When talking about wellbeing, it’s important to recognise that wellbeing is only possible after our basic needs are met. During times of crisis, finding ways to take care of one’s wellbeing can prove to be more challenging and that makes it extra important to be patient and kind to ourselves.
Finding ways to take care of our wellbeing can sound easier than it actually is, so here are some top tips.
Mind, the mental health charity, developed The Five Ways to Wellbeing in collaboration with New Economics Foundation from evidence gathered in the UK government’s Foresight Project on Mental Capital and Wellbeing. They are designed to help people take action to improve their wellbeing and can be done on an individual basis or as part of a workplace initiative.
The 5 Ways to Wellbeing are:
Connect with the people around you. With family, friends, colleagues and neighbours. At home, work, school or in your local community. Think of these as the cornerstones of your life and invest time in developing them. Building these connections will support and enrich you every day.
In time of Covid-19 – You can make time to connect with friends and family over a video call, write post cards, letters or emails.
Be Active: Go for a walk or run. Step outside. Cycle. Play a game. Garden. Dance. Exercising makes you feel good. Most importantly, discover a physical activity that you enjoy, one that suits your level of mobility and fitness.
In time of Covid-19 – Join an online work out, yoga or dance class, always bear in mind that we all have different physical capabilities. Finding a way to be active that suits you and can be sustained is key.
Be curious: Catch sight of the beautiful. Remark on the unusual. Notice the changing seasons. Savour the moment, whether you are on a train 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.
In time of Covid-19 – Take time to practice mindfulness and pay attention to the sensation of your breathing, the daily actions you take, your surroundings and sounds you hear. You can experiment taking care of plants and watch them grow, as well as make time to express how you feel regularly, either by speaking to someone you trust or writing or drawing in a diary.
Keep Learning: Try something new. Rediscover an old interest. Sign up for that course. Take on a different responsibility at work. Learn to play an instrument or how to cook your favourite food. Set a challenge you will enjoy achieving. Learning new things will make you more confident, as well as being fun to do.
In time of Covid-19 – Taking an online course, learning something new or improving a skill is a great way of feeling a sense of achievement. Setting yourself a challenge and attempting to master it will boost your confidence as well as your skill set.
Give: Do something nice for a friend or a stranger. Thank someone. Smile. Volunteer your time. Join 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.
In time of Covid-19 – While still following the guidelines, you can support others by joining your local mutual aid group in your community. You can support family and friends by connecting online with them and letting them know that you’re there for them. Donating blood is more important than ever and is still possible to do during the lockdown.
Author: Sarah Speziali, Chief Therapist at InsideOut