World Well-being Week starts on June 24th and ends on June 28th. The aim of the week is to provide the opportunity for all participants to promote an overall awareness for the various aspects of well-being: including social, physical, emotional, financial, career, community, and environmental well-being.
Well-being describes your mental state – how you’re feeling and how well you can cope with day-to-day life. Our well-being is constantly changing, whether that be as each moment passes or as the year goes by – our mental well-being is dynamic.
Signs of good well-being include feeling confident in yourself, able to express a range of emotions, and able to build and maintain good relationships with others.
Maintaining positive well-being is important. Low mental well-being that is experienced over a long period of time can potentially lead to developing a mental health problem. Someone who already has a mental health issue is more likely to experience periods of low mental well-being than someone who hasn’t – but that’s not to say that they won’t have periods of good mental well-being.
If you feel as if you suffer from poor well-being, try and factor in what may be the cause behind it. Just remember that everyone is different – what affects someone’s well-being may vary completely from your own.
We all experience moments of low well-being where we find it difficult to cope.
According to Mind, examples of life events that can affect your mental well-being include: loss or bereavement, loneliness, relationship problems, issues at work, and worry about money. Figuring out the root of what is causing problems for yourself is the start of your journey to bettering your mental well-being.
The Mental Health Foundation has launched its own Well-being Week, which is its new fundraising initiative for schools. The aim of Well-being Week is to provide young people with the tools and knowledge to help manage their mental health. On their website, they have taken a set of five easily implemented actions which are proven to improve our well-being.
The five ways of well-being are Connect, Get Active, Be Mindful, Keep Learning, Give to Others.
These can be easily integrated into your everyday life and are great ways to better protect and sustain everyone’s mental health. The following steps have been researched and developed by the New Economics Foundations.
There is a lot of strong evidence to suggest that feeling close to, and valued by, other people is a fundamental human need and one that contributes to being able to better function in the world. Make a connection today by:
● Talking to someone instead of sending through an email
● Speak to someone new
● Ask how someone’s weekend was and really listen when they tell you
● Put five minutes aside to find out how someone really is
● Give a colleague a lift to work or share the journey home with them
Regular physical activity is associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety across all age groups. Exercise is essential for slowing age-related cognitive decline and for promoting well-being. Here are a few ways you can get fit and physical:
● Take the stairs not the lift
● Go for a walk at lunchtime
● If you can, walk into work – perhaps with a colleague – so you can ‘connect’ as well
● Get off the bus one stop earlier than usual and walk the final part of your journey to work
● Organise a work sporting activity
● Have a kick-about in a local park
● Do some ‘easy exercise’, like stretching
● Walk to someone’s desk instead of calling or emailing
Reminding yourself to ‘take notice’ can strengthen and broaden awareness. Heightened awareness can enhance your self-understanding and allows you to make positive choices based on your own values and motives. Take some time to enjoy the moment and the environment around you. Here are a few ideas:
● Get a plant for your work space
● Have a ‘clear the clutter’ day
● Take notice of how your colleagues are feeling or acting
● Take a different route on your journey to or from work
● Visit a new place for lunch
Continuing to learn through life can enhance self-esteem and encourages social interaction and a more active life. The practice of setting goals has been strongly associated with higher levels of well-being. Learn something new today:
● Find out something about your colleagues
● Sign up for a class
● Read the news or a book
● Set up a book club
● Do a crossword or Sudoku
● Research something you’ve always wondered about
● Learn a new word
Participation in social and community life has attracted a lot of attention in the field of well-being research. Individuals who report a greater interest in helping others are more likely to rate themselves as happy. According to Mind, research into actions for promoting happiness has shown that committing an act of kindness once a week over a six-week period is associated with an increase in well-being.
These five steps to better well-being aim to improve the mental health and well-being of the whole population. Why not try out some of the suggestions and see if you notice a difference in your well-being.
When it comes to well-being, there is no one step solution for everyone, but by taking extra and smaller steps, you can gradually make the right changes and be on the path to better well-being.
Positive well-being are fundamental to achieving better health, to successfully overcome difficulties, and to achieve what you want to gain out of life. Every aspect of your life influences your state of well-being. Some people believe that wealth is the fast track to happiness, but various studies have shown that our personal relationships and the quality of them is the more important factor.
Remember there will be days that are worse than others, that’s inevitable, but we can learn not to constantly struggle with distressing thoughts and feelings that are preventing us from developing better mental well-being. “The thoughts are like the weather in our heads – they can come, and they can go. We don’t have to believe and grab onto each thought.”