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Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements Hardcover – Deckle Edge, May 4, 2010
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Why It Pays to Give a Damn: The Business of Wellbeing
-- From CNBC (read more: cnbc.com/id/37149447)
"The Gallup recommendations take immediate gratification and turn it on its head, making short-term satisfaction an ally rather than an enemy." --The San Francisco Chronicle
"the Wellbeing website...is as addictive as crack" --The Huffington Post
From the Inside Flap
Their groundbreaking research reveals how organizations can help employees boost their overall wellbeing -- from their satisfaction with their careers to their financial security and level of community involvement. After conducting this extensive study, Rath and Harter discovered that much of what we think will improve our wellbeing is either misguided or just plain wrong. When striving to improve our lives, we're quick to buy into programs that promise to help us make money, lose weight, or strengthen our relationships. While it might be easier to treat these critical areas in our lives as if they are independent, they're not. Gallup's comprehensive study of people in more than 150 countries revealed five universal, interconnected elements that shape our lives: Career Wellbeing, Social Wellbeing, Financial Wellbeing, Physical Wellbeing, and Community Wellbeing.
Wellbeing: The Five Essential Elements provides you with a holistic view of what contributes to your wellbeing over a lifetime. Written in a conversational style, this book is filled with fascinating research and innovative ideas for boosting your wellbeing in each of these five areas. As a complement to the book, you'll have the opportunity to use Gallup's online Wellbeing Finder to track and improve your wellbeing. By the time you finish reading this book, you'll have a better understanding of what makes life worthwhile. This will enable you to enjoy each day and get more out of your life -- while boosting the wellbeing of your friends, family members, colleagues, and others in your community.
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And one of the things that I majorly disagree with is how career well being impacts other aspects of life.I think that there are healthier workplaces than others. However I have also experienced that in my more negative work situations it is also about the mindset that you have. Ie..I can't control how much money I make but I can control how I spend the money I earn. I may be upset with a situation at work but how do I make sure I don't take it out on my husband or my parents. And when I have been unemployed or underemployed I am better with exercising daily.
In that regard the mindset about the situation one is in speaks more to a person's overall well-being than the situation itself. This makes me think that Mindset by Carol Dweck the best book I've ever read in this genre.
Don't get me wrong there are some good points in this book but if I could get my money back for this book I wouldn't complain. I found that Rath's Strengths Finder was a better book.
I'm 1 week into the process and they are correct - the process of tracking and measuring encourages you to reflect and inquire into why the numbers you get are the way they are and make the appropriate changes in your life. With its focus on the 5 elements, I personally would recommend referring to other books to do any required deep dives. Here are some examples (some Gallup published, others aren't):
1. physical - Eat Move Sleep is my current bible (published by Gallup). These 3 areas can be dived into further: eat:The Pleasure Trap; sleep: The Twenty-Four-Hour Society; move: currently reading Sweat Your Prayers with my bias towards dance as my "fun" way to move :)
2. social - Vital Friends is a Gallup-published book. Lots of excellent relationship books out there - find one that works for you. Tribal Leadership is excellent when you are ready to shift your focus from creating dyads to triads in your life.
3. financial - balancing common sense with Secrets of the Millionaire Mind and principles of The Zeitgeist Movement Defined and The Best That Money Can't Buy. BOLD is excellent if you are an entrepreneur interested in "exponential thinking"
4. career - Take the Clifton StrengthsFinder 2.0 if you haven't already. It will not only impact your career, it will impact the 4 other areas of well being tremendously. Business Model You is excellent for those of you interested in applying entrepreneurial thinking to your own life.
5. community - Your deep dive here really depends on the type of contribution you wish to be to your community. Is it philanthropy or "straight up" volunteering or something else? The training provided in the Wisdom Area at Landmark Worldwide is an excellent foundation (note: not a book - sometimes it requires actually getting your head out of books, out the house, and be with your community! :)
The 5 elements is a research-driven framework that speaks to all walks of life. If you can see it as such, you'll find the book creates focus and may transform the way you see your life - more importantly, it creates a context to communicate your well being needs and listen for the well being needs of others.
Revision: after 1 year of using this book & online resource to track my well-being, I can honestly say this had a tremendous impact on me. I will recommend it to friends and colleagues alike. I wish there were translations in other languages - I would like to share with my international colleagues as well.