What has changed for us in this year gone by? Has the past year been filled with improvements? Was it a downhill slide? Or has it been a mixed bag of successes and failures on different fronts? We have possibly spent the whole of last year facing various challenges and turmoil, trying to manage different dimensions of our lives in one way or another. Sometimes, we made a mess of it. Sometimes we made progress. 

How many balls can we juggle in the air all the time? We are dealing with so many things simultaneously, and realise that we are not making any progress on any front. Dividing our attention to manage different aspects of our lives, takes a toll on our health. This frustrates us and keeps us stressed out. 

If we really want to make progress in life, we need to channel our efforts in the direction that we want to take to achieve our goals. How have we transformed in the last 12 months? Consider the seven aspects listed below. 

PHYSICAL: Have you become healthier or unhealthier over the past year? How many times have you been to the hospital? Are your blood work and other essential health parameters better or worse than one year ago? MENTAL Are you more or less stressed, as compared to the same time one year back? Are you overthinking less or more? Can you focus better? Are you distracted more or less than last year? Are you sleeping better? EMOTIONAL Have you had any serious disagreements at work or at home in the last 12 months? Were there any major outbursts of frustration and rage that you remember with regret? Has intimacy increased or have you grown apart with someone? Are you getting more or less provoked by others than last year? Do you worry more or less? 

CREATIVE: Have you been able to fulfil a creative dream unrelated to work? Have you learnt any new skills? Have you pursued any of your cherished hobbies? Have you completed any of your cherished dreams and long left incomplete projects and commitments? 

FINANCIAL: Are you financially better or worse off compared to last year? Have you created any new assets or lost wealth? Are you overburdened with new loans or have you gone down the road of financial freedom? Do you have more than you need or do you feel stuck in a hole? 

SOCIAL: How many new friends have you made? Are your personal and social relationships improving or going downhill? Have you got involved in any new community activities and social causes? Have you joined any clubs or cultural groups? Did you take a vacation and come back rejuvenated? 

SPIRITUAL: Do you feel calmer? Are you more in tune with nature? Do you meditate and contemplate upon your life’s meaning and purpose? Do you laugh, sing and dance more often? Have you helped someone in distress? Did you bring happiness to someone? The World Health Organization (WHO) defines wellness as a “state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Imbalance and disharmony of the body and mind lead to stress. The Sanskrit word for health is ‘swastha’. ‘Swa’ means our Self, and ‘stha’ means to be established within, or to be still. Therefore, whenever we move away from our centre we move towards ill health. The more still, the more we are in touch with ourselves, the healthier we are. 

Deepam Chatterjee is the author of The Millennial Yogi. He can be contacted on [email protected]

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