Wellness Over Illness

The idea of sustainability overall is a concept that requires a completely open mind. Being available for new ideas to come and form is how solutions to these wicked problems can be solved. Sometimes in our world most people can get caught up in the stress and anxiety of our everyday lives and the small issues that at the time, may seem to be the most important. What needs to be considered the most, are the issues that will affect our world for generations and generations to come. Intergenerational responsibility is a thing, and it is something that should not be taken lightly anymore. Being mindful of the issues and wicked problems at hand, and keeping them constantly in mind is what will change this world. This does not mean just a few people who decide that their carbon footprint needs to change, but rather a whole generation of mindfulness that recognizes that our world is changing, and change starts and ends with us. There was a TED talk given by Dr. Marc Cohen in which he discussed “how to be happy.” He went into great depth about spiritual, mental, and physical wellness. In order for one to truly be well and happy, those around you must also maintain their wellness. If any one part of you is in trouble or is struggling, this WILL affect your overall wellness. Being in a state of complete happiness is when all these areas of well-being are perfectly in harmony, and you have learned how to balance all of these. It is so important to focus more on our wellness because in the long run, what is going to matter the most? Whether you got an A on that paper? If you successfully completed all your pomping hours? Negative. Our bodies, our minds, our health is what matters most and I believe that truly as a college student I do not maintain my wellness. As I am sure many other students can say the same. It is easy to get wrapped up in our day to day issues without focusing at all on whether we have enough sleep, or if we have even eaten that day. Is my stomach hurting because I am hungry, or because I’m stressed? Honestly I’ll never know and that is so sad. I have been recently trying to think of different ideas for a wicked problem and semi-solution that somewhat involves my major and career path. I am an interior design major so when first brainstorming it has been really difficult to come up with an idea that doesn’t involve biodegradable furniture. I have tried to branch out a little from the furniture idea, and after some research I stumbled upon the healthy environments idea. This concept discusses that as an interior designer, recyclable furniture and materials are extremely important, but so is air quality, heating, ventilation, and even acoustics. I learned that indoor air pollution is one of five biggest environmental threats. It is often issues like these that would go unnoticed but really should be considered more often. Materials and products with high toxic emissions like air conditioning and heating units can severely pollute the air we breathe when there is not proper ventilation set in place. Including more plant life indoors would make a huge difference in recirculating air as well as taking more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. When thinking on issues such as these it is important to remember the overall goal you are working toward. Going back to the fishbone diagram allows one to  breakdown broad and general ideas into smaller, more detailed concepts. When exploring the Wild Things activity, we got to see what our classmates were thinking as well as expand upon their ideas, which was very cool to me because it is important to come together as a group to brainstorm these ideas and come up with different solutions. So many people have personal stories or reasons why they want to fix certain issues. One topic I wanted to cover was sustainability in the food industry when it comes to waste. I used to work at a Starbucks, which known to many is part of a very large corporation. I often found when working there that so many foods and ingredients were thrown away simply for being a couple hours or even a day past expiration. You cannot tell me that a homeless person would not still eat these foods. Heck, I would eat them too. So many big corporations such a Starbucks become too wrapped up in their own profit to really care about their carbon footprint and affect on the environment. Issues like these can be so overwhelming when thinking about them, but as I stated before, change starts with one person. Start a chain reaction! All these problems can be stressful and bear a heavy burden on us, but it also just as important to keep our wellness in check. Taking care of our physical and mental health should always come first, and once those are fixed, we can begin to change the world.

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