When was the last time you felt happy? Well? Like your best self?
What was happening in your life during that time?
What was your daily routine like during that time?
What activities were you involved in during that time?
Who were you with? What did you do with them?
Exploring the answers to these questions can help you build and develop a list of wellness tools for your Wellness Toolbox. Next time you are feeling bored, down, sad, lonely, frustrated, upset, or just plain uninspired with life you can reach for your toolbox or borrow some from our community wellness toolbox below. A community wellness toolbox is built as a result of a collaboration of peers who are open to the exchanging of ideas, tools, and resources aimed at wellness and recovery. Don’t believe you are in recovery? Guess what–EVERYONE is recovering from something. Don’t let that word fool you into thinking recovery is only for those who have experienced a type of crisis. At a recent Focus for Life event, facilitator Anna H. Gray stated that some people feel that they are recovering from life itself–no crisis necessary!
Some of your wellness tools may be of a personal nature and you may not feel comfortable sharing them, and that’s ok. The majority of people have at least one or two that they feel comfortable sharing with others. For example, one of the facilitators in my W.R.A.P. class mentioned she felt better when she did small tasks at home–a load of laundry, a load of dishes, sweeping one room. She said it gave her a sense of accomplishment, a sense of productivity. Another peer in class spoke about how she loved adult coloring pages. I scoffed at first, but couldn’t resist giving it a try and now my fridge is adorned with an array of pages I have filled with vibrant colors. In groups, I have noticed that music is a very popular wellness tool. Many find that listening to their favorite tunes is an instant mood-lifter.
You may feel that the things you do to keep yourself feeling and happy and well won’t work for others, but you’d be surprised what an open exchange of ideas, tools, and resources can do for you. Most of the wellness tools I keep in my box have been inspired by others. I keep what works and “throw out” or “pass along” what isn’t working for me any longer.
A wellness toolbox (also called a soul toolbox, coping skills toolbox, and mental health toolbox to name a few) is a list of things we have done in the past, are doing in the present, and could do to stay well, healthy, calm, focused, and basically lift our mood/spirit. You should choose tools that reflect your personal interests, lifestyle, and needs. Many people think that wellness tools should only be limited to things, but that’s not true. Wellness tools can be anything: skills, habits, books, hobbies, activities, people you love to be with, and experiences you’d like to have.
When putting together your personal wellness toolbox, keep in mind all the dimensions of wellness: Spiritual, Emotional, Occupational, Social, Physical, Environmental, Intellectual. Try to include tools from each dimension.
Experience Wellness everyday by using your wellness tools often!
What are things you do to be and stay well?