Pulse May 2019 - Page 46

conversations With vivienne o’keeffe is a spa consultant and co-author of “Mental Wellness: Pathways, Evidence and Horizons,” a whitepaper recently released by the Mental Wellness Initiative of the Global Wellness Institute. The whitepaper aims to increase awareness of the latest research around mental health and share how the spa industry might better promote the mental wellness of its professionals. Pulse sat down with Vivienne this month to discuss the whitepaper and the importance of mental wellness in spa. 44 PULSE ■ MAY 2019 vivienne o’keeffe Pulse: What is the Mental Wellness Initiative (MWI), and how did you get involved? vivenne o’Keeffe: The mental Wellness initiative was created to better understand mental wellness, help people stay well and thrive mentally and physically. and it’s all about mental wellness, not about mental illness. We’re all about self-prevention, self- direction and the continued development of the mind and spirit. i got involved in 2016, when i was attending the Global Wellness Summit in Kitzbuhel, austria. i participated in a discussion there on mental wellness, and from that discussion the mental Wellness initiative was established. The first goal was to release the whitepaper. now, we’re developing a series of protocols on how to promote mental health in different contexts. i was attracted to the topic like a magnet because, in my work developing spas for people, i train a lot of young people and i know the mental challenges they face. “It's all about mental wellness, not about mental illness. We're all about self-prevention, self-direction and the continued development of the mind and spirit.”