Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wellness Wednesday: {Life Task 3: Work & Leisure}

Welcome back to Wellness Wednesday, a mid-week look at various factors of wellness in our lives. Wellness isn't so much about the absence of the negative or illness in our lives, but the presence of positive factors that lead to health in our lives. This takes intentional work and focus, but leads us to a place of being a healthy and flourishing individual. Remember that I am using the Wheel of Wellness to discuss wellness:

I've already discussed Life Task 1 (Spirituality) and Life Task 2 (Self-Direction), and today I'll be moving on to Life Task 3 (Work & Leisure). Today's post will be an introduction, and I will break it down and discuss in more detail in future posts.

Myers & Sweeney define this life task the following way:

Activities and tasks essential to personal well-being and social living, including: work & leisure

How's that for a short and sweet definition? Let's look a bit further at what they meant.

"Work & leisure provide opportunities for pleasurable experiences that are intrinsically satisfying and provide a sense of accomplishment. They challenge or engage our senses, skills, and interests, frequently absorbing us in activities in a state of consciousness called flow (Csikszentmihalyi, 2000). This is an optimal state in which an individual loses awareness of self and time while being highly engaged in the task at hand. Excitement and joy are enhanced while anxiety and boredom are minimized" (Myers & Sweeney, 2005, p. 25-26).

Have you ever experienced "flow" in your work? Have you experienced those moments where you lose track of time and are deeply engaged in what you are doing? This could be either at work (place of employment) or in your hobbies and free time.
A few questions to start asking yourself as we prepare for a deeper discussion on work & leisure:

  1. Is work intrinsically satisfying to you?
  2. Does your work or hobbies you are engaged in provide a sense of accomplishment in your life?
  3. Is there an activity or dream you would like to pursue that you feel would provide a sense of accomplishment, use your skills, or absorb you in that activity?
  4. What keeps you from pursuing those dreams in your work or leisure time? 
  5. How might you be a more healthy individual if work was intrinsically satisfying?
  6. How might you increase those times of "flow" in your life?
Now it's your turn:
What're some of your favorite hobbies? What activities do you get the highest sense of accomplishment from in life? Is there something you would like to pursue but haven't allowed yourself to at this point? What is it? 


  1. When I used to work in a regular job I know that I was sick a lot. My body was often unhappy with aches and pains. Now that I am working from home, dancing in my living room, and spending more time with my grandbabies I am enjoying life with better health.


  2. I would love to start writing the book I've had in mind for a long time to write. My leisure time is so limited these days that I find myself sleeping or checking off things on my to do list. I do love to read though and have made a conscience effort to do more of far so good! Thanks for sharing, now I'm thinking about how to get this book started :)