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If the theme of this year’s National Recovery Month is “Join the Voices for Recovery: Together on Pathways to Wellness,” what exactly are these “pathways”?
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) defines the following aspects of life as the Eight Dimensions of Wellness:¹
• Emotional: Coping effectively with life and creating satisfying relationships
• Environmental: Achieving good health by occupying pleasant, stimulating environments that support well-being
• Financial: Feeling satisfaction with current and future financial situations
• Intellectual: Recognizing creative abilities and finding ways to expand knowledge and skills
• Occupational: Obtaining personal satisfaction and enrichment from one’s work
• Physical: Recognizing the need for physical activity, healthy foods, and sleep
• Social: Developing a sense of connection, belonging, and a well-developed support system
• Spiritual: Expanding a sense of purpose and meaning in life
SAMHSA, in setting out the Pathways to Wellness, points out that the pathways aren’t always clearly defined for every person. “While people might face challenges along the way, the recovery journey is worth the effort.”
¹ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (n.d.). Eight Dimensions of Wellness. Retrieved September 7, 2012, from http://www.promoteacceptance.samhsa.gov/10by10/dimensions.aspx #footnote1.