Five ways to wellbeing

Information about looking after yourself during challenging times including mental health support.


During challenging times, it’s really important we look after ourselves and those around us.

This includes our physical health and just as importantly, our mental wellbeing. Good mental wellbeing helps us to maintain our physical health and to make the most from life. It is important that we take time to do things that are good for our mental wellbeing, below are some suggestions.

Five ways to wellbeing is a way of making sure our minds and bodies remain healthy while we stay safe. These are:

  1. Connect
  2. Be active
  3. Keep learning
  4. Give
  5. Take notice

The Five Ways to Wellbeing are not new, you may have heard of them before – or you may find that you do them without ever having heard of them being called this. However, the way in which can do them has changed so we must look for new ways. Fortunately, there are lots of easy and free ways to still benefit from the Five Ways to Wellbeing from within your home.

See also Young People’s mental health support.

There is strong evidence indicating that feeling close to, and valued by, other people is a fundamental human need and one that contributes to us functioning well in the world. Social relationships and feeling ‘connected,’ with others is critical for promoting wellbeing and for acting as a buffer against mental ill health for people of all ages.

This could involve something as simple as setting a regular monthly catch up date with friends or family, calling in on a neighbour once a week for a cup of tea, or becoming more involved and engaged in the community by volunteering or joining a local activity group.

North Lincolnshire offers a range of activities and opportunities to increase social engagement and connectivity ranging from services such as; community hub activities, walking way to health scheme, carers support, befriending services, various volunteer opportunities, community projects such as Men in Sheds and local library services.

Can’t meet up in person? Making use of technology by regularly video calling or messaging can make you feel less isolated and stay safe.

There are lots of free apps and websites you can use such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, FaceTime, Google Hangouts, Skype and Zoom. These can be done if you have a smart phone, tablet or laptop with a webcam and many network providers are removing data usage restrictions.

Or you can simply pick up the phone and chat to keep in contact.

Walking the way to health

The Walking the Way to Health initiative aims to encourage you to walk in your own community and there are organised walks in destinations throughout North Lincolnshire. All led walks are free and most are no longer than three miles each.

All walks are led and supported by at least two trained walk leaders, one with first aid equipment, and are very welcoming to new attendees.

The scheme is volunteer led, and regular walk leader training takes place to allow for new volunteers to join the scheme and support the community by leading walks.

For further details of the time-tabled guided walks please visit the Walking the Way to Health website or if you have any queries please contact Christine Johnson, Health Walk Coordinator, 07717 586380. email: christine.johnson@northlincs.gov.uk

North Lincolnshire Community Hubs

In the Hubs there are a range of activities and sessions designed to improve health and wellbeing of individuals, such as social wellbeing activities like Knit and Natter, physical activity sessions, health and wellbeing checks, IT support, Adult Education learning opportunities and volunteering opportunities. Community hubs are designed around the Five Ways to Wellbeing core principles.

Further information is available on our Community Hubs webpage.

North Lincolnshire Libraries

Keeping connected via access to information in the local area and wider world in varying formats at your local library. Visit our libraries page for more details. You will be surprised what you can find in the libraries, including set up or join a reading group, research your family history, help to use IT equipment, online resources and much more.

Carers’ Support

Visit the North Lincolnshire Carers’ Support website for lots of advice, guidance and support for people in a caring role.

Age UK – Befriending Service North Lincolnshire

The Befriending Service is available to people aged 50+ living in East Lindsey, West Lindsey and North Lincolnshire who are at increased risk of loneliness or social isolation. The service may not be suitable for everyone and the service is offered depending on volunteers available in your local area.  The aim of the service is to build an individual’s confidence via social contact though the telephone. If you need further information please call 01507 524242.
On-line referral form and further service details on their website: Age UK Lindsey | Befriending Service

Volunteering in North Lincolnshire

You can find out information about volunteering on the volunteering page.

Men in Sheds

Provide community spaces for men and women to connect, converse, create and develop friendships to help reduce loneliness and isolation.

