At St Peter & St James Hospice, we’re passionate about helping people to feel calmer, more in control of their lives and more connected with the things that make them happy. Here, our expert team share their tips and tricks for boosting your overall wellbeing.
Connect with others
Strong, close relationships can create a sense of belonging and self-worth, provide an opportunity to share in positive experiences, as well as bringing emotional support when needed. We recommend regularly spending time with those you love or socialising with new people; you could arrange a family dinner, walk with a colleague on your lunch break, have a cuppa and catch up with a friend, or attend a local class.
Stay curious and keep learning
Research indicates that learning new things can help build our sense of purpose in life and increase mental wellbeing by boosting our confidence and self-esteem. While the idea of learning something new may sound daunting, there are simple ways to bring learning into your life. For example, you could bake a new cake recipe, visit a local museum or exhibition, or try out a new hobby.
Give to others
Doing things to help others positively influences our perception of ourselves and the world. Research has shown carrying out a simple act of kindness for somebody else stimulates the production of serotonin – the happy hormone – in both parties. You might even boost your immune system too! You could treat someone you love to lunch, lend a listening ear, or phone a friend for a catch up and let them know you care about them.
Spend time in nature
Here at the hospice we’re lucky to be surrounded by stunning gardens. Being in nature is proven to help people feel more relaxed: reducing anger, fear and stress, as well as contributing to overall physical wellbeing too. If you are able, try to spend a little time each day either walking in or observing nature. You’re very welcome to pop by and take a stroll through our beautiful, private woodland!
The endorphins the brain releases during regular physical activity can help to improve mood, energy levels and even sleep quality. They may also inspire increased self-confidence and help to keep your heart and muscles healthy too. If you are living with a health condition it’s always best to check with your GP what kind of exercise is most appropriate for you. If you’re looking to take on a new physical challenge this February, why not have a go at our Virtual Triathlon?
Talk about your feelings and experiences
It can be hard to talk honestly and openly, particularly if we are experiencing difficult emotions. However, talking can help us better acknowledge and manage our feelings. It can also leave us feeling more understood and supported. If you feel you have nowhere to turn or would prefer to confide in somebody outside your social circle, you could consider counselling or joining a local support group.
Be mindful as often as you can
Mindfulness is about being aware of thoughts and feelings as they arise, as well as reconnecting with our bodies and the sights, sounds, smells and tastes we experience. Taking time to focus fully on the present moment can help to reduce stress and anxiety. You could try practices such as yoga or guided meditation, or simply make a conscious effort to engage more with yourself and your surroundings as you go about your daily life.
Find out more about our Wellbeing services here.