Last updated December 4, 2021
I was recently asked: what does wellness mean to you? This question stopped me in my tracks. I’m forever being asked why I created Vacayou, yet never has anyone asked what wellness means to me!
Vacayou is built upon my belief that each of us has our own special way of connecting with ourselves to stay healthy. Wellness should be focused on something we enjoy—mentally, physically, but most importantly, personally.
The friend who posed this question shared a beautiful tale of trekking through the Himalayas and eating the healthiest organic foods that enhance the immune system. This is a tried and true way to experience wellness travel. And your body will thank you for it.
My version of wellness, however, is slightly different. Muirgheal means “fair one of the sea” in Gaelic. I feel a strong connection with the ocean. I also feel a strong connection to Mother Earth.
There’s nothing quite like walking barefoot on the sand, strolling in the woods, hiking a mountain or finding a lake in the middle of nowhere.
Studies reveal that there are numerous physiological benefits of nature therapy besides enhancing your health and well-being when you “bathe in nature.” We are born of this Earth and will eventually return to this Earth.
Walking barefoot helps your body absorb the negative charge through your feet which can only be done when your body is in direct contact with the earth. This is referred to as grounding or earthing—making an electrical connection between the earth and yourself.
Immersive nature wellness experiences like this have proven to be very beneficial. Many people swear by it, as do I. Healers believe that grounding helps maintain the health of the root chakra, the first of the seven main chakras in your body, which is based on the earth element. The root chakra, or Muladhara, is responsible for confidence, support, the musculoskeletal system and sustenance.
When we lose our connection with the earth we often find ourselves feeling disconnected, floaty and unsettled. Grounding can help reduce stress levels, help the body recover from stress-induced issues and uplift your spirit.
I believe in chakras and the power of crystals that are created by our beautiful earth. The strength and sounds of the ocean as the waves crash against the shore help bring me peace. I love to meditate while listening to the sounds of Tibetan bowls.
All of this I have experienced first hand over and over again. Whenever I spend a few days in nature, I gain mental clarity. In fact, some of my best ideas come to me when I walk barefoot on the beach.
Today’s lifestyle has distanced us away from the outdoors and forced us indoors away from nature’s healing benefits. Touching the earth is nature’s greatest antioxidant and we should do much more of it.
So as you can probably decipher, my version of wellness involves nature: going on a hike, walking along a beach, sitting in a pool or hot tub overlooking mountains or a river. Being immersed in nature, eating good food and enjoying good wine.
My version of wellness entails everything from sun salutations on my rooftop and walking on the beach at sunset to hiking in Germany along an off-the-beaten path to find an old castle and then coming back to my spa hotel for a massage and swimming in a subterranean pool.
I also imagine myself on a beach in the Maldives getting a massage and listening to the ocean lap against the shore, hiking to a hidden mountain lake in Ireland, walking through the woods in British Columbia and enjoying the benefits of hot springs on a cold night under the stars in Colorado.
One of my all-time bucket list experiences is to sleep in a glass igloo in northern Finland and witness the northern lights. A girl can dream, can’t she?
There you have it. My version(s) of wellness. I would love to hear your thoughts. What does wellness mean to you?