Five ways to feel happier and healthier - from Milton Keynes Council

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A campaign to encourage people in Milton Keynes to take simple steps proven to help people feel happier and healthier is being launched by the council this month.

Called ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing MK’, it encourages people to build five practical, straightforward steps into their daily life which - according to research  - improve feelings of wellbeing, may help reduce anxiety and depression and could lead to them living 7.5 years longer.

From now through to next March, MK Council will work with partners including the NHS, Community Action MK, AgeUK, MIND and Carers MK to promote a range of ideas and activities on the following Five Ways to Wellbeing:

November: Connect: with the people around you, friends, family, neighbours and colleagues

December: Give: volunteer, help a neighbour, a friend – or a stranger! Acts of kindness are their own reward – pay it forward

January: Be active: Get walking, join a gym, start swimming, go for a bike ride or find ome other physical activity that suits your level of mobility and fitness

February: Keep learning: Try something new – learn a new language, pay a visit to your

local library – it’s free!

March: Take notice: Be curious, take an interest. Being aware of the world around you and what you are feeling. Director of Public Health, said: “The mental health and wellbeing of our local residents is a priority for us. We want to help people to understand the simple steps they can take to make a positive difference to their lives.

Director of public Health Muriel Scott (pictured) said: “Building the 5 Ways to Wellbeing into everyday life is proven to improve feelings of wellbeing and may even ward off mental health problems like anxiety and depression which affect one in four of us.”

Ms Scott added: “The first of our themes is connecting with other people. There is a lot of truth in the old adage ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’ so throughout November set aside some time to connect with the people around you, with family, friends, colleagues and neighbours.

“At home, work, school or in your local community, think of these connections as the cornerstones of your life and invest time in developing them. Building these connections will support and enrich your every day.”

To find out more about 5 Ways to Wellbeing MK visit www.milton-keynes.gov.uk/5waysmk

Look out for more information on Milton Keynes Council’s Twitter and Facebook pages over the coming months.