A panel of scientists (I prefer the collective noun experiment but seeing as I just made it up…) has found that simple activities such as gardening or mending a bicycle, can help people lead more fulfilled and productive lives, and protect mental health. They’ve dolloped these activities into five categories, each with evidence of their success behind it. This group of scientists is part of a government think tank working in this instance on mental capital and well being. Oh. You might now be thinking, that’s handy, five steps to sanity to line up nicely with your five daily portions of fruit and veg. Well I agree that this kind of research is a little unusual but let’s leave the cynicism on the side for the moment with the sprouts and broccoli, and have a look at the five steps:
Connect – developing relationships with family, friends, colleagues and neighbours will enrich your life and bring you support
Be Active – sports, hobbies such as gardening or dancing, or just a daily stroll will make you feel good and maintain mobility and fitness
Be Curious – Noting the beauty of everyday moments as well as the unusual and reflecting on them helps you to appreciate what matters to you
Learn – fixing a bike, learning an instrument, cooking, the challenge and satisfaction brings fun and confidence
Give – helping friends and strangers links your happiness to a wider community and is very rewarding
I like these five steps. I see work and life as part of a wheel spinning truly on its axis. I see strong links between these and satisfaction for our customers, colleagues and others around us. What do you think? Perhaps I’m just not eating enough greens but I think there’s something here…
If you want to take a look at the detailed research and download the report, there’s something in there for all ages.