Holistic wellness entails achieving a sense of well-being by balancing the physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual aspects of life. It is about recognising that these different areas are interconnected and that neglecting one can impact the others.
For high school learners, holistic wellness is crucial as it provides a foundation for healthy growth and development. When students are supported in all these areas, they are better equipped to navigate the challenges and pressures they face.
Dr Marelize Vergottini, senior lecturer in social work at the North-West University’s (NWU’s) Vanderbijlpark Campus, recently spoke to learners at Potchefstroom Girls High. Her talk focused on the importance of providing comprehensive support to students and equipping them with the necessary tools to thrive in all aspects of life.
“High school is a critical period of growth and self-discovery for young individuals. It is during this time that they begin to form their identities, establish relationships, and prepare for their future,” said Dr Vergottini.
She highlighted the significance of taking care of the physical aspect of holistic wellness.
“Engaging in regular physical activity such as exercise, maintaining a balanced diet, and getting enough sleep is essential for high school learners. Physical well-being is not just about looking good, but also about feeling good.
When students prioritise their physical health, they have more energy, improved concentration, and better overall resilience.”
High school learners often face various stressors, including academic pressure, social dynamics, and personal challenges.
“By providing learners with emotional support, teaching them coping mechanisms, and promoting self-care practices, schools can help students to navigate their emotions effectively and to develop emotional resilience,” she added.
Dr Marelize Vergottini addresses learners at Potchefstroom Girls High.