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The Mental Wellbeing Quiz

Background
What is Positive Mental Health?

What is Mental Health?

The World Health Organisation (WHO) describe mental health as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.” [1]

In children, the WHO place an emphasis on developmental aspects of mental health, such as “having a positive sense of identity, the ability to manage thoughts, emotions, as well as to build social relationships, and the aptitude to learn and to acquire an education, ultimately enabling their full active participation in society.” [1]

There are many different ways of defining mental health, but one thing is clear – we all have mental health, just as we all have physical health, and it is important that we take time to look after our mental health.

What is Mental Wellbeing?

Mental wellbeing is how we respond to life’s ups and downs. Mental Wellbeing is not the absence of mental illness and it is not the lack of life’s problems, challenges or adversity.

It is normal for us to face problems, challenges and adversity and it is normal for our feelings and moods to go up and down as we respond and deal with them.

Mental wellbeing is about how we cope with the normal stresses of life in different situations.

Five Steps to Mental Wellbeing

The National Health Service (NHS) say there are 5 steps to mental wellbeing [2]. These are:

Step 1. Connect with other people

Step 2. Be physically active

Step 3. Learn new skills

Step 4. Give to others

Step 5. Pay attention to the present moment

These steps are important because trying them could help us to feel more positive and able to get the most out of life.

Social Connections

Humans are social beings, and it is important for our mental wellbeing to connect with others and to be part of society.  Our social connections include family, friends, colleagues, and acquaintances.  Relationships are helpful as they often create a sense of belonging and provide emotional support.

Getting started with connecting with other people

  1. Put 5 minutes aside to ask someone how they are
  2. Arrange to meet up with friends that you haven’t seen for a while
  3. Join a local group or club and meet new people in your community

Physical Activity

From our constantly pumping heart, to our expanding and deflating lungs, to the electrical and chemical activity of our brain cells and to our ability to control our limbs to run and jump.  Movement gives us a pulse, a spark of life.  Without the tiniest physical movement, we would have no human experience.  Physical activity is great for your biological health and raises your self-esteem.

Getting started with physical activity

  1. Go for a short walk at lunchtime
  2. Discover a physical activity you enjoy and one that suits you
  3. Play your favourite tune and dance

Learning New Skills

Learning throughout our life is an important part of maintaining our mental wellbeing.  Learning new ideas or techniques gives us the ability to nourish our mind, using skills such as original thoughts, imagination, or creativity.  It helps us to problem solve our own issues and change our mindset when the going gets tough.

Getting started with learning new skills

  1. Sign up for a class and learn something new
  2. Rediscover an old interest, such as gardening or cooking
  3. Take on a new challenge to make or fix something.

Giving to Others

We generally feel good about ourselves when we take the time to help others and it has been recognised to be an important factor to include for good mental wellbeing as it gives you the feeling of worth.  There are many ways to give to others such as volunteering, local community groups, or just helping a neighbour out occasionally. 

Getting started with giving to others

  1. Volunteer your time for a cause you are passionate about
  2. Spend time with someone who you know has been having a difficult time
  3. Fundraise for a cause that is close to your heart.

Being Mindful

Mindfulness is a word used to help you to stop for a bit and be fully aware of the present moment considering your environment and what you are doing.  Mindfulness improves your mental wellbeing by getting you to practice keeping in touch with yourself and the world you are in.

Getting started with being mindful

  1. Set aside time to practice mindfulness or take up yoga
  2. Take notice of how your friends of colleagues are feeling
  3. Spend time outdoors, enjoy the fresh air and notice what’s around you.

The Sixth Step to Mental Wellbeing

In addition to the 5 steps to mental wellbeing given by the NHS. We believe there is a sixth step which is just as important.

Step 6. The Self-concept

The Self-concept

The self-concept is a general term used to refer to how someone thinks about, evaluates or perceives themselves. To be aware of oneself is to have a concept of oneself. 

It’s important to have this understanding to enable you to develop your own resilience to life’s challenges.  This will positively help your mental wellbeing of knowing who you are.

Self-esteem – (also known as self-worth) – refers to the extent to which we like, accept or approve of ourselves, or how much we value ourselves.

Looking after your self-concept

The charity MIND puts our self-esteem at the heart of mental wellbeing [4]. They say that good mental health is when:

  1. You care about yourself, and you care for yourself.
  2. You love yourself, not hate yourself.
  3. You see yourself as being a valuable person in your own right.
  4. You judge yourself on reasonable standards.

The Aim of the Mental Wellbeing Quiz

The aim of the Mental Wellbeing Quiz is to provide a short questionnaire to help people monitor and track thier mental wellbeing.

The Mental Wellbeing Quiz enables people to monitor and track their mental wellbeing in six areas. These are: social connections, physical activity, learning new skills, giving to others, being mindful, and the self-concept.

References

Further Information

Information about the Mental Wellbeing Quiz can be found by following the links below

Coming Soon: The Mental Wellbeing Quiz: Data - Mental wellbeing as a function of self-report physical activity levels.

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