Wellbeing is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as “the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy.” However, it is important to realise that wellbeing is a much broader concept than moment-to-moment happiness.
Wellbeing actually covers every aspect of our lives, whether we realise it or not.
Financial wellbeing means looking after your finances, both in the short term and long term. Short term includes the ability t pay this months bills and pay food, whereas long term is things like mortgages, savings and pensions. That also means living within your means.
Intellectual wellbeing means looking after our brain and keeping it fresh. Intellectual wellbeing is things like being creative, thinking critically, being open to new ideas and looking for new challenges. You can also look after your intellectual wellbeing through activities such as crosswords and sudoku, as well as activites that make you focus and think, such as playing Chess.
Next is our physical wellbeing. It’s important to look after the body – we only get one, so let’s look after it! Taking exercise – even if it’s just a walk around the block once a day, taking the stairs instead of the lift or getting off the bus a stop early and walking the rest – is a vital part of having optimal health. Diet and nutrition is also a key part of good physical wellbeing.
Our social wellbeing means being able to connect to a positive social network, building relationships with others and dealing with interpersonal situations appropriately. This is something people living with BPD can struggle with, but it is still a vital part of our overall wellbeing.
Spiritual wellbeing is much more than just religious beliefs. It’s about finding meaning in your day to day life, having a purpose, living a life that reflects your values. It’s about integrating meaning and purpose into yourself through things like music, literature, art or nature. Spiritual wellbeing includes our connections to spirituality, religion, community or culture.
Emotional wellbeing means looking after you. Take time out for yourself, and be kind. Recognise that sometimes you need to take time to experience your emotions, to heal, to rest. It’s about being in good mental health and having the capability to recover from illness or change.
And finally, environmental wellbeing. This is about living a lifestyle that is respectful of the community and environment around you. Be aware of your place in the community, and in the environment, and see the interactions therein. It’s important to behave in a way that takes care of these responsibly.
While this might sound like a lot of things to do in order to be well, it’s mostly just about living your life and doing your best. Most of these things fall into place without us even realising it at the time.
Here are some useful resources on wellbeing: