Wellbeing is another way to describe your mental health; how you feel, how you cope day to day, how in control you feel and how satisfied you are with your life. It is more than just being happy or content.
To maintain good mental health, we want to aim for good wellbeing. But what does that actually mean and what areas should we look to nurture?
Of course, it is individual to each of us, but it is worth asking yourself whether you feel satisfied within the following areas of your life:
Do you feel physically healthy? How is your sleep? Your diet? Do you have any ongoing physical illnesses that require intervention? Do you need to seek some help and advice for this?
Are you satisfied in the relationships you have? Do you feel connected to others? Understood by them? Do you find yourself struggling to feel close with others or are you often in conflict? Would you like to learn how to build and nurture relationships that meet your needs?
Work / study
Does your job or study give you a sense of purpose and satisfaction? Do you enjoy it? Are you clear about what you are doing and where you are going? Is there anything you would like to change or develop?
Do you have adequate money to allow you to live comfortably? Although excess money may be desirable, do you have enough to live the life that you want to live?
Home life (where you live / environment)
Is where you live safe and secure? Do you feel settled and comfortable there? What would need to change for you to feel safe?
Do you have beliefs that bring you comfort and perspective on life? Do they give you a sense of purpose or meaning (remembering that this does not have to be religious beliefs)?
Do you feel controlled by your thoughts and overwhelmed by them? Are they intrusive and critical? Do you find yourself ruminating on things that have happened in the past or worrying about what could happen in the future? Or do you find that you can notice thoughts as they come and go but not become too attached to them?
Are your emotions manageable or are they intense and constantly changing? Do you struggle to keep them under control and bring yourself back to a state of equilibrium? Would you describe yourself as able to experience a full range of emotions, positive and more difficult?
Do you feel that you have the ability to adapt to changes and difficult life events? Does change cause you overwhelming anxiety and do you do anything to prevent it? Do you feel that you have the support you need to be able to ‘bounce back’ when life throws challenges your way?
If you feel that you struggle in some or all of these areas, it is likely to have a negative impact on your mental health. It can seem like an insurmountable task to think about addressing all of these, but many of them are interlinked and changes in one area can result in changes in another. However, you do not need to do this alone and asking for support through therapy can help to kick start these changes. But it is something that is always work in progress – being aware of the different areas of wellbeing and keeping a check on them is the key to maintaining positive wellbeing.