We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Idopise Umana Jaja and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dr. Idopise Umana Jaja, is there something you can share with us that those outside of the industry might not be aware of?
According to a report released by the CDC in June 2018, the suicide rate has risen 25% over the last fifteen years. The report also revealed that in 2016, nearly 45,000 people died by suicide, and while some deaths were attributed to mental health disorders; many appeared to be related to individuals succumbing to the pressures of life. In that same report, relationships, physical health, employment, money, legal, and/or housing problems were often contributing factors. Now considering all that has occurred since that report was released, and with the devastating toll that the Covid-19 Pandemic has bestowed, I strongly want industry outsiders to be aware of the importance of individuals having a wellness plan for every area of their life. My business, The Wellness Institute (www.mindgymtwi.com) helps support that goal and educates individuals by engaging, equipping, and empowering people to live their best lives with a focus on pursuing mental health (emotional wellness) as well physical, social, lifestyle, financial, and personal-professional wellness.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I have been a physician for 16 years; practicing as a Primary Care Physician within a large health system for the past twelve (12) years. Within this field, I have had the opportunity to also hold a role as one of the Medical Directors, and the Associate Program Director for the Internal Medicine Residency Program. This passion for people and my natural gifting in encouragement, has led me to also seek to encourage and support individuals through my own additional ventures: The Wellness Institute “A Gym for the Mind” (www.mindgymtwi.com) and my nonprofit Living, R.E.A.L., Inc. (www.livreal.org). I am extremely thankful for all of the opportunities that God has given me because they all contribute to my overall sense of purpose. The road has not always been easy, but through my faith, a strong support system; it is fulfilling to help and support others. One of the biggest lessons learned along the way is pushing past fear and activating your faith. I want the world to know that finding your purpose and pursuing it is important; and in that journey continuing to remain thankful and strive to continually serve and give back to your community.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I reside in Suwanee, Ga and I honestly enjoy being at home, but if I was to embark on a trip locally, it would be dining at different restaurants in the surrounding Suwanee area, while also venturing into Atlanta. I would be looking for plays and concerts that were occurring during that week. I would also make sure to involve us in an exercise regimen to include walking through one of the many beautiful parks in Gwinnett County.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I have a very strong support system. I am thankful for a very supportive husband, Godwin Jaja, and definitely have been blessed with a wonderful family ( parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, inlaws) and amazing friends. I wish I could call each one out by name but they all know who they are, and I will be forever grateful for their support.