  Most people in positions to make decisions however, especially for higher paying jobs, are a lot closer to my age.  With the baby boom and older such a large percentage of the population I do not believe age is nearly as important as health. The man complaining looked much older than his 50 years and far from healthy. I believe people who are vibrant and exude a healthy demeanor are competitive in the workplace, regardless of actual age. 
As I grow older thoughts about health have entered my consciousness more frequently.  Clearly with the passing of time I am aware that my body does not possess the same resiliency of earlier days.  My research on wellness has increased dramatically. My approach is holistic, believing there is an interplay of body, mind and spirit. 

The concept of total wellness recognizes that our every thought, word, and behavior affects our greater health and well being. And we, in turn, are affected not only emotionally but also physically and spiritually.     ~ Greg Anderson (American Wellness Project)

Spirit is about our belief system, whether or not we believe in a higher power or how we answer questions about the meaning of the universe.  Personally,  I feel most comfortable believing we are in a universe of living interconnected energies. Some of you have experienced my attempts at Qi Gong and guided meditations in wellness workshop presentations.   I have studied many religious traditions over the years. I have  often found  many similarities and slightly different ways of saying the same things.  I have referred to the  "God Consciousness of the Universe”  while saying grace before meals, even though I am not completely certain as to what that means.  I see the yearly cycle of my garden. In spring there is a sprouting of new life, renewal and new growth.  The warm summer days allows plants to grow big and strong.  The shortened days of Fall bring harvest.  Then winter comes and it seems as if everything falls into a deep sleep.   I wonder if this is a pattern that can be applied to a human life. Personally I feel comfortable with the concept of the soul taking a physical vehicle to learn lesson on planet earth. I want to believe the soul continues to evolve in eternity, but just in case I am doing my best to make this life the best it can possibly be.  I truly believe there is power in prayer or positive affirmations, whichever you prefer.
I am an optimist and have no difficulty showering myself with positive affirmations.  Remaining in the present is not difficult for me.   I think Sidney Marshall Jourard said it well:

  Healthy personality is manifested by individuals who have been able to gratify their basic needs through acceptable behavior such that their own personality is no longer a problem to their self. They can take their self more or less for granted and devote energies  and thoughts to socially meaningful interests and problems beyond security or lovability or status.

So often I have expressed that there is just one model of each of us in the universe. When we learn to love that person unconditionally, we are then able to learn to love all other life forms unconditionally. 
The physical realm has called for more of my attention lately.   The ease of getting enough exercise in youth  has been replaced by  challenge.  The American Council on Exercise  says I have to “pump the heart” at  minimum for 20 minutes three times a week and if I do not lift weights I am going to lose muscle mass.    If you know me, you know I have been an organic gardener for decades.   There is no doubt in my mind that the type of fuel we use does determine how well our body functions.  Watching the documentary films “Food Matters ” and "Hungry for Change” strengthened my convictions.  
Employment Counseling is far more than helping someone find a job. I am blessed with a fine education and so are you.  I think our job is to help people get on a path to their true destiny or at least moving in that direction. When we are on a wrong path we know it. When we are on a right path we also know it. The universe and our bodies do not lie. Yes there are many illusions, but an educated mind has the ability to discern the truth. Thank you for being a member of our association. There is strength in numbers and ours is a very noble profession. Helping some find truly worthwhile employment is very, very healthy for everyone. Remember always that you are in a healing occupation and you are a gift to this universe. Be well my dear colleagues.

I am alone in nothing. Everything I think or say or do teaches the universe. ~
  W. 87  A Course in Miracles

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