Welcome to the Wheel of Wellbeing (WoW) — a simple framework designed to improve 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 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!
This month’s bumper issue offers a kaleidoscope of ideas and activities from around the whole wheel.
Why not use these inspiring international days to create a focal point for wellbeing activities in your school, workplace or community.
International Ideas Month
“A mind once stretched by a new idea never regains its original dimension.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes
March is International Ideas Month. According to its creators, it is “dedicated to all ideas — large, small, great, not-so-great, past and current as well as ideas yet to come. Without constant new ideas, progress and people stagnate.” Everything we use, from mobile phones to safety pins, was once an idea. Maybe it’s not hard to have a great idea but turning it into a reality can be another thing. Here are nine habits to improve your ability to generate — and capture — valuable ideas.
1st March – World Compliment Day
If you want to have a positive impact on the world, giving a genuine compliment is a powerful and easy tool. Many of us underestimate the positive impact of kind words on others. Research has even shown that the brain processes verbal affirmations similarly to financial rewards! World Compliment Day is the ideal time to share that feeling of wellbeing with the people around you by giving a compliment to someone on this day, whether it’s verbal, a card or note, or giving thanks to a service person who might be doing a difficult front-line job.
3rd March – World Wildlife Day
A recent announcement by the Australian government made headlines around the world: koalas are now an endangered species across much of eastern Australia. But it’s not only koalas that are endangered. This year, World Wildlife Day draws attention to the conservation status of some of the world’s most critically endangered species of wild fauna and flora. With the theme of “Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration”, it challenges us to imagine and implement solutions to conserve these precious endangered species across the planet. Check out these ideas on how you can get involved.
13th-19th March – Sleep Awareness Week
18th March – World Sleep Day
Did you know that there are currently an estimated two billon people living with insomnia? Or that losing sleep can increase your appetite? These and other research gems and resources have been collated by the World Sleep Society to help us better understand the impact of sleep on our health and wellbeing. As part of Sleep Awareness Week, this year’s theme for World Sleep Day is Quality Sleep, Sound Mind, Happy World. Explore the Sleep Foundation website for ideas and information on how to make healthy sleep a priority.
15th March – National Napping Day
Even if you’ve had a great night’s sleep, have you ever had that experience where you’ve been working hard through the day, getting things done but as it gets towards mid-afternoon, your energy starts to flag, and your concentration starts to wander? A nap could be just the answer! And if you can’t nap, taking notice of what your body needs, slowing down and spending a few minutes on a relaxation or mindfulness exercise can make all the difference.
National Napping Day encourages people all over the world to take a little time out of the day for a much-needed rest. And as Thea O’Connor (wellbeing and productivity advisor and past presenter at the Happiness and its Causes Conference) says: “The power-nap is the quintessential renewable energy practice that we’d be mad not to embrace —for the sake of sustainable living and a sustainable future”.
Check out her website here for some great science-based information and resources on how to give yourself permission to “Stop, Unplug, Tune-in and Recharge, as part of a normal day’s work”.
20th March – International Day of Happiness
With our world facing unprecedented challenges as we continue to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, the International Day of Happiness invites us to ‘Build Back Happier’ and make people’s overall wellbeing our top priority. You can find out more about the history of the day and how to celebrate it here.
26th March – Earth Hour
27th March – Neighbour Day
This year, Neighbour Day in Australia celebrates its 20-year anniversary with the theme, “Connecting Communities for 20 Years”. Celebrations can happen anytime throughout the year, though Neighbour Day itself is celebrated annually on the last Sunday in March. Whether as an individual, workplace, community organisation or local council, you can download free resources here to get involved in building respectful relationships, sustainable connections and reducing loneliness in our communities.
Greater Good Science Center
A reminder of one of our favourite websites for all things related to the science of happiness and wellbeing. Why not sign up for their free self-paced online course that explores the roots of wellbeing and provides practical insights for improvement?
Tips for Sleep and Rest
If you’ve been tossing and turning at night and want some science-backed tips for sleep and rest, the Greater Good has curated some great articles here.
Find out how resting more can boost your productivity.
Why your brain needs more downtime
Concerned about the health and safety of yourself, family or friends?
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