JOOL: The Purpose-Driven Health App
Victor J. Strecher believes in purpose-driven health. In addition to his work as a professor and director for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, Strecher serves as founder and president of JOOL Health, a company dedicated to examining how purpose and wellness are intertwined, an area he presented on last week at the Consumer Experience & Digital Health Forum in Chicago.
In his session entitled “On Purpose: Wellness to Engaged Wellbeing in the Digital Age,” Strecher spoke about how personal decisions are the leading cause of death, which is why we are constantly told to change behaviors, such as smoking, or we are risking our health. Rather than talking about what will lead us to death, though, Strecher emphasized that when we approach wellness, what we should be approaching is wellbeing and focusing on what gives us life. Living, he said, is directly linked to energy, willpower and resilience, which are related to purpose.
This is where JOOL comes in. Strecher referenced a number of studies indicating that mortality is linked to a sense of direction. When people have a purpose they can actively work toward, they often develop wellbeing. As a purpose composer app, JOOL allows users to identify personal, family, work and community values and what they care about. After 10 days of gathering data through follow-up questions, the app curates the experience to the user, offering suggestions for healthy behavior change through pursuit of their purpose. JOOL’s approach reflects where Strecher believes healthcare is headed, moving from “aspirational wellness to actualized well-being.”
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