What can you do to take some simple but effective steps towards living well? Extensive reviews of research and expert opinion have identified the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’. You can start your journey now by taking action to have a healthier and more satisfying life. You can make conscious and deliberate choices to look after your wellbeing. Try to consider what do the five ways below mean to you and how you could implement them in your life.
1. CONNECT – building connections with other people around you will support and enrich your everyday life. Invest time in developing positive relationships with family, friends, flat mates, the people on your course. You may want to get in touch and connect with nature, music, animals, spiritual needs or yourself. Establishing connections, that you feel are meaningful, will help increase your mental health and wellbeing.
2. KEEP LEARNING – learning new things will make you more confident as well as being fun. Try something new, rediscover an old interest, set a challenge and enjoy achieving. This could be cooking a new recipe, playing a new sport or researching something you are curious about. When we learn for our interest and gain satisfaction out of it, it will enhance our wellbeing.
3. BE ACTIVE – discover a physical activity you enjoy and that suits your level of mobility and fitness. This could be a walk, spending time outside, cycling, playing a game, dancing. Whatever exercise makes you feel good. Implementing physical activity as part of your routine, even if it is for 10 minutes, can help you to overcome mental fatigue and improve performance.
4. TAKE NOTICE – to take notice is to be in the present, in the ‘here and now’. Be curious, savour the moment, try being aware of the world around you and what you are feeling. The gateway to the present moment is often through our senses. Pausing and reflecting on your experiences will help you appreciate what matters to you.
5. GIVE – do something nice for other people. This can be a smile, a compliment, words of encouragement, tolerance, or help. Seeing yourself, and your happiness, as linked to a wider community can be incredibly rewarding and creates connections with the people around you. You can also give kindness to yourself and remember that it is okay to take and accept compassion from others.
There is substantial evidence to support the ‘Five ways to wellbeing’ in living well and small changes can often make a big difference, so why not give it a go?