WELLNESS GURU: YOUR TIME OR YOUR MONEY?
Who has seen a ‘Wellness Guru’ these days? You know, that $4.2 trillion dollar industry and its legion of wellness professionals keeping it clean and healthy on the high street and in foreign cities. Tell me though, whether you’ve seen anyone like this around the place?
I must be missing something… I certainly haven’t met anyone like this. I guess I’ll just have to keep on waiting.
What is a ‘Guru’?
The word ‘Guru’ means the guide who leads others through the darkness to the light. It’s a term often used in classical Indian texts and mythology to describe masters who help guide students on their path, often through difficult times to achieve liberation or whatever is the goal on their spiritual journey.
In the context of today’s ‘Wellness Guru’, and what it’s been made out to be, if you haven’t got your personalised planner, your amazing swimwear together with your magnesium oil (amongst others), you really aren’t going to get very far on your journey to living life’s full potential (which is what ‘wellness’ really is all about). Perhaps this is a bit exaggerated, but you know what I mean.
You see, this is what frustrates me so when I see images that really distort what it means to achieve ‘wellness’. Rather than being a ‘wellness guru’, it represents an idealistic image of a fantasy life – one where consumers too can easily buy their way to wellness rather than doing all the hard work to live a better life. What about the average Joe who can’t afford all these luxury goods (except for the cheap mini-foam roller I should say)? Doesn’t this just breed envy, frustration and perhaps even depression? Isn’t the ‘Insta-famous’ contributing to the mental health crisis of our youth today?
At worst, like much of what is being promoted as ‘wellness’ today, the benefits of these products may not be evidence-based or are at worst, misleading. Who ever said sunshine was bad for you? Would you never step outside without your sunscreen? Who needs Vitamin D? Hey, why not pop a pill or supplement instead?
The ‘Hapless Wellness Consumer’
You see then, the ‘wellness guru’ quickly becomes the ‘hapless wellness consumer’. Sometimes dangerously. At the bottom line though, this is what people are looking for in today’s fast-paced society: A quick return without all the hassle of doing the hard yards. Like in yoga, meditation, or any other practice that requires an investment of your time, and very little of your money.
Being a true ‘wellness guru’ also extends to taking the time to read evidence-based information and learn more about good health, exercise, and nutrition. It’s about taking the time to learn about the power of food as medicine. Most of all, it’s about realising that everyone is different. What works for some people, whether it be through food or exercise, may not work for others. All of this takes time, patience and effort.
Conclusion: Being a ‘Wellness Guru’ takes Time…
Wellness doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a process. The key is doing what is necessary in order to facilitate real change in a person’s lifestyle and habits – Whether the practitioner has the will to learn and to practice regularly. You can only be your own ‘wellness guru’. Unfortunately, wisdom doesn’t grow on trees, nor on the high street.
“No matter what activity or practice we are pursuing, there isn’t anything that isn’t made easier through constant familiarity and training.” ~ Dalai Lama.