Stephanie Michelle RD
Stephanie Michelle RD

Finding Balance

 

My Balanced Wheel of Wellness

My counseling approach is grounded in the belief that health is a synergistic process, inspired by balancing all areas of the self. Deep sustainable wellness requires taking a closer look at the many factors that influence your overall well-being. As you reflect on this wellness wheel, notice where you already place most of your efforts and where life might be calling for more of your attention. 


 
 
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Balanced Health

  • Nutrition, Eating, & Nourishment

  • Mindfulness & Stress Management

  • Emotional Well-Being & Self Acceptance

  • Movement, Laughter, & Play

  • Relationships & Communication

  • Spirituality

  • Personal Development & Self-Expression

  • Physical Environment & Detoxification

  • Rest & Relaxation

 

Let's Break it Down


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Nutrition, Eating, & Nourishment

Nourishing our physical body is important, but most of us are overcomplicating things. The truth is, everyone's body responds differently to different foods and the only way to learn what your body needs is by listening to it. Oftentimes we're being called to pay more attention to how we're eating than continue to manipulate what we're eating. Our bodies are brilliantly resilient and can handle more than we think they can. There is no shame in eating the foods that you love and nourishing your body in a way that feels natural and nourishing to you. 

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Mindfulness & Stress Management

We spend a lot of time and energy manipulating our diets, but any level of chronic stress can actually be counter-intuitive to our health goals. When I say "stress" I'm talking about anxiety, depression, worrying, over-thinking, over-working, lack of sleep, relationship challenges, work challenges, money challenges, and more.  Mindfulness practices are not optional in this work but are actually the most important aspect of healing your relationship with food.  

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Emotional Well-Being & Self-Acceptance

Cultivating self-acceptance is a life-long journey, but once the process begins there's no turning back. Learning how to be kind to ourselves is really a process of remembering. Remembering that we were born whole and that we have never been broken. Remembering who we are without our experiences. Once you engage in the process of cultivating compassion for yourself and your journey, the process of personal transformation becomes exhilarating.

 
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Movement, Laughter, & Play

Moving the body is pleasurable. We were born to move. Many of us have lost touch with the natural joy that comes from moving the body because we've been using exercise as a form of self-punishment for too long. Are you exercising from a place of authentic self-care, or are you doing it to punish yourself for eating too much? Reawaken to the joy of physical movement by exploring your world and the options available to you. Sometimes this means getting out of the gym and harnessing your inner child. Run... dance... laugh... play... Experiment with different ways of moving your body until you find something truly enjoyable and energizing. 

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Relationships & Communication

I have yet to work with someone who's food challenges are not connected to their relationship challenges in some way. Look at the nature of your relationships with friends, family, and co-workers. Quality is more important than quantity, but surrounding yourself with a solid support system is absolutely essential for optimal health. If life is calling you here, start by engaging more with your community. Join a yoga studio or meditation group. Find an inspiring spiritual gathering or church. Seek out a local book club, walking group, or cooking class. Volunteer. Expand the dimensions of your every day existence by getting out of your house and into the world.

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Spirituality

No matter what you believe, it's important to be in a healthy relationship with uncertainty. Our health and well-being depend on it because so much of our suffering stems from our discomfort with what we can't control. Plug in the name that works for you, whether it's God, a Higher Power, a Greater Wisdom, The Unknown, The Greater Architecture of the Universe, Nature, Science, or any other. I label them all under the umbrella of "spirituality." Finding comfort in your belief system can be done in a thousand different ways, but what's important is that you engage in the process no matter what spirituality means to you.  

 
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Personal Development & Self-Expression

It's so important to always be challenging yourself. Our brain continues to change, grow and adapt throughout the lifespan and it's important to keep this vital organ challenged for optimal health. How much time are you devoting to your own personal process? Are you in touch with your creative side? How do you express yourself? Seek out new hobbies, classes, or skills. Educate yourself, read, study, and challenge what you know. Look at your work life and what it offers you. Is there anything you can change if your work is unfulfilling? Embrace this life as an endless opportunity for learning and growth and your physical and mental health with reward you.

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Physical Environment & Detoxification

I believe in the health benefits of going natural, local, and organic within your budget, but I also believe that obsession over these things can also be toxic to our health. If an obsession with all things "clean" has taken over your life, then it might be worth reassessing how that state of mind is serving you. Balance is always key. Additionally, look around your living space and ask yourself if your environment is clean, organized, and peaceful. It's hard to cultivate a quiet mind when we're living in a chaotic space. Devote time to the organizational process and declutter where you can. Your external environment can have a powerful influence on your internal environment and state of mind.

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Rest & Relaxation

Relaxation and quality sleep could very well be the most neglected section of my wheel of health. Most people today sacrifice sleep for achievement or productivity without realizing the short and long-term health consequences this can have. Everything we work for when it comes to improving our health happens while we're sleeping or relaxing. The relaxation response is where the body digests food and metabolizes nutrients and emotions. The bodies recovery process happens when we sleep, and without it we suffer from nagging symptoms like mood challenges, brain fog, memory problems, fatigue, low energy, and muscle weakness. Lack of sleep also affects brain function and our ability to concentrate. Do your brain and body a favor by prioritizing restful sleep and relaxation.