‘Five ways to wellbeing’ was developed by NEF and is currently being promoted by Mind, the UK mental health charity. Simply put, it’s a framework to help us look after our mental and emotional health:

  • Connect – with other people, a fundamental human need
  • Be active – physical activity helps our mental and emotional state, as well as our bodies
  • Take notice – of what’s going on around you, now
  • Keep learning – learning new things helps keep us engaged and active
  • Give – doing something to help someone else makes us feel good

These activities have been proven to promote well-being and lift depression, and are simple things that we can do most days. They remind me of the mindapples approach I’ve written about before – using a short, manageable checklist to help us achieve some balance in our lives and to build and maintain our physical and emotional resilience. All good stuff.

I came across this at a World Suicide Prevention Day event that was hosted by Grassroots at The Synergy Centre in Brighton on 10th September. We ran a free safeTALK course in the morning for community members (funded by public donations) and then there were some guest speakers in the afternoon.

As well as ‘Five ways to wellbeing’ there were some other nuggets for me:

  • Video presentations from:
    • Sangeeta Mahajan – whose son died by suicide in October 2014 – her daily blog is very honest and touching.
    • Josh Quigley, The Tartan Explorer’ – a young man who survived a suicide attempt last year and is now cycling round the world on a global campaign to raise awareness of mental health and suicide prevention.
  • Live presentations from:
  • Hearing about the If U Care Foundation’s Inside Out Campaign which encouraged people to bring what’s on the inside out and show support by wearing their clothes inside out on the 10th September as a fun way to start what might be a tough conversation.
  • Launch of the Grassroots crowdfunding page which aims to raise £20, 000 to undertake some further development on the Stay Alive app. This app offers help and support to people with thoughts of suicide and also to people concerned about someone else. It was launched two years ago, has helped save lives and won awards, is free to download on Google Play and the iTunes App Store and well worth a look.

It’s all about caring for ourselves and each other in the best way we can.