The retirement landscape is evolving to keep up with the needs and expectations of today’s retirees. It is important to provide opportunities for seniors to remain as active as possible and maintain the social connections and intellectual stimulation that are so vital to well-being and happiness.
It is a holistic approach to retirement based on the Six Dimensions of Wellness, a model of total wellness that we embrace at Ingleside. The Six Dimensions of Wellness is a concept first developed by Dr. Bill Hettler, co-founder of the National Wellness Institute. According to his model, achieving wellness is about finding balance in six key areas including Emotional, Occupational, Intellectual, Physical, Social and Spiritual wellness.
Together, they form a comprehensive model of wellness that is positive and affirming, encompassing your lifestyle, physical, mental and spiritual well-being, and interactions with others and your environment.
Physical. It is important to understand and practice the habits and lifestyle that lead to good health: regular physical activity and a focus on diet and nutrition.
Social. This speaks not just to our families and friendships, but also to our interdependence with other people in our retirement communities.
Emotional. Being part of a positive environment that emphasizes respect for every individual throughout the life span can be a factor in emotional wellness.
Intellectual. As we grow older, we still need to solve problems, continue to learn, process information and live creatively. Intellectual wellness comes from lifelong learning and exposure to new ideas, expanding our knowledge and skills and sharing them with others to keep our minds sharp.
Occupational. After retirement, many people continue to work in some way in their chosen professions, while others find new meaning and purpose with new careers. Many find the same kind of personal satisfaction and enrichment in volunteer work that is personally meaningful and rewarding and that also contributes to their community.
Spiritual. Spirituality takes many forms, whether it means participating in an organized religious group, finding solace in nature or exploring spiritual concepts in discussions with others. Spiritual wellness is embracing core values that guide you, examining your beliefs and actively practicing those values and beliefs.
This holistic model of wellness is the driving force behind our upcoming state-of-the-art Centers For Healthy Living and reflects our ongoing commitment to provide seniors with the resources to achieve and maintain an integrated and engaged life.
The Centers will provide a multitude of opportunities for social interaction; promote intellectual growth through cultural experiences, classes and lectures; encourage the pursuit of old and new activities and passions that provide vocational fulfillment; foster spiritual inquiry; and create a positive environment that emphasizes respect for and dignity of everyone.
Monique Eliezer (MEliezer@Inglesideonline.org) is Chief Officer of Sales, Marketing, and Strategy for Ingleside. Ingleside is a premier provider of engaging senior living opportunities in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. For more than a century, Ingleside’s progressive programs and services have led the way by creating diverse and exceptional experiences for seniors.