Recently arriving in Barcelona has got me thinking about my wellbeing, and how I am making time to care for my mental health. So, today I’m sharing the first of Five Ways to Wellbeing, which I’ll be putting into practice!
Like physical illness, mental ill health can affect anybody and everybody. Taking care of our mental health should, therefore, be as equally important. But how many of us really take the time to care for our minds?
Wellbeing is the subjective state of being comfortable, healthy or happy, with mental wellbeing specifically describing your mental state. Good mental wellbeing is demonstrated with high emotional resilience, management of emotions, productive engagement (in society and your own life), the fostering and building of positive relationships, and the ability to cope with uncertainty. Reflecting on these, do you think you have good mental wellbeing? Or do you need to show yourself a bit of tlc?
Unsure of where to start, or how to show your head some love? The Five Ways to Wellbeing are strategies from the New Economics Forum. Hopefully these will prompt you to start making time for your mind, and get into a better headspace. Today I’m sharing the first one with you : Connect.
Social relationships give us feelings of being valued - a fundamental human need that allows us to function well in the wider world.
So, how can you connect?
Pick up the phone instead of sending an email or text
Speak to someone new - or even just share a smile!
Ask how someone’s weekend was and really listen when they tell you
Play a game rather than watch TV with your family
Give a colleague a lift to work or share the journey home with them
When I think about teaching English, and my students who are learning, connection is a vital motivating factor. Perhaps you hope to speak to your new Canadian neighbour? Or possibly you have to make a presentation at work to an English-speaking audience. Maybe that mental health research paper is only available in English! Whatever the reason, English can help us to connect with people from all walks of life. It can help you to access new information, and explore new ideas. It helps us to build bridges, share stories, and be a part of a new community.
So, as I settle into my new home, I’ll be looking out for opportunities where I can connect with my new environment. I’m making time for my mental health, and I hope you will too.
Keep an eye out for the second of the Five Ways to Wellbeing: Be active, coming next week! How do you think this can help boost our mental wellbeing?