Dina Colman founded Four Quadrant Living in 2010. Four Quadrant Living educates people on living an integral life of health and wellness through the proper nourishment of the four quadrants of our lives—Mind, Body, Relationships, and Environment. Dina teaches people through writing, one-on-one counseling sessions, and workshops. Her book, Four Quadrant Living: Making Healthy Living Your New Way of Life, will be published in 2013.
How we nourish ourselves in all aspects of our lives affects our health—whether it be the food we put in our bodies, the thoughts we allow in our heads, the people we spend time with, or the environment we live in. Most Americans are living in a chronic state of stress (poor mind health). We feed ourselves manufactured food that is convenient but has been stripped of the nutrients (poor body health). We surround ourselves with people who are draining us (poor relationships health). And, we live in a world that is becoming increasingly toxic (poor environment health).
Four Quadrant Living resonates with people because of the rising costs of health care, the lack of proper health insurance, and the increasing incidences of diseases. We are seeing more and more people with chronic conditions such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. According to a study done by John Hopkins University, 50 percent of Americans have a chronic condition. Many of these health challenges can be prevented with a change in diet and lifestyle. The American Cancer Society reports that more than 60 percent of all cancer deaths in the United States can be prevented. And, according to a 2005 World Health Organization global report, at least 80 percent of all heart disease, stroke, and diabetes are preventable.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the United States in 2008, spending for prescription drugs was close to 235 billion dollars, more than double what was spent ten years prior. At best, the drugs are masking the symptoms, possibly making us feel better temporarily (though not getting to the root of the problem). At worst, they are making us sicker or killing us. Approximately 1.5 million Americans are hospitalized each year from prescription drugs and 100,000 people die, according to the oft-cited study from the University of Toronto. Like prescription drugs, hospitalizations are making us sick too. According to the CDC, there are an estimated 1.7 million hospital-acquired infections each year, resulting in approximately 90,000 deaths.
Increasingly, Americans are realizing that the traditional medical model is no longer meeting their needs. We are looking for more natural ways to promote health. Four Quadrant Living helps us move toward health and wellness by nourishing the four quadrants of our lives. Below are a few ideas for healthy living in each quadrant:
- Live authentically
- Laugh and have fun
- Eliminate stress foods
- Release perfection
- Eat real food
- Exercise well
- Get enough sleep
- Be mindful of medications
- Use natural products
- Actively manage friends
- Reconnect through touch
- Let go of expectations
- Identify triggers from past relationships
- Ask powerful questions for deeper connections
- Reduce toxins in environment
- Exercise outdoors
- Find solace in nature
- Decrease environmental impact
- Use green household products
Four Quadrant Living inspires people to insist on health in their lives. We are in control of how we nourish our bodies. We decide what we eat, how we react to our stressors, who we spend time with, and what products we use. At the essence of it all, Four Quadrant Living is about living mindfully and embracing pleasure. Taking care of our health does not need to be serious, complicated, or a chore. It can be fun, easy, and a natural part of our lives.