By Julius E. Rhodes, SPHR

This is the time of year when many of us are trying to stick with resolutions. It presents us with an excellent opportunity to be well, which begins with doing what we can and should to secure our own wellness.

We are all familiar with the concept of health, which essentially denotes a condition of being of sound body free from pain and disease. While good health is a laudable goal, it may limit our ability to see things in a more ho­listic manner. This is where the idea of wellness comes into being. Wellness is proactive and encompasses physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual, occu­pational, environmental, and social com­ponents. It’s really a matter of balance and treating yourself well.


While balance sort of falls into the old adage of all things in moderation, it goes much further. Each of us has myriad responsibilities that we must address, but we need to ensure balance in our lives and make our personal well-being a priority. We should never put ourselves in a position of trying to do so much for others that we do less for ourselves. While service to others is essential, we also need to reward ourselves for the good we do and the positive actions we take. To me, this is the essence of being well by doing well.

Second, we need to work to under­stand how the way we view ourselves helps us connect with our goals and as­pirations on a level that is much deeper than gaining material things. Each day, we should set aside a brief moment to collect our thoughts and think about things that inspire us and might inspire others, too. This is a concept I refer to as positive self-talk and others call medita­tion, but whatever you call it, it needs to happen on a consistent basis.

What’s Going Well

I owe the next idea to my grammar school physical education and basket­ball coach, Andrew Summerlin, who often said, “If you’re driving a car and you don’t crash, keep doing what you’re doing.” All of us need to take stock of the things that are working in our lives to see which are going well and how we can sustain them. In other words, identify what’s going right and work to replicate it.

Finally, we should never underesti­mate the effect of emotions and being able to express them appropriately: hap­piness, sadness, pleasure, or even anger. All have a place in our lives, and we will experience all at various points. To the extent we learn to appropriately display our emotions and not let them rule us, we provide others with an opportunity to see and enjoy more of who we are as a person, and it encourages them to do the same.

So if these are some things we need to do to be well and do well, what tools do we need? Here’s the beautiful thing: You have all the tools either within you or around you. To be well and do well, you need personal motivation, which means no one can want something more for you than you want it for yourself. You need a support system—they are really all around you but usually start with family. You will also need an under­standing of the issues that face you and a willingness to address them by doing research and educating yourself on ap­propriate actions.

Armed with this information, you can and will be able to overcome any obsta­cles and increase your ability to be well by doing well.

Being Well: Read the full article. 

JULIUS E. RHODES, SPHR, is founder and principal of the mpr group and author of BRAND: YOU Personal Branding for Success in Life and Business. He can be reached at or 773.548.8037.