Most of us know when we are mentally and physically well, but sometimes we need a little extra support to keep well.
There are five simple steps that may help maintain and improve your wellbeing. Try to build these into your daily life – think of them as your ‘five a day’ for wellbeing.
Connect with the people around you: family, friends, colleagues and neighbours at home, work, school or in your local community. Think of these relationships as the cornerstones of your life and spend time developing them. Building these connections will support and enrich you every day. Try to do something different today and make a connection.
- Talk to someone instead of sending 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.
2. Be active
Go for a walk or run, cycle, play a game, garden or dance. Exercising makes you feel good. Most importantly, discover a physical activity that you enjoy; one that suits your level of mobility and fitness.
Exercise is essential for slowing age-related cognitive decline and for promoting well-being. Today, why not get physical? Here are a few ideas:
- Take the stairs not the lift
- 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 worI
- Have a kick-about in a local park
- Do some ‘easy exercise’, like stretching, before you leave for work in the morning
3. Take notice
Be observant, look for something beautiful or remark on something unusual. Savour the moment, whether you are on a bus or in a taxi, eating lunch or talking to friends. Be aware of the world around you and what you are feeling. Reflecting on your experiences will help you appreciate what matters to you.
Take some time to enjoy the moment and the environment around you. Here are a few ideas:
- Get a plant for your workspace
- 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.
4. Keep Learning
Don’t be afraid to try something new, rediscover an old hobby or sign up for a course. Take on a different responsibility. Set a challenge you will enjoy. Learning new things will make you more confident, as well as being fun to do. The practice of setting goals, which is related to adult learning in particular, has been strongly associated with higher levels of wellbeing.
Why not learn something new today? Here are a few more ideas:
- 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.
Do something nice for a friend or stranger, thank someone, smile, volunteer your time or consider joining a community group. Look out as well as in. Seeing yourself and your happiness linked to the wider community can be incredibly rewarding and will create connections with the people around you
If you would like more information on the 5 Steps to Wellbeing, please visit