In recent times, there has been an increasing awareness of the importance of safeguarding personal well-being, and having a bit of what is referred to as “self-care.”
The thing is, this emphasis on self care and personal wellbeing hasn’t caught on with guys nearly as much as it has with the ladies.
Guys often put themselves under a lot of stress, and frequently end up in situations where they end up feeling as though they don’t have the ability to maneuver their circumstances in a more balanced and harmonious direction – never mind taking a step back and actively prioritizing personal well-being.
Between the various frustrations that every day life can throw up, including things like car accidents and breakdowns, that may require a car accident lawyer, work stress, and all sorts of other things, it seems pretty clear that a lot of guys out there could do with paying more attention to their personal well-being.
Here are a few tips for enhancing and safeguarding your well-being as a guy.
Make sure that you are properly balancing work with play
Just about everyone wants to put their best foot forward in a professional context, and to excel in their career.
And it’s not exactly a surprise, or a secret, that excelling in your career requires hard work, and a significant investment of time, dedication, and focus.
At the same time, it can be a real problem if you end up in a situation where you are “living to work,” as opposed to “working to live.”
Even if you’re building your own business, and even if you genuinely get a lot out of what you do professionally, it’s important to strike the right balance between work and play, otherwise you’ll massively increase your chances of falling victim to burnout, and feeling as though your life and priorities are out of balance.
Regularly check in to make sure you are focusing on things that really matter to you, as opposed to just hunting status indicators
When all is said and done, no one has an infinite amount of time at their disposal that they can use to undertake all the different projects they could potentially work on, while simultaneously trying out different hobbies, building businesses, getting great shape, raising a family, and so on.
At some point, life really does end up becoming a matter of priorities.
You can certainly achieve all sorts of incredible things over your lifetime if you balance things out properly, plan and prioritise effectively, and so on.
At the same time, however, you really need to be able to identify and focus on those things that really matter to you the most, and that seem the most meaningful.
Often in life, we end up chasing certain status indicators that might not actually matter very much to us at all on a deeper level.
Things like a flashier car, a more senior job title, a bigger house, et cetera.
While there’s nothing wrong with any of these things in and of themselves, they rarely – if ever – end up being the kind of things that make life truly meaningful.
Make sure to dedicate most of your energy, time, and attention to pursuing those things that are genuinely meaningful to you, as opposed to those which are just relatively hollow status indicators.
Have some goals in place that you are pursuing, instead of just going with the flow
The idea of “going with the flow” sounds nice, and it implies living an easy-going life, where you don’t let too many things bother you or bring you down.
It also implies being flexible, spontaneous, and open to new experiences.
All of those things are great, but if you “go with the flow” too much – in the sense of not steering the ship of your own life enough, setting yourself goals, and managing your habits, and so on, you may easily end up in a place where you feel powerless, frustrated, and lost, at one point or another.
Instead of just “going with the flow,” set yourself certain goals that you genuinely value and want to achieve, and go after them in a focused and intentional way.
Among other things, this may include writing up an action plan and setting up a daily habit tracker to ensure that you’re always moving in the right direction, day by day.
Taking steps to proactively move towards valued goals and results can be a deeply life affirming thing, and can help to build confidence and restore a sense of agency, hope, and possibility.
Have a community of people who you regularly do things with – and find one if you don’t currently have one
As human beings, we are all naturally social creatures, and even introverted individuals need a certain baseline level of human companionship in order to truly thrive to the greatest possible extent.
When it comes to taking care of your well-being, having a group of people (ideally who you like) to do things with on a regular basis is extremely important.
This may mean hanging out with your family more, making contact with old friends who you have drifted apart from, convincing your existing friends to try out new pastimes or activities, and it may also mean going out of your way to find new groups of people to interact with and do things with on a regular basis.
The specific activities you engage in together aren’t really the point here – just do things that you enjoy, whether that’s discussing books or running an obstacle race, but do these things in the company of other people and deepen and strengthen your basic human connections.
Generally speaking, your well-being is always going to be much, much higher if you have people that you care about and regularly spend time with, who also care about you.
As the author Johann Hari put it in his book “Lost Connections,” it’s the connections that we have with other people that have some of the most central impact on our overall sense of well-being.