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  • Writer's pictureVicki Murtagh

Embracing Wellness through Changing Mindset

For me the last five years have been a deep journey into wellness.  Have integrated into my life four pillars of wellness that serve at keeping a calmness amidst the swirl of life. 

Wellness Pillars
Four Pillars of Wellness

Despite all of this still slip into states of being “unwell”.  After all I am still human. 

It was during one of these recent phases of being unwell that I experienced an epiphany about wellness.  It was so simple yet so very powerful. 

Wellness is often put on a scale with health. 

You feel healthy or you feel unwell; you feel well or you feel sick. 

After deep contemplation realized that health and wellness are two different spectrum / scales all together, yet they are used interchangeably. It is a misunderstanding and inappropriate use of wording.

Change your Mindset: Sick or Unwell?
Change your Mindset: Sick or Unwell?
Next time you have a cold; a flu or symptoms that make your body sick, notice what you say.  More than often instead of stating the fact that “I am sick,” we lean into the phase “ I am unwell.”

So what is the difference?

“Well” can be defined as:

  • good health but

  • look deeper it has to do with:

  • satisfactory or

  • high standards

  • things being done in a good way.

Whilst "sick" is very simple definition. 

It is being affected by physical or mental illness.

So being sick means that your body / mind effectiveness is being impacted by something that is affecting you. 
Whilst being unwell means you aren’t satisfied with the standards of health and how you are doing things. 

Can you see the difference?

It is similar to looking at the difference between pain and suffering.  Pain is a physical reaction to a stimulus whilst suffering is holding onto this reaction often within the mental realm of the mind. 

Change your mindset.  See things in a wider perspective.
"If you only think about your loss, for example, it increases the pain. That kind of thought is a delusion."
As the Dalai Lama expressed, “pain is inevitable, suffering is optional”.

Personally feel that being unwell or being sick has a similarity with pain and suffering.  When you are sick it is a fact. 

  • Something is happening to,

  • but if you think about why this is happening to you; 

  • how it is impacting negatively on your life;

  • what you are missing out on from being sick;

  • this all creates a sense of being unwell. 

This thought pattern creates a perspective focused on negativity transforming being sick into a lower standard of how you do things and an unsatisfactory view your life.  

Have observed very clearly the difference between being sick and being unwell due to living with someone who has a long term chronic illness.

My beloved is unhealthy, hence the chronic illness.  There is no much going on with his physiology as well as psychology that is a direct reaction from his illness.  Therefore he is sick. 

On some days he is so sick that he can’t walk, speech is slurred and muscle functioning just doesn’t work. 

Despite this he aims to lives a life full of wellness by making conscious choices each day.

  • Despite broken sleep with only a few hours of deep rest he greets me each morning with a smile and enjoy sipping water in the sun whilst breathing in the new day.

  • Despite the irritation and frustration that accompanies chronic illness he continues to reinvent himself through finding ways to engage in life that are in line with his capacity.

  • Despite chronic pain that cripples physical movement he experience awe and gratitude during short walks along our local creek

Feeling grateful is a wellness mindset
Awe and Gratitude help change mindsets about Wellness

This triggered a thought process. 

How can someone who is so sick be so well? 

That’s because wellness like suffering is a state of mind. 

  • It is a choice to attach to the feelings of being sick, of being unhappy, of being unfulfilled and allowing this choice to make you feel “unwell.”

  • Wellness is not the body’s reaction to an imbalances, dysfunctions or external stimulus such as a virus. 

  • No, wellness is how you feel about the body / mind reaction to these things.

Just because you are bed bound due to being sick doesn’t mean you are necessarily unwell. 

The power of our spoken and unspoken word

This deep reflection  has brought with it a deeper awareness. 

Notice myself using the term “unwell” when feeling sick. 

This feels like energetically giving away my power.  The feeling of hopelessness and being incapable surge and is followed by depression and helplessness. 

However on the occasions where I acknowledge I am sick there is almost like a space of stillness and permission to be. 

It is like the universe is asking, “ Yes, your body/mind is not function as effectively as it usually does … so what now?” 

Acknowledging being sick instead of unwell creates an opportunity to listen to what my body / mind needs in the moment and for that action to occur without any shame, guilt or apprehension.

Giving permission to rest when sick is healing
Power of the Word makes the Difference

On the days where I acknowledge fatigue due to being sick am able to really rest with a contentment and ease which allows the mind to also rest. 

However on the days where the state of “I am so unwell” occurs there is a push pull conflict.  Healing rest doesn’t occur despite of spending more time actually laying down and oh my guilt and negativity sky rocket because I am “too unwell to do anything.”  It really is a downward spiral.

Am sharing this with you in trust that an awareness will also be sparked for you. 

It is such a simple tool of expressing the real truth of either being sick or being unwell.  Wellness through changing mindset

This accurate use of words has made a real difference in my state of mind and ability to enjoy each day regardless if I am feeling sick or if my beloved’s chronic illness is creating major dysfunction. 

It has also given my beloved a reason to experience life in whatever way his chronic illness allows it. 

Awe can be experienced regardless of what is happening within the body / mind. 

It just takes:



commitment and 

a change of mindset

A change of mindset on just one word: sick instead of unwell. 

This simple shift of perspective is enough to live life instead of life being something that happens to you.

That way when you are unwell, a place we all go to sometimes, we can access the right tools and guidance to come back to centre.  This also means that when you are sick you can access appropriate measures.  Which means more accurate and beneficial actions can occur. 

So give it a try.  Can you consciously select the phrase for how you are feeling, whether it be “sick” or “unwell”; “healthy” or “well”?
May Wellness bless your mind
Blessing on your day

Sending blessings forth for:

  • your days be full of feeling well and full of health. 

  • resilience for

  • awareness to express the truth of how you are feeling.

Sat Nam Beautiful People
Thank you for reading
Keep beaming your beauty

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