09 September 2021
R U OK? 5 Ways to Wellbeing
Today is R U OK? Day, a yearly reminder to reflect on mental-health harm prevention. Recent events serve as a message that it is OK not to be OK. Through the simple act of connecting and communicating, we can help others and ourselves.
Recent studies have shown that adults experiencing mental health issues have doubled since the pandemic started. Studies found that during the pandemic, 1 in 3 adults was found to be suffering from anxiety and depression. As restrictions have eased, these numbers have decreased however, a quarter of people still suffer from some anxiety and depression, with one in 10 having suicidal thoughts.
Our mental health is something we have to prioritise. Looking after ourselves and others is not as simple as we would assume. Below are 5 ways we can find wellbeing.
We all live busy lives, trying to strike a balance can be difficult and often, our social connections fall by the wayside. Connecting with others is more important than you might think. Social connection can lower anxiety and depression, help us regulate our emotions, lead to higher self-esteem and empathy, and actually improve our immune systems. By neglecting our need to connect, we put our health at risk. Some things we may do to connect with others include:
Reaching out to family members.
Reconnecting with old friends.
Joining a club or social activity.
Introduce yourself to your neighbours.
Participation in regular physical activity can increase our self-esteem and can reduce stress and anxiety. It also plays a role in preventing the development of mental health problems and in improving the quality of life of people experiencing mental health problems. Exercising releases endorphins, a natural chemical that interacts with the receptors in our brain. Endorphins trigger a positive feeling in the body which help can help us deal with stress. Some things we may do to keep active include:
Going for a walk.
Joining a gym.
Taking part in sport activities.
Taking Notice means actively bringing our mind’s attention and interest to the world around us and ourselves; what is going on externally to us and what is happening within us. Taking notice means being present in the moment; Listening to ourselves and others. Doing so can help us fine-tune our thoughts and reduce stress and anxiety that often come with overthinking. Some things we can do to take notice include:
Mindfulness and meditation.
Going for a walk, nature can be a great way to stay in the present!
Observe what is around us. Be aware of what we are doing and why.
Take up a hobby. Hobbies are a great way to switch our mind off from what is happening.
Talk to friends and family and engage in active listening.
Learning improves our self-esteem, keeps us connected and involved, and helps us adapt to change and find meaning in our lives. It has also been shown to help prevent depression in later years. Learning is more than just formal education – it’s about exploring new ideas, seeing opportunities, embracing new experiences and sharpening our skills. It means being curious and having an enquiring mind, in all areas of life. Some things we can do to keep learning include:
- Sign up to an online course.
- Pick up a new hobby.
- Set goals.
- Find out what you are interested in and expand your knowledge on that topic. The internet is a great way to learn things for free!
Give (Give and be Kind)
“It is better to give than to receive,” People who are kind and compassionate see clear benefits to their wellbeing and happiness. They may even live longer. Kindness can also help reduce stress and improve our emotional wellbeing.
We all have so much going on in our lives - including competing strains and stresses – not to mention the current coronavirus pandemic. This can see kindness pushed to one side, in favour of what is urgent or trending now. Being kind can not only help ourselves but also others who are vulnerable and in need. Some things we can do to give and be kind include:
- Volunteer work.
- Asking friends or family members if they need
help with a task or activity.
- Do something for a good cause.
- Random acts of kindness.
Our life improvement courses help learners build confidence, learn new skills and improve their quality of life. Our Mental Health and Wellbeing courses are perfect for those wanting to help themselves and others. To find out more about our free course, click here
To register your interest in the course, you can apply here