Health Matters: Why isn’t it taken more seriously?

Helen Schifter has written extensively about the need to educate the world’s youth about the value of leading a healthier lifestyle. As Schifter has eloquently pointed out, we have done a good job about teaching the world’s young people of the need to pursue career and professional development properly. Because of that, so many young people have taken their schooling and academics seriously. They’ve committed themselves to all sorts of extracurricular activities outside of school that also help motivate and encourage the development of their fertile minds to help elevate their stature in the career development space. But how about health and wellness? Why haven’t we emphasized its importance just the same?

Helen Schifter has a theory on this subject that is quite intriguing. According to Schifter, this emphasis on career advancement at the expense of health and wellness is a by-product of society’s special emphasis in recent years on glorifying wealth and the like. Somehow professional accomplishments in some corridors of the world are now prized, viewed and treated, in a superior fashion to all else – including leading a healthy life. 

Of course, this societal caricature and movement did not start yesterday – not by any means, whatsoever. It’s built-up over a considerable period of time. That’s just an inescapable reality. But the need to combat it , is still very much feasible; and it  would be worthwhile for us all to take a proper look at the different ways to go about that. 

Health and wellness can be communicated to the public writ large in a way that’s sexy, alluring and exciting. Part of the reason past campaigns on the subject have seemed to fall into obscurity and fallen by the waist-side, is a tribute to the effectiveness of public awareness campaigns that have highlighted the need to be successful. These campaigns have been effective in motivating and encouraging the youth of America to take their studies seriously. 

Whether it’s standardized exams; or whether it’s the value of going to college and university, these campaigns have successfully raised public awareness and maximized exposure of the value of education and taking one’s studies and academics seriously. This is a tribute not only to the private sector entities like charter schools who have invested exorbitantly into these campaigns. It’s also a testament to the success and effectiveness of the public sector and the various initiatives that the Department of Education heralded by different Secretaries over time, has had in employing different communications programs to effectively drive home this important message. 

Helen Schifter on Thrive Global has expressed her support for the effective public and private sector partnerships and collaborations that we’ve seen succeed over time, concerning this message and many others. The value of entities in both the public and private sectors collaborating toward accomplishing a shared and common goal and objective is something that is the hallmark of American democratic society. In fact, what could possibly argue that it  is the hallmark of good government. Private and public sector partnerships should be reported on far more often; and they should be lauded and commended. Held up as something that can be emulated – and when emulated properly, prove to be very effective. 

The need to promote health and wellness is clear. It  does not need to be argued; and there certainly does not need to be a public or social campaign of any sort in an effort to establish the point. What is less clear is how we as a society can redefine the paradigm that presently exists, in order to effectively convince the youth of America to start following a proper fitness and health regimen that ensures their health and wellness are long lasting and properly treated and taken care of. But it  is possible and it  is feasible. It will however require tremendous resources on the part of well-recognized and respected influencers who young people take seriously. They need to start communicating through the usage of their social platforms that in some cases have hundreds of thousands if not millions of followers, with content and messages that young people will absorb and properly internalize. If young people start seeing that this is a concept (health and wellness) that’s taken seriously by their own influencers and “celebrities,” it’s only a matter of time before they take this upon themselves. Let’s get to work, together.