Boost your wellbeing

03 July 2023

Pegasus Bath Leat 150

Health and Wellbeing is at the forefront of our minds this Summer. Our team have collated a list of activities (that aren't diet and exercise!) that could benefit your mental health, add purpose to your life, and offer a little bit of much-needed TLC. 


1. Spend more time with others
There are lots of reasons why your social life might not be your number one priority right now. For example, maybe you’re hard at work pursuing an ambition or caring for a relative. Or perhaps you’re going through a tough time and are finding it difficult to muster up the motivation to meet your friend for a coffee. But spending time with others on a regular basis is important for both our physical and mental health. Experts tell us that face-to-face contact can reduce our stress and anxiety levels – both in the short and long term – and raise our confidence and self-esteem.

There’s also mounting evidence to suggest that socialising regularly can boost our brain health and reduce our likelihood of developing a range of conditions, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. Plus, it’s even thought to have a positive effect on cardiovascular health. Spending more time with others might mean being proactive and reaching out to friends and family to make plans, or saying yes to dinner with a friend even if you don’t really feel like it. More often than not, when you get home, you’ll be glad you went after all. It’s also common for us to go through times in our lives when we don’t have many people to turn to. Our living arrangements can have a significant impact on how (and how often) we interact with others. With this in mind, our later living communities are designed to bring our residents together. Not only do we run a wide range of activities, which are perfect for meeting new people, but spaces like communal areas and on-site restaurants are ideal for entertaining friends and family.


2. Unwind with a massage
From Swedish to deep tissue, there are many different forms of massage – all of which have different purposes and benefits. Some of the most common benefits include reduced feelings of stress, anxiety, and depression, increased feelings of relaxation, and improved sleep. Massage is also good for relieving muscle soreness, tension, and stiffness, as well as improving circulation and lowering heart rate and blood pressure. Scientific research even indicates it can have a positive effect on our immune system.

While you can find massage therapists at local salons, spas, and health clubs, experiencing the benefits of massage doesn’t need to be expensive. In fact, there are lots of resources available online. There’s also a wide range of products available to massage yourself if you don’t have a partner. There’s also a wide range of products available to help you relax and find relief at home through massage – from handheld massage guns to massage balls. At a handful of our later living communities – such as The Vincent in Bristol – massages and other beauty and therapeutic treatments can be enjoyed in the spa’s wellness rooms.


3. Spend more time in natural spaces
There’s nothing quite as uplifting and emotionally nourishing as spending time in nature. Scientific research suggests that being out and about in natural spaces can reduce feelings of isolation, plus, it’s even thought to boost our immune system, help us recover from illnesses faster, and increase our energy levels. Though, how much time do we need to spend in natural spaces to reap the benefits? A study from the University of Exeter found that people who spent 120 minutes in natural spaces per week were much more likely to report good health and psychological wellbeing than those who didn’t. So this could be a good goal to set yourself. Time spent in nature might involve a picnic on a beach, a cycle through the woods, or simply reading a book in your garden.

At Steepleton – our later living community in Tetbury – there’s plenty of natural space, including well-kept gardens and an outdoor swimming pond. Plus, it’s located in the heart of the Cotswolds amongst plenty of twisting walking trails, so your next nature fix is never too far away.


Final thoughts...

Our wellbeing is incredibly precious, so the importance of taking the time to do beneficial things for both our physical and mental health cannot be understated. Looking after ourselves extends past eating a balanced diet and doing plenty of exercise. It can involve a range of different activities; from practising mindfulness to help keep our stress and anxiety to a minimum, to spending time doing things that we find relaxing and invigorating – like getting a massage.