As another week of lockdown passes, we’re reminded how important it is to look after our health and wellbeing. But how many of us know what wellbeing really means, or where to start?
At its simplest, wellbeing is about the state of feeling healthy and happy. But how often do we stop to think about how many areas of our lives can affect our sense of health and happiness? Our extensive research shows that wellbeing is made up of four interlinked areas which underpin our approach at Health Shield, also known as the ‘four pillars of wellbeing’: Body, Mind, Money and Culture.
As it’s Mental Health Awareness week, we’re dedicating each remaining day of the week to a pillar of wellbeing, to explore what they mean and how they interlink. We’re starting with the ‘Mind’ pillar tomorrow, where we’ll be talking about the importance of this year’s Mental Health Awareness theme: kindness.
What do the ‘pillars’ mean?
- Body is anything related to physical health and wellbeing… whether that’s diet, sleep, staying hydrated or keeping fit
- Mind refers to mental wellbeing – emotions, mood, stress, thoughts and anything else that might go on in your brain
- Money relates to your financial wellbeing, or how you feel about your personal relationship with money
- Culture – “When a flower doesn’t bloom, you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.” On average we spend 39 hours a week at work, so it’s no surprise that our working environment or company culture has a significant impact on our wellbeing too.
The truth is, these pillars are intrinsically linked, overlapping and affecting one another all the time. For example, if your relationship with money isn’t great, it may cause stress and take its toll on your mental health. Similarly, our research shows that you’re four times more likely to suffer from depression if you’re experiencing persistent pain. Or maybe your work is causing you stress or interrupting your sleep. As you can see, looking after our wellbeing means something completely different to everyone. This is why when it comes to health and wellbeing, the ‘one size fits all’ approach simply doesn’t work.
The great news is, it works the other way too – if you improve one area of your wellbeing, you’re likely to have a positive knock-on effect and improve another. It’s about viewing all areas of wellbeing holistically – acknowledging how one area might be impacting another and making small changes to have a big impact. We’ll be exploring this in more detail this week, with top tips from industry experts on how you can make small changes to your lifestyle to improve how you feel.