Winterton Shed, is based at: 8 King Street Winterton, Scunthorpe. North Lincolnshire. DN15 9RN. (on the street front near Tesco).
For opening times please call: 01724 786592 or email wintertonmins@gmail.com
Find on Facebook: www.facebook.com/wintertonmensshed

Being active and getting out in the fresh air is proven to support our wellbeing, participating in regular physical activity is associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety across all age groups.

Running, cycling and walking are great ways of keeping your body moving and North Lincolnshire offers a range of top quality green spaces and parks, cycle networks and walking paths to explore.

You can find details of cycle and walk networks and lots of ideas on the Keeping Active webpage.  If you are unable to leave your home there are lots of free indoor exercises online for all ages and abilities, a huge range can be found on Youtube.

You can find lots of ideas on the council’s things to do webpage from dance workouts to yoga. There is something for everyone.

The NHS Better Health website can help you improve your wellbeing by making healthier lifestyle choices. It has lots of great ideas and apps to help you get active. You will also find tools and support to help with quitting smoking and losing weight.

Sport England’s #Stayinworkout information has whole range of accessible on-line workouts to do in your own home with links to Les Mills, FiiT, Nike Training Club, Exercise for adults, kids and older adults and many being free, including exercise routines, low intensity options, core strength, yoga and Pilates and meditation options to explore.

This Girl Can website has some specific exercises you can do in your own home.

Joe Wicks has started some free exercise routines on his Youtube channel for those less mobile and also his daily PE routines. More details can be found here Part 1 and Part 2.

Couch25k – Podcasts for beginners and those wishing to maintain, may be useful as support by music and coach to help you feel like you’re exercising with someone.

The British Heart Foundation have some advice for exercising at home and it is easy and free, and still helps to control your weight and blood pressure, and reduce your risk of heart disease, as well as many cancers. Exercising at home doesn’t have to take much extra time. Maybe do 10 minutes in the morning and then 10 minutes in the afternoon.

Learning new skills, or rediscovering an old one, can make us feel more confident as well as be enjoyable. You could get creative with things you may have in your cupboards such as paints or knitting needles – it could be as simple as taking time to complete a crossword or word search, anything that encourages you to take time out and use your mind.

You can find lots of ideas on the council’s things to do webpage such as photography, virtual museum tours and British Sign Language.

You can sign up for a free distance learning course with the Council’s Adult Education and Community Learning service. From Principles of Business Administration to Understanding Nutrition and Health, there is something for everyone. You can find them on the Adult Education and Community Learning webpage.

North Lincolnshire Council’s Library service has a huge range of digital services such as free online magazines and e-books, you can find them on the council’s Library service webpages.

A range of free online course is available at The Open University  website which may be a great way to find out if you want to further your study in the future.

There are lots of free videos on YouTube that you can access to learn a hobby such as knitting, crochet or embroidery, just type in the search bar what you are looking for.

Many on-line arts and cultural organisations are placing their collections on-line and nature and natural history videos are available to re-connect with environments that may not be accessible on our doorstep:

  • BBC Culture in Quarantine – Creative activities, streaming of performances, poetry, ballet, music, film, art and crafts, cultural collections
  • Google Arts and Culture – Hidden Worlds and National Parks Digital Tours – The digital exhibit features five national parks, including Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Carlsbad Caverns National Park in New Mexico, Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah, Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska, and Dry Tortugas National Park in Florida.
  • Natural History Museum uk – Crafts and Activities online and Educational resources Including 360 – Nature walks, trails, fossil hunting sessions and panoramas of the world
  • National Museum of Natural History (USA) – Virtual tours of current exhibition collections
  • Edinburgh Zoo have live webcam footage of various enclosures to include the Penguins, Panda, Tiger, Koala and Rockhopper Penguin cams
  • The British Museum has virtual tour videos and audio descriptions of their artefacts connecting you to their Museums of the World collection looking at history of continents of the world.

