waves blue sky beach france clouds explore holistic health efficacy wellness innovation reinvention rotana ty

Holistic Health Exploration

Why & What

My interest at the intersection of learning and health has followed me over the years as a networked learner and perhaps as an explorer of holistic health. In the context of my engagement in the 21st Century Explorers Community, this interest has resurfaced.

Holistic health involves paying attention to our cognitive state and process, physical activities and habits, emotional waves within ourselves, and our social living support system. In other words, it is about the connectedness and sanity of our body, mind, heart and social interactions we have. All starts with key questions to mull over and answer:

What am I?

What do I value?

How do I think?

How do I feel?

How do I start?

How do I figure out?

Navigating My System

So how do I pay attention to each element? Physical + Cognitive + Emotional + Social?

Step 1: Being self-aware of the four elements

Working on ourselves. Listening to your inner and authentic self, which I really am, is what I really want. Connecting with what’s inside me and what’s around me now. Trusting my guts and intuition. Using the following questions:

Physical: which physical activities do I do to get moving?

I list them, experiment sports I love doing. What are the ones that need a lot of stamina, for instance, others that don’t? How about walking? Stretching?

Tracking my progress in a sheet. So how do I nudge myself to get moving? With a wearable on my wrist to nudge me to move when I don’t—a timer on my browser when working.

I plan on my agenda to do fitness every other day. Sometimes it is a meeting or walkabout with a peer. It can also be professional/personal obligations for meetings and business events such as conferences, meetups, workshops, and exhibitions.

Emotional: how do I feel?

Am I aware of my feelings? How does it impact me internally, in my relationships with learning, other people? My environment? Workplace? Entourage? It is about self-awareness and self-regulation.

Cognitive: how do I think, do, share?

What are my personal routines for seeking, sensemaking and sharing? On my own? Collectively? Formats? Approaches?

seek sense share routines personal knowledge mastery rotana ty

Social: How do I interact and connect?

Weekly / monthly with people from my team, network and communities? How deep and meaningful is my engagement? Which type of engagement? Is it sane? What would each engagement look like?

  • Catching up? Getting to know each other?
  • Sharing stories, experience, knowledge, ignorance?
  • Observing?
  • Putting someone in the spotlight?
  • Learning life, learning and work practices?
  • Co-creating?

Do I take care of the health and diversity of my network? Do I visualize and see my network?

Step 2: Mapping how my operating systems work together.

I assess myself monthly, quarterly, yearly. First, through an online form, I created privately. Then, I write an answer to questions I wrote down.

Screenshot 2020 03 31 at 11.22.29

Visualizing my navigation system through mind mapping, sketching, or other visual thinking means seeing my emerging story and experience. It can be a canvas, card or visual diagram or just a write-up.

Step 3: Finding out how each type of health impact me

What are my levels of energy, well-being, self-efficacy, personal growth? I decide what to let go of or keep digging in areas of my holistic health that are meaningful, impactful and rewarding. For instance, on a scale of 1 to 10, I could evaluate:

Physical health gives/pumps me:

  • Energy 7
  • Well-being 7
  • Self-efficacy 7
  • Personal Growth 6

Emotional health gives / pumps:

  • Energy __
  • Well-being __
  • Self-efficacy __
  • Personal Growth __

Cognitive health gives / pumps:

  • Energy __
  • Well-being __
  • Self-efficacy __
  • Personal Growth __

Social health gives / pumps:

  • Energy __
  • Well-being __
  • Self-efficacy __
  • Personal Growth __

Step 4: Letting go or embracing curiosity habits

That don’t work for me. Embracing existing and new ones.

Moving & stretching to wire

What are the benefits of moving on myself and my internal navigation system? Connecting to nature. Walking daily to improve my mental health, for my self-awareness and self-respect. It is good for my brain and self-efficacy, too. Walking to wire and rewire my brain.


