Over the years, I have come to understand that "living well" is not a destination but, a journey for sure! As you learn some aspects of what living well means to you then you put them into practice - it allows you to be open to more things that you can do that all fall into that category of living well.
For instance, I had a baby at a very young age (17) and living well was not only NOT in my vocabulary it wasn’t anything I had ever even heard or dreamed of. The words that I knew were “survival” and I lived my life in survival mode on a daily basis…for many, many years. It wasn’t until about 10 years later, in a counseling session, when my therapist asked me what I did in life that I liked to do. Sadly, I had zero idea of what she was asking, as everything I had done up to that point was because it was what everyone else I knew liked to do or what was needed to be done.
When I couldn’t answer her, she said you know, like get your nails done, take a bath, etc. Again, things I didn’t do and became surprisingly aware of how I was only "surviving" vs "living". During that time, I started to think about ‘me’ and what ‘I’ wanted to do. It started slowly, with taking a dance class (ballet & jazz) as this was one of my favorite things to do as a child. Money was always an issue so being creative with things I liked was challenging. It moved into painting my own nails to feel ‘pretty’, planning a fun night with my daughter (just the two of us) to watch & eat whatever we wanted; no rules. And, has since turned into taking regular vacations (real vacations), getting monthly deep-tissue massages, getting my nails done every 3 weeks, getting my hair done every 8 weeks, eating healthfully, working out daily, visiting my family (daughter, 4 granddaughters, mom & brothers) every 3 months, racing motorcycles and simply building time and resources into my life so that I can do things that interest me and developing the ability to say no to those things that don’t interest me.
Overall, “living well” is a mindset in addition to a lifestyle. Living well means something different to all of us depending on where we are in our lives & I would invite all of you to "live well" to the extent to what that means for you. As you continue to grow, change & flex - allow yourself to become more aware of what living well could mean for you in your future.