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It’s More Important Than Ever to Build Your Well-Being Checklist

Leo Manzione

Do you feel yourself struggling? I just want to start by stating the obvious – if you are, that’s okay.

A lot of us are trying to find our footing during these unprecedented times. We’re in the midst of a global pandemic and it’s okay to struggle a bit!

I don’t know about you, but I can’t go online or turn on the TV without being bombarded with an insane number of updates – the state of the economy, the rising numbers of those infected, the struggles facing essential workers, people politicizing this crisis to fit their own agendas, …

It never seems to stop and it’s a lot to handle. The worst part is the feeling that it’s WAY out of my control.

I’ve had to stop and remind myself that there ARE things in my control and that I’m in charge of my response to this crisis: I can be there to support the business owners I work with as they adapt to the current climate; I can do my part to protect my community by social distancing; I can be the best fiance and cat dad possible throughout it all. The world is not just happening to me.

In order to perform at my best, however, I do have needs that need to be filled and prioritized.

But what are my needs? Some are obvious – yes, I think we’re all pretty aware that we need food and water to survive. But some of them are less obvious. For example, I know that I personally need a solid 30 minutes to wind-down before I go to sleep. I lie in bed and wear my stylish (okay, actually dorky) blue-light-blocking glasses, and close any loops that were left open during the day. This drastically increases the quality of my sleep. 

I developed a Well-Being Checklist framework to help you organize your thoughts and uncover what you need to be your best self – during this crisis and long after.

Let’s dive in.

Once you're no longer worrying about getting what you need, your productivity and effectiveness will increase drastically.

What are the things people in general need?

These can seem somewhat obvious – water, shelter, oxygen, hygiene, etc. – but it’s important to get these down. These are the foundation for everything else. Without these needs met, you cannot focus on more uniquely personal needs.

What do I need?

This is where you’ll take it a step further and reflect on what YOU need to be your most effective. These may not apply to everyone else, but they are intrinsically important to you.

Distinguish between wants and needs.

This is where you’ll go back over the needs you’ve listed and reflect on them further. Be truly honest with yourself and categorize them into wants and needs. Sometimes what we think of as a “need” is actually just a “want.” This distinction will help you prioritize in the next step.

Schedule it!

Actually designate time during your day to fulfill your needs. Do whatever you need to do to add it into your life – whether that’s adding it to a calendar, setting a reminder on your phone, or some other method – whatever works best for you. Once you’ve scheduled your needs, you can also schedule any wants that were uncovered in the previous step, as long as you have the bandwidth. If you don’t have the bandwidth for certain wants right now, that’s okay. They are something to work toward and look forward to.

It’s important to revisit this process in general as our worlds change and as we change. Right now, for example, with so many of us working from home, how we schedule these needs might change once things are more “normal.” But that’s okay. The process can be fluid and will get better with each iteration.

I hope this checklist is as helpful for you as it is for me.

If you’d like a PDF version of the checklist, you can download it HERE.

Until next time…

Stay safe,

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