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For the Greater Good

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We’ve learned a lot about wellbeing in the past 18 months, one of the biggest lessons for me has been that its like oxygen, you don’t even notice its there until it’s not, then it becomes the only thing you can think about.

One of the most important things I’ve learned has also been one of the most practically useful and has helped me improve my sense of wellbeing enormously. I realised wellbeing works like a seesaw. To explain how, let’s set some foundations:

 

  • Wellbeing implies a sense of thriving, flourishing, feeling balanced and calm, contented and at ease with life.
  • Wellbeing is affected by many elements in our lives some of which support and some of which detract from our wellbeing.
  • Our wellbeing can be negatively impacted by events, challenges and experiences we encounter in our lives.
  • Our wellbeing can also be positively impacted by the various psychological, emotional, social and physical resources we can draw upon.

 

Now envision these as two sets of forces, stacked up on opposite sides of a seesaw. When your challenges outweigh your resources, the seesaw tips and your wellbeing reduces, when your resources exceed your challenges, wellbeing increases.

 

While this is an intellectually interesting insight, it has a profound practical impact, effectively doubling the options you have to enhance your wellbeing. It invites you to ask two questions:

 

  • What can I do to reduce or eliminate the detractors to my wellbeing?
  • How can I build the resources that help me enhance my wellbeing?

 

EEK & SENSE Partners have defined six core elements of wellbeing, based on evidence-based research, underpinned by 50+ years of business psychology and executive coaching experience. The six elements are incredibly useful for helping you understand where the greatest opportunities to build your wellbeing lie:

 

  • AUTHENTIC RELATIONSHIPS

Our relationships with our family, friends, colleagues and community

  • MEANING, PURPOSE & DIRECTION

Our overall sense of whether we are leading a ‘good and full life’ which holds meaning and purpose for us

  • RESILIENCE & EQUANIMITY

Our inner strength and emotional evenness

  • VITALITY & ENERGY

Our physical health, nutrition, exercise and sleep

  • BALANCE & BOUNDARIES

Our success in balancing the various demands placed on us in all aspects of our life

  • INTELLECTUAL ENGAGEMENT & FLOW

Our intrinsic interest and focus in the work we do

 

While these factors are independent and can be worked on individually, they work collectively pushing and pulling your wellbeing in different directions.

For example, I may feel while I’m working from home that I’m always ‘on duty’ and never switch off from work (balance & boundaries), and this is exacerbated when the cabin fever of lockdown starts to fray my interactions with the people around me (authentic relationships). Or a work assignment that seemed challenging but interesting (intellectual engagement and flow), can seem overwhelming when you’ve come down with a dose of the flu, have a bout of insomnia or haven’t left the house for a week (vitality and energy).

Ask yourself, which of the six elements of wellbeing are working for you and what can you do to enhance, amplify and increase these? Conversely, which of the six are challenging your wellbeing and what can you do to reduce these?

 

A co-ordinated approach that targets several of the core elements of wellbeing and works on addressing the things that both enhance and detract from your wellbeing – working both sides of the seesaw – is much more likely to help you thrive, no matter what the world brings your way.

 

Marshall Cowley
Senior Consultant

 

To find out how we can help you, please contact us at Dattner Group.