Source: https://darebee.com/programs/vitality-program.html

Swimming for stamina & unplugging
1425032684 1

Source: https://www.nageurs.com/images/uimg/2015/02/27/1425032684-1.jpg

Update: With the pandemic since 2020, it is clear that I cannot do so.

Biking for creativity & cities exploration
49712835206 e40459c136 k

Source: Source: photo shot by moi on a bike ride in Chianti, Italy.

Recharging the batteries

Sleeping for mental fitness. Power naps. for memory, digesting what I have done in projects, worked on my own, learned, wrote down or visualized. Unplugging. It is about #SlowSocial.

Bottom line

Being in the flow, unplugging, connecting the dots, letting the ideas emerge. This is what I do to self-improve. This is part of my sensemaking routine.

Step 5: Doing on my own.

I also get help from my support life/work system/network, and sometimes coaches and mentors. I can reach out to have an exploration call or in-person meeting in my trusted network to ask for feedback, tips, advice, and suggestions.

Step 6: Do it & review

It is a constant work in progress. Planning the frequent review. Sleeping on ideas and experimentations. Getting back to them over time. Refining.

Impact On Self-Efficacy

Once my own navigation / operating system is mapped, I keep upgrading and fulfilling better human connections and conversations, deliberative decision making, and creativity. How do cognitive, emotional, and physical waves trigger or block our connectedness, conversation, decision-making, self-efficacy, creativity, and curiosity? What are the enablers and blocks inside myself, body, mind, heart, and outside from my environment and interactions?

Conversation on Embodied Exploration

Thank you @changingview @tolja @Connectle_ & the participants of the #21stCenturyExplorers Community for an insightful live conversation. Enjoyed sharing how I explore holistic health while working & learning in the 21st century https://rotanaty.com/2020/03/30/holistic-health @rotanarotana


“Thank you @changingview for bringing together this conversation with @rotanarotana and @SandraYOtto, and exploring the connection between our physical, emotional and cognitive selves. #21stCenturyExplorers http://connectle.com/explorers@connectle_

Looking forward to the next conversation.

“Such a pleasure to host this conversation on Embodied Exploration – how we use our integrated physical, emotional and cognitive wisdom to navigate towards our frontiers. So much more to explore here!” @changingview

Another gratitude from a fellow explorer:

“So good to see you @rotanarotana and @SandraYOtto in conversation. Two wonderful and inspiring people I’m proud to know. #21stCenturyExplorers@sahana2802

I am also mentioned in this blog post by Klara Loots from Antacara Frontiers :

“On Tuesday 7th April we hosted another 21st Century Explorers Community conversation (via Connectle) around the topic of Embodied Exploration – How our physical, emotional and cognitive states are all connected and when working holistically together can drive us farther towards our frontiers. (…)

In this current uncertain time, I have found my mind, my thinking mind, to be overworked. I have a mental check-list that I’m ticking off and although having this to-do list to refer to is in some ways reassuring, I realised after the exercise with Sandra that it very seldom involves considering how I feel or what I really want. (…)

Rotana Ty led us into a conversation about physical movement and holistic health – the connectedness of our bodies and minds. Right now we have been given an opportunity to act, live, and move with more purpose – we have an opportunity to reflect on how our actions (our daily movements and routines) make us feel. We have an opportunity right now to create our own certainty, in these uncertain times, in every decision we make.

We’ve also been given the gift of time. Time that used to be taken up by traffic, long meetings, or school-runs.


Time to realise that life doesn’t happen to you, you happen to life. When your whole life has been placed into one bubble, one space, you quickly begin to notice how every choice you make (and don’t make) affects your physical, mental, and emotional state. 


Time to think. Time to feel. Time to make more deliberate choices.”

How do you take care of your holistic health?

Tapestry goes through my flâneur’s journey over 63 pages of my personal learnings, stories and reflections in an e-book format. Through thoughts, experience, practices, inspirations, nudges, and questions, I share my story to work and learn continuously in a networked world.


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