Doing something nice for a friend, a neighbour or a family member can make you feel great. Just simply saying thank you or even being more involved in community and social participation through volunteering your time can be incredibly rewarding and helps to develop an enhanced sense of wellbeing.

The council have launched a volunteering page where you can find lots of local and national opportunities to help other people, particularly those who are most vulnerable. 

From befriending services to delivering shopping, there are lots of ways you can #DoOneThingNL in your local area.  Sharing it on social media can make you feel re-connected with your community.  

Taking notice means taking the time to pause to see the beauty around us, when on daily exercise this could be taking notice of nature, flowers, birdsong; it could be taking notice of the messages of support that people have displayed in their windows, or taking notice of other people that we see. Instead of rushing by, take the time to look and realise what you see.

Some of the support we rely on may have changed at the moment and it’s important we take notice of our own wellbeing to make sure we stay well.  It is important to remember that there is still support available to people who need it. 

Scunthorpe and District Mind have a website which you can check for the latest updates.  They are providing one to one appointments by telephone, and people can still call them and self-refer.  You can call 01724 279 500 and they will arrange an initial telephone assessment. 

Scunthorpe Samaritans have trained volunteers who are available to listen 24 hours a day seven days a week.  You can call 116123 for free or email jo@samaritans.org 

Suicide Prevention

Life is for everyone, and we can all take action to help prevent suicide. The Suicide Prevention page contains a variety of information about what to do if you, or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts or feelings, the warning signs, the support available – including crisis support and bereavement.

Doctors of the World are sharing coronavirus advice in 36 languages – produced in partnership with the British Red Cross, Migrant Help and Clear Voice.

Public Health England have released lots of useful information on mental health and emotional wellbeing at this time, you can find it on the Public Health England website. 

The Recovery College have released on line courses for adults, young people and children to help them cope during shielding and self-isolation.  You can find them on the Recovery College website. 

Having good mental health helps us relax more, achieve more and enjoy our lives more. Visit the Every Mind Matters website for expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing.

Rooted in mindfulness and involved in taking notice of your thoughts, feelings and acknowledgment of every-day activities visit the NHS Mindfulness webpage with further links to on-line courses and breathing / meditation sessions.

Young Minds have resources, information and contacts to help manage children and young people’s emotional well-being. You can find them on the Young Minds website. 

The Child and Adult Mental Health Service (CAMHS) have brought together lots of information for young people, carers and professionals to help support mental health and well-being. Visit the CAHMS Resourses website for more information.

There are lots of books for children and young people which tackle the difficult subjects of death, bereavement and loss. The Little Parachutes website have many listed and we have put together a list of suggested reading for children and young people which include the death of a parent/grand parent/pet etc

Men’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Directory

Public Health North Lincolnshire would like to shine a light on men’s mental health and wellbeing by sharing our Men’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Directory;  a useful resource to draw upon for signposting and raising awareness of the local support available for men.

Better Health – Every Mind Matters

  • Better Health-Every Mind Matters is launching a new campaign that encourages and helps us to be kind to our mind and heroes the small things we can do, which can make a big difference to our mental wellbeing
  • Making time for mental wellbeing self-care is important – and embedding these small things as part of your routine can help you feel better and more in control
  • These small actions can include:
    • Taking time to do mindful breathing by breathing in and out slowly
    • Planning an hour of screen-free time before bed
    • Reviewing your to-do list and breaking down your biggest tasks into smaller, easier-to-manage chunks
    • Taking a walk
    • Seeing or getting in contact with a friend or loved one
  • Better Health – Every Mind Matters website has lots of NHS-approved tips and advice to help you be kind to your mind
  • Get a free, personalised Mind Plan – a mental health action plan that provides practical tips to help you deal with anxiety and stress, boost your mood, sleep better, and feel more in control.

Parent and child looking at wild flowers

What is Live Well North Lincolnshire?

Live Well North Lincolnshire is an online information hub that provides information on a range of organisations, support groups, community groups, events, and activities that are available across the county.

With hundreds of services listed, Live Well is a wealth of information at your fingertips.