Welcome to the Wheel of Wellbeing (WoW) – a simple framework designed to improve people’s health, happiness and wellbeing by focusing on six areas – Body, Mind, Spirit, People, Place and Planet. This monthly newsletter provides a roundup of the latest wellbeing tips, activities, research and resources to inspire better health and wellbeing. Tap into them – for yourself, your families, workplaces, schools and communities – and help create a happier world for us all!
What could you do differently this year to bring even more wellbeing into your life and work, not just for January, but something that would stick throughout the whole year and develop into a healthy habit?
The start of the New Year is traditionally a time to reflect and reset ourselves, ready for the year ahead. This month we explore creativity and how to do things in new ways, while at the same time keeping a good balance in our lives. We also explore habits: how to form new ones and how to make them stick.
Why not use these inspiring international days to create a focal point for wellbeing activities in your school, workplace or community.
International Creativity Month
Although doing what is familiar to us can work well, in these ‘VUCA’ times of change and the challenges of the pandemic, it’s more important than ever to build our creativity, innovation and flexibility muscles.
Photo by Rachael Gorjestani on Unsplash
Creativity can be considered “the ability to bring something original and valuable into the world.”It is also one of the universal Character Strengths, so we know that it’s not just a trait that a privileged few are born with, but a strength that can be fostered in us all.
There is growing evidence that not only can the creative arts be used to develop and nurture our emotional and mental wellbeing, but they also create conditions for mindfulness and ‘flow’, that state of optimal attention and engagement. We don‘t have to wait for inspiration to strike either — we can learn to ‘hack the Zone’ and create more conditions for flow in our lives and work.
Get a Balanced Life Month
Balance your Wellbeing
Did you know that Australians work more hours than people in most other developed OECD countries, with less time to look after themselves? So, a great way to start the year can be to revisit the Wheel and consider the balance in your life and work. Are there areas where you are doing well and would like to do more? Or gaps that you’d like to try and fill? You might like to use the WoW Smart Planner (created by WoW practitioner Denise Svane) to rate how you are doing in each segment of the wheel and create some small goals for yourself for 2022.
The Art of Doing
Or, it may be that one of the best things you can do is niksen: the Dutch art of purposefully doing nothing! Rather than mindfulness, it’s more of a short
period of mindless relaxation to help you ‘downshift’ and it may help to decrease anxiety, boost productivity and bring creativity to the surface. So why not try building a bit of ‘niksen’ into your life this year.
Habits of Success
As part of gaining and maintaining balance, you might find yourself wanting to start some new habits – or break some old ones! But what’s the best way? That’s exactly the question that B.J Fogg, behaviour scientist at Stanford University, asked himself over 10 years ago. His research revealed that to design successful habits and change your behaviours, you need to:
1. Stop judging yourself.
2. Take your aspirations and break them down into tiny behaviours.
3. Embrace mistakes as discoveries and use them to move forward.
He and other researchers also recommend that you:
It’s not about willpower and it doesn’t have to be hard, so why not set yourself up for success with a new ‘tiny habit’ or two this year.
Do you sometimes think that you’re not really one of those ‘creative types? Think again and watch this inspiring, humane TED talk from David Kelley, founder of the design firm IDEO, on how to build your creative confidence
Fostering Creativity: Some great tips for
boosting your creativity skills from the Positive Psychology Program.
How creativity and hobbies can foster your wellbeing — more great tips.
Work Life Balance/Work Life Integration: Check out this article on Work Life Balance and Work Life Integration and why it’s important.
How habits are formed: Learn more about how habits are formed and explore some tools and resources to help you break negative habits and form new ones.
Top 2021 insights into the ‘science of a meaningful life’: The Greater Good Science Centre has curated their most provocative and influential findings from 2021.
Please feel free to use all or parts of this newsletter for your websites, blog, social media, newsletter or other communications to inspire your group members