The importance of wellbeing in one’s overall mental and physical health has been researched extensively. Studies have shown that higher levels of wellbeing are linked to improved mental health, lower levels of illness, and overall success. But how does one define wellbeing and, more importantly, can one’s overall sense of wellbeing be changed?
Wellbeing is a multidimensional construct and has been defined in different ways. Some have defined wellbeing as having high levels of positive affect, low levels of negative affect, and a high levels of life satisfaction. Others have stressed that wellbeing is more related to positive functioning and to the development of one’s capabilities and virtues.
Ryff’s (2014) multidimensional model of psychological well-being has perhaps received the most attention. According to this model, well-being is made up of six dimensions:
(1) autonomy: the ability to direct our own behavior and follow our convictions
(2) environmental mastery: the ability to effectively manage our daily activities to meet our needs
(3) personal growth: the process of developing our potential
(4) positive relationships: having secure and meaningful relationships with others
(5) purpose in life: having meaning and direction in our lives
(6) self-acceptance: the ability to have acceptance of ourselves, including both our good and bad Qualities.
All of these dimensions work together to represent wellbeing. In essence, wellbeing relates to having the physical, psychological and social resources necessary to meet our everyday challenges.
The good news is that skills that can improve your sense and wellbeing can be cultivated and learned. As Martin Seligman, who is the father of positive psychology, has said wellbeing is “not about avoiding life’s storms, but how to weather them better and emerge from them better off”.
Some of the ways at CITC which we can help improve your overall wellbeing include teaching you effective ways to manage your stress, mindfulness training, teaching you skills to help you improve the quality and quantity of your sleep, improved communication to help you develop meaningful relationships, and acceptance and commitment techniques that guide you towards living a meaningful life you value.
Mindfulness is the practice of maintaining awareness of your thoughts, emotions, physical sensations and the world around you with openness, curiosity, and without judgment. Being attuned to what is happening in the present moment has been shown to have many benefits, including stress reduction, improved relationships, less emotional reactivity, and improved focus and memory.
Mindfulness teaches you how to assess, interpret, and manage feelings and thoughts during stressful situations. These tools provide long-term support in various areas, including work, home, romantic relationships, social encounters, and more. Mindfulness has been practiced around the world for centuries. In the 1970s, Jon Kabat-Zinn was the first to integrate mindfulness into his work and developed a mindfulness-based stress reduction program for individuals with chronic pain. Since that time, research has supported the use of mindfulness-based interventions for various conditions.
The average adult human requires 6-8 hours of sleep every night. Unfortunately, modern Canadians often fall below this requirement line.
Losing sleep has a long list of adverse side effects, including:
Communication is the key to many aspects of life. Whether building a friendship or building a professional partnership, your ability to communicate can make or break your relationship efforts.
There are many reasons why people suffer from communication failure, including anxiety, depression, stress, and fear. For many, communication is an underdeveloped skill and one we often take for granted.
At the Cognitive & Interpersonal Therapy Centre, we work with people across Ontario to improve communication and interpersonal skills. By working with one of our therapists on your communication skills, you can improve self-esteem, confidence, public speaking skills, along with personal and business relationships.
Acceptance and Commitment (ACT) therapy, developed in the 1980s by Dr. Steven Hayes, is an empirically-based treatment that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies combined with behaviour change strategies in order to increase psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility is the ability to live life fully and in the present moment and to change behaviours based on one’s long-term values.