What is Wellbeing?

There are many people and organisations describing and defining wellbeing at the moment, have you noticed? So let’s discuss what wellbeing is…


What is Wellbeing?

Defining wellbeing is complex and an area that continues to evolve. Following are some definitions of wellbeing from a variety of sources:

Then, the following definitions go a little deeper, including –

  • Subjective Well-Being (SWB) was defined by Deiner (2009) as the general evaluation of one’s quality of life. The concept has been conceptualized as the three components: (1) a cognitive appraisal that one’s life was good (life satisfaction); (2) experiencing positive levels of pleasant emotions; (3) experiencing relatively low levels of negative moods (Deiner, 2009).
  • “Well-being is more than just happiness. As well as feeling satisfied and happy, well-being means developing as a person, being fulfilled, and making a contribution to the community” ~ Shah and Marks (2004).  
  • Headey and Wearing’s (1992) indicate that wellbeing is shown “as depending on prior equilibrium levels of wellbeing and of life events, and also on recent events.
  • Dodge et al (2012) – “as the balance point between an individual’s resource pool and the challenges faced”.


What Influences Wellbeing?

Basically every aspect of your life influences your wellbeing. Researchers investigating happiness have found the following factors enhance an individuals wellbeing –

  • an enjoyable and fulfilling career,
  • adequate money,
  • regular exercise,
  • a balanced diet (food and water),
  • sufficient sleep,
  • an intimate relationship with a partner,
  • a network of close friends,
  • a sense of belonging,
  • the ability to adapt to change,
  • a safe physical environment (home and environment),
  • a sense of purpose and meaning, and
  • all of the above factors are interrelated.

Over to You…

What Does Wellbeing Mean to You? Does it include your –

  • relationships (social)
  • emotions (emotional)
  • body (physical)
  • thoughts (mental)
  • finances (financial)
  • living environment (environmental)
  • spirit (spiritual)?

I would be interested to hear what well-being means to you, so feel free to comment below!

If you are ready to reclaim your courage and take the next step towards your freedom and opening your heart, why not join our Toolkit?


References –

Diener, E. (2009). Subjective well-being. The Science of Well-Being, 11-58.

Dodge, R., Daly, A., Huyton, J., & Sanders, L. (2012). The challenge of defining wellbeing. International Journal of Wellbeing, 2(3), 222-235. 

Headey, B. W., & Wearing, A. J. (1992). Understanding happiness: A theory of subjective well-being. Melbourne, Australia: Longman Cheshire. 

Shah, H., & Marks, N. (2004). A well-being manifesto for a flourishing society. London: The New Economics Foundation.


Website Page Reference –

Today 19/10/20, I updated this page. The majority of the information remained the same, however I have added the Dodge et al definition and diagram. Thanks in advance for honouring my work 🙂

Taylor, J. (2012) What is Wellbeing? [WWW] Available from: https://www.habitsforwellbeing.com/what-is-wellbeing/ [Accessed …….. ]


  • Chris Byers

    Reply Reply November 21, 2020

    Great content! This is exactly the sort of thing I was looking for. Thanks for your help 🙂

    • Jane

      Reply Reply November 22, 2020

      Glad it helped you Chris!

  • Sophie Hill

    Reply Reply September 7, 2020

    Great Post! I came across this whilst doing research into the wellbeing of our society since the outbreak of COVID-19. Our wellbeing has never been more important. Would be good to see an update on this regarding post-lockdown!

    • Jane

      Reply Reply September 12, 2020

      Thanks Sophie – will see what evolves. Be well!

  • Natalie

    Reply Reply May 5, 2020

    Dear Jane, I would like to reference this source in my paper I have to write for the university. Therefore I am wondering on which date you published it?

    Kind regards

    • Jane

      Reply Reply May 5, 2020

      Hi Natalie – thanks so much for your transparency and for honouring my work. I will also add this above now as well. The details to reference this page are below –

      Taylor, J. (2012) What is Wellbeing? [WWW] Available from: https://www.habitsforwellbeing.com/what-is-wellbeing/ [Accessed …….. ]

  • Lenka Filicka

    Reply Reply March 31, 2020

    Hello, I really like your article it is inspirational to me, i think well being is about state of your mind, ahen you are positive person, your day and life become better

    • Jane

      Reply Reply April 1, 2020

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts Lenka! Take care 🙂

  • Shaista Alidina

    Reply Reply August 10, 2019

    Well being means being productive and being happy.
    Being able to spread your happiness and remove negativity either from self or from others around you.
    Life gives us several opportunities to be productive and that’s when well being rises.
    When we thwart those opportunities (for any reason in your control or outside your control) that’s when well being drops down.

    • Jane

      Reply Reply August 29, 2019

      Thanks for sharing your insights Shaista!

  • Lost

    Reply Reply May 11, 2017

    Well being – something I have struggled with recently.
    Myself and the one I love were in a long distance relationship.
    The first 9 months were amazing – we talked of a future – our plans – I felt my life was mapping itself out in front of me.
    She was my everything.
    But long distances are hard – and somewhere in the last 3 months she lost her centre. Her well being.
    I didn’t hear what she was saying – and sadly I really didn’t understand. I started reacting and not listening.
    And so –
    I became so scared of losing mine – I think I became selfish and tried too hard – resulting in unsettling her even more.
    We snapped – she could see no way out – and I lost the love of my life – and with it my own complete well being.
    What I have learnt ?
    That we as a couple lost out wellbeing together – and rather than talk about it – resolve it and understand it – we tried to mask over it. It doesn’t work.
    If someone means so much to you – you need to tackle any problems head on. Openly and honestly.
    We were so happy. We were perfect – and then it went wrong.
    Lack of direction
    Lack of space
    Mutual boundaries
    And communication – honest and non reactive dialogue.
    For anyone who might be where I was –
    Please take what advice from this that you can – because I now take the long road ahead to try and find my own once more.

    • Jane

      Reply Reply May 13, 2017

      Thanks for sharing – there are many lessons we learn throughout life. I truly hope you discover your own wellbeing once more.

      Warm wishes, Jane

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