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How Environmental Wellness Can Transform Your Life

Jonathan Riley

“You are a product of your environment, so surround yourself with the best” – Anonymous

The quality of our environment has a direct effect on our personal wellness. According to Melnyk (2019) environmental wellness means recognising the responsibility to preserve, protect, and improve the environment and appreciating our connection to nature. To enjoy environmental wellness we require clean air, pure water, quality food, adequate shelter, satisfactory living and working conditions, personal safety, and healthy relationships.

Environmental wellness encompasses not just our relationship with the planet and nature but also our relationship with our personal surroundings. When our personal surroundings are well cared for, clean and organised, we experience a greater sense of comfort and less anxiety. Environmental wellness enhances our personal health and helps ensure the future health of our communities and the world.

Your environment includes everything that surrounds you, including your home, car, workplace, the food you eat, and people you interact with. Environmental wellness is related to the surroundings we occupy. This dimension of health connects our overall well-being to the health of our environment. Our environment, both social and natural surroundings, can greatly impact how we feel. It can be hard to feel good if we are surrounded by clutter and disorganisation or feel unsafe in our environment.

What are other signs of environmental wellness?

  • Being aware of the impact of your decisions on the environment
  • Working with your community to make improvements
  • Caring for the environment by following the four R’s (reduce, re-use, re-think, recycle)
  • Leading a lifestyle that is respectful of and in harmony with your environment
  • Recognising the need to keep a healthy personal environment

A healthy personal environment includes:

  • Surrounding yourself with people and things that you find positive and inspiring
  • Participating in your community
  • Taking care of personal belongings and maintaining a comfortable working and living environment
  • Creating orderly and secure working and living environments

People have needed to be sensitive to their surroundings to survive since the beginning of time, which means they have an innate awareness of their surroundings and seek out environments with certain qualities. For example, humans have a strong need for safety and security and look for those attributes in their environment. Environmental wellness includes both living in harmony with the Earth and in your personal environment. We are responsible for caring for the Earth as well as caring for our immediate surroundings. Just as the external environment can affect wellbeing, so can your personal environment. A study found that both natural and artificially produced bright light in a room improved mood and alleviated anxiety (Link, 2014). Our immediate surroundings can also influence our behaviour and motivation to act. Cluttered spaces, for example, can have a negative impact on our stress and anxiety levels, as well as our ability to focus, whereas clean and organised spaces can promote productivity.

In conclusion, the quality of our surroundings has a significant impact on our overall health. The environmental dimension of wellness consists of attempting to live in harmony with the earth by understanding the implications of our interactions with nature and our personal environment and taking action to protect the world around us.


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The University of Minnesota. (n.d.). What Impact Does the Environment Have on Us? Retrieved from

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