On October 24, 2022, I had the pleasure of attending Deepak Chopra's conversation regarding “The Future of Well-being.” The event took place at Artemis W. Ham Concert Hall at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and was well attended with a mix of Gen X, millennials and Gen Z; the bulk of the audience was comprised of baby boomers.
As a long-time fan of Deepak Chopra, I was overjoyed to see him live, and with wellness being the focus of much of my work, it was, in a way, research. These conversations are taking place worldwide in conjunction with Chopra’s new book Abundance: The Inner Path to Wealth. His medical background and efforts to understand the application of wellness modalities to heal the body have helped Chopra lead the charge in scientific research on the effectiveness of various longevity treatments.
At the core of this presentation were the seven pillars of wellness, which include “sleep, meditation/stress management, movement/yoga, emotions, nutrition/nourishment, biological rhythms, and self-awareness and self-realization.”
There is a correlation between sleep and stress, and the CDC has declared sleep deprivation an epidemic. Less sleep lowers self-regulation in the body, and thus leads to increased stress levels.
In addition, the occurrence of depression has reached an all-time high and continues to impact millions, which is directly correlated to an increase in suicides. As alternative and medical health care continue to merge, Chopra is now working with a team of mental health professionals to provide resources, community and support those suffering with mental health issues via neveralone.love.
One suggested treatment for sleep issues, stress and depression symptoms is the daily practice of meditation. Meditation can reduce the impact of all these issues and is noted to reverse the effects of aging—who doesn't want that?
The power of movement, especially in nature—walks on the beach, mountains, woods (aka “foresting”)—also reduces stress levels and uplifts mood.
Once sleep and stress are at a maintainable level, next is the management of emotions. Chopra explained that anger as an emotion is often “the memory of trauma,” and noted that trauma can actually be passed down through generations. Thus, it’s especially important to master emotions, particularly anger, and heal trauma to ultimately create a sense of calm and lessen the effect of anger on the body.
Chopra then presented the concept of the Direct Method, which he explores in his most recent book. It ultimately leads to the notion of a “metahuman,” which is someone who can stop to be present in the moment and thus be in better control of their emotions, thoughts and responses. (He calls this “overriding their automatic responses.")
The conversation was an introduction to a deeper interpretation of wellness and well-being, which I am excited to experience. I would highly recommend checking with local universities and institutions to enjoy the experience for yourself.
In closing, I leave you with a thought presented by Deepak Chopra that hopefully puts us all on the path of deeper introspection and mindfulness: “Carry your presence wherever you go.”