What is Wellness Again?

Nurses are used to dealing with illness. And wellness is the goal. So what is it again?

Fortunately more and more nurses are working in the wellness field.

Wellness science is growing and is addressed comprehensively in Holistic Health, Integrative Health.

The focus on wellness in our society and in the media has grown in recent decades.

Even the layperson has caught on that wellness is more than being free from illness or disease.

Wellness is about feeling good, having positive emotions and moods, being satisfied with life, finding meaning in what we do, and enjoying positive relationships with those around us, as well as being physically healthy.

The United Nations, the World Health Organization and the CDC all actively participate in gaining and protecting health and wellness for the individual, populations, countries and the world.

Florence Nightingale focused on health in her work. She promoted ‘health-determining patterns’ in the individual – to – global continuum.

Her definition of health was “ … not only to be well, but to use well every power we have.”        Dossey, B.M., et al. (2005). Florence nightingale today – Healing Leadership  Global Action. Maryland: ANA.

This signaled nursing’s social contract with society.

There are 10 factors that contribute to overall well-being:

  • Physical
  • Nutritional
  • Medical and Dental
  • Social
  • Environmental
  • Spiritual
  • Behavioral and Intellectual
  • Psychological and Emotional
  • Occupational
  • Financial

Why is this important ?

Fewer than half the people worldwide have a sense of well being.

People with a higher well-being are more productive, have fewer healthcare costs, are more resilient in facing challenges, and contribute more to their organizations and communities.

In the 2014 Gallup-Healthways Global Well-Being Index


  • 54% of Americans rated their level of well-being as strong and consistent
  • United States ranked 23rd of 143 countries surveyed, falling from 12th in 2013.

Before you pick up and move to Italy, it ranked 85th.

And to no surprise, Afghanistan ranked last.

Of course these numbers have far reaching implications, socially, politically, financially, and emotionally for each individual.

And that individual is you and the patient in front of you.

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