In this 28-minute podcast, Allie Middleton, founder and principal of Integrative Leadership Practices, discusses the value of intellectual wellness in recovery and well-being. Melissa Stancil, LPC, regional director of CareNet Counseling Central Region, and Dr. Jana Spalding of Setup4Success, join Mx. Middleton and share their personal experiences on developing intellectual wellness. This podcast is part of a 10-episode series exploring how each of the Eight Dimensions of Wellness enhances recovery. 

Intellectual wellness is about recognizing our abilities and talents, applying these capacities, and developing skills to expand our knowledge. Examples of activities that support intellectual wellness include writing, learning an instrument, cooking, and crafting. Learning and practicing these activities supports intellectual wellness and can enhance other dimensions of wellness as well. Learning is a lifelong endeavor that aids in personal growth and recovery. Though the learning process is often marked by challenges, these are opportunities for growth, which make intellectual and creative pursuits particularly valuable. The path of intellectual wellness is a “hero’s journey,” and every hero’s journey is a different one. Everyone has unique needs, but these can be overcome and addressed by remaining engaged in the learning process. Rather than seeing impediments as sources of defeat, adopting a narrative that assumes the inevitability of challenges and values persistence can empower individuals with behavioral health conditions in their path to recovery—a non-linear, lifelong process—and overall wellness. 

To learn more about intellectual wellness, please see our intellectual wellness fact sheet. 

Listen to the other episodes in this series: 

This resource was first shared in 2018. 

(Podcast, Soundcloud)