Health and well-being is a high priority in current health and social care provision

The importance of promoting health and well-being is due to the dramatically increasing trend of morbidity and mortality from health problems, illness and chronic disease

‘Well Being’, as I know it, means different things to different people and it is true that well being does not necessarily mean happiness. It definitely depicts a bigger picture; a more holistic and enduring state of existence as compared to happiness which sometimes can even be one-dimensional or just plain boring.

Under the current situation of crisis, one of the things that could be very useful is a system of living. I think, the key to our well being is getting up early in the morning and doing a concise workout. Free hand - to ease the knots in our body, followed by Yoga and Pranayam (meditation).

Having completed the work-out, one can gear up to begin cleaning operations, which is both healthy and refreshing, according to me. This, on the one hand, is a wonderful exercise and, on the other, as involving and concentrated an activity as meditation. It is hard work and in my scheme of things, cleaning up is both physical and mental. In a sense, it is trouble-shooting because while it tests our muscles and physical endurance, one also has to figure out how to clean the part under the cupboard without a crick in the neck or a spondilytic scrambling of the lumbar region!

While at our peak of physical strain, one can also creatively engage the mind by recalling literature pieces, for example Shakespeare - be it Portia’s speeches in Merchant Of Venice, Lady Macbeth’s soliloquys or Hermione’s speeches in The Winter’s Tale.

Therefore both the mind and the body are hyper active during this activity. The first step towards Mens Sana In Corpore Sano (A healthy mind in a healthy body).

This exercise, not only leads to a clean house which is essential during these troubled times when one has to keep a whole host of diseases at bay, it also sharpens our brain. Moreover, the mind takes great care to consider several issues like what disinfectant to use, what sanitizer to spray and how much of these solutions will do the optimum work so as to combine cleanliness with foolproof protection. Thus, the mind is kept alive even during the physical exertions, besides enhancing the excitement one feels when using liquids that not only help to clean the place but also, to provide pleasant fragrances besides taking cognisance of the fact that over-use could be counter productive.

The learning by rote and the endeavours to remember the complex prosodic structures of Shakespearean verses also stretch the muscles of the mind. The speeches are all dramatic, full of emotional appeal and inclusive of several allusions to Greco-Roman mythology. One thinks of these allusions and wonders about their meanings or metaphoric resonances. This becomes an extremely effective part of the mental gymnastic.

My system of house-cleaning as exercise takes cognisance of the five ways towards well being as elucidated by the New Economics Forum. Connect, Be active, Keep learning, Give, and Take notice.

My cleaning connects me to my home, it keeps me active, it is a continuous learning process for me, and I am being able to contribute my labour towards a holistic activity besides taking notice of the situation within and without my premises.

”Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." (WHO, 1948) Wellness.

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healthcare Sophie Barry


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