Well-Being: Who Says Nothing Is For Free?

Nic Marks, psychologist, and Founder of the Centre for Wellbeing at the New Economics Foundation, says that well-being “At the highest level…is the quality of people’s experience of life.” It may be defined as an experienced sense of happiness.  nature walk 6

Well-being describes our physical, mental, psychological, spiritual, and emotional health.

The great thing about well-being is that it is for free and it’s easy and simple. Most of us are doing it already to different degrees. Focusing and bringing conscious awareness to our well-being can, however, further enhance it.

Well-being is simple. It is up to us. No one can do it for us or take it away. It is a daily way of loving ourselves.

Why Be Well?

Our well-being affects every aspect of our life – our relationships, our work, our social life, and our health, ourhappiness, and even our longevity. We feel well we are kinder to ourselves and others, we are more productive, we perform better, we socialise more, and our health improves, leading us to live longer happier lives.

A Life Long Journey

What is important to note is that well-being is not a destination, it is a life long journey, and requires a little something each and every day.

What Prevents Wellness?

Each of us may respond to this question differently. One common factor in the modern western world is likely to be time or busyness. With Google and TV we no longer have any excuse for not knowing what to do when it comes to wellness!

In our fast-paced, quick fix, disposable, and materialistic world, we can, however, sometimes forget what really leaves us feeling good, even great. We are so busy working, commuting, and caring for others, that there are just not enough hours in the day to focus our own well-being.

What Is The Cost Of This Lack Of Focus?

In the essay – On the Shortness of Life, Philosopher, Lucius Annaeus Seneca, says –  “Are you not ashamed to reserve for yourself only the remnant of life, and to set apart for wisdom only that time which cannot be devoted to any business?”

Well-being is Free and Easy!

It actually doesn’t take much effort and you can improve your own and others’ well-being for free. You may already be doing it!

In 2008 the New Economics Foundation (NEF) in the UK were tasked with finding 5 Evidence-Based Ways to Well-being. They chose 5 as the project was likened to the healthy eating equivalent – 5 fruits and vegetables a day. NEF researched what makes people feel well and came up with 5 ways. There are of course more than 5, and eating a healthy diet is one of those, the task was, however, to come up with 5 and these are them.

5 Ways to Well-Being

1. Connect – “No man is an island,” they say. Make connections with friends, family, colleagues and neighbors. When you build these connections they help enrich your life with new experiences, opportunities, and camaraderie.

2. Be Active – Get moving. Walk, skip, run, dance – move those muscles with joy. Exercise not only makes you feel good, it keeps you healthy too. Pick a physical activity that you enjoy and you can do. You are never too old to get fit.

3. Take Notice – Be mindful. Be curious. Like a child, see the wonder and beauty of the world. Notice the things around you – the weather, the seasons, the landscape, the people, the mood and feelings of not just the people around you but of yourself as well. In noticing and reflecting on the beauty of the world you learn to appreciate the things that matter.

4. Keep Learning – We never stop learning as long as we’re alive. So continue being curious and keep on trying something new – an old interest, a new course you’ve been wanting to do or a more challenging task at work. Challenges keep us on our toes. They also increase our confidence and excitement in our day.

5. Give – Be generous with your time, your love and your talents, giving to friends, family and even strangers. Be thankful, smile at people, and volunteer. Good karma always comes back with blessings ten fold. When you look inside yourself you will see that sharing your happiness to a wider audience gives you a greater reward than just doing things for yourself. You are rewarded by the meaningful connections you have with everyone around you.

Can you find a way to incorporate all these 5 experiences into your life?

If so, you will increase your overall well-being – physically, mentally, psychologically, spiritually and emotionally.

Ways to Well-being Ideas

Here are some ideas…

Idea To Achieve 5/5 All At Once!

Start a neighbourhood, workplace, or community group that includes physical exercise, or a sporting activity. It could simply be a mindful walk, and don’t charge anyone to participate!

Even 4 / 5 will increase your well-being. Giving is one of the most important of the 5 – this alone can improve your well-being. Giving does not need to cost money – it can be simple as paying an elderly stranger in a nursing home (who hasn’t had a visitor in a while) a visit. It could be giving a busker a few coins for livening up your commute. What about smiling at a stranger or picking up something off the ground for someone less able, standing up, and giving away your seat on a bus or train?

Simple things feel good.

Please post in the box below any comments – how you achieve 3 and above ways to wellness.

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