As humans, we face a lot of challenges in our lives. These challenges can include illness, a lack of income, family problems, losing a loved one, etc. Knowing what to do about these problems or when to get help can be challenging. However, there are many things you can do to make yourself feel better and help you cope with your difficulties. In this article, I will discuss one of the common factors contributing to a person’s career well-being and how you can address the issue to help improve your overall health and wellness. As you read this article, I hope you will share your thoughts so I can learn from your feedback.

Being healthy doesn’t just mean having a good body but also a good mental state. If you are worried or anxious, this can harm your mental health. Fortunately, there are ways that you can address these issues to improve your mental health and live a happier and healthier life. However, it is essential to identify the root causes of any well-being challenges to develop a plan of action to address the problem.

One of the most common ways to do this is by taking stock of your well-being through personal evaluation using the eight dimensions of wellness. You can find this in the so-called “wellness check.” This check contains questions such as: “Are you happier?”, “Do you feel safe?”, “Do you have enough to eat?”, “Do you have enough support?”, “Do you feel good about yourself?” and “Do you feel fulfilled?”. You can answer these questions on a scale of 1 to 5 – for example, to answer the question “Are you happy?” you could answer 3, which means you are neither happy nor unhappy with your life, or 4, which means that you are happy or satisfied with your life, but it could also mean that you want more from your life. You can use these questions as a starting point to identify where you are lacking in your well-being and the steps you can take to address these problems. Although there is no single answer to these questions, you can use them as a guide to help you develop an overall strategy for addressing these issues. Consider your overall experience and well-being and what you want to improve and change.

For example, suppose you have difficulties getting out of bed or going to work every day. You may need to address these issues by developing a healthier diet, exercising more, practicing good sleep hygiene, or even checking if something or someone at your workplace is scaring you away. I remember the jitters I used to have every Sunday evening as a bank relationship officer (marketer). Monday was the most dreaded day of my life back then because of the departmental meeting that would hold in the morning. It always allowed my former boss to chew (call out and ridicule) non-performers, and knowing that marketing wasn’t my forte, I was always a scapegoat.

There are several issues in life that one cannot contend with or have control over; however, your career shouldn’t be one of them, let alone allow it to mess up your physical or mental well-being. Because your job takes the most significant chunk of your waking hours, it is so crucial that you are happy while at it. Many of us currently operate in a state of career disequilibrium – a point in one’s career where one works for the money without fulfillment or is fulfilled but not making enough money to make ends meet. With that definition, you can imagine being in a state of career equilibrium – where you love what you are doing (hence fulfilled) and are getting paid well for it.

I often chuckle when I hear people say they are going through a midlife crisis, especially when everything is going on well with them in every facet of life. I chuckle because what they call a crisis is not a crisis but an awakening to find purpose. That is why it usually happens between the ages of 40-50 years, connoting that something within you is making a demand. Such demand often sounds like, “I have allowed you to do what you’ve been asked to for the first 40 years of your life. Now, it’s time to discover yourself and use your natural gifts to enhance your skills and acquired knowledge or vis versa.” Interestingly, there have been a few much younger people with this awakening too. And I always ensure I let them know how lucky they were to have experienced it at such an early age, albeit not meaning there won’t be a repeat of such a nudge later in life.

In Africa, most of us who had our first degrees from universities in our home countries studied courses our parents wanted us to take or the ones the higher institutions decided to give us. We later joined the workforce in trending industries which in my time were banking, oil, and gas, simply because they were the highest-paying institutions back then. A shift later emerged when banks started laying off in droves and thousands with a reality check of lack of job security. Right now, what is trending is entrepreneurship. Still, even at that, we need to get it right so that in providing goods, services, or solutions to people or organizations, we do so happily and not just to make a living. And when we find fulfillment, we ensure we obtain career equilibrium because they impact our overall well-being.

If you’ve read my piece up to this point, your mind should start to wonder about who you are and what you want careerwise at this point in life. If so, I’m happy to inform you that the mystery lies in the interconnectedness of your natural gifts, talents, acquired knowledge, skills, and the ability to identify what comes easily to you regarding performance and productivity. So, if you would like to know more, you may want to contact me for details.

Olayinka Opaleye, a well-being specialist, writes from Lagos. Email: oopaley[email protected] or follow her on LinkedIn: