Learning something new, a skill, some new knowledge can be another tool to distract us from the stresses and strains of our daily lives. After reading the excellent book Sane New World by Ruby Wax, I also learned that it helps us create us create new neural pathways as past of something called neuroplasticity. Given our brains and nervous systems have a huge part to play in our health, this has got to be a good thing!
Like the other "ways" you need to pick something that interests you and might be relevant to you. This could be learning a new skill that enables you to live more efficiently, or it could be a new hobby. It also needs to be achievable, at least in bite size chunks. Setting up yourself to fail is not going to help your frame of mind.
I am certainly lucky with one of my hobbies, namely music. Playing music gives me the opportunity to learn a new song or technique pretty much whenever I want. I find it massively relaxing and grounding. As I mentioned above, though I do have to be realistic about what I learn. I know I am improving all the time, but I am not about to become a world famous musician anytime soon!!
I could list of hundreds of hobbies here, but I will leave this to you to think what might work. So have a think - is there something you have always wanted to do but haven't been able to make the time? Is it something that can help you achieve something, or enjoy learning?
Summarising the 5 ways to wellbeing
I try to incorporate the 5 ways into my daily life and tasks. Alongside my work tasks I put something in there that is for me. Of course this is helping me keep well, but I also find that by forcing myself to do something different away from my desk; when I come back to my work, tasks see easier and less onerus! It's weird!
You may also notice that it is very probable that an activity can tick more than one box. So going for a walk with a friend, ticks Connect as well as Be Active. Me learning a new song ticks keep learning and then playing with my band colleagues ticks Connect. I also find music very grounding, so that could tick Take Notice as well. I am sure you see the point. but even by ticking multiple boxes helps create positive feelings and thoughts.
I hope you have enjoyed my blog this week, and I really hope that it has given you ideas about how you might be able to improve and maintaining your mental and physical wellbeing.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Stay safe everyone.