Wellness at work: 5 ways to wellbeing
Wellbeing is something we are told we need to achieve in order to find happiness both at work and in our personal lives. But achieving wellness can feel like something of a mystery. So, in our new eBook, Wellbeing at Work, we’ve broken down five ways to wellbeing. These five separate areas of focus can support an individual’s sense of personal wellbeing both inside and outside of the workplace.
Human beings are social creatures. Feeling close to and valued by other people is a fundamental human need and one that contributes to functioning well in the world. Connecting with family, friends, colleagues and the local community brings wellbeing benefits. Taking time to build and nurture these connections can boost wellbeing.
It is understood by most people that activity is good for both physical and mental health. Activity also has the benefit of connecting people with others. Physical activity does not necessarily need to be particularly intense to deliver wellbeing benefits – walking, for example, has many health benefits. Building in activity on a regular basis is key for overall wellbeing.
The activity of learning has been correlated with positive effects on wellbeing, reports of life satisfaction, optimism and efficacy. Studies indicate that participation in lifelong learning can have a positive impact on an individual’s wellbeing and resilience levels. The continuation of learning through life can enhance self-esteem, encouraging social interaction and undertaking a more active life. The satisfaction of achieving a goal can also boost individual wellbeing.
Taking notice is about being aware of the world and connecting with feelings. It’s also about the purpose of reflecting on experiences, savouring the moment, being mindful and heightening awareness.
Giving doesn’t necessarily mean giving gifts or money. It’s also about doing something nice for another person or expressing gratitude and thanks. It can also mean contributing to a community. Evidence suggests that notions of reciprocity and ‘giving back’ to others promote wellbeing for people of all ages. Feelings of happiness and life satisfaction have also been strongly associated with active participation in social and community life.
Many organisations have used the 5 ways to wellbeing as a structure for their wellbeing activities and programmes. The ‘ways’ can be a useful mechanism for communicating the benefits of wellbeing to employees and activities can be aligned to each of the different elements. The structure can also be used in training, especially line manager training and communication. Each of the ways can also be simply brought into the working environment.