If there was ever a buzzword from the last couple of years, especially as we see a renewed focus on health, it would have to be ‘wellbeing’.
But what does the term ‘wellbeing’ mean to you? Is it that warm-hearted feeling you have for your friends and family, your self-worth and internal happiness? Or how you feel physically in terms of your health?
Bet you didn’t think that all of these things are actually connected to each other. We’re all different, but it’s interesting to understand the connection between both our physical and mental state; and how they can support one another on the road to positive wellbeing.
Remember, sometimes our wellbeing isn’t 100% in our control and can be affected by what’s going on around us.
So, let’s focus on what we can do to support our wellbeing – and hitting it out of the park when it comes to feeling comfortable, healthy and happy!
- Get moving. Whether it’s a walk through the park, chilling out at a yoga class or a bike ride around the neighbourhood, taking time for at least one activity a day is beneficial. Not just for those who are athletes or managing their weight, regular exercise is known to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. But you know what else? Research has shown that it can aid sleep and have a positive impact on your overall mood – because it helps to clear your head!
- Get checked out. We live in a country where we can easily access check-ups for common issues – skin checks for sun damage, breast scans and pap smears. And don’t forget to book in a trip to the optician or dentist. It’s been reported that one in four people would not bother having a symptom examined for fear of what the doctor might find*. Don’t lie awake through the night worrying about what you can’t control, just making the appointment can improve your peace of mind.
- Value the downtime. If there’s one thing the 21st century has created is the cult of ‘busyness’ – there’s almost a pride in rushing from one thing to another and having no time to hit the couch, without a screen in front of you. ‘Burnout’ is now officially recognised as a medical condition, so taking it slow and enjoying downtime is not a bad thing. Now’s the time to realise we don’t need to pack so much in to every second of the day, if we skip one gym session or a catch up with friends, remember, life goes on! Channel your inner Jane Austen character and spend time on the quieter things in life with some ‘downtime’ – a walk, some music or reading a book. Your entire perspective on life could change!
- Put the work in. Our mental and physical health is not fixed – accept that sometimes we need to keep an eye on how we are feeling and if our wellbeing is taking a hit. There are practices you can adopt that will help your mood and get your body back on track. It could be switching off social media and getting lost in a book, learning a new skill, picking up the phone and calling a loved one, stretching or baking some banana bread.
Life can be challenging, and we wouldn’t be who we are if every day was an easy ride. Taking a moment to acknowledge that physical and mental wellness are linked, that there are steps we can take to build resilience for both and build healthy habits to navigate the tricky times – the only next natural step is to a path of contentment and wellbeing.