Hopefully what you will have learnt from the original handout is the importance of the relationship between mind, body, spirit and environment. The relationship between these four aspects underpins the whole of life. Without their synergy, well-being and happiness are no more than fleeting experiences. Their relationship is deep, subtle and multi-factorial and in this handout we will further explore those subtleties and intricacies.
Although the mind and spirit are arguably the key players in this synergistic dance, the truth is without the needs of the body being met and the environment being right, the mind and spirit eternally struggle to prosper. A wonderful analogy for understanding the concept of the relationship between the four is to imagine a table with four legs. Which leg is most important? By conceptualizing a table with four legs it becomes clear that all are of equal importance and should be appropriately positioned and equal in size. In the same way, the table of the self cannot be balanced, stable and able to fulfill it’s potential if the mind, body, spirit and environment are not all equally tended to and respected. There needs to be equal attention given to all four if the table (the self) is to perform at its highest level. So, when thinking of the story of health, keep remembering the four legs of the table. Are they positioned correctly in your life? Are they equal in length and dimensions? Where there is any discrepancy in this regard you will continue to fall short of your potential.
In order to create balance and stability in your life, one often needs to begin the process of transformation by initially focusing on the body and the environment. These two are most likely to be undermining and limiting your growth and we would encourage you to look in these two areas first. If the body is not having its needs met (see Persuading the Body 1, 2 and 3) then it will continue to work against the mind and limit the growth of the spirit and so the needs of the body must not be neglected. Equally, if your environment does not offer you a sanctuary, a genuine place of safety and retreat, then once again both mind and spirit will limp along in a dysfunctional way. Your environment needs orderliness to foster growth in the other three aspects of the self so it is important to get colours, fragrances and aesthetics right in your personal space. It is also important to understand and develop the other aspects of environment (see Spirit Mind Body Plan and Spirit Mind Body and Environment).
So, although we would stress that all four are equally important we would want this conundrum to be understood. The paradox being that almost certainly the process of personal transformation will be best achieved by making any necessary biological and environmental changes first. This way the mind and spirit are propelled forwards and the tensions particularly between mind and body are removed. If the biological and environmental needs are not addressed they become a gale force wind blowing against one’s ambitions and aspirations. In order for that gale force wind to be blowing at your back, try meeting the needs of your body and sculpt your environment to suit you, then your progress will be swift and smooth.
By understanding the deep and subtle relationship between spirit, mind, body and environment the keys to your happiness lie in the palm of your hand. So plan the changes you need to make and make them as quickly as you can. Take back responsibility for you. However you’ve arrived at your current position in life, remember you cannot change the past but you can change the way it affects you! It’s time for change and change begins with you!