Introducing The Daily Drop-in: Our daily pick of the best tools and articles to help you care for yourself during lockdown.
Good health isn’t simply about being free from disease, it’s about your overall wellbeing.
But what exactly does wellbeing mean?
Wellbeing means different things to different people, and no formal definition exists. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, wellbeing can be described as judging life positively and feeling good.
If you’ve never thought about your health in terms of general happiness, this exercise aims to help you do so.
And you’ll do it by exploring your wellbeing from the following angles:
The first step in making any change is to understand where you are now, where you want to be and what you need to do to get there. This is an approach that’s commonly used in life coaching for personal development.
To help you understand where to start, use a scale of 1 to 10 (where 1 equals not important at all, and 10 equals very important) to rate how important each of the following areas of life is to you:
After rating the importance of the 5 areas, consider where you are right now in these 5 areas of your life. Rate how happy you currently are with each area on a scale of 1 to 10 (where 1 equals very unhappy and 10 equals very happy).
You should have 2 numbers for each area of your life. Subtract the score for where you are now from the score for how important that area is to you.
This will give you a figure that reflects how much attention you should give to each area of your life. The larger the figure, the more attention that area of your life may need.
The NHS promotes 5 evidence-based ways to wellbeing that loosely correlate with the 5 areas of life explored in this exercise. These 5 ways to wellbeing can form a useful guide for the changes you can make to improve your wellbeing.
Here are a few practical steps you can take today to make small but effective changes that can increase your wellbeing over time.
You don’t have to go to the gym to stay active. There are many ways to build activity into your daily life, including:
You can increase feelings of positivity by being more aware of the present moment. This is known as mindfulness. You can be more mindful by:
Learning new skills can help you feel more confident. You can make learning a habit by:
Acts of kindness - both small and large - can make a difference to the person you help. They can also give you a sense of purpose and make you feel more satisfied with life. Small ways you can give to others include:
It’s time to take action. Why not choose a few of the ideas listed above and focus on doing them this week?
Write the actions you have chosen down in a journal, along with the number of times you want to do them and when you want to do them by.
Remember to go back and review your progress at the end of the week. Congratulate yourself if you manage to do them and consider making adjustments if you didn’t get round to doing them all.
Commit to setting yourself small goals like this each week and you may soon start to see the changes you’re making reflected in your overall happiness and wellbeing.
Important: Our website provides useful information but is not a substitute for medical advice. You should always seek the advice of your doctor when making decisions about your health.