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Holistic wellbeing is essential for a healthy and productive life. We can think of wellbeing as being the sum of three component parts – a tripod if you will.

The three legs of the tripod are equally critical and if one breaks the whole thing comes crashing down.

 

Physical wellbeing

 

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The first is physical wellbeing. It was the Greeks who kicked off an obsession with human perfection – and it’s no surprise that Greece was the birthplace of the Olympics – the ultimate celebration of the body.

To look after your own physical wellbeing you can:

  • Get regular exercise – it can boost your self-esteem and can help you concentrate, sleep, and feel better
  • Eat well – so your brain gets the critical mix of nutrients it needs to stay healthy and function well
  • Get enough sleep – this helps regulate the chemicals in your brain and helps manage our moods and emotions
  • Get plenty of Vitamin D – and the easiest way to do that is to get some sunlight! Vitamin D is great for our bodies and brains

 

Mental wellbeing

 

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The second leg is mental wellbeing – it first referenced in 1843 by the American Psychiatric Association – only then it was referred to as “mental hygiene” – the idea of preserving the mind. 

You can take care of your mental wellbeing by:

  • Avoid alcohol, smoking, and drugs – these stimulants are likely to make you  feel more depressed and anxious
  • Talk about your feelings, especially when you’re feeling low or troubled. This is when good friends really earn their stripes!
  • Taking a break, sometimes all you need is a change of scenery to feel better 
  • Remembering that ups and downs are a normal part of life, as are feelings of sadness and joy, lethargy and excitement… life is both an emotional spectrum and emotional rollercoaster and no emotion or mood lasts forever

 

Financial wellbeing

 

Image representing financial wellbeing

 

The third leg of the tripod is the one most ignore – financial wellbeing

Despite a tonne of research that clearly proves that money exacerbates, and causes, mental health distress and impacts negatively on physical health – people still treat finance as an afterthought.

Our own research has shown that 67% of students surveyed who worry about their financial situation say this negatively impacts their mental health. This impact manifests in a lack of motivation to study and an inability to sleep and triggers feelings of depression, isolation, and hopelessness. 

You can take care of your financial wellbeing by:

  • Getting your budget sorted – that way you’ll know where your money goes rather than wondering where it went
  • Take control of your debt – know who you owe what, and what it’s costing you each month. And if possible move the most expensive debts to a cheaper option, like a 0% card if you can
  • Plan for emergencies – you can still check out the resources from national student money week which was all about planning for the unexpected. 
  • Boost your earning – cutting expenses is one thing but the best way to balance the books and build your financial future is to earn more. Treat yourself as an ever-appreciating asset!

If there’s one thing we’ve learned in the last 12 months it’s that we never quite know what’s around the corner, but we know that whatever it is will impact every aspect of our life so get all elements of your tripod sorted! 

 

Image representing young people happy

 

Further reading:

  • Top 10 Money Tips – Read on to discover how you can break bad spending habits and create new good money habits. How to manage money effectively, know where your money is going, create a budget, and pay yourself first.
  • The Budget Decision Tree – A step-by-step decision tree to help to examine your income and expenses and put a plan in place to balance them – or ideally have more income than expenses!