Looking after your Mental Health and Wellbeing
Many of us think about wellbeing in terms of what we have; our income, car, house or job.
However, research shows that what we do and the way we think have the biggest impact on your wellbeing.
Our mental health has an impact on how we feel, think and act in everyday life. It can help us to overcome challenges, recover from setbacks, cope with stress, and build healthy relationships.
Getting up in the morning, chatting with friends and family, farming, making dinner, are all things that our mental health helps us do.
The Five Ways to Wellbeing have all been proven to keep our mental health and wellbeing at a healthy level. Trying to do these each day can help improve how you are feeling. These actions are based on research from the New Economics Foundation (2008).
Five Ways to Wellbeing
1. Connect: Meeting up with friends, family or people in your community and strengthening those relationships are a great way to maintain a sense of belonging and connection. Going to the local Mens Shed, a sports match, or simply picking up the phone to someone you haven’t spoken to in a while are all ways we can connect.
2. Be Active: Our physical and mental health are so strongly linked – if we improve one, we will improve the other. Try and do activities that you enjoy, farming, cycling, gardening, biking or leaving the car at home to walk when you can, are all ways we can get more active.
3. Take Notice: Focusing on the here and now, our thoughts, feelings and taking in the world around us, are all linked to improved wellbeing. Trying to focus our mind on one thing rather than several things can be a helpful way to cope with daily stresses. Mindfulness is one way to practice becoming more aware of ourselves and our surroundings.
4. Keep Learning: Challenging ourselves to try new things each day is a great way to boost our confidence and self-esteem and in turn improve our mental health. For some that might mean signing up to a new course, for others it might be trying to fix that broken bike at the house.
5. Give: Small acts of kindness to larger ones like volunteering with your local community have been linked to giving people a greater sense of purpose, community and connectedness. Simply making someone a cup of tea or helping someone with a job has a greater knock on effect on ourselves giving of our time rather than the one receiving the help.
For more information on the Five Ways to Wellbeing go to www.mentalhealthireland.ie or call us on 01 2841166 to order a leaflet with more information.
If you feel you need more support with your mental health and wellbeing, visit your local GP. If you need to talk to someone, about anything at any time, contact the Samaritans at free call 116 123 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find lots more information on www.yourmentalhealth.ie