The 10 Dimensions of Wellness

Wellness is a state of well-being and process that applies to the “whole person.” Human beings aren’t one-dimensional—our lives comprise many facets, including:

  1. Social: family and social support and cohesion
  2. Physical: physical vitality, active lifestyle practices, structured exercise
  3. Environmental: living conditions and physical surroundings from immediate to global
  4. Medical and dental: screening, prevention, adherence
  5. Nutritional: diet and food choices, healthy weight
  6. Spiritual: core values, identity, and purpose
  7. Psychological and emotional: mental state, coping and problem-solving skills, stress management, decision making
  8. Behavioral and intellectual: thoughts and actions that have positive or negative effects on life
  9. Occupational: activities in which we engage, interests, skills, performance, satisfaction,
  10. Financial: planning and saving, cash and credit management, risk management

At the Institute of Wellness Education, we encourage you to examine the different dimensions of wellness and recognize that they are interconnected. No dimension stands alone. Each dimension is related to others in different ways and to different degrees. A change in one dimension will likely affect other domains. This means that if you make a positive change in one domain, you may experience a positive effect in another without even making an effort. For example, if you take just a couple of deep breaths after you arrive home after work, you may find that helps you make the transition from work to home more smoothly. That’s because a little deep breathing helps calm and center you. Once you enter your home, you may find yourself a little patient with family members or friends, or perhaps you’ll discover you’re a little more able to make healthy food choices for dinner. Little actions lead to big rewards.

Wellness includes a balance of health habits, rest, good nutrition adequate sleep, exercise and connections with friends and family that support you.  Here are a couple of the dimensions

Physical Wellness

Your fitness level and ability to care for yourself define physical wellness. You get physically “well” when you engage in regular physical exercise during which your heart rate remains elevated for at least 30 minutes. Experts recommend at least 2.5 hours of brisk cardiovascular exercise—also called “aerobic” exercise.

Other ways to improve your fitness include doing a brisk walk three times a week, an aerobics or Zumba class at the gym, or jogging or cycling for 30 minutes. Hey, don’t forget to break a sweat!

If you are unable to do this, you should consider building up to it (if you are physically able to) or consider what is keeping you from regular exercise. Too much work? Too little time? Apathy? We simply can’t ignore so many studies in favor of “getting moving.” Physical activity prevents common lifestyle-related illnesses like diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, plus it improves brain function and memory, including problem-solving and focus.

Spiritual Wellness

If you’re spiritually “well” you may possess a set of guiding beliefs, principles or values that  give meaning and  purpose to your life,  especially during difficult times. You need both to develop a sense of balance and peace to protect and nurture your psyche.

Spirituality is not necessarily religion or even necessarily affiliated with religion. It’s more a process or journey of self-discovery, learning not only who you are but who you want to be. It can be about the challenge of reaching beyond your current limits and determining what you are most passionate about in your professional, social and personal lives.

You manifest spiritual wellness if you perform community service, keep a journal, pray, practice yoga and simply challenge yourself to be a better person, however you define that.

There’s More…

At the Institute for Wellness Education, we respect all 10 dimensions of wellness, and invite you to attend our classes to expand your knowledge and your grasp of all the components that make us “whole” and “well”.

Students Speak about Wellness Coach Training

Vista Ridge High School Pioneers Wellness Coaching Course

Vista Ridge High School pioneers Certified Wellness Ambassador

Hear a few things that our first class of Teen Ambassadors learned and accomplished!


Recent Comments on the Certified Wellness Coach Level 1 for Teens Course

“I’m really inspired now to live more healthy because I learned how to set goals I can reach.” —High school junior

“I learned how to take better charge of my emotions so I don’t feel so stressed.” —High school senior

“My boss wants to know what I'm doing because she's noticed a huge improvement in my mood and how I do my work.” —High school senior

“Fantastic opportunity for students! Gives them skills that are critical to their success.” —High school teacher

More comments from course attendees


Earn College Credit
IWE's Certified Wellness Ambassador and Wellness Advocate courses now earn 3 college credits from the White Mountains Community College that can be transferred to other Universities and Colleges, thus lowering your College tuition fees.


US Department of Labor Approved

IWE created the competencies and curriculum for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wellness Coaching Registered Apprenticeship Program.

Participating in IWE’s Wellness Practitioner training courses may count toward fulfillment of the Registered Apprenticeship Program requirements. Department of Labor: Certified Wellness Coach Bulletin and Curriculum Institute for Wellness Advocate and Coach programs are US Department of Labor approved