The meaning of wellbeing
Posted by Justine Clarabut on 26 June, 2020
An emerging message from the recent pandemic of Covid-19 has been that people who have suffered with the virus the most, have also had underlying health conditions. In particular, lifestyle diseases such as type 2 diabetes, obesity and hypertension.1 Lifestyle diseases can be reversed or better still, avoided, by making sure our bodies and minds are in great shape. In other words, by looking after our own wellbeing.
So what does wellbeing mean and how can we make positive changes to live healthier and happier lives?
The World Health Organisation states that wellness is “a state of complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
Wellbeing is more than being free from illness. It is about being able to develop and grow, enabling us to overcome difficulties and achieving what we want out of life. Wellbeing refers to the state of being comfortable, healthy and happy. Even though happiness is an integral part of our personal wellness, wellbeing includes other things such as the fulfillment of long-term goals, our sense of purpose, and how in control we feel in life. It is an active process of becoming aware of and making conscious choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life.
There are different types of wellbeing…
Physical Wellbeing is about our body and mind being in a balanced state of health through regular exercise and healthy eating. Physical wellbeing is not just being free of disease, it is our body functioning well enough to prevent lifetstyle diseases.
Mental Wellbeing is having the ability to cope with everyday life, to be resilient and recover quickly from life’s set-backs. The difference between mental and emotional wellbeing is that mental wellbeing refers to our ability to process information and emotional wellbeing refers to our ability to express feelings which are based upon the information we have processed.2
Emotional Wellbeing is the ability to be in control of our feelings, thoughts and behaviours. Being emotionally well enables us to express our emotions, feel engaged with the world around us and experience positive self-esteem.
Social Wellbeing is the extent to which we feel a sense of belonging, inclusion and stability. It is about having the ability to develop meaningful relationships, being able to communicate effectively and maintain a support network. Social wellbeing encompasses our values and beliefs.
Spiritual Wellbeing relates to being able to connect with nature. A ‘being’ that is greater than ourselves that brings a purpose and meaning to our lives.
Achieving Optimal Wellbeing
For us to achieve optimal wellbeing, we have to encompass every element of wellbeing in order to feel the best we can and to live our very best life. Wellbeing People’s mantra, ‘progress not perfection’ is about taking small steps to turn unhealthy habits into good habits. This doesn’t mean going on a crash diet to lose weight, or rushing to the gym to get a six-pack or reach a peak of cardio fitness. It’s about looking at our whole self and changing our mindsets to work towards a positive state of wellbeing.
The winning formula for long-term transformation is simplicity – it’s the small things we do every day that make a difference.
Our Recalibrate Wellbeing® Programme teaches people how to upgrade their mindset, nutrition, movement and lifestyle habits. The online Programme is a highly engaging, easy to follow, 12-week process that fits into even the busiest of lives.
References and further reading
If you would like more information around the meaning of wellbeing, visit our What is wellbeing page.