My health and wellbeing design has been ticking along for approaching four years now. Some of the tools I designed have been very useful in my life and are still regularly used (the weekly blackboard planner) Some are used occasionally (meal planner) and some are now obsolete as my weekly schedule changed over the years (the exercise planner) and have been replaced by other designs and systems that are more fit to purpose. My idea of what health and wellbeing means for me has changed and developed over the years too.
My health and wellbeing is still very much on the agenda, as it should be for everyone! The purpose of this blog post today is to update with where I am now and share some of the tools that are currently working well for me. Some of these tools i’ve designed myself, others are adapted from various sources and some are purchased.
Towards the end of 2016 I read a great book called ‘The desire map ‘ by Danielle LaPorte. Part of the book is a workbook and helps you to plan your year ahead around how you want to feel or your ‘core desired feelings’. I’ve found this a very helpful model to make planning really reflect what you WANT to do rather than just what you NEED to do. So much of my updated health and wellbeing work is structured by my core desired feelings for 2017 which are
CLARITY, VITALITY, BALANCE, IN TUNE AND THANKFUL.
I spent a long time deciding on these words, they are very meaningful to me and link to elements, directions and spirituality. I’m not going to go into much detail here about them, but feel its important to share the following.
In Tune – Feeling connected and grounded – Earth – North
Vitality – Feeling uplifted and positive – Air – East
Clarity – Looking forward, making plans, making things happen – Fire – South
Thankful – Looking back, feeling in the flow of life – Water – West
Balanced – The centre of everything, holding it all together – Spirit/ self
I thought I’d make a list of all the tools that I am using and look at how interconnected they all are across the 5 core desired feelings.
To gain clarity about how I use the tools I have laid out how I weave health and wellbeing work into my life at various levels, daily, weekly and monthly.
Here is an example of my daily and weekly planning. I try to make this about all the CDF, so it’s not just work but also exercise, where I am in my cycle, seeing friends etc – thus keeping me balanced.
This is a monthly check in page from my planner. The focus notes are from my Oracle card pulls and the big goals are work and life related, giving me clarity and keeping me focussed.
This is a planner that I created and trialled for January. It brings a lot of my other tools together into one place so its easy to quickly glance at and keep sight of what I should be doing and why. I’ve laminated this so that it can be used over and over again and adapted as needed.
This is part of a monthly reflection sheet I fill in for the balance club, an online group I am a member of. I like this as its simple and pretty quick to compete. I keep all of these reflections in a folder so that its easy to refer back to and see myself making progress on various areas of my health and wellbeing over the months.
So you can see, my health and wellbeing designs have evolved and changed, taking on influences and inspiration from other sources outside of Permaculture over the years.
I thought at this stage I should check back in on the ethics and principles of permaculture to ensure that this is still a permaculture design, not only for the purpose of passing my diploma, but also as a way of refocusing myself on permaculture and pulling it back into my life. So here we go;
EARTH CARE – I try to consider earth care around how I purchase my food i.e local produce, grow my own, bulk deliveries to cut own on pollution. I try to care for and connect with the earth by walking, exercising and spending time outdoors everyday. I work outdoors teaching others all about earth care. I notice and tune into the cycles of nature, the moon and cycles with my own body. I use natural skin care products and essential oils that honor the earth rather than deplete it.
PEOPLE CARE – This is very much about self-care for me in the design and I’m not feeling guilty about that! My H&W design has self care and self-love at the core of it. I try to care for others too, by taking care of myself it makes me a better mum, wife, relative and friend to everyone around me. I am setting a good example for my children.
FAIR SHARES – I often share details with friends and family of things I’ve learnt from doing this design. I am a member of numerous online forums where we help each other, sharing advise, support and ideas. I share my skills and experience in my business. One of the primary reasons for beginning this design was that as a mum of 3, I’d put my needs last for many years to the point when I felt depleted, unhealthy and resentful. So my H&W design helped to re-address this balance and ensure I had a fair share of time and energy directed towards myself.
I thought I’d pull 3 principles at random and reflect on how my health and wellbeing designs link in with them.
INTEGRATE RATHER THAN SEGREGATE – The designs and tools that I use to ensure my H&W stays on a good path are fully integrated into my life and the are integrated with each other also.
OBTAIN A YIELD – My H&W does give me lots of yields, better health, a fitter body, fantastic foods, more mindfulness, more peace, guilt free time for myself, new learning, clarity in my business, better work/life balance.
DESIGN FROM PATTERN TO DETAIL – MY H&W design does this really well I think. I have broad overarching patterns like ‘set 3 most important tasks each morning’ and ‘set monthly goals’ and ‘exercise 3 times each week’ I then fill in the detail effectively. For example today my 3 MIT’s were 1. Do my H&W update on the blog. 2. Take the kids to swimming and climbing’ 3. respond to MB booking enquiries. I add detail each Sunday about how I will fulfil my exercise 3 times each week goal, This week it was 1. swimming with the kids. 2. yoga classes. 3. Gym session and induction on the new machines
So in concluion, yes this is still a design that is in line with permaculture and it is working well for me right now. I’m very open to keep on adapting and tweaking the tools that I use to benefit my H&W over the years. I now feel I have tools on hand to help me keep my life in balance and heading in a healthy direction.