Scientific evidence points to fivemental health.
However, there’s more to good mental health than avoiding or treating mental illness. There is also positive mental wellbeing.
This article explains:
Why is mental wellbeing important? First, we all want to feel good – about ourselves and the world around us – and to be able to get the most from our lives.
There is also evidence that good mental wellbeing is important for our physical health, and that it canWellbeing self-assessment tool.
Wellbeing in your life
Many factors influence our wellbeing. Evidence shows that the actions we take and the way we think have the biggest impact.
It can help to think about “being well” as something you do, rather than something you are. The more you put in, the more you are likely to get out.
“The first thing you can do for your own wellbeing is to become curious about it,” says Professor Stewart-Brown.
Start to think about what you’ve done in the past to promote mental wellbeing, and whether it worked. Then think about new things that you can try.
“Remember, no one can give wellbeing to you. It’s you who has to take action.”
Five steps to mental wellbeing
Evidence suggests there are five steps we can all take to improve our mental wellbeing.
If you approach them with an open mind and try them, you can judge the results yourself.
- Connect. Connect with the people around you: your family, friends, colleagues, and neighbors. Spend time developing these relationships. Learn more in Connect for mental wellbeing.
- Be active. You don’t have to go to the gym. Take a walk, go cycling or play a game of football. Find the activity that you enjoy, and make it a part of your life. Learn more in Get active for mental wellbeing.
- Keep learning. Learning new skills can give you a sense of achievement and new confidence. So why not sign up for that cooking course, start learning to play a musical instrument, or figure out how to fix your bike? Find out more in Learn for mental wellbeing.
- Give to others. Even the smallest act can count, whether it’s a smile, a thank you or a kind word. Larger acts, such as volunteering at your local community center, can improve your mental wellbeing and help you build new social networks. Learn more in Give for mental wellbeing.
- Take notice. Be more aware of the present moment, including your feelings and thoughts, your body and the world around you. Some people call this awareness “mindfulness”, and it can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges. Learn more in Awareness for mental wellbeing.