Our 4C Mental Health & Wellbeing model makes it easy for you to understand and meet the human needs of your people and ensure they feel healthy and balanced at work.

If you want your people to achieve optimal cognitive performance and productivity, then you must ensure they get all their human needs met at work.

Below, we look at the 16 sub areas within the Mental Health & Wellbeing model.

This glossary is a list of the different areas investigated as part of the Mental Health & Wellbeing survey, with explanations of what they are and why they are important to you and your employees.

The Mental Health & Wellbeing survey allows people to assess their own mental wellbeing and identify which aspects of their life are potentially hindering their mental health and happiness. The platform then provides employees with practical action plans and resources to enable and empower them to start improving their own mental wellbeing at home and at work, as well as give the organisation & managers an overview of which areas of wellbeing employees are struggling most with.

Own time

We all need privacy - time and space for ourselves- when we can stop, disconnect from our responsibilities, reflect, rest, and do things for ourselves! A human brain needs to be offline and rest at times. Some of us need more time alone than others. If we do not get this downtime our mind may get overloaded by the never-ending demands, and we start feeling stressed and anxious.

Sleeping

Getting the right amount of good quality sleep is essential in order to function and to stay healthy. How quickly we fall asleep and how well we sleep depends on how tired we are, how free our body is from stress and how clear our mind is from worries. Stress can make it difficult for us to fall asleep and can lower the quality of our sleep, making us feel tired and unmotivated in the morning. Learning to calm down and manage our worries helps us fall asleep easier and ensures good quality sleep.

Movement

Stress and anxiety symptoms are caused by our body’s natural survival mechanism trying to keep us safe by preparing us to run away from the danger or fight it. Without physical action our body’s stress hormones keep circulating inside our bodies, unused, causing havoc to our brain and body. We can burn off these unused stress hormones with any simple physical activity and gain more energy, optimism, and focus. If we find it difficult to motivate ourselves to be physically active, doing it with others and doing it regularly can help.

Emotional connection

We all need to have people in our life who accept us the way we are. To feel emotionally connected with others we need to spend time with likeminded people, who share the same attitude towards life, values, or interests with us, and who make us feel safe, appreciated, and supported. Spending time with people who don't understand us or respect our thoughts, can feel uncomfortable and make us feel stressed and anxious. Sharing activities with likeminded people creates a feeling of connection, and that has a positive effect on our mental health and well-being.

Receiving attention

All human relationships are based on attention exchange. To stay mentally healthy, we need to have equal and honest relationships that provide a good two-way communication, and allow us to receive and give attention in equal measures, making us feel that people are listening to us and paying attention to us. Relationships where we do not receive enough attention may be one sided and unhealthy, potentially making us feel insignificant, unappreciated, lonely, anxious, or depressed.

Giving attention

We need to equally give and receive attention. Spending time with others and paying attention to them creates a feeling of togetherness. Without that we may develop unrealistic thoughts, lose perspective, or worry too much, which can then lead to anxiety, and depression. If we do not give attention to others, we may end up focusing too much on ourselves. We may push people away and end up feeling lonely. When we learn to focus on others, it can minimise our own fears and anxieties about that interaction.

Belonging

We all have a strong, primitive need to belong and need social connections outside home life as they help us feel that we are part of a wider community. If we do not have social connections and do not have a feeling of belonging, we can feel isolated, rejected, and lonely, and can develop anxiety or depression, often without consciously knowing what is wrong. A happy life comes from having likeminded people in our life, taking part in life, and doing meaningful things with others.

Achievement

We all need to feel that we have done something useful every day, that we have achieved something. If we're not able to appreciate our own achievements, we may constantly worry about not being good enough, regardless of how much we actually achieve. This can lead to chronic stress, burnout, anxiety, and depression. By learning to acknowledge our own competencies and achievements, we can create an infinite supply of appreciation for ourselves. Although our sense of achievement must come from ourselves, it is helpful if we get acknowledgement from others.

Meaning

We all need a reason to get up in the morning and do things that make life worthwhile. Helping others and being needed creates meaning and purpose in our life. Without that life can feel empty, and we may feel lonely and depressed. When we help others or do something that is of value to others, we feel connected, useful, and appreciated. We forget our own problems. By helping others, we help ourselves. The more we help, the more we feel needed.

Emotions

In order to have a happy, well-functioning life, we need to learn to master our emotions, our mind, and keep calm. Our emotions are the driving force behind all of our behaviour. When we experience strong emotions, we can sometimes start acting without thinking and strong emotions such as fear, anger, anxiety, or depression can have a severe impact on our ability to think straight, make decisions, learn, remember, be creative, and deal with people.

Thinking

Our ability to think straight, focus and concentrate depends on how strong our emotions are at the time. When we feel strong emotions such as fear or anger, the part of the brain that controls those emotions takes over, and we often can't think straight. We need to lower those emotions and calm our mind. Our ability to focus and concentrate can also depend on our environment. When our environment is noisy, busy, or interruptive, our brain needs to continually analyse our surroundings, and cannot fully concentrate on the task at hand. We can improve our concentration by learning to keep our mind calm, environment quiet and train our brain to focus more effectively.

Physical health

Feeling that we do not have control over our body and physical health can be scary and easily impacts our mental health. The best way of managing situations where we are losing some control, is to focus on things we still have control over - our own thoughts, attitudes, and actions! When it comes to physical health, getting our basic physical needs met better, always makes us feel better.

Safety

Feeling safe is our most fundamental human need. We cannot be mentally well unless we feel physically/psychologically/emotionally safe in all our environments. Feeling constantly unsafe causes chronic stress, sleep problems, anxiety, depression, and physical illnesses. We need to learn to identify the sources of threats, get them resolved, or if nothing can be done, remove ourselves from threatening situations.

Free from worry

We all worry at times, especially when we do not have clear solutions in our mind. Constant worry can distort our sleep, be the source of anxiety and depression. Worrying is always pointless unless it produces meaningful action. The quickest antidote to worrying is to calm our mind, distract our thoughts, challenge our worries, and start taking practical actions towards solutions.

Control

We all need to feel we have control over what happens to us and around us. Without a sense of control, we may feel overwhelmed. Although we need to feel we have control over what happens to us and around us, we need to be realistic about things we can/cannot control. Trying to control things we have no control over is pointless and we may develop chronic stress, anxiety or depression. When we change our focus to things we can control, our mental health improves!

Respect

One of our most primitive human needs is to feel appreciated, valued and respected by others. If we do not feel appreciated, or have no one showing it to us, we cannot feel totally fulfilled and may start feeling rejected, worthless, scared, angry or depressed. Not everyone around us is able to show us respect and appreciation, and we must accept that. It is therefore vital that we learn to appreciate ourselves. For some people that comes easier than others, but we all can learn to acknowledge ourselves better – for what we are, what skills we have, and what we can do.

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