We all want to feel well, vibrant and thriving.We want to lead meaningful and fulfilling lives, to cultivate what is best within ourselves, and to enhance our experiences of love, work, and play. We want to bounce out of bed, joyful with the anticipation of a stimulating work day, and purposeful challenges. We all want to conclude the day well-satisfied with our contribution. We all want to flourish.
Raised awareness of stressors and mental illness in our workplaces and communities has many organisations seeking to boost the wellbeing and resilience of their employees through planned wellbeing programs.Having a sense of resilience and positive wellbeing enables individuals to approach other people and situations with confidence and optimism – a very useful attribute in the workplace.
“Positive psychology is the scientific study of what makes life most worth living.” (Peterson, 2008)
Thanks to research in the behavioural sciences, we are now aware of the activities most effective for enhancing wellbeing for employees.Evidence-based activities can support us in our pursuit of a flourishing life. Positive Psychology places a focus on strengths instead of weaknesses, builds the ‘good’ in life instead of repairing the ‘bad’, and lifts the lives of ‘average’ people to become ‘great’ people instead of focusing solely on shifting those who are struggling towards ‘normal’ people.
Whilst improving one’s wellbeing seems simple, it is not always easy.Determining what parts of wellbeing are most important for you and then how, exactly, to build wellbeing habits usually requires some extra help.
So, how do you currently rate your wellbeing?Ask yourself:“All things considered, how satisfied are you with your life as a whole? On a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 meaning ,“completely dissatisfied” and 10 meaning “completely satisfied”, where would you put your satisfaction with life as a whole?” **[please see note below].
Some wellbeing habits to get you started:
- Gratitude journal: at the end of every day, write down 3 x things for which you are grateful;
- Walking meetings: encourage your colleague(s) to join you on a walk whilst you discuss your latest project [incorporates exercise, strengthening social networks, purpose].It is even better if you can be in nature, such as parklands, botanic gardens -being in nature has also been shown to contribute to our wellbeing;
- ‘Hunt the good stuff’ [M. Seligman] – seek out what is working well in your workplace; this enhances positive emotions; people who habitually acknowledge and express gratitude report benefits in their health, sleep and relationships and they perform better at work;
- Strengths: get to know your strengths and find interesting and novel ways to use them in your work every day;
- Regular Exercise: join with your colleagues to find a way to enjoy exercise together;
- Practice Mindfulness: Mindfulness Interval Training – 3 x 1 minute times per day; at its simplest, mindfulness is about noticing how you feel and what you’re thinking.An easy way to incorporate this into your routine is to take 3 x 1 minute breaks throughout your day to do just that. Set a reminder and, when your notification goes off, commit to sitting or standing still, close your eyes, and, for 5 to 10 breaths, simply focus on your breathing. Your mind will wander – it is in the habit of doing this.The purpose of this practice is to develop your capacity for focusing. As other thoughts creep in, know that every time you choose to let them go and pay attention to your breath, your focus is getting stronger.
- Volunteering - Kindness exercise (M. Seligman) – find one wholly unexpected kind thing to do for your colleagues tomorrow and just do it.Notice what happens to your mood.
These are but a few of the known practices that can maintain and boost your wellbeing.
Practice daily doses of hope, mindfulness and optimism.
If you and your team would like assistance to boost your wellbeing and resilience, learn more techniques, shift to flourishing habits contact:
Debra Sarre, Founder & Principal Consultant, SarreODL
+61 407 431 007
**Should you be experiencing continued psychological distress, seek medical expertise from your general practitioner or psychologist.