This is why well-being is often ignored.
Well-being is a widely used term so typing it into google should bring up straight forward results right?
This image was from my well-being search. As a phrase it is thrown around to sell products from watches to tablets and bread to cosmetics – they can’t all offer wellbeing can they?
Google dictionary suggests well-being is the ‘state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy’. Psychology today goes further in simplifying “well-being is feeling well”.
So perhaps “advertisers” are correct and ‘bread and cosmetics’ can provide well-being. If this is true and a product can make you feel well – keep buying it.
However, there is a flaw to this way of thinking.
What happens when the product runs out? What happens when the money runs out?
Putting well-being into the hands of a person and or product is not a sustainable system.
If well- being is “feeling well” how do we create well-being? How do we know its the real deal? How much do you need?
How to create ‘well-being’
Doing things you enjoy: Do you get your kicks from walking the dog, being around others, being on your own, reading a good book, singing in the shower, applying a facial, a hot cup of tea and a biscuit? What ever it is you enjoy, do more of it.
Even a relatively unhealthy action done in moderation can provide well-being. If we keep things simple, this means, does the benefit outweigh the negative?
If so crack on, if not, lets look for an alternative.
Engagement with what you do: Where do you lose track of time? When do the voices in your head start to quiet, what are you doing when you get that sense of calm and peace. Where ever you find peace, do more of it.
Relationship with others: Whom do you offer unconditional love/respect/regard? Who in your life are you committed to developing a mutual relationship? Mum, Dad, Friend, Lover? Note the “mutual”, relationships do not just happen, they need to be worked on and nurtured. This is another post for another time but for now, what can you do for those around you without wanting anything in return? Whom ever you find peace with, spend more time with them.
Start small, take action and reflect on where achievements have come every day.Habitual
Develop Meaning: Do you have a purpose? Okay maybe thats too big a word right now, but do you have a reason for being, a reason for doing what you do? a reason for wanting to be a better version of you? Why do you do the things you do? Do they connect to your core way of thinking and believing (see this guide on values as a starting point – Values Work sheet). Where ever you find meaning, go there more often.
Achievement: Success breeds success, achievement builds further achievement. This does not need to be Nobel prizes and Olympic Success – in fact this idea that all achievement needs to be grand is a root cause of ill-being. Start small, take action and reflect on where achievements have come every day. Where ever you find achievement, keep going.
#DoWhatWorks: Is phrase to call upon. Its a timely reminder that you deep down know what works and its okay to do it, regardless of what others may think or say, however lets first address the “obvious” question here – how do you know it works?
How do you know you have well-being?
- It feels right – no anxiety, no worry, no stress
- It is an act that supports you to grow as a person
Its easy to say things work, I mean I love a good binge of TV, I feel relaxed, I receive enjoyment as I watch a show I love… but too much TV, like most things, can turn into overuse and creates personal regression rather than supports growth.
Impact on health: Well-being is impacted by physical, mental and social health.
When you engage in acts that support well-being do they positively impact your physical, mental and social health? If so you are on a path to healthy long lasting well-being
How much well-being do you need?
Before we explore how much, lets first bring our attention to “narrative”. “We” as humans have a unique ability of creating a narrative or story around any situation and by doing so can explain our way into or out of anything.
I urge you to question your first thought, your first statement or your first action. Question is this what you automatically always do or is this it in fact something that will lead to growth in health and well-being?
Regarding how much is enough – It’s not for me to tell you. I know I feel better when I carry out daily actions and actively seek opportunities to develop well-being. I also know daily habits that remind me and prime me towards of state of well-being work.
How much do you need practice well-being comes down to
Q. What is a source of well-being for you?
Q. How often do you need to do this to be-well?
Q. How do you know?
Q. Is it sustainable?
At Habitual we offer a program called LIFE, where through daily action we work with clients to develop there own health and well-being through small daily acts.
For the curious and brave, add yourself to our pre-sale list and when our next cohort opens you get first refusal for one of limited spots.
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