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!
“Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness”
Why not use these inspiring international days to create a focal point for wellbeing activities in your school, workplace or community.
1st-5th November – International Stress Awareness Week
3rd November – International Stress Awareness Day
International Stress Awareness Week was created in 2018 to raise awareness about stress prevention, particularly in the business world, and this year marks 23 years since the establishment of Stress Awareness Day, the highlight of the Week, in 1998. International Stress Awareness Week has developed as a major annual event focusing on stress management and campaigning against the stigma associated with stress and mental health issues.
13th November – World Kindness Day
The purpose of World Kindness Day, according to the World Kindness Movement, is “to highlight good deeds in the community focusing on the positive power and the common thread of kindness which binds us.” Kindness Day first began in 1997 when a collection of humanitarian groups came together and made a ‘Declaration of Kindness’. The current trend for the day is to commit three random acts of kindness for others, whether giving a compliment, holding open the door for someone, donating to charity, anything! Check out some great ideas to inspire kindness here.
16th November – International Day for Tolerance
“What is tolerance? It is the prerogative of humanity. We are all full of weakness and errors; let us mutually pardon each other our follies – it is the first law of nature.”
The UN International Day for Tolerance is about fostering mutual understanding among cultures and peoples to strengthen tolerance. It encourages us to recognise the universal human rights and fundamental freedoms of others. People are naturally diverse; tolerance can ensure the survival of mixed communities in every region of the globe. This year’s focus is on climate change. Download more information and free resources from toleranceday.org
21st November – World Hello Day
World Hello Day encourages us to take the opportunity to simply greet ten people, and to recognise how important communication is in our daily lives and how this helps to preserve peace. World Hello Day was begun in response to the conflict between Egypt and Israel in 1973. Since then, it has been observed by people in 180 countries.
And the Winner is…
This month we shine the Spotlight on Mentally Healthy Schools. Huge congratulations to Mountain Creek State School winner of the 2021 Queensland Mentally Flourishing Schools Award.
Left to Right: Ivan Frkovic, Queensland Mental Health Commissioner; Lydia Najlepszy, Principal Adviser, Mental Health, Department of Education; Lesley Kelly, Jenny Baker, Louise Blanch, Mountain Creek SS; Georgina Livingstone, Manager ‘Be You’, headspace (Award sponsor).
Mountain Creek SS put mental health and wellbeing at the centre of school decision making and practice by integrating the WoW framework, activities and resources into the curriculum, teaching practices and wellbeing and behaviour management policies.
The team were supported By Lydia Najlepszy, the North Coast Principal Advisor for Mental Health and an Advanced WoW Practitioner. Lydia said “the Mountain Creek WoW team completed their WoW Ed Intensive training in 2019 and have worked persistently to embed WoW through classroom activities, staff PD and as part of special events to increase the resilience and flourishing of staff, students and families. I have also been delighted to continue to work with the team in the delivery of WoW training to staff across the North Coast Region for both Introductory and Intensive WoW training projects, building capability across many schools for wellbeing.”
The award is worthy recognition for all the hard work, persistence and determination of everyone involved.
In other news…
The Happy Planet Index (HPI)
The HPI has been updated! The new website was launched on 25 October. The HPI measures what matters: sustainable wellbeing for all. It tells us how
well nations are doing at achieving long, happy, sustainable lives at at what cost to the environment. We absolutely love this resource it’s a great tool for starting conversations about how can we live good lives that don’t cost the Earth. So which country achieves the highest level of happiness and wellbeing with a low carbon footprint – Costa Rica. It tops the index for the forth time in a row! Why not check out where your country ranks in the HPI? You can even take your own personal HPI test and find out whether the way you live your life makes you a ‘natural citizen’ of Vanuatu (#2) or the USA (#122).
May the flow be with you
Some sad news: Professor Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the founding father of Flow Science and Positive Psychology, passed away on 20th of October 2021, at his home in Claremont, California. This summary of his life and contribution was crafted by his son, Mark.
Compassion is the inner state that can lead us to do acts of kindness – and it’s a skill that can be learned just like any other skill. Learn the six habits of highly compassionate people from the Greater Good Science Center.
Kindness.org: some tools to build a kinder world
Research-based benefits of kindness and compassion from the Australian Government backed ‘Health Direct’ website
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