At a recent Wellness Day in Guildford’s GLive, I conducted a short survey of people walking around the stands. My first question was this: “you’re at a wellness event, how well do you feel today?”
The answer? Lots of five out of fives for bubbly, vibrant health. One person answered ‘perfect’, another ‘great’ which are responses to be proud of. It turns out you’re a healthy bunch. What is more, you’re destined for a long life.
Attitude is the key to longevity
For a research paper (1), when over-65 year olds were asked to rate their health, their answer is a key indicator of how long they’re likely to live. Given the choice of
· Very Good
Those who answered ‘Very Good’ were much more likely to be alive in three years’ time compared to those who answered ‘Good’. That’s not because they had an actual difference in their health. Lifestyle, activity levels and diseases were compared like for like.
It turns out ‘very’ is an important word.
So what’s stopping you?
These Wellness Day attendees have already got the attitude to take them far. So why did so many falter at the final question? I asked them to identify their biggest barrier to enjoying ‘greater health and wellbeing’.
No surprises for guessing the most popular answer was TIME.
The second most common answer was MONEY.
Neither of which need be a barrier to greater health. My experience as a practitioner is that small changes to existing daily routines can have a huge impact on people’s levels of health and wellbeing.
Winning the lottery is not necessary
There’s no need to win the lottery, hire a retinue of cooks and personal trainers and retire to the Caribbean for your health to improve.
“It’s the small things that count” was the message of my book that was given to all participants of the survey as a ‘thank you’. Now they’re all set to become an even healthier bunch!
(1) Ariyo AA, et al. Depressive symptoms and risks of coronary heart disease and mortality in elderly Americans. Cardiovascular Health Study Collaborative Research Group. Circulation. 2000 Oct 10;102(15):1773-9.