Six Ways to Wellbeing
Whether it be exam season or the summer holidays, it’s important to take some time for ourselves to make sure we’re looking after our wellbeing. When it comes to your wellbeing, a small action can make a big difference. The university’s six ways to wellbeing framework is an evidence-based framework that will help you make positive changes to keep feeling good and living well.
Feeling close to and valued by others is key to our happiness.
Studies have shown that happier people have stronger relationships with others (and stronger relationships lead to increased happiness).
Finding the time to nurture your existing relationships with others, and connecting with new people, can help you feel better and live better.
Some things you can do to ‘Connect’ are:
- Phone someone you care about and ask them about their day
- Organise a games night or film night with your household
- Meet up with an old friend you haven’t seen in a while
Helping, giving, sharing – doing something for someone else has been proven to make us feel more positive and increase our self-worth.
Big or small, actions to improve the lives of others, improves our own. So why not take time to do something kind?
Some things you can do to ‘Give’ are:
- Offer to help a neighbour or friend
- Phone a friend and ask how they are
- Thank three people you’re grateful for
Being mindful of the moment – what’s happening, and how it makes us think and feel – can help us better understand ourselves. When we know how to do this, we can seek out the moments that we value most.
Life moves fast – so hit pause and take a second to appreciate what’s going on, inside and outside.
Some things you can do to ‘Take Notice’ are:
- Go for a mindful walk and take in your surroundings
- Take regular breaks from reading and watching the news
- Turn off your social media notifications for a little while
Be Active encompasses any physical activity or movement that works for you, your ability, your other commitments and that you find enjoyable!
Physical activity isn’t just about keeping fit. Research shows it can help us to think and feel more positively, sleep better and have more energy which can improve our physical and mental wellbeing. It can be categorised into three forms: light, moderate and vigorous.
Some things you can do to ‘Be Active’ are:
- Take a short, brisk walk outdoors to get some fresh air
- Find a form of movement that energies you and that you enjoy
- Get away from your desk and move as a study break
Taking care of yourself by paying attention tonutrition, hydration, getting enough sleep and looking after your personal safety will benefit your wellbeing.
Taking care of your wellbeing in relation to health is about focusing on the things you can manage and making the choices that work for you.
Some things you can do to ‘Be Healthy’ are:
- Switch your phone off at least an hour before you go to bed
- Aim to drink at least two litres of water everyday
- Try to establish a good routine and stick to it throughout the week
Learn and Discover
The act of learning itself has been shown to improve our self-esteem and resilience.
Perhaps now is the perfect time to learn that new skill or try that new recipe. Or, if big challenges seem overwhelming, maybe listen to a new podcast or read a book you wouldn’t have usually picked up. Start small, allow your goalsto be flexible and go easy on yourself.
Some things you can do to ‘Learn and Discover’ are:
- Try a new cooking or baking recipe and enjoy the results!
- Learn a new skill by watching tutorial videos on YouTube
- Read the classic novel that you have always been interested in
If you’re unsure where to start, why not reflect on your own wellbeing with our self-reflection tool or if you’re not sure on what little changes you could make to your day have a look at content ambassador Lauren’s article on small actions she took to improve her wellbeing.
Remember, if you feel you are struggling and need more support, you can access our student support website which outlines a range of mental health and wellbeing support we have at the university.