Friday, December 08, 2006

Wellness Lifestyle and the Youth

The OSA's Center for Counseling Services (CCS), in cooperation with LaMMP's Social Action Office (SAO), recently held an essay writing contest with the theme, "Wellness Lifestyle and the Youth." Below are the three winning pieces and the writers.


School of Design and Arts
AB Fashion Design and Merchandizing

"Get High"

There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle.
Albert Einstein

Wellness does not only include Cory Quirino, yoga, vegetarians and Pilates. It goes much deeper than that. Wellness is holistic: being physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually fit is wellness. These four has to have balance and equilibrium. You may be the smartest person but loneliest (“They only talk to me when they need yellow pad.”), the richest yet the most stupid (“I forgot my yellow pad”.), the toughest yet the most conscious ("why are they all looking at me?").
The goal with wellness is to be happy. Performing, looking and feeling your best. You can't achieve this through tons of make-up, having the fastest ride, latest cellphone or coolest clothes. How would you like to be happy for a long time? Not just a momentary itch of bliss that we feel when we see our crush in the corridor.

The first step is to know your weaknesses and strengths so that you will know what to improve on. Just like in the scientific process, you have to identify the problem. Physically: what did you eat for lunch? Or did you even eat lunch at all? Do you consider Marlboro Red as a meal? Mentally: See course cards. Spiritually: Who do you talk to when you're stuck in a rut? Who do you talk to when something happy happened to you? Emotionally: Do you give in to pressures easily? Do you cut yourself? Do you hurt your partner? When you wake up in the morning, what comes into your mind? Do you smile or do you wish that you've never woken up? Of course these are just some of the questions, just random and guide questions. There are a LOT more. The point is to reflect on your actions. Make it a habit to notice yourself. Now you know where you lack. This time, be positive and asses your strengths. Work on them, they are your assets. Don't forget to be consistent, Rome wasn't built in a day. And just like quitting smoking, you need a lot of self-control. When will you know that you are doing it right? When you feel right, you feel different. Somewhat lighter and happier. I can't explain it fully, you have to try it out for yourself. Wellness is a lifelong commitment. It's addictive, a different kind of high once you feel how it truly is to be holistically well. Feel good moments are made to last forever.


School of Multidisciplinary Studies
AB Consular and Diplomatic Affairs

The desire to live a better and happier life is present in all of us, though the achievement of this desire takes some doing. Intrinsic to this is the idea of wellness, which involves a positive balance between all aspects of a person, from physical, mental, spiritual, and social. Achieving this balance requires several self-realizations as well as a framework for addressing problems which may arise. The youth is in a prime position to determine how they're going to live the rest of their lives, now that their exerting their independence and making their own decisions. However, it is also the period when people are prone to self-doubt and may submit to peer pressure or conform to society's norms. What is essential to achieving happiness, therefore, is the realization that the capacity to make ourselves happy is in our own hands.
The mind, in particular, is the most important tool we have. Obstacles and trials are inescapable, and yet the way we address them can be subject to change. Training the mind to always look to the positive keeps our mental attitude confident and determined, which translates itself into our ideas and actions. On the other hand, immersing ourselves in negative ideas like inadequacy and incapability also leads to a depressed and generally unproductive life. In that sense, our thoughts determine the reality we live in. Recognizing this innate power can help us reorganize and restart our lives to better achieve the results we want.
A second adage to remember is that it is okay to be different. We all have our own talents, our own interests, and our own ways of doing things. Therefore, we cannot expect that everyone will act or think the same. Acceptance of this truth requires the cooperation of both the youth and the society. The youth, in recognizing that it is okay not to follow the "pack" and exhibit their independence; and the society, in nurturing, or at least not stifling, these bursts of originality. It is when our capacity for uniqueness is not recognized that most problems occur, from anything as drastic as rebellion to cases of depression.

School of Design and Arts
BS Industrial Design

A Whole New You All my life, I had this preconceived notion that wellness is all about being happy. But if anyone ever asks me how to define happiness, I would be at a loss for words. What is being happy anyway? If you ask a little kid, he might say that happiness is getting a fresh box of crayons. A teenager might say that happiness is being able to go out on gimmicks without any restrictions. A career woman might say that being rich is equal to being happy. I think that these kinds of happiness are incomplete and temporary. Happiness is closely related to wellness and fulfillment. Achieving wellness may be a challenging task. It involves working with the mind, body, spirit and your relationships with other people. But achieving wellness is not impossible. There are several ways to achieve wellness. I think that the best way to achieve wellness is by working with the physical aspect of your life. Try to achieve a healthy lifestyle by taking care of your body with natural diet, exercise, restful sleep and relaxation. Once you have achieved physical wellness, spiritual and emotional wellness will follow. Personally, I have not yet achieved wellness. My physical condition always gets in the way because I noticed that this affects a lot of my relationships, and even the way I think. Wellness can be compared to the wholeness of your body and the way it works. Everything connects to everything else. If you get a toothache, no matter how small that affected part may be, it greatly affects the way you act, the way you think and the way you speak. Going back to the idea of wellness, if one part of your life is not functioning properly (may it be physically, emotionally, spiritually or mentally), you are not well. You don't have a balanced life. Achieving a state of wellness means living a higher quality of life and experiencing tranquility that goes beyond what worldly objects can offer. Once you have achieved physical wellness, you may go on working on your spiritual, mental and emotional life (not letting go of your physical wellness). Achieve a deeper connection with your own spirit and others regardless of your personal beliefs. Have lasting, fulfilling relationships with the people around you free of ego and complication. Be a good natured person. Learn how to share, be patient and kind. Sometimes, the lessons we learned in kindergarten are the most essential learnings that we need in life. Don't let go of these values and find out your purpose in life. Accomplish your goals. Go beyond your limits. Enjoy your life without risking it. These ideas may help you become a whole new person.


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