Many of us have external heroes. They are people we respect for their admirable qualities and abilities.
We also have an internal HERO. We’ve created an acronym – HERO – to represent our internal HERO traits – Happiness, Enthusiasm, Resilience, and Optimism.
It’s remarkable how each of the HERO wellness traits positively impacts overall wellness. HERO is:
- Linked to longevity
- Linked to a stronger immune system
- Mitigates pain
- Predicts lower heart rate and blood pressure
- Predicts lower rates of depression
- Linked to better physical wellbeing
- Linked to better coping skills
Given these benefits, spending about 5 minutes a day strengthening your internal HERO makes sense. After completing the WILD 5 30-day program, research has shown that:
Happiness went up by 30%
Enthusiasm went up by 51%
Resilience went up by 63%
Optimism went up by 45%
What are HERO Exercises?
In addition to the 5 daily wellness practices of exercise, mindfulness, sleep, social connectedness, and nutrition, we encourage you to answer two HERO questions, which will take about 5 minutes each day. As the data show, this practice illustrates it's possible to strengthen your internal HERO in a short period of time.
When completing your daily HERO Exercises, you can use a notebook or an electronic option, such as a journaling app or your phone or tablet.
To get the most benefit, it’s important to take the time to review your previously answered HERO questions, which are recycled every eight days. We invite you to consider these questions:
- Are you noticing any patterns?
- Do you see any areas where you’re struggling?
- Are you observing any positive changes?
This repetitive, reflective review increases your mindful awareness, which in turn strengthens your internal HERO. As you establish this daily practice, you will come to value this time of thoughtful reflection.
As you begin these exercises, you’ll notice there is some overlap between the HERO wellness traits. For example, happy people are often more enthusiastic, resilient, and optimistic. Strengthening one of the HERO wellness traits, helps strengthen the others.
Perfection is not the goal.
Be kind to yourself as you begin making these changes. Change can be challenging. If you miss a day or two, shake it off, regroup, and keep going!